Apple Launch Event

Welcome to this edition of “The Week in Tech,” where we recap some of the most interesting technology and mobile stories from the past week.

This week we cover Google’s launch of new Nexus products, Apple’s announcements of new iPads and Macs, HBO and CBS going over the top, and egg freezing. Yup, egg freezing.

Google, Apple both unveil new gadgets

Google knew Apple was going to announce new products on October 16, so the company took a pre-emptive strike and launched products of its own the day before.

Google announced:

  • The next version of Android, dubbed “Lollipop”, which will debut on the devices below
  • The Nexus 6 smartphone, with a massive 6″ display, built by Motorola
  • The Nexus 9 tablet, an 8.9″ tablet (2″ larger than the prior Nexus tablet) manufactured by HTC
  • The Nexus Player, a streaming media player where you can access movies, music, videos, and games. This is the first device to run on the Android TV operating system.

Not to be outdone, Apple made a slew of announcements yesterday, including:

  • The launch of the iPad Air 2, which is 20% thinner than its predecessor, and the iPad Mini 3
  • A new 27-inch iMac with Retina display
  • A new Mac mini
  • The availability of OS X Yosemite today and OS 8.1 update available on October 20
  • Apple Pay will be available on October 20, with partnerships with AmEx, Visa, MasterCard and a bunch of banks in tow

HBO and CBS going over the top

The day cord cutters have been waiting for is finally here.

On Wednesday, HBO announced that in 2015 they will launch an over-the-top subscription to HBO Go, allowing viewers to watch shows like True Detective and Real Time with Bill Maher online without having to subscribe to cable.

On Thursday, CBS became the first broadcast network to announce that they’re going over the top. Viewers without a cable subscription will be able to watch any of the million variations of CSI or NCIS shows as they air for the first time. Unfortunately, NFL broadcasts won’t be available live.

Networks are finally realizing that there are many people who either don’t have access to cable or completely despise the cable subscription model, and this is a HUGE step to improving the consumer experience. I can’t wait until more and more networks follow suit.

Facebook and Apple offer to freeze female employees’ eggs

Silicon Valley tech companies are famous for employee perks like free food, massages, and nap rooms.  Now we can add egg-freezing to that list.

Facebook and Apple are now offering female employees the option to freeze their eggs so they can focus on their careers without having to potentially sacrifice the opportunity to have children. The family vs. career conflict is a very tough decision, and tech companies hope that this benefit will: 1) allow current female employees to achieve success without sacrificing family and 2) better attract female recruits.

As with many gender-related topics, this benefit is surely one that will be hotly debated.

Read more at NPR.

What do you think of these stories? Have you read other interesting mobile and technology stories this week that are worth mentioning? Feel free to add your thoughts to the comments.

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Image courtesy of Forbes