To honor the one-year anniversary of Steve Jobs's death, Apple has replaced its normal homepage with a short 1:45-minute video of the founder and former chief executive's life.
The video takes you through a series of fading-in-and-out, black-and-white photos showing various parts of his life -- including the release of the iMac and the iPhone.FULL ENTRY
The head of Apple said he was "extremely sorry" in an open letter today for the much maligned new maps that the tech giant rolled out as part of its new operating system last week.FULL ENTRY
Join Weight Watchers--there's a monthly subscription fee--and you can now get an app for Androids and iPhones that will let you check the calorie count and nutrition info on many food items by simply scanning the barcode on the package. Pretty cool.
Think your smartphone or tablet can tell if you've had one too many? I doubt it, and so do the folks at computer security software maker Webroot. But that didn't stop them from whipping up an amusing little app that'll delight your friends at upcoming holiday parties. The Sobriety Test app, available for iOS and Android devices, features a bunch of silly puzzles and games which supposedly measure your ability to hold your liquor. There's also a prudent legal disclaimer warning that the Sobriety Test is really nothing of the sort--just a bit of silly fun.
Looks like Google is working on its own version, to be codenamed Majel. After Gene Roddenberry's wife, I spose. This should be fun.
That could be the effect of an injunction issued by a German court today. I doubt it'll hold. Apple got a similar injunction earlier this year against Samsung's Galaxy tablet computer, and that was downgraded to cover only Germany, not all of Europe.
Still, it shows how high the stakes are in this battle to dominate tablet and smartphone sales. All sides in this fight are using live ammo and playing for keeps.
Over at Harvard Law, the ever-clever Jonathan Zittrain has a good idea--software to tell smartphone users exactly what data is being transmitted from their phones. The Apple and Carrier IQ user tracking scandals are helping to focus our minds on this issue. Our phones transmit all sorts of data about our activities. Surely we should know what they're sharing with the phone company, the phone maker and who knows who else. Somebody really ought to create an app for that...and quick.
This Apple product will self-destruct in midair...
Four decades ago, Intel created the first true microprocessor. We're all still trying to catch up.
Adobe gives up on developing its Flash software for mobile devices. Apple's refusal to support Flash on the iPhone and iPad, saying it was too slow and used too many resources, was presumably the last straw. Soon, none of us will be using Flash on portable devices--not even Android owners. And Steve Jobs laughs from the grave.
Apple has shrewdly avoided the boneheaded arrogance it displayed during the iPhone 4 antenna fiasco, and admitted forthrightly that the new iPhone 4S has distressingly brief battery life. The company says it's a software issue that it will soon repair.
Getting lots of reports of really short battery life. Me, I haven't tested this yet. Guess I better...
A new study finds that cell phones don't cause brain tumors. Well, all right then.
The trailer for the upcoming comic book movie The Avengers was partially shot with an iPhone.
Nothing like having your favorite team win--and then taunting fans of the defeated foe. It's unsportsmanlike, but kinda fun. And now, sure enough, there's an app for it. PlayUp is a free iPhone social app for sports lovers, with listings of upcoming games in a variety of sports--baseball, American football, soccer, even cricket. You can log onto chatrooms devoted to thousands of sporting matches happening all over the world. There you can peck out text messages mocking your rivals or bemoaning the performance of your favorites. It's a great idea for fans who can't resist rubbing it in.
Tiny regional cellphone company C Spire has won the right to offer its customers the Apple iPhone. Looks like Apple's going to open the floodgates, perhaps in an effort to gain ground on Android.
The new Apple iPhone 4S doesn't just use the American GPS satellite network for navigation. It's also compatible with Russia's GLONASS network. This redundancy should make it more reliable.
Oh well. Some people are never satisfied.
If not, you won't be able to buy an iPhone at an Apple store. I guess it's Apple's way of rationing a dwindling supply of the popular phones.
I know that lots of cell phones are pretty crappy, but this is ridiculous!
Fragile or not, the iPhone 4S is selling like wildfire. Wasn't this phone supposed to be a major letdown? Seems only the "experts" felt that way. Other people were too busy getting in line to buy one...
A gadget insurance company stress=tested the new iPhone 4S, with tragic results.
By now you know that the new iPhone 4S drew big crowds to Apple retailers worldwide. And I must admit, it was partly my fault...Next time, I'll stay home.
I think the coming Apple iPhone 4S is a pretty major overhaul in its own right, but some are disappointed Apple didn't go even further. Well, here's a very plausible analysis that suggests that Apple's got very good reason for holding off on the iPhone 5...
The popular sports news website Bleacher Report offers you a way to stay informed wherever you are. Their Team Stream app, available for Android or Apple devices, will deliver a steady flow of news about the teams of your choice. It's handy, and it's free.
...if you're in California. The governor there just vetoed a bill that would have required cops to get a warrant before viewing the data stored in a suspect's phone. So now, a cop can just take your phone and start skimming through whatever he finds there.
Cellphone companies have begun shipping the first batch of pre-ordered iPhone 4Ses.
Personally, I don't think 4G makes a whole lot of sense at its current prices. But apart from that, there are technical reasons why Apple has held off. This rather geeky but informative piece will fill you in on the details.
