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Iphone 4.0

Apple adds iBooks to iPhone 4.0

Midway through the big iPhone 4.0 announcements today and Apple has just introduced iBooks to the iPhone, bringing it up to eBook par with its big iPad brother launched last weekend.

[Image via Gizmodo]

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Apple updates Mail in iPhone 4.0 with unified inbox, multiple Exchange accounts, threaded messages

As part of the iPhone 4.0 announcement today, Apple introduced an updated Mail app that includes (as rumored) support for a unified inbox (so all your new home, work, etc. email shows up in one place). Also introduced was threaded conversation, multiple Exchange accounts (hello Exchange + Google Sync), and fast inbox switching.

Does that solve all our iPhone email woes?

[Image via Gizmodo]

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Apple introduces Folders with intelligent naming for iPhone OS 4

Apple today introduced Folders for the iPhone OS 4 (iPhone 4.0) Home Screen/app launcher interface.

To use Folders, you start by tapping and holding an icon until it jiggled (like you would to move or delete it). You then drag one icon on top of another and they combine to form a Folder -- a bordered icon with small versions of the contained icons. Folders will name themselves based on the category of the apps you drag into them, or you can edit the name yourself.

Folders behave like any other app -- you can move them around and even place them in the dock for any-screen access. When you tap one, the screen splits open and slides vertically apart to reveal a grid of the apps inside.

This increases the number of apps you can store on your iPhone's 11 Home Screen pages from 180 to over 2000.

But it's still an app launcher at its core, of course. Though, when asked about Widgets Steve Jobs did say Apple implemented them early on in Mac OS X as Dashboard, and simply hadn't had time to do anything with them on the iPhone. (Yet?)

So, does this solve your app managements issues? Or did you need more power? More eye-candy?

Pics and video after the break, or read our complete iPhone OS 4 preview for more!

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Apple announces multitasking for iPhone OS 4 (iPhone 3GS/iPod touch G3 only)

Apple today announced support for multitasking in iPhone 4.0, which go to developers today and the public this summer. CEO Steve Jobs admitted Apple wasn't first to market with multitasking, but like with cut, copy and paste from iPhone 3.0, he thinks Apple's implementation is best.

Multitasking will be supported for iPhone 3GS and iPod touch G3 (both released in 2009) but not previous generations like iPhone 2G or iPhone 3G due to hardware limitations. (Presumably it will run just fine on an iPhone G4 this summer...)

In terms of the UI, double-clicking the home button raises the current window and shows you actively running apps in the dock. You can scroll through those apps and rapidly switch between them. State is saved so apps appear persistent to the user. (For example, if you leave a game and come back, you no longer start over -- you start where you left off.)

Inside, Apple's SVP of iPhone Software, Scott Forstall explained they looked at existing apps and distilled 7 services those apps needed to run in background, then provided them via API. According to Apple, these are:

  1. Background audio - Allows your app to play audio continuously. So customers can listen to your app while they surf the web, play games, and more.
  2. Voice over iP - Your VoIP apps can now be even better. Users can now receive VoIP calls and have conversations while using another app. Your users can even receive calls when their phones are locked in their pocket.
  3. Background location - Navigation apps can now continue to guide users who are listening to their iPods, or using other apps. iPhone OS 4 also provides a new and battery efficient way to monitor location when users move between cell towers. This is a great way for your social networking apps to keep track of users and their friends' locations.
  4. Push notifications - Receive alerts from your remote servers even when your app isn't running.
  5. Local notifications - Your app can now alert users of scheduled events and alarms in the background, no servers required.
  6. Task finishing - If your app is in mid-task when your customer leaves it, the app can now keep running to finish the task.
  7. Fast app switching - All developers should take advantage of this. This will allow users to leave your app and come right back to where they were when they left - no more having to reload the app.

Pandora said it took 1 day to recode and enable background in their app. Skype is also shown (which may explain their delayed 3G launch?)

Overall, it appears like Apple has once again abstracted a concept from low-level and developer-centric to higher level and OS-managed. Like Grand Central does for multi-core dispatch in Mac OS X, or CoreData, CoreAnimation, etc. do across Apple's platforms, it does the heavy-lifting and tries to maximize user experience at the same time.

Our question for you is, does this beat Palm webOS cards or Android multitasking? Is it enough to make you happy?

Pics and video after the break, or read our complete iPhone OS 4 preview for more!

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TiPb Live Podcast #93 -- iPad'ed!

Dieter, Leanna, and Rene talk iPad launch day, iPad hits and misses, and favorite apps, plus iPhone 4.0 preview. Listen in!

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Apple uses AdLib JaveScript framework to make richer web apps for iPad

Done21.com has discovered something interesting in the online iPad user-guide: a new JavaScript framework they've dubbed AdLib (after its filename) that allows for very native app look and feel in the decidedly web-based app.

AppleInsider notes that it appears to be related to the PastryKit framework used for the iPhone user-guide (which stands to reason), and the TuneKit framework used for iTunes LP and iTunes Extra. And that the name may tie-in to the iAd rumors, and to internal efforts on Apple's part to raise the bar of web apps and diminish the need for plugins like Flash and Java.

Could we find out more at Apple's iPhone 4.0 event tomorrow? We certainly hope so. As much as some decry the closed nature of the App Store, developing for Safari is wide open and a new class of better, faster, stronger web apps is ultimately good for everyone.

Video after the break!

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What will we get in iPhone 4.0?

Tomorrow at 10pm PT, 1pm ET, Steve Jobs puts sneaker to stage and, along with SVP of iPhone software, Scott Forstall, gives us a sneak preview of the highly anticipated iPhone 4.0. No one outside Apple knows exactly what new features and paradigms iPhone 4.0 will offer. However, tradition demands we make our best guesses and ask you to do the same.

This isn't what we want, mind you. We told Apple what we want back on December 25, 2009: multitasking, better notifications, widgets for the home screen, instant access to important settings, themes, gestures like pervasive pull-down-to-refresh, system-wide "back" implementation, orientation lock, and resolution independence, along with a ton of great reader suggestions in the comments. We've also asked for a Finder app, like the Photo but to store document files.

This is what we think we'll actually get, given the rumors and the direction Apple looks to be going. This is us, TiPb staff and TiPb readers reading the tea leaves...

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What do you see in the iPhone 4.0 event artwork?

Apple's iPhone 4.0 sneak preview event invitation features the number four, though its shown in the corner, mostly cut off, identifiable only by its shadow.

The iPhone 2.0 event featured a road map apropos of the SDK introduction. The iPhone 3.0 event featured blueprints, perhaps a nod to the construction going on within the OS.

What then to make of iPhone 4.0's artwork? Dieter stared at it for a couple minutes to glean what he could and came up with this: the 4 is in the background. Shadows are typically in the background.

Are we reading too much into it? Are you reading something different? Share your best guesses in the comments!

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Apple iPhone OS 4.0 event scheduled for April 8!

Apple will be holding their iPhone 4.0 event, tagged "Get a sneak peak into the future of iPhone OS" on Thursday, April 8. Yes, that's this Thursday.

Apparently Apple can go from iPad launch to iPhone OS sneak preview in 5 days flat. Wow.

More as this develops...

[Engadget, thanks for the tip Damon!]

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TiPb Live Podcast #92: iPad Imminent!

Chad and Rene discuss the iPad launch, iPhone 4.0 and iPhone G4 rumors, Steve and Eric having lunch, iPhone on Verizon again, and all the week's news. Listen in!

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