Apple Development Hardware iOS

iPod Touch

Why doesn’t Apple improve on the iPod Touch every couple years? Why not take older chip sets — maybe a model from last years iPhone — and leave the form factor alone? Just keep stuffing updated tech into the existing design.

There are folks that can’t afford to buy their kids an iPhone but the iPod Touch may fit nicely into their budget.

Yep, it's a rooster.As a developer this is also a nice machine for testing. The only issue I see is it hasn’t been revved in a long time. It’s still using an A8 processor but it is still slightly ahead of the iPhone 5s which uses an A7. that’s important because the iPhone 5s is the lowest end iPhone that supports iOS 12. That means we could get another couple years use out of the current generation iPod Touch.

The iPod Touch with 128GB of storage sells for $299US.

Fingers crossed Apple updates it soon.


Larger Phones

Jerry Fahrni: “The size. I’m not a fan of large smartphones. The Moto X has a 4.7-inch screen while the S5 has a 5.1-inch screen. This is more personal preference than anything else. It’s all about how well it fits in the left front pocket of my jeans.”

My brother recently had to replace his Moto X. He chose a Samsung S5 because, apparently, the Moto X is no longer available. It’s a really nice device, but like him I’m not a fan of larger devices. It really comes down to fitting in my pocket and how it feels in one hand.

I’m happy with the 4-inch screen on my iPhone 5C, and I could see going as large as 4.7-inch, Jay’s Moto X felt great in hand, but over 5-inches? Now we are approaching tablet size.

If you pay attention to Apple rumors, which I don’t, you’d hear talk of Apple releasing a 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch device. This definitely doesn’t sound like something Apple would do, but Apple has been doing very un-Apple like stuff recently.

My hope? I hope they don’t go to a 5.5-inch device. That is extremely large. If you want something that big, buy an iPad Mini, it’s only 7.9-inches.


Police helped Apple employees?

CNN: “Four San Francisco Police officers escorted Apple investigators to a home in the city’s Bernal Heights neighborhood, the statement said. The two Apple employees searched the home while the officers waited outside, police said. They did not find the item there and declined to file a police report, according to the statement.”

Does that seem backward to you? Why would the police wait outside? This is either horrible reporting or horrible police work.

I hope it’s horrible reporting.

Apple Microsoft

iPhone Funeral

Daring Fireball: “Microsoft has never been cool, has never had good taste, but their lack of cool and lack of taste are spiraling out of control.”

I’m not exactly sure why Microsoft would target the iPhone? Apple has, what, 6% of the mobile market? They’re also limited to AT&T as a carrier.

John is right, the bigger threat is Android with all the OEM deals. Actually, the biggest threat of all is Microsoft. They haven’t exactly done so well in the mobile market lately. Hopefully they don’t pull another KIN.

Apple Core Labs

Wanted: Beta Testers

Apple Core Labs LogoApple Core Labs: “We’re working on the next release of RxCalc and would like to open it up to some beta testers!”

If you’re a Pharmacist and are using RxCalc, or would like to test a Pharmacokinetics calculator for the iPhone, head on over and sign up!

Apple Google

Nexus One vs. iPhone

Justin Williams: “After a week of using Android, I’m conflicted. If you had asked me last Wednesday what phone i’d be using a week from now I’d without a doubt say the iPhone. Now that we’re here, however, I am sticking with Android until the new iPhone ships. Widgets, home screen customization, background processes and the notification system are things that I’ve grown incredibly fond of and would miss if I went back to the iPhone today. I’m also eagerly waiting the release of Froyo for my Nexus One, which will offer a lot of new features I’d like to toy with in the near term.”

Go read the entire post, it’s very good. Justin actually likes some of the stuff I find interesting about Android, home screen customization and the notification system in particular.

Parting shot, from the post: “Where Android shines in some areas, it really falls apart in others. Things that are ridiculously simple on the iPhone such as taking a screenshot involves installing an SDK and going through a 15 step tutorial to do on Android.”


