According to SplatF Amazon’s new Kindle Fire is their best-selling electronics device, even though it’s only available for pre-order. However, what surprises me is this:

The new $79 Kindle is no. 2, and various Kindle models actually make up the top 12 gadgets on Amazon right now.

The Kindle is available in three versions, the color-display tablet called ”Kindle Fire”, the touch screen eReader ”Kindle Touch” and the no-touch but cheap ”Kindle”. The $79 model that Dan Frommer mentions is the one that’s basically the same old Kindle as before, i.e. just a cheap eReader without touch and likely with crappy controls.

Based on this I guess that a lot of Kindle customers are very price-sensitive, so it’s likely that even the Fire will compete on price rather then features.

Next week (Tuesday, to be specific) Apple will host an iOS-related press event. As far as we all know they will likely talk about the finished version of iOS 5 and reveal one or more new iPhones. There has been a lot of speculation over what the new iPhone(s) will be like. A popular theory is that there will be two new versions, one brand new iPhone 5 and something that is more like an evolution of the iPhone 4. An earlier theory said that the new iPhone would just be an updated 4.

Both these theories have given wind to the idea of an ”iPhone 4S”, much like the 3GS which was a beefed-up 3G. I’ll go on record and say that there will not be an iPhone called the 4S. The only reason the 3GS was called that was that it was the third iPhone and the second one already had the number three in it.

  • The first iPhone was simply called ”iPhone”.
  • The second iPhone was called the ”iPhone 3G”. (Because the original one didn’t have 3G.)
  • The third iPhone was called the ”iPhone 3GS”. (Yeah, sure, ”the S is for speed” but the only reason for the extra letter was because they couldn’t call it the ”iPhone 3”, since no real customers would be able to remember the difference between that and the 3G.
  • The forth iPhone was called the, wait for it, ”iPhone 4”.

So my guess is that if there is just one new model it will be the iPhone 5, whether it’s a ”revolutionary” update or just a beefed-up 4. If there will be two models, they will both likely feature the numeral 5 in their name.

Now, let’s se if Apple proves me right or wrong.

The iteration of this sites design is slowly progressing. Out of the four points I presented in my original post about the design update, one is now complete and the others is in progress.

  • Take unnecessary text out of the main content area and move it to the sidebar. (in progress)
  • Make sure the content of the sidebar is relevant. (in progress)
  • Rewrite copy where necessary (coincides with previous point).
  • Separate the footer from the main content in a better way.

According to information directly from Spotify you can no longer sign up for a Spotify account, be it an ad financed free account or a premium account, unless you have a Facebook account.

Unfortunately you will need a Facebook account to access Spotify from now on, unless you already have an account set up.

A my friend Emil put it in a tweet, being able to use your Facebook account is a good thing, being forced to do it is a bad thing. I like it when modern more or less web-related companies integrate with each other, but when membership in one requires you to be using the other it’s really not a good thing.

My opinion on Spotify in general

I’ve had a Spotify account for a really long time now. It’s always been a premium account, except for the first few months. I’ve been fairly happy with the service and selection they provide. However one thing about Spotify has bothered me. (The same goes for any other company that provides streaming media.) No matter how long I’ll be a member, nothing of what I chose to listen to will be mine. The second I quit my membership I will lose the ability to listen to the songs. Contrast this with money spent on a download service, like iTunes. When I pay for a download I purchase something. If I chose to throw away my iPod and iPhone, thrash my Mac and burn my iPad to ashes, the right to listen to the music I’ve purchased is still mine. Any computer or computer-ish device that can play AAC audio files enables me to listen to my purchased music. (Yes, of course I must make sure the actual files are present on the device.)

This is by no means Spotify’s fault. It’s an inherent flaw in the streaming business model. To some people it’s no problem, and to me the benefits of Spotify has counterweighted the limitations of the nature of streaming. However, I’ve noticed that I don’t listen to as much ”new” music as I would need to in order to really make full use of Spotify’s benefits.

