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Posts Tagged ‘Apps’

Find Your iPhone

June 18th, 2010 No comments

Let’s say you leave your new iPhone in a bar and need to track it down before it ends up on Gizmodo ASAP.

There’s an app for that.

Apple has released the new Find My iPhone app that allows you to locate, ring or remote wipe your iPhone or iPad from any other iPhone or iPad.

Just download the free app on a friends iPhone, sign in with your Mobile Me account and your lost or missing iPhone will appear via Google Maps.

You need three things to make this work.

1. A Mobile Me account registered with your device.

2. A friend/kind stranger with an iPhone.

3. To actually remember that this capability even exists when you do lose your phone.

[ Find My iPhone ]

Categories: News Tags: , , ,

Apple TV Re-Imagined

June 1st, 2010 No comments


Last week, rumors surfaced of a new Apple TV. The new form factor is rumored to look like a screen-less iPod Touch and start at around $99. With Google announcing their own Google TV platform, the time is right for an Apple TV refresh.

What could be in store for the new Apple TV?

Storage

On board storage is rumored to be around 16GB which would make it more reliant on cloud storage (streaming) or connection to a Time Capsule (external drive.) This makes a lot of sense as this would keep the entry costs lower, hopefully boosting adoption rates. For the prosumer who likes to have a localized, large media library, the ability to easily piggy-back to the larger Time Capsule would be a plus.

Apps

Connecting the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad apps to the TV screen would be huge. If the new Apple TV shared the same OS platform as the other mobile devices, developers could easily port (or already have them work) on the new Apple TV.

Connections

The new device is rumored to have only a single HDMI port for 1080p video and network via built in Wi-Fi. The small form factor and simple connections would make the device portable and easy to share between television sets.

How does Apple get the great content that’s currently available for the iPhone, iPod and iPad onto the TV cheaply and easily? That’s the question. Hopefully the next Apple TV will have a good answer.

[ AppleInsider ]

Categories: Commentary Tags: , , ,

WWDC 2010 Preview

May 25th, 2010 No comments

Apple’s 2010 Worldwide Developer Conference will take place June 7-11 in San Francisco. The annual developer’s conference has become better known for product (iPhone) keynotes lately but has the primary focus of connecting Apple engineers with developers from around the world.

What to expect.

All signs point to new iPhone hardware being announced at the conference. The biggest hardware news being the inclusion of a front facing camera in the iPhone to facilitate video chat. More details (including availability date) on the new iPhone 4 OS. More info on the new iAd platform and an increased emphasis on iPad specific apps are also likely.

What not to expect.

No other hardware announcements.

What we hope to see.

Mac Pro desktop refreshes. With AutoCAD on the way, this might be a good time to give the old desktop some love. Some insight into 10.7. How will the touch input and app revolution make it’s way onto laptops and desktops? A strategy for Apple TV. With Google on the attack, it’s time to start winning (or at least fighting) in the living room.

With Google painting Apple as the bad guys in “V for Vendetta” at their own developer’s conference last week, it will be interesting to see how (if at all) Apple responds. Will Apple defend it’s openness and revolutionary spirit, or will they pull a Microsoft and respond with numbers of units sold and revenue? We’ll find out soon enough.

[ WWDC 2010 ]

Categories: Commentary Tags: , , , ,

iPhone Inside An iPhone? Why Not

December 23rd, 2009 No comments

Check out this augmented reality app from Orange wireless. Not only is this a virtual iPhone, you can actually control the iPhone from inside the app. The more I see of augmented reality applications, the more I like.

[ Ogmento via Gizmodo ]

Categories: Insights Tags: , ,

How The iPhone Can Win Against Android

November 18th, 2009 No comments

android-logo-redWhen Google first came out with the G1, I was not impressed. The iPhone was still fresh and exciting and the G1 felt cheap and underdeveloped. I remember asking the first person I saw with a G1, “Do you work for Google?” Thinking, why else would you have that phone?

Times have definitely changed.

The Android OS has continued to improve and evolve with more and more handset manufacturers coming out with Android phones that people actually want. HTC, a relative no name a few years back, is successfully building their brand presence in the U.S. (thanks in large part to Android) and Motorola is in the middle of a comeback with the early success of the Droid.

With Samsung, Acer, Lenovo and Dell all coming out with Android phones, it looks like Android has a chance of becoming the “Windows” of the smartphone market. On top of this, rumors are that Google themselves are making their own smartphone which would provide the all-in-one hardware-software mix that has made Apple so successful.

So, how can the iPhone win against Android?

By doing what has worked for Apple in the past, focusing on quality and creating enough product diversity to satisfy their target markets.

More iPhone Models

When the iPod came out, there was one model and it was hugely successful, but in order to keep over 70% of the MP3 market share, Apple came out with the Nano, Shuffle, Video, etc. Same thing needs to happen with the iPhone. Different price points and storage capacities aren’t enough. Different hardware configs, screen sizes, form factors, etc. Why is a physical keyboard blasphemy?

Better Hardware

Apple is know for innovating with the latest hardware. They were the first laptop manufacturer to include built-in wifi, wide screen displays, backlit keyboards, etc. The original iPhone had the best touch screen and great specs, but the 3GS was a hardware snooze fest. Front facing camera for video chat (can be low rez and only work on wifi,) 5mp camera with flash, and their own line of doc connector peripherals (i.e. game controller) would be awesome.

Open Up the App Store

Yes, it’s good that Apple wants to keep the junk out of the app store and wants to insure that the iPhone experience doesn’t suffer because of poorly written apps. However, the public attention is not on how many apps there are, but how the approval process is slow, flawed and over restrictive. Provide more ratings, allow more content, and hire more people to make the process faster.