Gruber on Balmer on iPhone

John Gruber: “Not only was he wrong about the iPhone, but he was even more wrong about Windows Mobile. Three years ago Ballmer was talking about 60, 70, 80 percent market share. This week, Gartner reported that Windows Mobile has dropped to 6.8 percent market share in worldwide smartphone sales, down dramatically from 10.2 percent a year ago. (The same report puts iPhone OS at 15.2 percent, and Android at 9.6.)”

Microsoft has really dropped the ball on mobile computing. They had a huge lead with Windows Mobile, managed to sit on it, and now Apple, Google and RIM have taken them to the woodshed for a good old fashioned butt whoppin. But, and yes, there’s always a but, never count them out of the game. Kin may be a complete bust at the moment, but they’ll learn from that mistake, and who knows, maybe they’ll open source their mobile effort just to try and stick it to Google?

Stranger things have happened, right?


Leave Apple Alone

Bloomberg (via Daring Fireball): “May 4 (Bloomberg) — U.S. antitrust enforcers are considering an investigation of Apple Inc. following a complaint from Adobe Systems Inc., according to people familiar with the matter.”

Yesterday, on Twitter, I asked “Can you develop XBox 360, Sony Playstation, or Wii apps using Flash?” There was a reason for that question. I was hoping someone would take the bait, but alas, nobody obliged. Once again I ask, can you develop XBox 360, Sony Playstation, or Wii apps using Flash? I’m fairly confident the answer is “NO.”

From the Microsoft XBox Developer site: “At this time, access to development tools for the Xbox 360â„¢ video game console is limited to developers working on approved titles for licensed publishers. This will change over time, so check back for more information in the future.”

At this time you can’t even develop for the platform. Sorry, I’m picking on Microsoft, but I’m most familiar with the XBox so it was easy to find information on developing for the platform.

Why doesn’t Adobe complain about lack of Flash support on those platforms? Money, that’s why. Adobe stands to lose money if it can’t sell it’s Flash development tools targeting the extremely successful iPhone and iPad. For some reason they’re not beating down the door at Microsoft, Sony, or Nintendo trying to get on their game platforms. They’re closed systems, but I guess gaming consoles are somehow different?

Yeah, but…

I’ve been carrying on a conversation with a co-worker about iPhone, and iPad, development and he’s not happy about Apple’s stance. He says he doesn’t have access to the platform because he has to invest in an Apple computer($599.00) and pay to join the iPhone Developer Program($99.00). For $700.00 you can develop Mac, iPhone, and iPad applications. I can see where that could be a bit intimidating, $700.00 is a chunk of change. But what does it cost to use Flash to develop on any platform? To purchase Adobe Flash Builder will set you back, that’s right, you guessed it, $699.00. Same price. There may be free tools, I don’t know, I don’t use Flash.

Why punish iPhone and iPad developers?

There’s an entire class of developers out there working hard to deliver iPhone and iPad applications, they’re using the preferred technologies, and quite a few of them are doing quite well. Hey, if a knuckle head like me can figure out how to write and publish an iPhone app, anyone can. Is Flash really a great development tool? Really? All designers aren’t necessarily developers, there are a few that bridge the gap, but not many. I’d venture to guess there is a lot of really bad Flash code running on the web today, Flash is the new Visual Basic, it gives folks something they can create with, that’s great, create away! My question is why do you feel you have to be able to write Flash code to run on the iPad or iPhone? Is there some code of ethics that says you have the right to create Flash based programs that can run everywhere? Why would someone think that? I have an idea.

If you want to create apps for the iPad or iPhone pick up a book, get a compiler, sign up to be an iPhone developer and you can create apps to your hearts content. I’m pretty sure you can create “Punch the Monkey” using Objective-C and Cocoa Touch.

I’ve rambled on long enough, have a great night.