The new Apple iPhone 4S is the company's first "world phone," with electronics that'll let you use it all over the planet. Just one little problem--international service is going to be really, really expensive. How does it profit a man to gain the world and lose every dime he owns?
...or the iPhone 4S, according to a company that tracks reactions on social networking sites.
Consumer Reports has $10,000 burning a hole in its public-spirited pockets. And it's ready to hand it over to the best new Consumer Reports smartphone app. Interested?
Maybe. We'll see in a few minutes...
The Wall Street Journal reports that Sprint will buy $20 billion worth of iPhones over the next four years, in a "bet the company" bid to stay competitive with AT&T and Verizon Wireless.
Sony Ericsson CEO: We Should Have Taken The iPhone More Seriously
In India, anyway. Indians love those pushbutton phones, mainly because the country's phone networks are still too primitive to handle all the data traffic stirred up by iPhones. Whatever the reason, RIM needs all the wins it can get.
Tomorrow's the big day--the unveiling of the new iPhone. But as this article points out, the new phone will enter a much tougher market than ever before. The latest Android phones are very good indeed. And Android phones handily out-sell the iPhone. Even Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 is a legitimate contender. So whatever comes out of Cupertino this week, it better be good.
Let it go, Red Sox fans. Forget about baseball and move on. It's football season, and time for tailgate parties. Also, time for the new sport of competitive tailgating. Here's a new iPhone app to let tailgaters slug it out in the name of total stadium parking lot supremacy.
In the overall mobile device market, Android is smoking Apple's iOS. And here's why.
Okay, not really. But the iPad is well and truly losing market share to Android tablets. Bound to happen. But iPad will remain the leader--count on it.
Apple's bid to trademark the term "multi-touch" to describe its lovely little touchscreens has been iced by an unwilling federal court.
How far have Tiger's fortunes fallen that they're giving away the iPhone version of his golf game? Oh, well, they're giving away lots of iPhone software for a limited time. Check it out...
Worried about the school-bus-sized satellite hurtling down from orbit? Keep up with the latest news on smartphone apps from NASA. News updates, videos, a Twitter feed...it's all here. And it's free for iPhone, iPad or Android users.
Big doings at Apple on Oct. 4. iPhone 5? Could be..
Looks like T-Mobile won't be getting the iPhone 5, at least not for awhile...
LocalHero is a social networking app that assists you in finding help from friends and neighbors. Good idea.
Don't look for it on the next iPhone. If this rumor proves correct, Apple will kill off the big round one on the base of the iPhone. The next-gen version will feature a different kind of controller. Given Steve Jobs' legendary hatred of pushbuttons, this is one rumor I can easily believe.
That's what these guys are saying.
Hate your alarm clock? Well, if you use the iPhone as an alarm, here's an app that lets you express your rage. It also makes sure you're awake, since you can only turn off the alarm by violently shaking the phone. That oughta work...
Passengers on Southwest Airlines will soon get videos beamed straight to their smartphones or tablets via Wi-Fi. Offerings to include the Three Stooges. Now we're talking!
The number-three wireless carrier will become the third to offer the Apple iPhone.
Reuters says the company is planning to release an el cheapo version of the iPhone.
I'm old enough to remember when Apple prided itself on charging more for its products than rival companies. It still does when it comes to its Mac computers. But ever since the iPod, Apple's learned the joys of going downmarket. Its phones, tablets and music players are price-competitive with rival products, and in some cases cheaper. One more reason Apple's setting the world on fire.
Looking for a doctor? Look at your smartphone. ZocDoc, a smart new app for iPhone or Android lets you set up appointments with local physicians. Just put in the name of your medical insurance plan, and the kind of treatment you need. ZocDoc uses the phone's GPS system to calculate your location, and then point you to the nearest doctors. It'll even show you whether they've got an open space on their daily schedule. Somebody should have thought of this a long time ago...
The British government considers shutting down social networking services and cellphone texting during periods of social unrest...
Patents filed by Apple suggest the company plans to build video projectors into future iPhones, iPad and MacBooks. That means users will be able to project photos, videos or documents against any nearby surface, thereby delighting friends and colleagues. Picoprojectors haven't been all that popular with consumers up to now. But if anybody can fix that, it's Apple.
Massachusetts is an iPhone state, according to Cambridge mobile advertising company Jumptap. They've surveyed the US to identify the dominant smartphones on a state-by-state basis. The Northeast and Midwest tend to be iPhone country, while the West and Southwest favor Androids. But in New York State, BlackBerry rules.
There isn't an iPhone app to let you cancel bad TV shows. But here's one that claims it can predict which TV shows are doomed.
...and you'll wind up at Apple. When it comes to smartphones, Android's getting the market share, but Apple's getting the profits.
A new iPhone app brings the battle alive. A tempting treat for history buffs, and it's free.
It's neck-and-neck in the smartphone wars...
Another hint that Apple will unleash the next iPhone in September...
Tekken Bowl features the hard-hitting boxers from the venerable fighting game. Only this time they're taking their skills to the bowling lanes. It's family-friendly and it's free for iPad and iPhone.
Fans of the weekly magazine The Economist can now subscribe to an Android edition..A similar app for the iPhone and iPad has been around for months.
