Well, I guess that November 21 rumor was true, because the iPhone 2.2 firmware update is now available. This one is pretty hefty in the feature department too, so color us excited. You’ve got the a few nice enhancements to Maps, including Google Street View, public transit directions, walking directions, and the ability to share your GPS location with others via email. Speaking of email, the Mail client enjoys some stability improvements in this release as well, along with better handling of wide HTML email. Safari picks up performance improvements, we get the promise of fewer set-up failures and call drops, and better sound quality for Visual Voicemail.
If you’re a podcast lover (and seriously, we know that you love our shows,) you’ll be ecstatic to hear that, finally, podcasts are available for download in the iTunes application. Seriously, this thing is packed. Connect your iPhone up to your computer and grab the 246MB update now.
Here at Gear Live, we’ve been big fans of Orb for quite a while. Back in the original iPhone days, they made an app that was only available on jailbroken phones that we really liked - we just knew it needed to run at 3G speeds to be useful when on the go. The time has finally come, though, as OrbLive has hit the App Store. To back up for a moment, Orb allows you to access files and media on your home computer while on the go. This means that any music on your home computer can now be played on your iPhone from wherever you are. Videos too. Oh, and if you have a TV tuner in your computer, Orb will even allow you to tap into that and watch live television on the go as well. Isn’t that off the hook?
The one caveat for the time being is that the Orb PC software is only available for Windows - but the Orb folks are promising that versions for Mac and Linux are coming soon. We definitely recommend this one - grab the full version of OrbLive for $9.99, or if you are on the fence, there is also a demo version, OrbLive Free.
I’ve always been one who enjoys a good game of Pass the Pigs, and I just gained the knowledge that the game is available in the App Store. It’s basically a dice game that uses pigs rather than, you know, actual dice. Depending on how the pigs land, you gain points, lose points, etc. The is put out by THQ, which likely explains why there is also a one-player Story Mode as well. In any event, Pass the Pigs can be found in the App Store for $2.99.
Read More | App Store: Pass the Pigs
Microsoft is planning a web-based version of their Office suite, which will include full versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote. As long as you have a Firefox, IE or Safari browser, you can access it from anywhere. The company has not given an official public release date, but you can probably expect it in late 2009. This should give iPhone and other handheld addicts another source of happiness since they have even more reason now to use them more than their computers.
Read More | Unwired View
I still remember the first time I went to the Apple Store to check out the then new iPhone and iPod touch; although I was impressed by the slick new touchscreen, I was horrified and disgusted by the visible filth from curious hands, and being the germophobe I am, I asked the sales associate to clean the Gerber Baby goo off of the screen.
Enter Wireless Wipes – the first portable sanitizer pack designed specifically to clean mobile phones, PDA’s and laptop computer screens. Though these little cleansing cloths won’t do anything for your phone’s internal bugs, they will wipe out the bugs living on the outside – you know, the kind that’ll get you sick. A 2006 U.K. study found that our little electronic devices carry tens of thousands of bacteria, including Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, also known as MRSA, a type of antibiotic resistant bacteria that can be deadly if ingested. In another study, an Arizona microbiologist tested 25 random mobile phones and found the staph bug growing on nearly half of them! Staph, in case you didn’t know, causes everything from pimples and boils, to pneumonia and meningitis – ailments most of us try to avoid.
Wireless Wipes cost $2 for a resealable 10-pack, which is certainly more than you’d pay for most cleaning wipes, but what sets these wipes apart is that they are fast drying, non-streaking and most importantly, non-corrosive. Or you could just keep putting that Petri dish of a phone up to your face. I’m not here to judge…
Read More | Wireless WIpes
One of my absolute favorite iPhone apps, OmniFocus, just received a small update, meant to kill a few bugs. In case you have yet to give it a try, OmniFocus is an organizational tool solely meant to keep you on task, focused, while maintaining peace of mind that you aren’t forgetting anything. It’s configurable in so many ways, that just about anyone is able to fit it into their workflow. There is an iPhone version, as well as a desktop version for OS X, and the two can sync together. Anyhow, here are the details of the recent update for OmniFocus for iPhone:
Changes in the minor v1.1.1 update:
Fixed a bug which could leave the user at a blank screen after adding a new item.
Fixed a bug which caused the app to be unresponsive after converting an action to a project.
Fixed a few places where English was still visible in the Japanese translation.
Changes in the minor v1.1.2 update (released November 13, 2008):
Updated the Settings icon to avoid potential confusion with the iPhone’s built-in Settings application.
As we said before, if you haven’t already, you owe it to yourself to check out OmniFocus.
The rumor mill is buzzing today about the soon-to-be-released iPhone 2.2 firmware. iPhone Hellas is saying that we can expect iPhone 2.2 to be available for download on November 21, a mere 10 days away. We have no reason to doubt, since the 2.2 firmware has been in beta for a while now, and everything sounds like it working nicely. With iPhone OS 2.2 you can expect things like walking directions, Google Street View, public transportation information, the ability to share your location with others, over-the-air podcast updates and downloads, and your overall bug fixery.
This is certainly an update we are primed and ready to enjoy, so let’s hope this rumor holds true, cool?
Read More | iPhone Hellas
If you’re like me and have grand plans of typing up whatever comes to mind on your iPhone, but those giant fingers make it really awkward, you’re thrilled with the idea of a Bluetooth keyboard that allows you to strike real keys. The BTKeyMini is now available on pre-order from AValive for $92. The device has a cover that doubles as a holder for your iPhone and operates on its own battery; it’s designed to be folded up and carried in your bag – you know, the duffel you keep all of your iPhone gear in…
An analyst has confirmed that Apple has made it to number 2 where smartphone vendors are concerned. The iPhone has become a holder of 17.3 percent of the market share with RIM trailing at 15.2 percent. Apple also came in with the highest marks in customer satisfaction, operation, physical design, operating system, battery aspects, and features. RIM could bounce back to the 2nd place mark with the Bold and Storm, but with the growing sales of iPhone and the “coolness” of the Apple brand, it will certainly be a challenge for RIM. The results are due to the 6.9 million iPhones shipped during the summer months with no signs of slowdown even though the economy has moved in the other direction.
Read More | J.D. Power
Musicians (and non-musicians) are often caught with songwriting ideas and nowhere to write them down; fear not, the $10 FourTrack is here! Although it’ll never replace your main recording setup, this app for the Apple iPhone or 2nd generation iPod touch records, mixes and plays up to four tracks like a pocket-sized version of Pro Tools.
Recording in true 16-bit, 44.1 kHz quality, FourTrack works with the iPhone headset mic, or an iPod touch with a third-party mic and headphones so your inspiration isn’t forgotton. Each track can be as long as your device’s memory can handle and once you’re ready, Wi-Fi Sync allows your recordings to be downloaded to nearly any desktop computer, where tracks can be transferred to whatever recording software you prefer.
You can find FourTrack in the App Store.