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Tag: IPhone 4

Cord On Board by Caselnity

Posted by KL Tech Muse at 9:16 AM on February 22, 2012

Cord on Board I have several extra iOS cords because when I travel I tend to forget them, or I leave them in a hotel room or they get lost somewhere in my luggage. So I have to go out and buy a new one. Cord on Board by Caselnity is trying to solve that problem. Their case for the iPhone 4 or 4s has a place where you can store a custom sized cord right in the case. So it is always there and doesn’t get tangled up with other cords. To fit the cord the case has to be curved, which makes it more ergonomic and nice to hold in your hand. It is also doesn’t slip as much as many other iPhone cases. The case is made of shock-resistant thermo-plastic and comes in black or white. They hope to have other colors available at a future date.

Cord on Board started out as a Kickstarter project, although that ends on February 22. All cases come with the custom sized cord included. At this point in time pricing is not available. Although if you pledge $25.00 or more on Kickstarter they will reserve a case for you. They hope to have cases available in March and are looking for retail partners. If I still had my iPhone 4 I would take a good look at the Cord on Board. I hope they still make it even if the Kickstarter support doesn’t come through.

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Mophie Juice Pack Plus Update

Posted by geeknews at 3:01 PM on August 28, 2011

Over the past two  years I have had a love hate relationship with the Mophie Juice Pack. It has been awhile since my last update, but I wanted to let you know my recent experience has been. When I owned a iPhone 3g I went through three of their external battery cases and reported here about the mortality rate of those cases when dropped while being charged. Essentially anytime the charge cable got banged while plugged into the case the internal plug would break.

In recent moths I upgraded to a iPhone 4, and went and purchased their latest rechargeable battery case after having been given assurances at CES 2011 that the new cases had been redesigned and the weakness in the connector had been resolved… Well not so fast. On my latest trip I had my phone plugged in charging, on the bedstand next to me and I accidentally knocked the phone off the bed stand and you guessed it the connector broke in the same exact way previous versions have.

Honestly I just shook my head… The connector in the Juice Pack Plus was rattling around like the others had. It just really blows me away that a device cannot be made to withstand an 18 inch fall of a bed stand onto a carpeted floor. But I disregard my own advice and had it in a place where it could slide of the bed stand.

Some will say Todd your pretty stupid in keep on buying these things. This may be true but no other external battery gives me more extra battery life that is as easy to use. So I will give everyone warning again. Only charge you phone in which you are using a Mophie Juice Pack in a location that will in no way be at risk of falling of a table or counter.

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Smartphones As The New Facebook

Posted by tomwiles at 2:40 PM on November 19, 2010

Facebook hit critical mass and managed to move into the mainstream and is now sucking in mass numbers of new users. Much of the value of a many goods and services revolves around mass adoption – it becomes beneificial for people to use Facebook simply because so many friends and family are already on it.

We keep hearing statistics about smartphone adoption rates. No doubt about it, smartphones are increasingly popular devices and are quickly moving into the mainstream.

How does this translate into the real world?

I came across a guy a few days ago that had recently gotten an iPhone 4.0 specifically so he could do Facetime chats with his brother. This guy was in his 50’s and had never owned a computer or dealt with the Internet in any way. I was surprised at how well he had learned to run his phone. He was clearly thrilled with the smartphone and what it was capable of. Even though this fellow had somehow managed to resist getting a computer and the Internet, the smartphone managed to pull him in. Furthermore, this guy was using a lot of data above and beyond WiFi and Facetime. Even as a novice user, he had already purchased a few iphone apps. Additionally he expressed a lot of interest when I was describing Audible.Com audio books.

There’s a segment of the population I run into personally that doesn’t like the idea of or see the need for or perceive any benefit from paying for mobile data connections. These are the people that are hanging onto more basic phone models. I suspect that these same people likely resisted the idea of getting a cell phone in the first place – in other words, they are late adopters when it comes to cell phone technologies and services.

We are now entering the phase of smartphone adoption of where mass numbers of people will get smartphones simply because everyone else has them. I believe smartphones are poised to outstrip even a service like Facebook with the total number of smartphone users.

These new smartphone users are likely to use mass amounts of data. Cell phone companies wanted people to have data plans because of the extra revenue from larger data-enabled bills – now they’d better be prepared to deliver on the promise.

So Is The iPhone A Good Phone?

Posted by tomwiles at 3:44 AM on July 21, 2010

When the iPhone came along in 2007, many people were immediately disappointed, including me, that it was tied at the hip to AT&T. In retrospect, that set the stage for what was to follow.

Immediately many iPhone users began to complain about poor signal coverage and dropped calls. It seems that everyone assumed that the iPhone itself as a phone was as good or better than any other phone – after all, it was an Apple device, implying that it had to be good.

