What Apple Can Learn from Google's Big Announcement

Apple had its event earlier this month and yesterday it was Google's turn. The tech company took full advantage and rolled out several new and significant products. The low-cost Chromecast family of TV streaming devices received a more stylish hockey puck sized device with new colors (red or yellow in addition to basic black) plus an audio-only device dubbed Chromecast Audio that could let users create their own, cheaper SONOS style whole house audio system.

Chromecast

Android Wear, the name for a variety of devices from a variety of manufacturers, was updated and Google made a big deal about the differences between their offering and Apple. Obviously, the devices come in different shapes and sizes. Several vendors including Motorola, LG, Huawei, and even Samsung now offer circular watches. While the choice of a rectangular or circular watch is nice for consumers, it's another fragmentation point for app developers. A distinct advantage to Android Wear is the ability to always tell the time. The Apple Watch conserves power and only shows the time when it detects wrist movement. The Apple Watch doesn't even let you keep Nightstand Mode on while it's charging.

Google is not content to make just the Android operating system. It also makes Android phones under the Nexus brand. Although technically, it outsources that to Android device manufacturers. While Google's efforts have often been overshadowed by Samsung, its newest phones up the ante. LG makes the Nexus 5X and Huawei makes the Nexus 6P. Both are high-end devices with screens of 5.2 and 5.7 inches respectively. Both models feature a fingerprint sensor (in the rear) with 6 millisecond response time. The 6P has an all metal body and starts with 32 GB of memory. Are you listening Apple? 16 GB is too little these days.

USB C

The Nexus phones also use the newer USB Type-C connector just like Apple's latest Macbook. Google claims the port can charge twice as fast as Lightning. USB-C will be the standard port for Android devices, over time, and eliminate the frustrations of the microUSB port which had to be inserted one way only. With USB-C, the cable is reversible, just like Apple's Lightning port.

Pixel C

Google also announced the Pixel C which is similar to their Chromebooks, but it runs Android and has a detachable keyboard. The build quality is impressive, but after a major push for $200 Chromebooks in school, it might be a hard sell to get users to switch to a $499 Android "PC" and that doesn't include the $149 keyboard.

 

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Todd Bernhard's picture

Author Details

Todd Bernhard

Todd Bernhard is a bestselling (6+ million downloads) award-winning (AARP, About.com, BestAppEver.com, Digital Hollywood, and Verizon) developer and founder of NoTie.NET, an app developer specializing in Talking Ringtone apps including AutoRingtone. And his profile photo is of the last known sighting of Mr. Bernhard wearing a tie, circa 2007!

An iPhone is almost always attached to his hip or in his pocket, but over the years, Mr. Bernhard has owned an Apple Newton, a Motorola Marco, an HP 95LX, a Compaq iPaq, a Palm Treo, and a Nokia e62. In addition to writing for iPhone Life, Mr. Bernhard has written for its sister publications, PocketPC Magazine and The HP Palmtop Paper.