Did you hear that sound? If you felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of ringtones rang out, well... AT&T just gobbled up T-Mobile, for $39 billion. This consolidation, announced just before the industry's CTIA Wireless show, brings together the 2nd and 4th largest cellular carriers in the U.S., to create a new #1 provider. Both vendors use GSM technology which should make it easier to integrate the two firms and their customers.
In addition to the iPad 2, Apple's Smart Cover has been widely anticipated. There is a lot to like about this accessory. As the Smart Cover is opened, the iPad wakes up... and goes to sleep as the Smart Cover closes. The Smart Cover peels back to form a stand, either for watching movies or typing. And most significantly, it attaches via magnets... check out the tear-down from iFixit. But this may be the iPad's version of AntennaGate.
As a kid in the '80's, I grew up playing Kevin Flynn's videogames such as Space Paranoids and of course, TRON. So naturally I believe that Flynn Lives... how could someone so brilliant just disappear? Now there's a documentary, TRON: Legacy, that suggests he may have evolved into something different... something extraordinary. I don't know what to make of it, but you should check it out for yourself. If movies aren't your thing, there's an app for that.
The white iPhone 4 has been as elusive as that famous white whale, but there are rumors that it may be available soon. But if you can't wait, or more likely, you've already given up on the white one and bought a black iPhone 4, you have some options.
I just got back from a cruise and I used a $25 Trident Cyclops case to protect my iPhone from sand and water. While Trident doesn't claim that the case is waterproof, it's dust (and probably splash) resistant. Indeed my phone survived a week in Mexico at exotic locations like Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas, and the kids pool on the Disney Wonder!
It's a tale of two children. One is a rule follower and the other a rule breaker. I love them dearly, but it can be a challenge to get everyone on the same page. Thankfully, iRewardChart is a well made app that enables me to track their chores but more importantly, it encourages them to participate. Not only can they see their progress, as they perform daily household activities, but I've begun to let them checkoff their tasks as they complete them. The rule breaker actually likes this as she can get a visual and audible recognition and she has some control... that's her big thing. The rule follower likes it because it's structured, reliable, and most importantly, high-tech.
Nobody's perfect but we try! A typo crept into our March/April 2011 print issue, page 26 and the wonderful Mophie Juice Pack Air had the wrong price listed. The correct price is $79.95.
Okay, so the shine is off the Apple, so to speak, and we know what the iPad 2 is going to offer. Here are some things you need to know:
1) The "3G" model is really two different models. There is a Verizon (CDMA) version and an AT&T (GSM). So don't expect to buy "the 3G" version and decide which vendor to use with it later. You need to decide before you buy.
Let's cut to the chase. The iPad 2 was just announced and here's the scoop:
1) Two cameras. A front facing camera was overdue, but two brings the iPad 2 up to par with the iPhone 4 and latest iPod touch. I can't wait for FaceTime chats with the big screen!
2) A 2X faster A5 dual core CPU with 9X graphics performance! There's a gyroscope, too.
3) Thinner and lighter, at 1.3 pounds instead of 1.5 pounds for the original iPad. At 8.8mm, not only is the iPad 2 thinner than the 13.4mm original iPad, but it's thinner than the original iPhone 4, which is 9.3mm!
4) A white model will be available on Day 1, which is a nice surprise. March 11th in the U.S. and March 25th in 26 more countries.
In an earlier article, I wrote about several cases that make it easier to get a good grip on your iPad. This article builds on that one and includes additional cases that let you wear your iPad on your shoulder or neck. A comparison chart is included for your convenience.
So you're moving from AT&T to Verizon. What should you do with your old iPhone? You could hand it down to someone who is already under contract with AT&T. Or use it as an iPod touch, without a voice or data plan. You could also try to sell it on eBay or Craigslist. But if you just want some quick money, there are several firms waiting to turn your phone into cash. Many of these firms guarantee that they wipe the data on your device, so that might be worth some peace of mind. They also typically offer volume deals for businesses.