Fast-forward to now. The iPhone 4 comes out, and immediately some users began to complain about the new antenna design and the “ground out” effect that happens on some phones when certain areas of the external metal antenna comes into contact with human skin, resulting in signal attenuation.

Apple’s immediate reaction was to come out with a statement saying they had checked in to the issue, and discovered to their dismay that every iPhone ever sold had a signal calculation problem. Ooops, the result was that every iPhone going back to the original model happened to be displaying too many signal strength bars for a given signal level. So sorry, the calculation error meant we weren’t following the exact AT&T signal strength calculation specifications. Gee Whiz!!! We have a download that will fix that optimistic display signal strength problem and make it more realistic.

I have no doubt that there was an honest calculation error. The bigger question that remains is this – how do various iPhone models stack up to other specific phone models on the same AT&T network? Does anyone actually test these things in a scientific way? It’s well known that different phone models exhibit different performance levels in the same specific signal areas. Some phone models will work in marginal signal situations where other phone models fail to perform at all.

For some time, I’ve had a sneaking suspicion that the iPhone has never had top cell phone performance. AT&T has likely taken a lot of bashing over the past few years that it might not have entirely deserved.

Verizon puts each new phone model through an extensive testing and certification process before they will sell them for use on the Verizon network, thus ensuring that each new device will meet a certain minimum level of performance. This way the Verizon brand and network performance reputation is protected from the bad word-of-mouth that a marginally performing device would likely generate.

If a CDMA version of the iPhone exists, and the rumors are true that it will eventually show up for sale at Verizon, this has to mean that it’s already being tested. Will the CDMA iPhone pass the Verizon tests?

Perhaps more importantly to some, are the iPhone CDMA testers with their black horn-rimmed glasses hanging out in bars shouting “Can you hear me now?” into mysterious phone models disguised to look like Droids? Is there an app for that?

Marriage & Cell Carriers

Posted by tomwiles at 7:01 PM on July 16, 2010

The air is electric with heady excitement. The big day has finally arrived. “This one will be nirvana!” you tell yourself. As you enter the doors and walk down the isle, there she is waiting at the altar, all decked out in a one-use dress. Your heart races with anticipation.

There’s your dream — waiting there for you, with a pre-nuptial agreement in one hand and divorce papers in the other, complete with fine print written in legalese.

For some of us the marriage is a happy one. For others it is a marriage of convenience. And for a small number the marriage ends up going sour and costing them a bundle of money.

Am I talking about a wedding? No, I’m talking about the trip to the cell phone store.

We tend to get all excited about the latest phone models, comparing this feature set with that feature set, this screen with that screen, etc. Once we make a decision and our heart is set on a specific device, we eagerly sign the contract and end up married to a cell carrier for the life of the contract.

Devices aside, the big U.S. carriers have been making constant improvements to their networks. It’s a huge job, but there’s a lot of future money at stake.

In the realm of cell phones, I’ve always found it fascinating and somewhat telling how people will bounce from one cell carrier to the next, seemingly on a whim. If it becomes chic to talk bad about a specific cell carrier, it seems that a lot of people will change cell carriers the same way some people will worry about saturated fats or the latest diet fad.

And now we have the iPhone 4 and it’s purported antenna problem story of the past few days. At this point Apple has sold more than 3 million iPhone 4’s and the vast majority of iPhone 4 users have been happy with their new phones. Yet I find it interesting that all of this media attention about antenna problems has put doubt in the minds of some iPhone 4 owners.

That new spouse might be cheating on you…

I’ve Got An Iphone 4

Posted by KL Tech Muse at 6:38 PM on July 14, 2010

I received my new Iphone 4 late Monday afternoon and have been trying it out since then. I have upgraded from an Iphone 3GS and so far I am happy with my purchase. I am well aware of the issue with the antenna, however I don’t make that many calls and when I do I almost always use headphones. This however does not excuse Apple for the antenna problem. One of the issues maybe how Apple, especially Steve Jobs and early adopters see the Iphone, in comparison to the general public. I believe that the first group see the Iphone as a mini computer that happens to have a phone, while the second group sees it primarily as a phone.

If Apple sold it as a mini computer with telephone capabilities added, I might give them more leeway. However it is being sold as a phone, which means that it must work at least as well as any other phone on the same network. A questionable connection and a suspect network, is not a good combination for a phone. I am afraid that Apple, solution maybe to simply changing the the bars to fit the actual connection, instead of fixing the connection. This unfortunately is something that many companies do to, they mask the problem, instead of fixing it. Worst, is what Apple tried to do. which is to blame the customer. Blaming the customer is always bad for business, no matter if what you are saying is true or not. Its even worst if the customer is doing exactly what you would expect them to do.

