It will be interesting to see how things work out with the new in-app purchases and all. I think there is a certain amount of fear that the whole app market is going to turn into a bunch of semi-scams where every app author tries to constantly squeeze more money out of people. Part of the biggest danger is that app updates which I tend to just do automatically can regress functionality.
One of my favorite casual iPhone games is FlightControl. I think it cost $0.99 and its simple, easy to pick up for a few minutes while waiting for a bus or something. I noticed a week or two ago that there was multiple levels in the game- you could switch the map and try out other environments. Now that appears to be gone- probably something that looked like a routine update removed it and I fear its going to be back later as an extra charge…
posted in Apple, Business, Technology |
I got a new iPhone 3GS today (actually Kat got it, but is letting me have the new one while she gets my old one that isn’t eligable for an upgrade yet). They were warning that the activation is taking forever but after we were home and an hour later it still wasn’t activated.
The LA Times blog had some advice to turn the phone off and back on. I gave it a try and 2 minutes later it activated right away.
I’ve got to say, this year’s iPhone release madness was much better than the past. The lame upgrade policies (even the recently ammended ones) suck- I do expect that for my $1000 a year in service + $299 a year I should be able to get a new phone every year. But the reservation process was great and even at 3:30pm I was able to walk into the store, after a 2 minute wait someone took me in, they grabbed the box and it was all very smooth. I’m especially impressed that even on the most busy day of the year they still had things worked out enough that someone was able to notice us puzzling over the display of protective cases, approach us and helpfully suggest a few models, unbox them for us to try out and all. The Apple Store continues to the the retail gold-standard.
posted in Apple, Business, Technology, iPhone |
Now that the iPhone 3.0 software is introduced, its time to start dreaming about what the next hardware might bring. My assumption at this point is that Apple is going to refresh the hardware every summer, and that if they do a good enough job that I (and tons of other suckers) are just going to buy the new one every year like clockwork.
So given that I’m overall pretty happy with my iPhone, certainly more happy than I have been with any phone 9 months into ownership, what are the top things I would improve?
- 64GB storage. 32GB seems like an easy bet given that there is an iPod Touch with it, but with USB drives out in the market with 64GB, is a 64GB option too much to ask? The fear is it would push the price point out to $399 (64GB USB drives are still a bit more than $100 right now). My 16GB has done pretty well so far, but I’m starting to push on its limits.
- Better wireless circuitry. Of course its hard to tell how much is AT&T, how much is the phone hardware, and how much is software issues, but it certainly feels like I occasionally have a harder time connecting, especially for data connections than makes sense.
- Better GPS. It seems like the micro GPS chips have been improving rapidly and having a GPS chip that syncs faster would be very nice.
- Better camera. I find myself taking a surprising number of photos using my phone now since I always forget my camera. Its actually not that bad for a “paste a quick snap on Facebook” scenario, but 4-5MP and less grainy would be really nice.
- Standard USB port for charging. This one I assume I’m not going to get unless the pressure from the EU forces them into it, but being able to use a standard micro-USB port to charge the thing would be great.
Given that you pay almost $1000/year for service, Apple really does have a good business model on their hands if they can come out with an incrementally better device every summer for $299. Just with normal wear it can make sense to get a new one every year or two and Apple needs to keep pushing just enough improvements to get people into the new model. The 3g refresh last summer appears to have done the trick for most people, and frankly if they can do 3 out of the 5 things above, it will be a pretty easy decision for me.
posted in Apple, Technology |
Leading up to MacWorld there were a ton of rumors about a new MacMini, an iPhone Nano, and updates to Snow Leopard. Then the announcements during the actual show were a bit underwhelming(for most people- Chris was really excited about the new MacBook Pro).
My theory is this is all related to the reason that Apple is pulling out of MacWorld in the first place. It is a show they don’t control, IDC presumably wouldn’t let them webcast the keynote so they would rather introduce important things at their own events where they can get more focused press (on a schedule they control, not the middle of the CES mess and where they can time them so the products are ready), with a webcast and broadcast into all the Apple stores.
So they had already signed up for MacWorld and needed to announce something, but they kept it to the fairly tame iLife, iWork updates and the new MacBook Pro which is certainly a product for the enthusiast segment. The theory is that on good PR grounds they are holding the bigger more general audience announcements for events where they can control them better and make a bigger splash.
I’m assuming in a few weeks we are going to hear about invitations heading out for some other Apple event where they will start rolling out the next stuff (I’m hoping for an update to the MacMini myself, and betting that we won’t hear about iPhone updates until around June which appears to be when they refresh that product line).
posted in Apple, Business, PR, Technology |