Spotify’s change to the free accounts

Some time ago Spotify changed the terms for free accounts and made some cheap accounts available. Suddenly the free accounts had a limit to how many songs could be listened to in a month. This really pissed of some people. Apparently some people still thinks free music should be part of the human rights. (Let’s save that discussion for some other day.)

This didn’t really change anything for me. If anything it was just an indication that the advertising didn’t pay off as good as some people thought and that Spotify felt a need to limit the free accounts in order to gain more paying customers.

Spotify and Facebook

So far Spotify’s collaboration with Facebook hasn’t changed anything for me, since the new rules only apply to accounts created now and in the future. However, if it does start to apply to old accounts I will likely cancel my Spotify subscription and start spending the $10 a month in the iTunes Store instead. I currently don’t have a Facebook account and I will not create one just because Spotify wants me to. I pay money to Spotify to listen to music, not to have them forcing me to get a Facebook (or any other social network) account.

As I wrote earlier today, this blog needs some sort of design re-make in order to better distinguish the actual post content from all other page content.

What to do?

This is a list of what I think needs to be done.

  • Take unnecessary text out of the main content area and move it to the sidebar.
  • Make sure the content of the sidebar is relevant.
  • Rewrite copy where necessary (coincides with previous point).
  • Separate the footer from the main content in a better way.

Apart from that I should also spend some time making it more responsive, since right now it’s more of an adaptive design.

According to AllThingsD:

Tuesday, Oct. 4.

That’s the day Apple is currently expected to hold its next big media event, according to sources close to the situation, where the tech giant will unveil the next iteration of its popular iPhone.

AllThingsD also states that Apples new CEO Tim Cook will be the one leading the keynote speech at this, and all future, Apple events. I think that is not necessarily correct. Cook will likely lead this one to show everyone that he really is the new man in charge. However in the future someone else might be better qualified to do the keynotes. To paraphrase John Gruber, Steve Jobs didn’t do the keynotes because he was the CEO. He just happened to be both the CEO and a really great keynote speaker.

Horace Dediu makes a chart of ”Possession vs. Utilization for Android and iPhone”.

This data seems to support the hypothesis that Android users are disproportionately less willing to spend money (note that the data does not say that users don’t have money, but simply that they are not spending it).

Which is why my current idea for a smartphone app will be realized as an iOS app, not an Android one. (Click through to the original post to se the actual charts.)

The great 5by5 podcast network has recently launched a new show called ”The Web Ahead. It is

A weekly podcast about changing technologies and the future of the web, discussing HTML5, mobile, responsive design, iOS, Android, and more. Hosted by Jen Simmons.

The first episode was published last week and featured Peter Lubbers who told us a great deal of information about web storage/local storage/web databases etc. and I thought it was awesome. This weeks episode is a long talk with Ethan Marcotte about ”Responsive Web Design”.

I highly recommend you all to start subscribing to this (and all other great 5by5 shows).

A while back my friend Emil responded to my post on Google+. I should have answered it right away, but lots of stuff got it the way (mostly work). Here is what Emil wrote.

Men det går alldeles utmärkt att köra google+ utan javascript! Och för den delen tror jag du hade tyckt om Google+!

Update: Okej lite för snabb med att skjuta där, var från höften. Viss funktionalitet försvinner ju faktiskt. Men en del saker fungerar ändå.

For the non-Swedish speaking audience of this blog, what he says is that some things in Google+ still works, even without JavaScript. I’ll admit (as I did in my original post) that I haven’t really tested Google+ myself, that all of the writing was based solely on what I’d read about it. He also says that I’d probably like Google+.

Emil’s got a point. I really should have tried Google+ before coming down hard on it. I also might like it, if I tried. There is absolutely no ideological statement behind me not using Google+. (The same is true for me not using Facebook.) It’s just a lack of interest in immersing myself in yet another community/social network.