Sep 27

Let's Talk iPhone

The rumored October 4th iPhone 5 launch date is no longer rumor; Apple has begun sending out invitations to an event entitled “Let’s Talk iPhone” which will take place at 10:00AM PDT on October 4, 2011, in Cupertino.

Expect a new dual-core A5 CPU, an 8MP camera, perhaps a slightly larger touchscreen display, new Siri-inspired voice command software, and maybe even a second budget iPhone model.  Maybe more. But whatever will come, we’ll know  by around this time next Tuesday.

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Sep 16

iphone4When Apple announces the next-gen iPhone later this month, the current iPhone 4  (or a version of it) will continue to be sold as a more affordable alternative. This is a safe assumption as the iPhone 3G continued to be sold alongside the iPhone 3GS, and the 3GS is still available for purchase today – fifteen months after the iPhone 4’s release – as a budget option. 

Accepting that this model will continue, the question is: how will the iPhone 4 change when it shifts from Apple’s flagship product to a lower-priced alternative?

Of course, one option is status quo, minus the premium price.  Carriers could continue to sell the 16GB iPhone 4 as-is for, say, $99 on contract, to offer a more attractive entry price to would-be iPhone owners or legacy iPhone users who haven’t yet upgraded.  This is certainly possible, but given current market realities and Apple’s history of bold action, a more significant change seems warranted.

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Sep 12

Rendering by CiccareseDesignJune and July have traditionally been the months new iPhones have arrived on store shelves, but this year was different.  June, July and even August passed without word from Cupertino, and Apple’s delay has understandably led to a great deal of speculation about exactly when this year’s iPhone model(s) would be released. 

And while we still don’t know, leaks, business planning and other information all seem now to point to October as the month we’ll get our hands on the iPhone – be it iPhone 5 or iPhone 4S.

Item: MacRumors reported last month that Apple was eying either October 7th or 14th as the iPhone 5 – or whatever it’ll be called – launch date.  These are both Fridays, which would be in line with previous iPhone release days. 

Item 1: BGR posted a purportedly leaked BestBuy memo showing that pre-orders of the iPhone 5 will begin the first week of October.

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Sep 10

The Colorado MountainsOn a recent trip to Colorado, there were times I wanted to know exactly how high I was (how high as in feet above sea level, of course), and I knew this information was available on any device with a GPS receiver – like my iPhone 4.  But try as I might, I couldn’t find altitude data in any of the iPhone’s built-in apps.

So, while taking in a particularly breathtaking vista in central Colorado on U.S. 24, I visited the App Store and downloaded myAltitude, the first free altitude iOS title I came across.  And it was well worth the time it took to download with an EDGE data connection.

myAltitude is a free app from DJM Development [View in iTunes, App Store] that uses available GPS data to display current altitude.  Of course, you’ll need an iOS device with a GPS chip for the app to work – any iPhone but the original model, or an iPad / iPad 2 with 3G. While the app doesn’t guarantee exact elevation accuracy, it kindly provides you with a margin of error so that you can rest a little easier. 

The results were fast, and even displayed with no  data connection (a frequent occurrence in the Colorado Rockies).  I also took to grabbing screenshots of the app after shooting photos from a single location so that I would know the elevation at which the photos were taken when I reviewed them later (NOTE: if your location services are turned on for the Camera app, altitude information is stored in the photos’ metadata, but it’s more of a pain to view.)

So, if you’re going anywhere with your iPhone or 3G-enabled iPad and will want to know the elevation, grab myAltitude.  It’s a free and simple way to transform your iPhone into an altimeter. 

If you’re looking for a bit more geo-data, take a look at another DJM app, myCoordinates Pro.

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