Today in Tech: Why restaurants want you to stop using your camera phone
Also: Tim Cook calms investors; Twitter’s Instagram for video coming soon.
Restaurants turn camera shy [THE NEW YORK TIMES]
It’s hard to know who is most irritated by amateur photography — the owners and chefs, the nearby diners or even the photographer’s dining companions. Emma Kate Tsai, a Houston-based editor, said her 64-year-old father drives her family crazy with the food photos he shoots with his large, cumbersome camera strapped across his chest. “It’s really irritating,” she said, “because we can’t take a bite unless he takes his photo.”
Cook likes the mystery that the Apple rumor machine brings to his company’s brand, but it’s starting to come back to bite them. Very rarely does Apple address specific rumors, but Cook did just that on Wednesday, in an attempt to swat down the idea that demand for the iPhone during the current quarter has decreased. He said:
“I want to take a moment and make a comment. I don’t want to comment on any particular rumor, but I’d question the accuracy of any kind of rumor about our plans. I’d stress that even if a particular data point were factual, it would be impossible to interpret [the meaning] for our overall business. Yields can vary, supplier performance can vary … there’s an inordinately long list of things that would make any single data point not a great proxy for what’s going on.”
Why would you want to download Vine? Because it’s supposed to be a fun tool for making and sharing very short video clips — no longer than six seconds a pop — in the same way that Instagram worked for photos. And it’s designed in a similar way, with the ability to follow other Vine users’ clips, explore stuff from people you don’t know, etc.
Google creating wireless network, but for what? [THE WALL STREET JOURNAL]
Piecyk of BTIG said Google’s experimental network could mean that it plans to introduce a wireless service to customers of its Google Fiber product. In other words, people in Kansas City who sign up for high-speed Internet would be able to receive wireless service anywhere in the city for future tablets or other devices that would be compatible with the network. Google could have its Motorola hardware unit build devices that work on the Clearwire-controlled frequencies, he said.
Netflix said its improved domestic subscriber numbers were due to users buying new connected devices in the quarter, as well as improved voluntary and involuntary retention. That included improved payment processing, as well as “steady improvements in service and content relative to the broad array of video choices available.” Netflix believes that it will be able to keep subscribers on board also thanks to continued growth in the amount of content viewed by each member. It expects to carry its domestic subscriber momentum into the first quarter, adding 1.7 million users during the current period.
Don’t miss the latest tech news. Sign up now to get Today in Tech emailed every morning.