A new free iPhone app takes speech recognition to a new level. Dragon Go, from Burlington-based Nuance, makes it easy to search a host of Internet data sources--not just Google--by speaking into your iPhone. Want to see videos of the space shuttle launch, for instance? Just ask for them. This is one nice app.
A new website claims to provide accurate information about the safety of apps for Apple, BlackBerry, Microsoft and Android phones. Worried about downloading an app infected with malware? Maybe these guys can help.
And here's the proof! A third of iPhone owners think their phones have 4G data service; only a quarter of BlackBerry users think so. Of course, neither line of phones currently offers a 4G version. But more iPhoners have been fooled than BlackBerry users. So there!
...ask Dolce & Gabbana. The renowned Italian fashion company has a new iPhone app with instructions and video tutorials on how to behave like the perfect gentleman in any situation. If only that insufferable bounder Roderick Spode could be persuaded to download it...
You do, thanks to a controversial new app that lets anybody record the activities of the police. The police are public servants, after all. Why shouldn't their public activities be recorded by members of the public? The software is available for iPhones and Androids, right here...
That's the latest rumor about Apple's late-summer announcement. The company may announce not one, but two new versions of the iPhone, including a cut-rate no-contract version for those who want a pay-as-you-go plan.
Help the people of Japan by playing games. That's the pitch from PopCap, one of the world's top makers of casual games. On Saturday and Sunday, PopCap will slash the prices on its games for the iPad, iPod Touch and iPhone, and donate every penny to the Red Cross. What a lovely idea. God bless them.
Two smartphone apps for video chatting leave me cold. They can't match Apple's FaceTime for the iPhone 4
The Internet's nearly full up, because of all the phones and tablets and game consoles and such that we keep plugging in. But a new Internet addressing scheme is about to solve that problem--permanently.
Can a cheap mini-iPhone save Apple from the Android tidal wave? A bunch of stories like this one say that Apple plans to introduce such a phone, and soon.
...to liking the new Roman Catholic confession app for the iPhone. No, you can't get absolution from sin merely by using the phone. It's actually a handy and well-designed aid to the sacrament. I was brought up Catholic, but currently hang with the Baptists. Still, I plan on using this app again, as a handy guide to the strait and narrow path.
...and other smartphone market data from Nielsen. Google's operating system sure has shaken up the market.
Location-based services like Foursquare really aren't too popular, according to this report. Sure, all the cool kids like to talk about "checking in" and becoming the "mayor" of this nightclub or that coffee shop. But most folks don't see the point. I used Foursquare myself for several months but have lately wiped it from my BlackBerry without regret. Does me no good that I can see, so why bother? Besides, why should I report my movements to Foursquare? Go hire a private eye if you're that interested, but you'll get no help from me.
An interesting theory about Android's surging popularity--lots of the Android phones have pushbutton keyboards, and the hip, happening youth of the world mainly use their phones for texting. The iPhone, available only with a glass keyboard, just isn't as appealing.
Dunno if this is correct, but it's a clever hypothesis.
Now there are 100,000 apps for Android phones. Smartphones running this software are gaining fast on Apple's iPhone.
Just touch the screen to call for help. That's the idea of a new emergency rescue app called Forsse. You pay $14.95 a month to install it on your phone--just Android for now, but versions are being prepared for the iPhone and for BlackBerries. One touch activates the app. Another touch triggers an alert to a remote monitoring station that uses GPS to figure out your location and send help. The service also starts recording any audio coming over your phone. I haven't tried Forsse yet, but it sounds like it could come in mighty handy.
Texting while driving is now illegal in Massachusetts, and in most other states too. So...what's a driver to do? Turn off the phone, or put it out of reach. Or check out some of these clever apps...
I've been sending and receiving a lot of cellphone text messages lately, mainly to myself. Call it research.
The new Massachusetts ban on texting while driving may save lives, although I have my doubts. But it certainly provides an economic stimulus for makers of cellphone software and accessories that are designed to keep our eyes on the road and hands on the wheel.
Some software apps block the use of your phone while driving. Others let you keep right on texting, by reading the messages out loud and even letting you reply by talking rather than clicking.FULL ENTRY
The tiny Boston firm faces tough competition, because its core business is so smart--mapping the world's Wi-Fi hotspots as a supplement to GPS location technology. Millions of smartphones around the world use Skyhook tech to help users find their way. But now giants like Apple and Google want the technology for themselves. And that means trouble.
Not at first, anyway. Verizon says it'll hold off on carrying smartphones based on Microsoft's new operating system until next year. This does not bode well...not at all. Windows Phone 7 is Microsoft's last chance. If it doesn't catch on, it's game over. iPhone and Android will rule.
Apple could see the iPad become its second-most-lucrative product in a couple years, right behind...the iPhone. So the Mac computer is rapidly fading as a revenue source for the company. No wonder they changed the name from Apple Computer to just plain Apple.
Forget it, Apple. Android smartphones will conquer the universe!
They're making it easier to get new apps approved. Credit increased competition from Android phones, and greater scrutiny from federal regulators.
