Holy Mac Baiters, Batman. John Dvorak wrote something that’s difficult to disagree with.
The world has stopped turning, hell hath froze itself over, Bill Gates always tells the truth and loves the Mac, Michael Dell is thinking about giving back all his money.
Is it possible for admitted Mac baiter, prognosticator supremo, that the man who says OS X just feels mushy, can pick up on a universal truth?
What universal truth is that, Miss Kate? How about this? John Dvorak figured out that the cell phone companies don’t like competition. Who tipped off the guy to that news flash?
Here’s what John says is happening in the telecommunications world.
Come on, folks. Those are gems for John. Has someone shown him the light? Is he about to go techno postal on us and kill off his bias, too?
What John is writing about should be obvious, and probably is, even to Joe Average and his love for all things Microsoft. John thinks the cell phone companies are trying to undermine use of WiFi. Well, “duh” John.
In a somewhat elaborate and complicated method of reasoning, even using the phrase, “Let’s cut to the chase,” John thinks the average internet user and cell phone user doesn’t understand the differences in the technology that lets a cell phone surf the net, and lets their Windows PC surf the net, assuming they’re pretty much the same.
What’s sad about that observation is paramount on two fronts. The first is that John is correct and says so publicly, assuming average PC users and cell phone users don’t read his column (they don’t read). The second is that most of us would agree with John.
Of course, we could say that the former is a first, and the latter is pure coincidence, and that it had to happen someday. It did.
The premise of John’s argument is pretty much spot on. Cell phone companies don’t like public access WiFi, especially if it’s free. John figured out that the cell phone companies charge a lot for wireless internet access which remains slow compared to most WiFi connections, which are usually much faster and cost less.
He also figured out that WiFi connections, especially municipalities which are vying for free WiFi that covers a whole community, could spawn the use of WiFi phones with, say, built-in Skype connectivity.
Such competition would be bad for cell phone companies, right? You know that. I know that. Cell phone companies know that. Now John nows that.
Here’s my example of a future I’d love to see, and it didn’t come from John though it appears he would probably agree that this is a good idea.
Apple’s upcoming iPhone is stuck with Cingular cum AT&T for a couple of years. Some of us hate AT&T and that could be a deal breaker for the privilege of owning an iPhone.
What if, and it’s only a drink inspired prognostication from a Manhattan Macophile of Scottish and Puerto Rican descent, mind you, but what if Apple released a high end iPod with that slick multi-touch interface and, drum roll, please—WiFi capability.
That’s WiFi capability with, say, oh, I don’t know… could it be something like… Skype built in? With a camera? Making it a camera phone over WiFi? With audio and video and chat? And, don’t forget that iPod part.
Now, what’s that little baby worth to you? It’s worth enough to make you forget that John Dvorak finally was right about something, even if it was so obvious that Alaska’s Senator Ted Stevens could have figured it out, if he was conscious.
What do you think? John Dvorak’s miracle pronouncement aside, what’s a WiFi iPod worth and what does it need to make you buy one instead of an iPhone?