There is a part of me , that says this product is defective and you should hate it. I don’t, I admit I still love it. I love how it feels, how it works and all the little touches that make it an Iphone. I admit that the various Android phones probably do certain things better then the Iphone. However after three years in the Iphone universe, I am not about to change now. I am still convince that Apple will find a solution to the antenna problem, and in a year it will be just be a distant memory. Perhaps the press conference this Friday at 10:00 AM PST will tell us which direction Apple is headed on the antenna issue. What do you think, do you own an Iphone 4, do you love it or are you ready to throw it against the wall. If you don’t own a Iphone 4, but was thinking of getting one, has the antenna issue stopped you. What do you want to hear from Apple at this Friday’s press conference. Please let me know.

GNC-2010-07-09 #591 Hollywood’s Funny Accounting

Posted by geeknews at 1:15 AM on July 9, 2010

Quick week for many of you, thanks to everyone that called in to the hotline to leave comments. Wait till you see how Hollywood does their accounting no wonder they can claim they are loosing money. Did you notice the mini format change? First big change in over 500 shows not a really big deal but lets see your reactions!

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Living With The Sprint HTC Evo

Posted by tomwiles at 7:46 PM on July 3, 2010

I’ve been living with my HTC Evo now for a few weeks, long enough where I can make a few informed observations about the device.

The Evo’s 4.3 inch multi-touch screen is superb. I’ve been surprised by the brightness and readability of the Evo’s screen even in a vehicle or outdoors in sunlight. The screen is big enough to be useful, yet the device still fits into a regular shirt pocket.

The Evo is fast and responsive. It seems that no matter what programs are open, the Evo remains just as responsive — there’s no wait for programs or configuration screens to pop open. The other smart phones I’ve owned in the past are dog-slow and sluggish by comparison.

The HTC’s “Sense” user interface that sits on top of Android is a winner. Popular social networking sites are slickly integrated right into every aspect of the phone’s functionality, making it possible to share most everything you can think of with a couple of taps.

The WiFi hotspot feature is also a tremendous convenience. It does have its quirks though. I’ve found that if I have opened up a bunch of different applications in the course of using the phone, if I then open up the WiFi hotspot feature, something will go wrong after a few hours and turn off the battery’s charging circuit. Something I have installed and am running may be causing this to happen. If I reboot the phone and then run the WiFi hotspot feature, this problem doesn’t occur and the battery keeps charging when it’s plugged in to AC power.

The integrated GPS is able to quickly find a signal. There are two GPS navigation choices that are included – Google Navigation and Sprint Navigation. Both work exactly as expected. I find myself making the most use of Google Navigation and Google Maps. The ability to search for businesses in a local area based on the phone’s own GPS location is extremely useful and I typically find I use that feature several times a day.

4G is currently not a good reason to buy an Evo because 4G coverage is currently extremely limited. This situation is in the process of changing. In the meantime, I’m happy with Sprint’s 3G coverage. I knew about this 4G limitation going in to getting this phone, so it’s not a problem for me. In reality, it’s likely going to take two or three years before 4G is widely deployed. I’ve been a Sprint data customer for more than 5 years, so I’ve witnessed (and lived with) the process firsthand of them going from 1XRT service that was limited to the eastern half of the country to widely-deployed EVDO Rev “A” 3G service.

Android is light years better than Windows Mobile 5, 6 or 6.5. When Android needs to pull data from the Internet it quickly pulls it without fuss or muss. All the versions of Windows Mobile I’ve dealt with have a “Dial-up Networking” routine they have to go through just as if it was a desktop computer connecting via a modem, which is slow and sometimes prone to fail. Windows Mobile data connections must be manually closed when not in use or they can drain the battery. Android just does what you expect it to without jumping through a bunch of hoops.

The Evo’s main 8 megapixel camera is very good, and the interface allows instant uploading of photos to services such as Flickr and Facebook. The front-facing camera will work with a free program called “Fring” that will allow two-way video conferencing, but I’ve found Fring’s interface confused and somewhat unreliable.

Sprint appears to be blocking the uploading of videos recorded on the phone even through the phone’s integrated browser when signed in to YouTube. However, I was able to email a video as an attachment to my YouTube account.

The Evo’s “HD video” recording capability is not anywhere close to HD standards. Furthermore, the sound quality of recorded video and audio is quite poor. The Evo is not a replacement for a real video camera. It is only fair to note here that all iPhones, iPod Touches, and iPads have superior audio recording capabilities. Also the iPhone 4’s HD video recording capabilities are obviously quite superior to the Evo’s.

Overall, I’m very pleased with the HTC Evo. That being said, keep in mind that it requires expensive voice/data plans if you wish to take advantage of all its capabilities. Furthermore as a two and one half year plus Sprint customer I’m satisfied with the quality and speed of the Sprint network.

GNC-2010-07-02 #589 Chrome Takes a Dive!

Posted by geeknews at 12:59 AM on July 2, 2010

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