Do your digital pictures need digital frames? Darned If I can see the point of it, but a guy named Eli Wilner is hot on the idea. Mind you, he's prejudiced--Wilner is a major producer of real-world picture frames, some of which carry six-figure price tags. Yeah, I don't get that either.
Anyway, Wilner is now selling an iPhone/iPad app that'll let you drape a stylish frame around your digital snapshots and share them with friends and family. I tried the $1.99 iPhone app and...it works. Definitely. I know a picture frame when I see one, and sure enough, the pictures on my iPhone were well and truly framed. Yes sirree.
Still dunno why I'd want them to be, but that's just me.
For $4.99 you can get the iPad version, with really big frames. Each app lets you choose from 100 different frame styles.
Wilner is convinced he's onto something. He's so eager to get the word out that his company sent me an iPhone, just to try the frame program. I remain unconvinced. Nice iPhone, though.
Smartphones can help you launch your own business empire. This clever article from Network World tells how.
A new Nike app for the iPhone generates a Google Maps display of the route you follow during your daily run. Nice way to see where you've been going.
As Hurricane Earl bears down, consider stocking up on weather-related smartphone apps. Here's a mess of links for the iPhone. I can't find a similar list for Androids, but you can visit the Android Market with your phone and search under "weather."
Want to turn your iPhone into Capt. Kirk's communicator? Here you go.
Amidst all the Apple news, CEO Steve Jobs cast doubt on Google's claims about the popularity of its Android operating system. Well, Google's not going to take that lying down.
Sprint unleashes its 4G cellular data service in Boston, but rival T-Mobile says its improved 3G service, also just launched, is equally fast. Let the high-speed data flow like wine!
Netflix comes to the iPhone and iPod Touch. Wonder why it took so long; the online movie streaming service was available on the iPad from Day One. The new app works nicely on the iPhone, showing all the movies and TV shows you've already got queued up. And of course the app itself is free; a Netflix subscription costs a minimum of $8.99 a month.
Remember pinball machines? You're not alone. Some clever cat has devised a kit to turn an iPhone into a mini-pinball machine, and you can purchase on at Best Buy Too cool.
The director of Apple's App Store has been caught selling some pretty tasteless products of his own. Not exactly kid-friendly, for sure.
I check out two of the latest, the Dell Streak and Samsung Vibrant, and explain why the Android platform is bound to take a commanding lead over the iPhone--in market share anyway.
It takes a lot of work to build the navigation maps on your smartphone. Here's how it's done.
Somebody had to take the fall for the notorious antenna problem and the difficulties in making white iPhones, yes? And it sure as shooting wasn't going to be Steve Jobs. So instead, it's this guy.
Free trial versions of new iPhone apps are available at last, thanks to a new Try Before You Buy feature at the App Store. And about time too.
Lots of apps can swipe your personal data, according to a new report.
But take this claim with a grain of salt. Last month I linked to a similarly spectacular story about insecure Android apps. The source of that story has since retracted it.
New federal rules make it lawful. So users of Apple iPhones can now put unauthorized software on their phones without fear of legal repercussions. You need only fear the terrible wrath of Steve Jobs...
Most iPhone users are fine with AT&T, according to a new survey from Boston's Yankee Group. So am I, most of the time. But earlier this year, in Las Vegas, I found the company's service atrocious. I guess it depends where you are.
Talk about guerilla marketing. This is one slick bit of jiu-jitsu from the Korean phonemaker.
Verizon Wireless is doing just fine without Apple's popular iPhone, thanks to red-hot sales of Android smartphones.
The local defense contractor Raytheon, maker of the Patriot missile system, has brought out an iPhone-based training game for the troops. It's just the latest Raytheon military app for the iPhone. I'd like to review it, but first I'd have to buy my own Patriot missile battery.
This guy stole the wrong iPhone.
For $10 a month, Hulu Plus will pump dozens of your favorite shows right into your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. Here's my take on it.
Apple comes through loud and clear, even with the iPhone 4's bum antenna. Profits up 77% in the latest quarter. Wow.
...and in timely fashion. A couple of weeks from now, this whole iPhone 4 antenna thing will be forgotten.
Maybe not Verizon Wireless. Despite persistent rumors that Verizon will start selling the iPhone in a few months, this NY Times story makes a good case that Verizon's strong sales of Google Android phones make the iPhone a lot less important to Verizon that you might think.
...about a problem with the iPhone 4 antenna, according to this report.
Steve Jobs holds a press conference on Friday--my day off! He must have known!
Wonder what he'll say? A full recall of iPhone 4s? No way. Maybe free rubber bumpers to fix the antenna problem, coupled with a groveling apology. That sounds about right.
A horde of excellent new phones have set consumers on a buying spree, and smartphone makers are having trouble keeping up.
Recall, schmeecall, say some Apple defenders, who argue the iPhone's not really so bad.
Bad antenna or no, Apple's smartphone business is on track to generate twice the profit of all its rivals put together. Dude.
PR experts say they'll issue a recall of the defective iPhone 4...or else.
The trusted product-review mag gives it a thumbs-down, due to the notorious antenna problem. Consumer Reports hasn't given the iPhone its kiss of death, the rarely issued do-not-buy warning. Instead, the magazine says "we can't recommend the iPhone 4." It's a major embarrassment for Apple.
