Originally Posted by mark2005
One of the things the Sarbanes-Oxley Law tried to do was put an end to accounting fraud, which in this case, has to do with recording revenue before the full product is delivered. When Apple sells an iPod touch, it records all the revenue on that day. (In contrast, when Apple sells an iPhone or AppleTV, it divides the revenue by 8, and records 1/8th in each of the next eight quarters.) Since Apple records all the iPod touch revenue, it has declared that the iPod touch is complete as it was sold. Therefore, it cannot deliver free new software features for it like the iPhone 2.0 software, for if it did, it would imply that the product was not yet complete when sold, and Apple should thus not yet record all the revenue. Apple can deliver bug fixes for free, which is usually all that is fixed by firmware updates.
One good thing: Now that Apple can sell apps for the iPod touch, and sell them as a separate product even if priced as free, we may only get more features for free. Features that must be built into the OS though will likely still incur a fee unless Apple starts to be aggressive legally (Note Apple has a new General Counsel.)
Originally Posted by mark2005
As for the price of the upgrade, SOX would expect it to be priced relative to and close to what it cost to make (again, to avoid fraud). The charge may be lower now because the expense is spread over many more units.
Cogently started, however, I'm still not buying this SOX argument unless you can riddle me this:
How does Apple record revenue for the sale of a MacBook or iMac or Pro? All at once, correct?? A complete product, blah, blah, blah. And both are digital devices with upgradable operating systems, running programs, accessing the internet, playing music, etc., etc. (on the same basic kernel!) And NEITHER is a phone per se (altho an iMac is more one than a Touch because you can Skype on it with Apple's blessings).Ergo, legally/technologically equivalent to an iPod Touch.
So what's the diff between releasing, say, 10.5.4 and then 10.5.5 and later .6, .7, etc., to all 10.5-10.5.3 owners (with more than bug fixes, but actual feature changes) for free and charging $10 to go from OS X Mobile 1.0 to 2.0?
It can't be because it's a version number change -- that's totally abitrary (NT 1.0 was released as a 3 version, e.g. to bring some internal logic to MS's OS marketing): And Apple could make any point version of Leopard a little bigger and call it the next version of OS X any time they want. It can't be because of new features: my original Tiger 10.4.2 has changed quite a bit by 10.4.11.
Also, does Apple break out the engineering cost of developing and distributing cost of OS X Mobile 2.0 and report it separately to any agency of the government? I'd be surprised. And the costs are bound to overlap with many other parts of Apple's functioning, so how could "the cost of production" be accurately determined??
Finally, what if (since OS number versions are arbitrary, as noted above) Apple adds cut and paste to OS X M 2.2?? That's a "major new feature" (based on how many people keep noting its glaring absence) -- or a landscape keyboard in some modes that lack it now?? Will they have to charge iPT owners for that as well, since the iPT was obviously "incomplete" without these??
I'm not saying I'm right and you're wrong -- I've heard pro journalists tossing around SOX as the reason -- but if that's true, again, please tell me what's wrong with my reasoning above.