All Articles by Rene Ritchie

Apple/PA Semi: Possible Reasons and Military Fallout

Following Apple's acquisition of PA Semi yesterday, and some of the early theories surrounding it, comes word on reaction to the deal, and some more theories as to how Apple may leverage its new technology.

First up, Apple Insider (via EETimes) points out that the Palo Alto semiconductor design firm warned existing companies that:

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iPhone 2.0 SDK Beta 4: Interface Builder Unleashed

No reports of Pink Screens of Death this time, but Apple has released the fourth version of their SDK (5A258f), which weighs in at a beefy 1.15GB (200+MB for firmware) and according to TAUW (via Apple Developer Connection) sports:

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iPhone Risk: Belgium 3G Bound?

Another day, another iPhone International rumor, this one from Ars Technica (via pegging the iPhone 3G to arrive in Belgium sometime between May and June.

Quick check of the scorecard, should this be true:

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Sony to Purchase Gracenote (iTunes Music Tagging Database)

Daring Fireball (via Reuters) brings word that Sony has agreed to purchase Gracenote for $260 million plus "considerations".

Why should iPhone owners care? Gruber sums it up:

Gracenote owns the CDDB database iTunes uses to supply song and album names for CDs you rip. $260 million sounds like a lot to me, but at least now Sony can claim to have something to do, however tangential, with a popular portable digital music player.

So, any time you want to add your own CD music to your iPhone, Gracenote is the place that provides all the metadata you need to properly label them (artist, track, album, etc.)

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o2 Sells Out, AT&T Cashes In

The United States and England are countries separated by one ocean and two languages, or so they say. Yet Apple Insider reports good tidings for both sides of the pond this week.

First up, the recent price cuts on the 8GB iPhone in the UK seems to have had the desired effect, with both Carphone Warehouse and O2 retail stores experiencing increased demand -- and even selling out of Apple's revolutionary mobile phone.

AT&T, meanwhile, boasted of a 22% increase in profits and the addition of 1.3 million new subscribers.

Boom indeed...

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Patent Watch: Mobile iChat Touch Cometh?

Ever-watchful Apple Insider brings word on yet another Apple patent drop. This one, published in March, sets the stage for the long anticipated -- nay, demanded -- Mobile iChat application.

Though the iPhone already includes a somewhat similar, though carrier-bound, SMS app, the need to move away from device-modal technologies (i.e. phone to phone) to more open protocols (i.e., phone to computer to console, etc.) like Instant Messenger is compelling. In answer, Apple has proposed an interface that builds on the SMS app in significant ways:

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3G Rumors: iFlips, iSlides, and iTablets - Oh My?!

Ars Technica (via Times Online) is joining the ranks of "we don't believe it and hate all the rumors, but we just gotta report this one..." (Welcome!) with a report citing the ever mysterious "industry insiders" and the equally obtuse "Asian Analysts" as saying:

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iPhone Risk: Italia Independant! 3G Senza Una Lock-In?

Engadget, via typically credible Italian newspaper La Repubblica, reports that a 3G iPhone will be coming soon to Telecom Italia, and what's more: without carrier or contract lock-in.


First, a quick look at our scoreboard, if this be true:

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Flash and Silverlight to Make MobileSafari Crashier?

We've covered the iPhone Flash saga ad nauseam here, but in an interesting post involving the technology itself, NetNewsWire developer Brent Simmons (via DaringFireball) shares some interesting error/crash logs highlighting the instability-adding benefits of Flash, and the rapid catchup of Microsoft's copycat, Silverlight:

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This Week in Smartphone Schadenfreude, April 17th Edition

Not evil twin to Phone Different Week in Review, not an invasion by Fake Steve, This Week in Smart Phone Schadenfreude brings you all the feel-better news you need about the smartphone world outside Apple's current media dominator. (Who knew there was such a world? We were just as surprised! Inelegant, interface challenged, keyboardy, crashy, single-touchy place -- best not to linger...). Join us as we mock review the big news from last week at our sister sites. Everybody loves sibling rivalry!

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iPhone Risk: India Impending?