Depends on the photographer. Here's what a fashion photographer managed to pull off with this cell phone camera.
With 160,000 of them being switched on every single day, Android-based smartphones are snatching market share from all the others. Of course, Windows phones are being clobbered, but even the iPhone is taking some hits. Notice, though, that RIM's BlackBerry platform is still out front and holding its own. BlackBerry is doing better than I'd have expected, but the company needs a major upgrade to prevent a major share collapse. Those touch-screen Androids and iPhones are just so much easier to work with.
If the bad guys can break into iTunes, what can they do to our iPhones?
Some apps let you do it, but their accuracy and ease of use leave something to be desired, as I discovered firsthand.
And quit complaining about the bum antenna. That's Steve Jobs' message, according to this e-mail exchange posted at the Boy Genius Report.
Hire engineers first, release product later. Makes sense to me. But now that iPhone 4 users are buzzing with discontent about reception problems, Apple is in the market for a few more antenna engineers. Smart move, guys, but a little late. Unless the lads in the lab have finally perfected that time machine...
So says Bloomberg. Massive bad news for AT&T, if true, and a major boost to Verizon and Apple. Millions who've held off buying the iPhone because of AT&T's reputation will now sign on.
On the other hand, couldn't this cause a short-term hit to iPhone sales? Some people will put off signing contracts with AT&T, and wait for Verizon Wireless to start offering the phone next year. Hmmm...
Here's an interesting summary of the fuss over the new iPhone's antenna. Is it really all that defective? Maybe not...
Earlier today there was a hoax message supposedly from Steve Jobs, indicating that Apple might recall the iPhone 4. Now there are reports of a Jobs e-mail claiming there's nothing wrong with the new phone, despite all the claims of poor reception. Maybe that message is a hoax too?
Besides, Steve, if iPhone 4 users could "stay tuned" there wouldn't be a problem, yes?
"Well, don't do that!" This vaudeville routine brought to you by Apple, which admits that their new iPhone 4 loses signal if you hold it a certain way. Doesn't this mean the phones are defective and should be repaired? Oh no...you've just got to develop a whole new way to hold your phone. Maybe you buy a hat with a really wide brim, hang a string from the front of it and tie the phone to the string so it sort of dangles in front of you. Yeah. That'll do it.
Now this may be a misunderstanding of the new Apple policy, but if so, Apple needs to clear things up, and fast. Anyway, it sounds a lot easier than plugging the durn hole in the Gulf of Mexico.
Here's an excerpt from the Barton-Markey press release:
It seems that the new iPhone operating system collects real-time data about the phone's location--and of course, your location too.
Apple says the data is anonymized, and customers can refuse to provide the info to any given app from any particular company. Still, this is a development that bears watching...
After an hour of using the new iPhone iOS 4 operating system, I'm quite impressed. Yep, it multitasks. I've been reading the New York Times on my Opera browser and popping open Google Maps, all while listening to film scores on Pandora. I can just hop from one app to another, using a very clever window that shows recently used or running apps, which appears at the bottom of the screen when you tap the home button twice. We also get folders. Press and hold one icon and then drag it atop another similar icon. For instance, drag one of your iPhone games onto another. Up pops a window suggesting that you call the new folder Games. It now appears as an icon with tiny little mini-icons set inside it. Very handy, and a good way to regain control of screen real estate.
These are just first impressions, but very positive ones. Steve Jobs said that Apple didn't want the iPhone to do multitasking till it could be done right. I think Apple's come through.
Apple's major overhaul of the iPhone operating system is now available for downloading. This is the one that's supposed to enable multitasking--if you've got multitasking-capable apps. I'm getting it now and will check in later with early impressions.
We've heard that one before. But it's become a lot more plausible lately, due to the rise of mobile devices and cloud computing . Here's long-time tech analyst Henry Blodget, warning Microsofties that the end is near...
I'm not talking about digital viruses, either. I mean good old-fashioned germs, the kind your mom was worried about when she taught you to wash your hands after using the bathroom. Needless to say, even the cleanest of us are covered with microscopic bugs, and some of them end up on our smartphones whenever we touch them. Which is why the world needs something like this--a gadget disinfector. Personally, I just use those disinfectant wipes every now and then. But maybe it's time for an upgrade....
The US government is dominated by BlackBerry users, right up to President Obama. But that's starting to change, as a tidal wave of smart new iPhone apps far surpasses the software available for BlackBerries.
The world's leading cellphone maker long ago lost its edge in the US market. But believe it or not, Nokia's Symbian phones are still the world's most common type of smartphone. But for how long? The company's fading fast as iPhone and Android phones gain share around the world.
Ever since the first iPhone, the relationship between AT&T and Apple has seen plenty of turmoil. Will Apple eventually throw in the towel and start seeing others? Count on it. But don't ask me when.
It's a smart way to get back some of the cash you paid for aging gadgets. Here's how...
First AT&T stopped taking orders for the iPhone 4, citing its inability to keep up with demand. Now the company says customers who've pre-ordered will have to wait till July 14 to get their phones.
AT&T, which already has trouble delivering wireless phone service, also seems incapable of taking orders for the upcoming iPhone 4. And it gets worse. The company's order system may also be compromising its customers' personal data. Goody.
