So, the iPhone 5 has been announced, and it's a little bit longer than the last one. Big woop, eh?
This is the second year running that reaction to an iPhone unveiling has tended towards disappointment – not because the device looks bad, but because it doesn't look like a radical departure from what's gone before.
Of course, Apple is in an invidious position every time it releases a new device - the more changes Apple implements, the more fragmented its product range becomes.
Product unity has always been a key strength of iOS.
And it's worth remembering that changes at the top-end of Apple's product line affect lesser devices too.
For instance, those who purchased the third generation iPad at launch were wowed by its retina display, but 8GB iPod touch owners may have been less pleased – since app file sizes ballooned once devs started adding extra high-resolution textures to their universal apps.
Developers are affected too, of course.
Every new screen size, resolution or aspect ratio is another setup they have to support. At a time when rival mobile operating systems have finally closed the gap in terms of usability, Apple has to guard its app ecosystem more closely than ever, since that's the one area in which Apple's offering undoubtedly trumps that of its rivals.
Conservative product refreshes help minimise disruption for developers and owners of other iOS devices, and ensure that Apple's app advantage remains intact – at least, for now. But that's enough from me.
Let's move on to our bite-sized overview of the last seven days' worth of news.Platform wars
- The PocketGamer.biz Mobile Mavens discuss Amazon's new Kindle Fire range, addressing the question: what can it offer that Google can't?
- The refreshed Lumia range is looking mighty fine, but when it comes to press events, Nokia has a lot to learn from Apple, argues PocketGamer.biz editor Keith Andrew.
- Atari Arcade developer Grant Skinner explains that HTML5 is no 'one size fits all' platform.
- As it prepares for the launch of Windows 8, Microsoft opens the Windows Store to developers in 82 additional markets, relaunches its Windows Phone Marketplace as the Windows Phone Store and begins accepting applications for the Windows Phone SDK 8.0 preview – but only if you already have a successful Windows Phone app.
- PocketGamer.co.uk deputy editor Mark Brown meets with some crowdfunding success stories, and they explain that Kickstarter is not only harder work than it seems, but that it should only be a last resort.
- This week's Charticle examines Clash of Clans, and finds that a 'tablet first' strategy hasn't stopped Supercell's city-builder ascending the iPhone top grossing charts.
- We talk to the CEO and CTO of Elblabs about their GameAdTrading platform, which allows devs to hook up their games with advertising campaigns with a simple Unity plugin.
- Gaming historian Zoya Street examines the ways in which Pocket Legends attaches value to its in-app purchases.
- UK trade association UKIE argues that the government must measure the 'true size' of the games industry if tax breaks are to work – a notion CEO Dr Jo Twist elaborates on when she speaks to PocketGamer.biz.
- Tag Games MD Paul Farley illuminates the opportunities and the pitfalls of moving from console to mobile games development.
- Madfinger Games' Petr Benysek and Anna Porizkova tell PocketGamer.biz about the making of Dead Trigger.
- PapayaMobile's Oscar Clark argues that the industry has failed to engage with people who love games but don't understand freemium.
- Double Fine's Kee Chi talks App Store submission slip ups, impromptu beta tests and the studio's mobile future.
- A special pre-announcement feature sees the PocketGamer.biz Mobile Mavens discussing the features, fixtures and fittings they want from the iPhone 5.
- At a press event in San Francisco, Apple unveils its 4-inch iPhone 5 for a 21 September launch, shows off a similarly proportioned iPod touch and announces 400 million iOS devices have been sold to-date.
- PocketGamer.biz editor Keith Andrew has been polling developer opinion regarding the iPhone 5, and he distils a comprehensive set of interviews into one easy iPhone 5 article. The general consensus? It may not set the world on fire, but iPhone is still top dog.
- Finally, Pocket Gamer editor in chief Kristan Reed asks: is Apple getting complacent?