Category: Apple


Apple TV or Google TV?

Apple and Google are both trying to get into your home and in front of your television. Both are doing it a little different but are offering many of the same features. Do we really need something new?… a new remote control, a new device to connect up to our TV, a new piece of equipment to learn? I’m on the fence with this decision but am keeping an eye on both devices.

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I was able to pick up my new iPhone 4 on day one! When it comes to gadgets like this, that is how I am. When I got my iPhone 3G, I waited in like at 5:00am at the local AT&T store to get it. Something in me just has to have it when it’s released. That is the geek in me. With the iPhone 4, it was easier. I just pre-ordered it at Best Buy and they made an 8:00am appointment, the day before it was released, for me to come in and pick it up. I got there, stepped in side, sat down, and had my new 32GB iPhone 4 handed to me.

I’ve had it a few days now and have spent a lot of time with it. Just today I put emoji icons in front of my folder names… so I have a football in front of the name for my ‘Sports’ games folder, headphones for my ‘Music’ folder, and a camera on my ‘Photo’ apps folder. With all the good, and bad, news flying around about the new iPhone 4, I thought I would put in my two cents worth. There has been enough in-depth reviews, so I will keep this simple. Just do an iPhone 4 review search in Google to get all the juicy details.

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Up Next… The New iPhone

Well, it is almost June 7th. This is the date Steve Jobs steps onto the stage of Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) and officially announces the new iPhone HD… 4G… or whatever the new name will be. WWDC seems to be the place where Apple makes iPhone hardware announcements. It has been this way since the first iPhone release in 2007. It’s appropriate, since the iPhone (and new iPad) is a great development platform. Most people are waiting for the big iPhone announcement. So what are we hoping to see in the new device?

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The New iPhone Discovered

If you haven’t heard, a new 4th Generation (prototype) iPhone was found on the floor of a bar in San Jose. Sounds fishy, right? Engadget posted pictures on its site last week and then a day later said that they were probably pictures of a knock-off iPhone from China. Another day later and they are posting that it is real again. Then I read that Gizmodo actually got the prototype iPhone, for an undisclosed amount of money. They put up pictures and videos of it on their site. They actually got hands on with the new iPhone and even took it apart to verify the Apple design for themselves. Turns out that this is the real thing… and it looks exciting!

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Opera created their mini browser for the iPhone and Apple just released it on the App Store this week. Do we need another browser on the iPhone? Opera seems to think so. Is this a browser you should download and try out for yourself? Let me give you some more information on it and you can make your own decision.

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Today, Steve Jobs got up on stage and announced iPhone OS 4.0. With 1,500 new developer API’s and 100 new user features, this looks to be the OS that we have been waiting for.  Most of the time was spent going over the main seven “Tentpole” features.  It’s about time Apple! I’m excited all over again for this new OS, due summertime… and a new iPhone too.

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It’s hard to believe, but just today, I saw multiple articles about sites converting to HTML5 for the Apple iPad launch. It’s hard to believe that a device could have such an impact on the Internet. Last week it was the CBS.com announcement that they were testing an iPad version of the site to run their videos in HTML5. This week it looks like The New York Times and Time Inc. are preparing their sites to use HTML5 in preparation for April 3rd’s iPad launch. Rumors have it that NPR and Wall Street Journal iPad sites are also in the works, using HTML5.

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The tech community has been able to jailbreak just about any device, from the Xbox 360 and the PS3, to smartphones like the iPhone or Blackberry. This is normally done to get around restrictions that are put on the device. Tethering your laptop to your smartphone (this is done so that your laptop can connect through your phone to the Internet) is something that AT&T has not wanted, so they had Apple put restrictions in the iPhone OS to disable this feature. It’s the operating system that is keeping you from tethering your laptop to your iPhone, not the hardware that Apple built. jailbreak your iPhone and you can enable this feature for tethering through the iPhone’s wi-fi, bluetooth, or USB connection.

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“Throw Away” Apps on the iPhone

Apple announced that over 3 billion applications have been downloaded from its App Store. There are over 140,000 apps available to download. That is a lot of apps for the iPhone and iPod Touch. There are applications available in just about any category you can think of from education, to business, to news, and even games. There are applications from the low, low price of FREE up to $100 and possibly higher. You will find your average apps linger around $5 to $10, but most are priced from $.99 and $1.99. This is the sweet spot for applications. It is what I consider to be the “Throw Away” app price range.

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Make any picture funny with the Face Melter application.

Have you ever seen those cards with the morphed dogs or cats on the front… the ones with the big eyes and wide mouth? I thought about these cards the first time I used Face Melter ($1.99) on the iPhone. It is a simple program that allows you to take a photo with the built-in camera, or an existing photo, and twist it, squish it, stretch it, and magnify it. Deform photos in just about any way you can imagine. When done, you can save it to your photo library for use as a funny MMS message, a post on Facebook, or just print it out and make a funny card.

When out at get together with friends, I’ll take pictures of different people and then morph them to look like wild characters. Using the iPhone’s two finger gestures, you can widen their eyes, pinch their nose, and stretch their mouth. Using the one finger swipe, you can move parts of the photo around… sort of like putty.  With three fingers, you can swirl parts of the photo. When you are done, tap on the save button and you have a new funny photo in your collection. There is an undo feature if you make a mistake… or just shake the iPhone to reset the picture back to normal.

This is great application to use at parties. It gets everyone laughing and you can even send them a copy of the photo with the iPhone’s email application. Check out a YouTube video of Face Melter below.