Word on the street suggests that BlackBerry will soon unleash a slider phone that might put it in a better position to fend off the iPhone and Android challenges. We shall see...
Funny thing about Wikipedia, the Internet's giant user-created encyclopedia. it's so small. It seems to contain summaries of all the world's knowledge. Yet it really takes up remarkably little space in digital terms--about six gigabytes. Heck, you can fit that much data on a smartphone these days.
And here's an app to let you do it. AllOfWiki Offline is a $10 app for iPhones and iPads that does something very simple and powerful. It downloads all the text content of Wikipedia, and stores it in your device's memory. Now it doesn't matter if you can't score a Wi-Fi or 3G connection. You've always got Wikipedia, as well as an nice-looking interface for quickly looking up information on pretty much anything.
On the downside, updates--available on a monthly basis--are $1 apiece. If you're a hardcore user you'll probably want those updates, and so the price of the app soon gets a bit steep. And with Wi-Fi connections so widely available--Starbucks Wi-Fi service goes free-of-charge starting next month, this is an app you can easily live without.
Still, it's kind of cool to tote around this much knowledge in your pocket.
The coming of the iPhone 4G has owners of older iPhones rushing to sell them. Boston's own Gazelle.com says trade-in volume is soaring.
Sometimes you don't need a whole webpage of answers to an online search. Instead, you want a simple, short answer to a simple, short question, like, "what's the capital of North Dakota?" Google has been buffing up its ability to respond to such simple questions, and they're touting the technique as ideal for smartphone users. Especially if you've got an iPhone or Android phone, where you can speak the question into the microphone, instead of typing it in.
This report indicates that the upgrade to the iPhone operating system is just the first step in bringing true multitasking to the device. All the app developers will have to upgrade their software as well, and quite a few of them may not bother. Which means that full-bore multitasking on the iPhone may be further away than we thought...
Thousands affected, according to the tech website Valleywag.
The version of Apple's iPad which that connects to AT&T's 3G network was affected a security flaw that exposed the e-mail addresses of many prominent owners, including White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and New York's mayor, Michael Bloomberg. AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel tells me the breach is closed and that it doesn't affect any other devices on the AT&T 3G network, like the iPhone. Still, this isn't going to do much for AT&T's reputation. And Apple 's been given one more reason to consider offering its products through rival carrier Verizon Wireless
Amtrak plans to introduce Wi-Fi Internet access on all its trains nationwide.
Want to know how the hottest Android phones measure up to the new iPhone 4? Here you go.
The newest version of Apple Inc.'s hugely popular iPhone features a built-in videoconferencing feature - the most eye-catching of several major upgrades unveiled today, as Apple tries to stay a step ahead of rival smartphones powered by Google Inc.'s Android operating system.
Speaking at the company's annual conference for software developers in San Francisco, Apple chief executive Jobs called the new iPhone 4 "the biggest leap since the original iPhone." Set to go on sale in the US on June 24, the new iPhone will include a camera on the front of the device as well as on the back, allowing the user to capture and send self-portraits in stills or video. The phone will also include FaceTime, a free videoconference program that will work over home or office WiFi wireless networks, and eventually, over cellular data networks.
Jobs said that Apple is still working with cellular carrier AT&T Inc., the exclusive US provider of the iPhone, to allow videoconferencing over the carrier's phone network, but ABI Research senior analyst Michael Morgan doubts that AT&T's data network has the capacity to handle millions of FaceTime users. "Right now, with a 3G network, it's not going to be a very good signal," Morgan said. Cellular videoconferencing won't catch on until carriers launch faster data networks. AT&T plans to offer the next generation of network service, called 4G, in 2011.
The iPhone 4 will also feature an upgraded screen with sharper resolution; a new processor chip similar to the one in Apple's popular iPad tablet computer; and a built-in gyroscope that measures rotary motion, allowing for more sophisticated video games.FULL ENTRY
Foxconn, the Taiwanese company whose Chinese workers make products for Apple, Dell and other global electronics titans, has suffered a spate of employee suicides this year. Foxconn's leaders seem to have decided that paying its workers better might convince them that life is worth living.
Steve Jobs is to address Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference today at 1 pm Boston time, and he's expected to unveil a certain much-anticipated new cellphone.
Here's a nice little news reader from France, for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Stories are arranged in a mindmap-style configuration, making it easy to read about the same event in dozens of major newspapers. Each news page is displayed in Apple's cool Cover Flow feature, the way an iPod shows off album cover art. Touch the newspaper of your choice, and it enlarges into a full-screen browser page. leNewz is marred by an odd litlle control bar that appears at the bottom of the screen, and obstructs your view of news pages. Otherwise, this handy little program is an excellent way to quickly get a broad perspective on the day's major news stories. Not quite magnifique, but mighty close.
The researchers at Nielsen know, and they're spilling the beans.
For instance, the average iPhone has 37 apps on board, compared with 22 for Androids and a mere 10 for BlackBerries. And 21 percent of Americans now have a smartphone. And there's more interesting data where this came from...
The company's new multi-tiered pricing plan includes a $15-a-month tier that could make data service cheap enough for entry-level users. Smart move.
