Tag Archives: iPhone 3G

Did Apple throw AT&T under the bus cuz there is a CDMA iPhone on the way?

5 Jul

In its ‘letter regarding iPhone 4‘ Apple wrote everything but admit that there is a genuine reception issue problem with the iPhone 4. Instead, it put the blame on its sole carrier partner in the US (AT&T) by implying that users were facing dropped calls and network bars disappearing because they might be in an area with poor network reception. Judging by the number of complaints that we are reading about, it seems that would be across the country and not just some pockets.

Now why would Apple do that to its exclusive partner. Why now, after three iterations of the device have made the iPhone the most popular smartphone ever. Why now, when Apple knew since 2007 that AT&T’s network was being overwhelmed by the traffic its iPhone toting users generated and whatever the carrier did was just not enough to satiate the data guzzling smartphone?

Till now Jobs and company were content to simply smirk when people complained about AT&T. But never did they go to the extent of blaming the carrier for the poor reception quality of Apple’s “best iPhone yet.” But now they just did.

So here’s what I think: Apple is on the verge of closing a deal (or might have already inked it) with Verizon Wireless, AT&T’s closest rival that uses a competing CDMA network known for its strong reception and data throughputs. Verizon already has a robust EVDO network and is on the verge of launching an LTE network (4G) in the US.

Apple has done its bit for AT&T (and vice-versa, as it is believed that Apple first approached Verizon for the iPhone but the carrier at that time refused) and now it seems the right time to move on from their exclusive relationship. Verizon will offer Apple a new set of customers to sell the iPhone to and also offers the company a future growth path.

On Verizon, Apple could first launch an EVDO version of the iPhone later this year or early next year and tap into its millions of subscribers who just could not switch to AT&T but were dying to use an iPhone. Then, in late-2011 or early-2012, Apple can launch an LTE version and then keep adding new features just like it did with the GSM iPhone. A simple 2G version in 2007 (iPhone), a 3G version (iPhone 3G) in 2008 and progressive feature improvements in 2009 (iPhone 3GS) and 2010 (iPhone 4).

A move like that would not only give Apple a bigger addressable market in the US but also help it secure more carrier partnerships in other countries like India, where CDMA carriers are yet to get a ‘killer’ smartphone that would enable it to keep its high value customers interested in their services.

That is what I think. What do you think?

Apple releases patch for Exchange Server issues after iOS4 update

1 Jul

After updating their iPhone 3G and 3GS to the latest iOS4, many users had complained about erratic behaviour in the way it handled e-mail configured using Microsoft’s Exchange Server. Our own e-mail constantly failed to send mails that we composed on our iPhone. While the issue didn’t create as much noise as the failing antenna band (death of grip) or the breaking covers, Apple took notice of it and issued a patch.

If you are facing Exchange Server-related problems on your iPhone running on iOS 4, see here on how you can resolve the issue. It is a small download and install process, which would require you to reboot your device once the installation is complete.

Yahoo! releases Mail, IM app for Android; HTML5 site for iOS

1 Jul

Yahoo! has announced a couple of apps for Android and a new HTML5, iOS optimised site for iPhone and iPod touch owners.

The Android apps for Y! Messenger and Y! Mail will be available in the Android Market and will work with all devices running OS 2.0 and above. Users will be able to receive push notifications for new mails; will be able to access contacts both from their Yahoo! account as well as those stored on their device; search mails by subject, sender’s name and even upload images stored on the phone as mail attachments. Users will be able to send and receive pictures even from the IM app for Android. In addition to this, Yahoo! has also released a search widget for Android phones.

For iPhone and iPod touch users, Yahoo! has released an HTML5 web app for mail. Users will get desktop like experience in terms of speed and features and will be able to access their mails even when they are offline and carry out local searches thanks to on-device local caching. The web app will also display HTML messages along with images or videos that come as attachments. The web app can be now previewed by going to m.yahoo.com/mail from Safari browser on your iPhone or iPod touch and selecting ‘Preview the new Yahoo! Mail’ link.

Why you should update even your iPhone 3G with iOS 4

22 Jun

Apple flipped on the switch for iOS 4 for the iPhone 3GS, the iPhone 3G and the two recent versions of the iPod touch. The biggest draw of iOS 4 is it would finally allow some apps to run in the background and give users a taste of limited multi-tasking. However, it comes with a caveat: multi-tasking will only work on the iPhone 3GS and not the iPhone 3G. After playing with my iPhone 3G running iOS 4, here are some reasons why iOS 4 is a must update for all iPhone 3G owners.

The problem with having too many apps on your iPhone is that you end up with too many screens and finding an app becomes a pain. Yes, you can search for an app using Spotlight (the search page on the left of the homepage) but I never got myself to use that feature. Instead, I keep swiping one screen after another to get to the app I was looking for. With Folders in iOS 4, I have managed to fit all my apps in just three screens from about seven screens in the pre-iOS 4 state.

What I like the most about folders is how easy it is to create them – press the screen till the icons start jiggling and then start placing the apps that you want in one folder over each other. It will automatically give the folder a name based on the type of apps in the folder but you can customize it. This feature alone is more than enough to update your iPhone 3G to iOS 4.

There have been many iterations of predictive text input in cellphones and even the iPhone OS (or should I say iOS) has its own eccentric version, which worked for me but many friends keep complaining about.