More Customization

User customization has never been a trademark of Apple but a little can go a long way. Either develop a framework for themes or give users more options for what appears on the unlock screen (widgets,etc.) Everyone’s iPhone looks the same and for the Apple creative crowd, that’s not a good thing. At least offer more exterior colors, people eat that up.

Get On Verizon

Hopefully this in already in the works. Don’t let AT&T’s network issues drag down the iPhone brand in the U.S. A lot of users are going with Android because they don’t use (or want) AT&T.

Diversity and competition are great for technology, and I for one am glad it’s Google and not RIM or Microsoft  giving Apple the run for their money. Although I’m obviously a die hard Mac fan, the Droid and HTC Dragon look really tempting. I want to use an iPhone because I believe it’s the best hardware/software combo out there, not just because it’s got an Apple logo on it. The iPhone is still tops, but it’s gonna take a lot of innovation to stay in the lead when it’s Google on your heels.

Categories: Commentary Tags: , , , , ,

Adobe Releases Photoshop.com iPhone App

October 9th, 2009 No comments

Photoshop.comToday Adobe released their Photoshop.com Mobile iPhone app. It allows you to perform some basic photo editing without having to leave your iPhone.

Some of the editing features available are cropping, rotation, flipping, exposure and saturation. Basic Photoshop filters include Black and White, Vignette Blur and Pop.

The app includes 2GB of free online storage for you photos, which you can edit directly from the app. You’re also able to edit photos already on your phone, or take new pictures using the camera.

The app is not nearly as full featured as any Photoshop desktop applications, but it’s definitely a start. Photoshop.com Mobile is available at the App Store for free.

[ Photoshop.com ]

Categories: News Tags: , , ,

iPhone App Review – Lose It!

August 21st, 2009 No comments

Lose It

For those fighting the battle of the bulge, here’s a cool app to help you set your goals and maintain them. Lose It! is built to do just that by tracking your food intake and exercise.

Upon first launch of Lose It! you’ll set your current weight, height and age. Pick how much weight per week to lose, any where from 1/2 lb to 2 lbs per week in 1/2 pound increments. Now you have a date in which you are expected to be at your goal weight. They make it look so easy. Now the hard part.

A daily calorie budget  is what you’ll be trying to fight with. Using the daily food log, look up food you’ve consumed and add it. There’s a large database of food, almost everything you can eat including brand name selections. If you always eat Oroweat 100% Whole Wheat bread (my favorite), use the search function to find it and add it to your list. Now it’s added to your My Foods list so you won’t have to search for it again.

A large component of this program is tracking your exercise. There’s preset activities from Archery to Yoga, just choose one along with your impact level and minutes completed and you’ll get the number of calories burned. Can’t find your activity on the list (rock, paper, scissors)? Simply create your own.

Check it out for free at the App Store.

[ Lose It! ]

Categories: Commentary Tags: , ,

Mactracker – IMDB for Macs

July 1st, 2009 No comments

MacTracker

Mactracker is a free OS X/Windows app that provides detailed info on every Mac and Apple product.

mactracker-iconWant to know how much RAM your MacBook can take? When was the first Newton released? Mactracker provides all sorts of technical specs, marketing info, links to support docs, history and benchmark tests.

We’ve been using Mactracker for years and the info is incredibly useful and accurate (sometimes more accurate than the official Apple specs.) If you’re an Apple fan, this app is fun to browse. If you’re a tech, you probably already have it.

[ Mactracker ] BTW, the first Newton came out in ’93.

Categories: Insights Tags: , , , ,

Lonely Planet City Guides

June 30th, 2009 No comments

IMG_0619Lonely Planet guidebooks are a great travel resource.

At first designed for backpackers, these books offer local insight and “hidden” gems. As Lonely Planet has grown in popularity, their audience has broadened to include casual travelers as well.

The LonelyPlanet.com website has always been pretty cutting edge, so it was no surprise when they starting releasing iPhone apps. The iPhone is a great travel device (world phone, GPS, wifi, camera, etc.)

I installed the San Francisco City Guide app to check it out. The guide includes the entire City Guide “Book” in digital format as well as maps, a search function and a “nearby” tab that brings up points of interest in your current vicinity.

Just having the book in digital format is awesome and saves a lot of space and weight (alone worth the price of admission). The nearby feature and maps work as you’d expect and should make for some easy bar hopping.

Some more social features like media uploads or a way for users to provide on the spot reviews would be welcome but I’m sure stuff like this is on the way.

These apps sell for $15.99 each ($0.99 for San Francisco) and are currently available for about 20 cities. While a little on the spendy side, they’re about the same price as the physical books. If you like Lonely Planet and were considering buying a city guide, this is definitely the way to go.

[ Lonely Planet on iTunes ] [ Lonely Planet ]

CNN + iPhone = ?

June 9th, 2009 No comments

cnn-iphone

CNN has announced they are coming out with their own App for the iPhone this summer.

While they provide no details on what that App will do that the mobile version of CNN (or the full website for that matter) doesn’t already provide, it will be interesting to see what they come up with.

There is a lot of debate/uncertainty over the future of mobile applications. Will they be web based and work across multiple hardware and software platforms or will they be device specific (App store) but offer tighter integration and a better overall experience? Right now it looks like most major companies are hedging their bets and offering both.

Cnn.com is one of my primary sources of mainstream news and they’ve generally been quick to embrace new technologies. So what will the iPhone App offer that their website doesn’t? Mobile is all about location (the Apps know your GPS location and where you’ve been/frequent.) By delivering news thats relevant to your current location, this App could bring something new and valuable to the table. Let’s say you travel to Denver for business and when you get off the plane, the CNN app delivers weather/traffic and any breaking local news for Denver.

We’ll keep you posted. Until then you can signup here for updates on the App from CNN.

Categories: Commentary Tags: , , , ,