UPDATE: Oops. Turns out that under the new AT&T pricing plan , the $30-a-month unlimited option.goes bye-bye, except for existing customers who've already signed up for it. Now that is a bummer.
According to this survey, the iPhone is still well out in front.
I try to wear comfy shoes during my rare trips to shopping malls; just finding the right shop often requires a good hike, made more strenuous by the difficulty in figuring out where you're going. The mall developers never put up enough maps to suit me; I suspect they want us wandering around aimlessly, in hopes we'll be suckered into a few more impulse purchases.
Well, here's a smarter impulse for Android and iPhone users. Before heading to the mall, download Point Inside, a handy free app that puts the mall map in your pocket. Point Inside uses the phone's GPS feature to identify nearby malls. Tap the icons, and you'll see a map showing the location of every store in the mall. Many stores will have built-in links that provide the shop's phone number and a link to its website.
Point Inside features maps for hundreds of malls throughout the US, and also features maps of major airports. You may still have to walk quite a bit, but at least you'll know where you're heading.
RIM's BlackBerry phones are still huge sellers, mainly because of their robust features for connecting securely to corporate networks. But Apple is catching up. It's just a matter of time before iPhone--and Android, for that matter--supplant BlackBerry, thanks to superior ease of use and hugely bigger libraries of appealing software apps. Unless BlackBerry comes up with a game-changer, and fast.
In a world of tweets and Facebook fluff, who reads poetry any more? Perhaps we would, if we carried a worthy assortment in our pockets. And you can, thanks to a new app from Poetry, a Chicago-based literary magazine that's been publishing the world's leading poets for just under 100 years.
The new Poetry app for the iPhone is free. it features 1,400 pieces. There are contemporary works, as well as classics by famed poets like Wordsworth and Frost. But you don't sort them by author. Instead, you pick a general topic, like "work," "love" or "nature," and you're given an assortment of relevant poems. You can also sort poems by mood. Still upset about the Boston Bruins' playoff defeat? Find solace in poems about disappointment, frustration or grief.
Not sure what kind of poem you want? Press the spin icon, and you get a lovely whirling screen effect, reminiscent of a Vegas slot machine, followed by a randomly-chosen group of poems. See something you'd like to share with friends? The app offers built-in links to Twitter and Facebook, so you can impress your online pals with your good taste. This cool little app is a real literary icon.
...an official Twitter app for the iPhone. Remarkable as it seems, there hasn't been one up to now, just apps hacked together by creative outsiders. Well, now you can get the genuine article. Pretty nice -looking, and works reasonably well, except that the search function doesn't want to work. Whatever I type in, I get the message "bad request." Oh well; my tweets get transmitted just fine, and I'm able to read yours. That's a start.
According to this Reuters story, next generation cellphones and 4G Internet service may become widely available faster than you might have expected. Consumers have fallen in love with high-speed wireless, and carriers are eager to cash in.
...is the prospect of its key corporate customers migrating to--gack!--the iPhone.
Well, it's starting to happen. And while it's not exactly a rush to the exits, this could be a sign of something grim for RIM, BlackBerry's creator and Canada's top high-tech company. The BB just can't touch the iPhone or Android for sheer ease of use, or for number of available apps. Unless RIM can turn things around, the writing's on the wall for BlackBerry.
I know it's considered a classic, but I think the 1983 film Scarface is one of the worst movies of its era, and the film that marks the terminal decline of Al Pacino's acting career. So I wasn't particularly inclined to enjoy Scarface: Last Stand, an iPhone game that celebrates that film's idiotic, blood-saturated conclusion. Still, it was free for one day only--yesterday to you luckless latecomers--so I couldn't resist downloading it and taking it for a spin.
I've given it 15 minutes. Maybe it gets better with age, but so far, Scarface: Last Stand serves up gory, pointless tedium. Basically, the rival drug gang breaks into the mansion, they shoot at you and you shoot back. At its normal price of $7, I'd say keep your money. But then I felt the same way about the movie, which remains popular over a quarter century after its release. So what do I know?
Maybe, if you're Apple. If you're an app developer, not so much. Still, on average, app developers will make back over 15 times their development costs. So don't give up hope. Instead, use this stat-heavy article as an aid in calculating your odds of success.
Just look at the early adopters of the iPhone in the enterprise. Executives gave up their CrackBerry addiction for sleek, easy-to-use iPhones running consumer apps such as iPod, Facebook, travel apps, foreign-language voice-to-voice translation apps, and, especially relevant to executives, golf apps like Golfshot GPS. iPhones have been trickling down org charts ever since.
But don't take my word for it, check the numbers. It's the tale of two companies. RIM's stock price today is around $70-a-share, nearly the same as it was a year ago. In the same time period, Apple stock has steadily soared from $120 last year to $260 today. The Silicon Valley company continues to be a Wall Street darling. In the world of technology and innovation, if you're not flying, you're falling.
Earlier this year, Carbonite issued an iPhone app, and it's pretty sweet. Customers can log in to view their files, and send them to others as e-mail attachments. It even let me play some of my backed-up audio files through the iPhone's speakers, though I don't think this feature supports all audio formats.