But it is probably for the first time that I’m seeing an MS Word-like red underlining of suspect words. There is nothing special about the feature but it does make even something as basic as sending a text message super smart.

It does what it is supposed to do – underline suspect words – but what it should also do is give suggestions, which it does not at the moment (left for iOS 5 to do?).

Nevertheless, it does come in handy when you have to shoot a text message to a client or your boss and want to ensure that there are no typos in the copy. But I want more…

Like I mentioned earlier, I am not a big fan of Spotlight search feature. Let me rephrase that, I was not a big fan of Spotlight search feature. With iOS 4, I might just get hooked on to the feature.

Spotlight has been updated. Now it not only searches for apps or contacts but it also searches your text message inbox and gives you an option to search on the Web or do a Wikipedia search!

Then there are dozens of new features like digital zoom while clicking pictures, a unified mailbox with threaded e-mails, iBooks and many other features that I’m still trying out. Plus it seems that my iPhone 3G is a bit snappier than before or probably iOS 4 is simply ‘magical’ and I’m under its spell.

Trust me, once you have got a hang of iOS 4, it will be very difficult to go back to any older version. So what are you waiting for? Backup your iPhone, install iTunes 9.2 (if you haven’t already) and update your iPhone 3G today.

Watch out for our complete iOS 4 review coming up later in the day.

How Google should change Android in wake of the iPhone 4

9 Jun

It has been over 24 hours since Apple announced the iPhone 4 and this is the first post I’m making about the device. My thoughts about the iPhone 4 have changed from sheer disappointment (heck, it is the same device that we had seen a couple of months ago) to unparalleled enthusiasm (I’d have probably started making arrangements to camp outside an Apple Store, had I been in the US). Call me a fan boy but after analysing what the iPhone 4 has to offer and after going through numerous hands-on posts, I’m convinced that Apple has really outdone itself and has changed the rules of the superphone game, again. (For the record, I’m a die-hard Android fan.)

However, even Steve Jobs agrees that if there is one OS that really competes with iOS, it has to be Google’s Android. Jobs could be seen comparing device shipment and web browsing stats of the two operating systems during his keynote. This says a lot about Android, which shipped its first device more than a year after the first iPhone and has already gone past the incumbents – Windows Mobile and Symbian.

While Android is still no where close to iOS in terms of apps (both number and quality), multimedia (it is the weakest OS  in multimedia department in my books) or sheer quality of hardware when compared to iOS, where it scores is its openness and multi-tasking abilities. Apple is bringing multitasking to the table with iOS 4, but it does not seem to be as convenient as Android’s drop-down notification bar on the top.

Now, I expect Google to devote more resources on the Android Market to ensure that there are more quality apps available. Google would also like to introduce paid apps to more countries as soon as possible to encourage developers to churn out as many interesting games and high-quality apps as possible. The sheer number of Android devices being sold in the world (about 100,000 devices everyday!) makes it very attractive to developers. It would also help if Google looked into cr-apps that have flooded the market and did some housekeeping rather than taking potshots at Apple.

Secondly, I would like to see Google change the way it releases OS updates. Considering that there are all sorts of phones at all possible price points and hardware configuration, it would help Google (and Android) if it classified which categories of phones run on which version of Android. This could be based on the processor/memory configuration of the phone. What this would do is ensure that the highest-end segment of phones  run on the most advanced OS version while the phones in the lower-end of the spectrum run on a more basic/lite version that gives most features but skips the processor-intensive stuff. By doing this, users will get a more refined user experience suited to their choice of hardware, which has been one of the main reason for the iPhone’s success. It would also mean that developers will be able to target high-end devices with better quality apps.

I won’t be surprised if we see Android phones from certain handset vendors to sport their equivalent of ‘retina display’ before the end of this year and include other key learnings from iPhone 4. Now only if Google can take care of its app store and OS update mechanism, I believe that Android can still take on the iPhone phenomenon.

Hindustan Times launches its free iPhone app

17 May

HT Media Ltd, the publisher of Hindustan Times – one of India’s most read national dailies – has launched its iPhone app in the iTunes App Store. Available as a free download, the app has a simple navigation menu with quick links to Top Stories, Business Stories, Cricket and Bollywood. Major global media houses have launched their iPhone app and HT is probably the first Indian media house to launch an app. The free app is too simple for our taste and we hope that it will get an update soon for users to customise their homepage and see the news that they are interested in rather than the fixed view option. An option to view news by more categories (for instance local news) would be appreciated. Also, we fail to understand why the app does not have the HT City section – a city-specific supplement that covers socialite gossips and parties – which is quite popular among youngsters. Nevertheless, it is a good start and we cannot wait for Times of India – HT’s main rival – to reciprocate.

Nokia sues Apple for patent infringement, includes iPad, next-gen iPhone in the mix

10 May

Last week, Nokia sued Apple yet again, alleging that Apple’s iPhone and iPad 3G infringe on five of Nokia’s patents. While it has been an ongoing process with both companies suing each other over patent infringement. However, this time it is interesting to note that one of the patents in question is related to “innovations in antenna configurations that improve performance and save space, allowing smaller and more compact devices.” While we did not cover the next generation iPhone leak story due to ethical reasons, one of the things that its tear down revealed was that Apple had reduced the footprint of internal circuitry to house a bigger battery inside. Did Nokia just included a patent that Apple might infringe upon in a product that it has not yet launched?