Pyrofers has posted a how-to on turning a Windows Mobile 5 or Windows Mobile 6 phone with 3G access into a high-speed modem for the iPhone. The whole process seems a little extreme given that you would have to pay for, carry, and keep active a 2nd device at all times, but might be useful if you have a spare Windows Mobile device hanging around and if you can convince your work to pay for an unlimited data account for it. Fair warning - the hack involves registry editing on your Windows Mobile device so proceed at your own risk. As for us, we will likely just wait it out for the iPhone 2.0 (iPhone Extreme?) to come out with 3G internet access built in.
Read More | Pyrofers Projects
We have even more video goodness for you from the HP Your Life is the Show event. This time we talk with David Fishman about the brand new line of HP iPaq handhelds. Specifically, we’re talking about the iPaq 100 Series, iPaq 200 Series, iPaq 310 GPS, iPaq 600 Series cell phone, and iPaq 900 Series smartphone. All good stuff. Let us know what you think, and stay tuned for one more video more from the Your Life is the Show event.
The first major iPhone software update has finally been released from Apple. iPhone Software Update 1.1.1 includes a host of bug fixes and new features. When you launch iTunes to download the update, you are warned that if you have modified your iPhone in any way, there is a chance that the update might permanently damage it. Fun! This update is a big one, weighing in at 152.3 MB in size. Here’s the lowdown on what you can expect:
- iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store
- Louder speakerphone and receiver volume
- Home Button double-click shortcut to phone favorites or music controls
- Space bar double-tap shortcut to intelligently insert period and space
- Mail attachments are viewable in portrait and landscape
- Stocks and cities in Stocks and Weather can be re-ordered
- Apple Bluetooth Headset battery status in the Status Bar
- Support for TV Out
- Preference to turn off EDGE/GPRS when roaming internationally
- New Passcode lock time intervals
- Adjustable alert volume
Let us know if you find anything not listed there!
Computerworld just published its in-depth usability test of the Apple iPhone, the HTC Touch running Windows Mobile 6 Professional, and the Nokia N95 running the Symbian operating system. The tests involved a number of participants who had never used any of the three devices, and had measurable results (i.e. the time it took to accomplish various actions). Apple’s famed information architecture and interface design skills seem to have paid off as the iPhone bested it competitors by a factor of two in some of the tests.
The study praises the iPhones information architecture and consistent user experience as a strong benefit to any user be it someone new to the iPhone or a power user. At Gear Live we have noticed several inconsistencies in the user interface, for instance, the new message button being in different locations in the mail and SMS clients for instance. We do however agree with the general consensus of the study that overall the user experience with the iPhone is far more unified that it’s competitors.
Things were not entirely positive for Apple - some users found the lack of tactile feedback a little disorienting, however all users were able to finish each of the tasks with the iPhone. The also iPhone fell behind it’s competitors in the sheer count of features. The N95 managed to edge out the iPhone in this category with GPS, voice activation and the ability to record movies with it’s camera. Considering that the Nokia is $100-300 more expensive in the United States than the iPhone many users have elected to splurge for Apple’s $400 easy to use wonder device.
Read More | Computerworld
So, let’s cut to the chase - the reason that Apple slashed the price of the iPhone by 33% at the September 5 Apple Event was because Steve Jobs and company felt that was the best way to bring the device to the mainstream phone buyer. Everyone I know who owns an iPhone is someone who is an early adopter of consumer electronics. People who buy Apple products the moment they are available, people who refresh their RSS readers a few times an hour (or more), and people who scour sites like Gear Live for news multiple times a day. The only person I knew who owned an iPhone who didn’t fit the mold was my wife, Monica. I figured I would have her review the iPhone from her perspective - that being someone who couldn’t care less about technology, gadgets, the Internet, or anything that involves something that has to be charged or plugged in to a wall. This, dear friends, is a review of the iPhone from someone who is completely satisfied with the free crappy phone you get when you sign up for any standard cell phone plan.
Do note that the video was recorded prior to the iPhone price drop, so keep that in mind.
Earlier today, Apple announced ringtones for the iPhone, by way of a new version of iTunes. This will all happen by using a new Ringtone Composer that is built in to the new version of iTunes. You will find a new bell icon next to any purchased songs that are “eligible” to be turned into a ringtone, and will be able to choose any 30 second (or less) portion of that song to use as a ringtone. You have to own the song, and then when you want to buy your ringtone, that will cost you another $.99. $1.98 buys you both the song and the ringtone, which is completely unnecessary, what with program like iBrickr, iFuntastic, and others, that allow you to use any track in your iTunes library as a ringtone - for free.
Still, for those who are uncomfortable modifying their iPhone in any way, here is your chance at expanding your ringtone library.
Apparently Nokia is nothing if not persistent. This week Nokia plans to introduce a third cell phone to bear the name N-Gage and try yet again to gain some traction with its cell phone/game device hybrid. This time they spent some time with the design firm Ideo to research what consumers wanted in such a device and think they have it right this time. “The graphics problem has been removed. And phones today are always connected and you always carry them with you. Phones are now the perfect device for gaming,” says product manager Tomi Huttula.
Most curious perhaps is the decision to stick with the name N-Gage, which at this point carries some pretty negative baggage. The idea of a cell phone that plays half decent games isn’t particularly bad on the face of it but the Finland-based company learned the hard way in 2003 that gamers, who are likely to be the early adopters and initial market for such a device, won’t jump on board just because an idea has potential but lacks proper execution. There’s no reason to stick with the brand name when it has already failed twice.
Still, Nokia seems undaunted by past disappointments and is focusing this time around on the multiplayer features and streamlining the experience to be more attractive to casual gamers. Also Nokia isn’t focusing on a single model this time around but will offer N-Gage games on a few of its Series 60 smartphones, presumably as a trial run, before gradually expanding to all Series 60 models. The prices have yet to be announced, but more details should be available later in the week.
Okay, we know that since Apple released the iPhone, you’ve all been wanting to modify it to do your bidding. Over on the OS X side of things, we have iFuntastic, which provides a slick GUI interface for modding your device. New to the Windows side of things is iBrickr. iBrickr is the Windows application that makes it dead simple to modify your iPhone, add and manage custom ringtones, and install third-party applications. We give you a full tutorial of how it all works in this episode.
Read More | iBrickr
Virgin Mobile US has announced the wireless Aloha, its first LG clamshell . With dimensions of 3.5 x 1.9 x 0.9-inches and a weight of only 2.7 oz, the cell phone features a metallic white front and matte back. It has a 65K color display, MP3 ringtones, memory enough for about 199 contacts, voice-activated dialing, speakerphone, and a few games bundled inside for your amusement. The Aloha promises up to 180 minutes of talk time and 150 hours of standby time. Virgin plans to release the phone in September with the mini-price of $34.99 as part of their RE* Generation plan to raise awareness for at-risk and homeless youths by teaming with other companies such as LG.
Read More | PR Newswire
We open up the Apple iPhone Bluetooth Headset in this episode of Unboxing Live. We show off the size, the two accessories included with the headset, and compare it to the Aliph Jawbone Bluetooth headset in terms of size as well. Check it all out by hitting up the video.
Let us know what you think, or what you want us to unbox next!
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