Recently, Carbonite announced a BlackBerry app as well. Here's the web page for it. But I'm danged if I can find the app here. Too bad; I'm looking forward to trying it.
More details here...
Too bad there's no Live Mesh for the iPhone or iPad. Then again, there's Dropbox, a program that does much the same thing, and offers a free iPhone-iPad app. The free version of Dropbox stores just 2 gigs of data; for more storage, you've got to pay monthly fees. In addition, the Dropbox app doesn't copy all your stuff to the iPhone. Instead, it lets you view all your "boxed" files, and download particularly important ones. If you juggle lots of files, the Dropbox app is surely worth a download.
So where's tethering? Seems AT&T's network just isn't robust enough to allow it. That's the clear implication of this message.
No doubt about it, there's a price to be paid for tethering. It would likely cause a big surge in demand on the AT&T wireless data network, with iPhone owners putting their notebooks and netbooks online and downloading masses of text, video and music. AT&T's basically admitting that their network can't handle it. Which doesn't exactly come as a surprise.
Which might be why I did pretty well with Eat This, Not That, the iPhone game. It's based on the series of books that helps you lose weight, not by giving up junk food, but by making slightly better junk food choices. For instance, the Burger King Whopper with cheese has 300 more calories and nearly twice the fat of the McDonald's Quarter Pounder with cheese. I kinda guessed that, which is why I haven't had a Whopper in years, but occasionally chow down on a Quarter Pounder--without cheese, by the way.
So I scored pretty high on this iPhone guessing game, where you're shown side-by-side images of popular food items, and asked to pick the healthier one. I guessed right about 70 percent of the time.
Eat This, Not That doesn't exactly offer edge-of-the-seat excitement. But it's a handy little training tool for dietary sanity, and it's free for the taking at Apple's App Store.
Hard for us Americans to grasp, mainly because Nokia has so utterly flopped in the US market. Nearly everybody here has heard of the iPhone or the Android phone. But mention Nokia's Symbian phones, and the usual response is "huh?"
I interviewed the CEO of Nokia last year. He admitted that the company's done a wretched job here in the Land of the Free, but that it's finally getting its act together. They better hurry, with so many people snapping up iPhones, Androids and BlackBerries. Even so, Nokia's still number one. And don't you forget it.
Behold the immense potential of the smartphone market. Remember that although about two-thirds of the human race now has a cellphone, most are fairly basic. The potential market for iPhones and other smartphone models is only just being tapped. There's still vast amounts of money to be made, which is why Google and Microsoft and RIM and Nokia and Dell and Palm and so many others are plunging in.
This is going to be fun. Heck, it's already fun!
But now Untravel Media, a Boston company that creates digital walking tours of the city, is retelling the story the 21st century way--via the iPhone. Walking Cinema: Murder on Beacon Hill is an iPhone app that uses GPS mapping technology and embedded video to create a chilling and informative account of the horror. For $4.99 you can settle into a comfy chair and enjoy the grim saga, or you can stroll the streets of Boston, while the app guides you to key locations like the victim's former home, or the site where a curious janitor found his remains.
Over 160 years later, this nasty little murder still has plenty of grisly appeal, especially when presented in such a clever and original way.
Still, it's easy to see why Apple was willing to allow an alternative browser on the iPhone. Apple's own Safari browser is darn good, and can cope with the competition.
I've mainly used Opera Mini on the BlackBerry, where it competes against that smartphone's decidedly inferior browser. Once you try Opera on the BlackBerry, you never want to go back. The iPhone version is quite good as well. I especially like the way it can display all your open browser windows at the bottom of your current window. Still, it's not overwhelmingly better than Safari, and most users will probably stick with Apple's browser.
John Hudson at The Atlantic has an interesting take. He plausibly suggests that Apple is playing catch-up to Android phones, which are selling like wildfire of late.
The software upgrade will be available sometime this summer for iPhone and iPod Touch, and in the fall for the iPad.
Multitasking will only work on the most powerful iPhone, the 3GS, and on third-gen iPod Touches. Presumably it'll work on the iPad too.
Users of Android and BlackBerry phones are about to lose one of their biggest advantages over the iPhone. Meanwhile, iPhoners will at last be able to run apps in background--like Pandora for streaming music - while playing games or surfing the Web.
Everybody knew this had to happen someday. The iPhone is perfectly capable of it. But Apple was worried about performance and battery life issues. Not any more.
(Photo above is by Reuters.)
Just got a press release from Illume Software, a Boston-area company that makes iZUP, an app for Windows Mobile phones that prevents texting while driving. Illume would love to make a version for the iPhone, but can't because iZUP requires the ability to run in the background at all times, and as everyone knows, the iPhone doesn't let apps do that.
Or maybe it will, after Thursday. The release said:
"On the heels of the news that iPhone 4.0 will support multi-tasking, I wanted to provide you with a powerful example of how this news will impact Boston businesses.
"Before the availability of multi-tasking on the iPhone, certain applications have not been available or possible for the iPhone. This development now enables local Boston company, Illume Software, to offer their flagship product iZUP (eliminating driver’s distractions) on the iPhone."
There've been lots of rumors that multitasking is coming. This may or may not be confirmation that the rumors are true. We'll see...