Following the initial teardown photos, TechOnline has identified each chip component on the iPhone 3G motherboard -- including the associated manufacturers and functionalities of each. The report says that choices are surprising for some of the upgraded communication components and outside of some basic design tweaks, the iPhone 3G is very similar to the original iPhone. The report says that Infineon made four key design wins with the new iPhone 3G and that it usses Toshiba rather than Samsung memory, leading analysts to question whether the huge memory deal with Samsung is still in place.
Despite the activation woes around the world -- including the US, UK, and Canada -- for the $1 billion event, Apple's iPhone 3G hit the streets with little surprises (given the early mostly positive reviews, unboxing leaks, and official unboxing videos). Packaged in a smaller box, the new iPhone 3G is nestled in a black recyclable cardboard holder rather than the clear plastic holder used with the original iPhone. The iPhone 3G also comes with Apple's earphones, a very small power adapter (inset into the box so it doesn't move), and USB charging cable, but no dock. Unfortunately, the new iPhone is not compatible with older docks; the new iPhone 3G dock (available at the time of purchase) is sold separately for $29.99. The new iPhone 3G looks different (more slick, if you can imagine), though the size is relatively the same. The improved ergonomics and curve are relatively minor, but overall change the feeling of the device.
Dauger Research has introduced Atom in a Box for the iPhone, a 3D real-time volumetric raytracing iPhone application that visually presents quantum orbitals of a hydrogen atom. Using the iPhone's multitouch interface and accelerometer, the user can reorient and interact visually with the atomic orbital. The software is even able to show the "flow" of the electron around the orbital by presenting the time-evolving phase of the wavefunction as color. Atom in a box is available for $10 at the iPhone Apps Store, for both the iPhone and iPod touch. It requires the iPhone 2.0 software update and is also available as a Mac OS X application.
Apple has released an update to its developer tools, Xcode Tools 3.1. Xcode 3.1b was previously available as part of the iPhone SDK and is now as a standalone package for Mac OS developers as well. Addressing security issues, the new update fixes an arbitrary code execution and a WebObjects session ID disclosure. Requirements for Xcode tools 3.1 are an Apple Developer Connection membership and OS X 10.5 or higher. Xcode is available for Mac OS developers and as part of the final iPhone SDK; both are free for ADC members. [updated]
Sony today posted a teaser confirming the launch date for its Centrino 2-based VAIO line. The electronics maker expects to formally unveil the new range on July 14th at 9PM Eastern and is known to be introducing several new models as well as potentially refreshing existing systems for the initial launch. In addition to better performance, they should also consume less power in most models.
Koyono has announced the its new Booq Mamba Compact Back Pack, a laptop backpack capable of carrying up to a 17-inch MacBook Pro. It offers 420D Polyester with a water-resistant coating and protects the laptop with a half-inch of high-density foam padding, and scratch-resistant linings. The new bag offers easy-access side pockets, a number of mesh pockets and zippered compartments for large and small items,with a zippered accessory pouch for cables.
In a comparison of the iPhone contracts of 27 cellphone operators in 21 countries, UK carrier O2 was a far better deal than AT&T in the US, while Swisscom (Switzerland) had the least expensive outlay (albeit while offering voice calls and SMS 'separately'). setteB.IT analyzed the offerings of the 27 carriers, comparing overall costs of the (mostly) two-year contracts, along with the various limitations of data usage, visual voicemail and wi-fi access. Swisscom was the least expensive, at Ä540, but it listed voice calls and SMS as additional charges. Italy took the prize as most expensive, with a two-year contract costing Ä1615. Italy's offer does allow a healthy 600MB of data traffic per month, where most of the 27 contracts limited data to 100MB per month.
Mach Software has released a new version of its popular clipboard manager, Clipboard Evolved. Designed to fit neatly into Mac OS X (and so that it offers the most functionality with the smallest learning curve) the software offers two views, a clipboard window plus a menu for easy access to copied items. Clipboard Evolved adds an icon into the menubar that allows access to all the programs features with very little hassle. Right-clicking on the menubar icon brings up a list of all the items in the clipboard which can then be clicked on to be copied, or if you have a new piece of data you would like to add to the clipboard just drag that item over the menubar icon and it will be instantly added to the current clipboard.
Pandora has released a version of its popular internet service for the iPhone. The new app brings users CD-quality tracks in the form of a personalized radio station. A user must simply enter the name of an artist, song or composer and then within seconds Pandora will build a "station" that plays the music the user entered along with music that is similar in style. With each song users are also given the option of tagging the song with a thumbs up or down to further fine tune and customize the created station. The iPhone app also supplies users with a link to buy any song that is being listened to in the iTunes WiFi store.
Following the initial announcement a few days ago, the iPhone dev team says it is close to releasing a new version of its iPhone PwnageTool application for jailbreaking and/or unlocking an iPhone. The new version, PwnageTool 2.0, brings support for the new iPhone 2.0 firmware, allowing the new iPhone 3G, or 1st gen iPhones/iPod touch's to be "jail-broken," so users can install third-party software (not through the Apps store) and access the file system. The tool is designed to be extremely user-friendly and simple, enabling almost anyone to jailbreak their iPhone. After the process is finished all of the 2.0 firmware features, such as the App Store or Exchange support, will be available to the user as well as the ability to add other third-party apps via the installer, reminiscent of the way software was installed before Apple launched the App Store.
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Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive,¬†Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk¬†Drive,¬†GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN
MIT demoes 'Eyeriss' AI chip for mobile
At the International Solid State Circuits Conference in San Francisco this week, MIT researchers presented a new chip designed specifically to implement neural networks. The researchers claim that "Eyeriss" is 10 times as efficient as a mobile GPU, so it could enable mobile devices to run artificial-intelligence algorithms such as Siri or Cortana, rather than uploading all data to a remote server for processing. http://bit.ly/1TISJBe
Pocket for iOS adds readability settings
Offline reader iOS app Pocket has updated, with reader-friendly changes. With the new revision, premium subscribers can adjust character spacing, and choose from eight new fonts including one that makes it easier for sufferers of dyslexia to read saved content. The app itself is free, with a premium subscription available for $5 a month, or $45 a year. http://apple.co/1KuILBl