Singapore, the Netherlands, and Mexico, and Australia, watch out! Apple Insider is reporting that India has joined the fray for next iPhone launch.

A quick check of the battleground shows:

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Vive les iPhone Price Drops! Le Prep for 3G?

Ars Technica (via Market Watch, via Les Echos) reports that French iPhone carrier Orange may be the third European country (after Germany and the UK) to begin discounting the 8GB iPhone.

Unlike the previously mentioned Germany and UK, these price cuts are said to come on the heels of what's considered disappointing sales for Apple's phone debut in the land of brie and champagne.

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iHulk Smash Puny Rumors: 32GB iPhone, Australia, iTunes 8 (+ Laptops!)

No, that's not spring in the air, that's the rumor frenzy ramp-up to Apple's June World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC), and here's the aptly titled MacRumors with a mother load:

A MacRumors reader ran across a very unusual .Mac web page yesterday and was kind enough to forward it on. The page contained promotional images for Apple products [...] including teasers for iTunes 8, a 32GB iPhone [in Australia!], and a WWDC launch date (June 10th).

Turns out, not so much. The images came courtesy of one of MacRumors own forum members (though MacRumors continues to maintain they were associated with a legit account).

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3G Chip Watch: UMC to Manufacture Infineon for iPhone 3G?

Apple Insider (via Digitimes, via Economic Daily News) brings word that United Microelectronics Corporation has nailed the contract to produce the Infineon powered 3G basebands for the next generation iPhone:

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WWDC Design Awards to Include iPhone Native + Web Apps

Apple sent out an email yesterday to developers formalizing the 2008 Design Awards set to take place at the World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) this June. And this year, continuing their dual bridge/landmark theme, Apple has opened the awards up to the iPhone!

iPhone categories include:

  • iPhone Developer Showcase, for native apps built using the iPhone SDK, feature-complete, ready to run on an iPhone, iPod Touch, or the Sim. (Apple may pick multiple winners in this category.)
  • Best iPhone Web Application, for specifically MobileSafari based Web 2.0 apps. (No word addendum on multi-picks here.)

And to the victorious will go quite the swag bag:

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Patents Pondered: An AT&T-less iPhone World?


Your plane's landing in the middle of nowhere. Scratch that. WAY past the middle of nowhere -- that little state on the other coast you've never been to, where the people have funny accents and McDonald's has menu items you've never seen before.

The pilot flips off the seatbelt light, you whip out your iPhone to make a quick call, and before the bars come up you're greeted with a screen that lists off all the local service providers complete with up-to-the-minute rate information. You flick-scroll to the cheapest one, tap to select, the bars pop up, the network springs to life, and you start your call.

What? Your iPhone doesn't do that? You don't get to pick your service provider? You don't get to choose just-in-time data rates? You're stuck with AT&T 24/7?!

Yeah. That's because you're in the real world, not the world of what might-have-been. Not the world Apple could have created had they gone ahead with a little patent just recently brought to public attention...

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NBC Wants Back on iPhone + More Money + Content Blocking

NBC done gone lost their rainbow peacock'd minds? Maybe, if Gizmodo is properly quoting their Chief Digital Officer, George Kliavkoff:

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3G Crystal Ball: O2 Discounting UK iPhones

Following on a veritable flood of previous "OMG 3G!!11" news and rumors, it now looks confirmed that O2 in the UK has knocked 100 quid off the price of an 8G current generation (2.5G) iPhone 8GB.

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iPhone Wins Big at Engadget 2007 Choice Awards

Mega-blog Engadget handed -- er... posted -- out their 2007 Readers and Editors Choice Awards this week, and Steve Jobs' revolutionary little mobile phone was the big winner with a grand total of 6 Engadget'ies, including the 4 biggest!

  • Readers' Gadget of the Year
  • Editors' Gadget of the Year
  • Readers' Most Anticipated Gadget for 2008 (iPhone 3G)
  • Editors' Most Anticipated Gadget for 2008 (iPhone 3G)
  • Readers' Smartphone of the Year
  • Editors' Smartphone of the Year

Apple also took home honors for desktop (iMac), laptop (MacBook Pro), MP3 player (iPod Touch), and peripheral (keyboard).


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