How we love the iPhone

TechCrunch: “But every single day I have some kind of AT&T issue. And many of the aforementioned people I know do too. So rather than making us pay the $150 for this device, why not just send one to every customer living in areas that you yourselves admit has service “below our standards“?” – Yep, that’s right, AT&T has a device you can pay $150.00 for that will use your existing broadband connection so your AT&T based service is better. What the? So, get this, most folks pay around $120.00 per month for the “honor” of using the iPhone, they could care less about the service provider, unless that provider’s service is horrible. Instead of fixing their network in San Francisco and New York they’ve found a way to make a profit off of it. Wow, just wow.

Let your money do the talking

Look, I don’t have this issue with AT&T where I live. The network seems to work just fine most of the time, cellular still has a long way to go to match the quality we get with land lines. Here’s the thing. Either you live with the poor network, or move to a different carrier. Yeah, it’s that simple. Ahhh, there’s a catch. You can’t take your iPhone with you. That one thing is keeping people on a network they’re unhappy with. Another wow. Really? You’re picking your network because you won’t give up your iPhone?

If you won’t let your money do the talking because of the device, should you complain about the service?

There are other phones

The Palm PreI don’t actually own an iPhone, I have a Palm Centro. It works for me. I only have voice and text services so the device isn’t as important, I just need something with a QWERTY keyboard. Sure I’d like to have one, but I’m not yet willing to play the extra price for the service. At one point back in the summer I’d looked at switching to Sprint because of their great pricing. You can get the same services; unlimited text, and data, with 450 voice minutes for $70.00. Sprint, as you may know, had an exclusive deal with Palm. The Palm Pre is an amazing smart phone, in fact I think it’s the second best smart phone on the market. Of course I think the iPhone is better, but the Pre is a great number two! I know they’re in trouble, and folks have criticized their hardware, but they do have an amazing operating system in WebOS, and they’re not going away anytime soon. If you want to spend a little more and get what most consider the best cellular carrier in the country you can now get the Palm Pre Plus through Verizon and you can tether with up to five devices. Nice.

What if?

If you’re an iPhone user and you could use your phone on Verizon, Sprint, or T-Mobile, what would you do? Would you switch in a heartbeat? My brother is a Verizon fanboi so he lives with the phones he can get his hands on. I’m not convinced he’s liked any of his smart phones because he keeps buying new ones. I know, I just know, he’s waiting for that glorious day to come! The day the iPhone is available on all the major carriers, then I’d put money on him buying one the day it’s available. I also know people that are living with AT&T service, because of the iPhone, and are due to commit to a new two year deal, but won’t do it because they’re hoping the exclusive iPhone deal will AT&T will lapse and they can switch carriers. Interesting isn’t it.

Yeah, people love the iPhone.


I like Palm

ars technica: “In January of 2009, shares of Palm traded at a little over $3 as everyone awaited details of the once-mighty smartphone maker’s plans to save itself from certain death. In the wake of the Pre’s successful unveiling later that month at CES, Palm’s stock price more than doubled, and optimism about the Pre’s prospects eventually drove shares to a high of over $17 in October of last year. But as of this past Friday’s earnings report, sales are way below Palm’s and Wall Street’s expectations, the company has little cash left on hand, and shares of PALM have dropped all the way back down to $4. There’s a growing consensus—as expressed by the market—that there are only two possible futures for Palm: acquisition, or insolvency.” – Darn. I’ve always been a Palm fan. I had a Handspring Visor and used it for years, and I’ve even written, and contributed to, applications that run on the original Palm platform. The new Pre, and more specifically WebOS, are beautifully designed. In fact I’d put them firmly in second place to the iPhone. I would hope they won’t go away, but I’m not sure who would be interested in acquiring them at this point. A few months back I’d have said Microsoft was the perfect place for Palm but with the introduction of Windows Phone 7 (what a horrible name) I think Microsoft is now in a fairly decent position to be a good number three or four in the market. About a year ago I considered moving to Sprint for my cell service and the Pre was a natural choice, hard to beat unlimited use for $70.00 a month, the same plan on AT&T, with an iPhone, would run $119.00.

Anywho, I hope Palm can manage to stick around. They’re now offering the Pre at Verizon, which is a very popular carrier, and Verizon still doesn’t have the iPhone of course. Once the iPhone hits these other carriers it could be game over.