iPhone Life magazine

Calling

Meanwhile, on Verizon: free Skype calls coming next month

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Skype on the iPhone is old news, but the most frequent complaint about the iPhone app is that it doesn't work over AT&T's 3G network -- you have to be in WiFi range to make or receive a Skype call.  Meanwhile, those of us with other smartphones haven't even had that capability, hitting our heads against shaky, unfriendly voice-over-IP (VOIP) implementations such as Sipdroid.  But today's announcement of a partnership between Verizon and Skype promises to bring Skype to



iVideochat: The missing link for the iPad & iPhone

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While I will definitely be buying an iPad on Day 1, I am on record as being disappointed there is no built-in camera, let alone two.  Cameras are included in just about every cellphone and even the lowly iPod nano and Nintendo DSi.  Imagine the gaming, Augmented Reality, and videoconferencing capabilities this feature would have enabled.  Instead of the mixed reaction the iPad has garnered, the appeal of the iPad would have been a no-brainer, just by including a camera.  I have to believe a future iPad will have at least one camera.  But for now, I Photoshopped the following creation in the hopes it might inspire a vendor to create such a hardware and software combination.



Incoming calls you don’t want to answer

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Your iPhone “rings” and you see that it’s a call you don’t want to answer. Press the Wake/Sleep button once and it will stop ringing; press it twice and the call will be immediately forwarded to your voice mail.


“Annoying Caller” alert!

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Persistence is an admirable quality in some circumstances, and very annoying in others. For example, a broker keeps calling you about an investment opportunity involving sub-prime mortgage-based derivatives. “Thanks, but no thanks” may be tolerable once, but having to repeat yourself can get old quickly.


A person posting in the iPhone section at YahooGroups.com had a creative solution for this. Create a single contact and call it “BLOCKED” or “DON’T ANSWER” or something like that. Then, when you have identified a phone number as one you don’t want to answer, enter it in this contact.

Check AT&T account balance

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Check your Account Minutes balanceThis tip is based on an excellent article at Macworld.com. You can check the balance on your AT&T bill or the remaining number of voice minutes you have directly from your iPhone. From the Home screen, go to Settings >Phone >AT&T Services. Select the button labeled “Check Bill Balance” or “View My Minutes.” AT&T will promptly send you a free SMS with the info.

MoGo Talk Review - A Bluetooth Headset with a Disappearing Trick

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LG makes a phone called the Envy, but the LG phone that I've always envied is the Decoy.  The LG Decoy has a snap-on Bluetooth earpiece that always goes with the phone.  It's a novel concept that we iPhone users couldn't take advantage of.  Now, there's a headset for that!

 



Most cell phone users don't notice unicycling clown

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In case we needed another reminder of why it doesn't matter that the iPhone can't multitask, a study published in Applied Cognitive Psychology indicates that most of us can't, either.

Specifically, 75% of people walking down the street while talking on their cell phones did not notice a unicycling clown passing them.  (Oddly, neither did 50% of the people who were not talking on cell phones, so really the phone conversation only cuts our attentiveness by an additional half.)

Read about the study in



Enter a pause in a phone number

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 Some business phone systems require that you pause between numbers. For example, there may need to be a pause between the main number and the extension to give the phone system time to “pick up.” To insert a pause while entering or editing a phone number in Contacts, place the cursor where you want to insert the pause, tap on the lower left button (+ * #), and hit the pause button that appears next to it. Repeat the process to insert another pause. The pauses appear as commas in the displayed number.

How to forward phone calls

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The ability to forward a phone call can come in handy if you’re in a meeting or on vacation and want an associate to handle your calls. It could also come in handy if you’re traveling to an area with no cellular coverage, and want your calls forwarded to your hotel. Here’s how you do it on the iPhone:

  1. From the Home screen, go to Settings >Phone >Call Forwarding.
  2. Then, turn on Call Forwarding and tap on Forwarding To.
  3. Finally, enter the number you want your calls forwarded to.

WARNING: To set up call forwarding, your iPhone must be in range of your cellular network. So if you’re going to an area without cellular coverage, set it up beforehand.

 

Free apps for making calls via your iPod Touch

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If you're an iPod Touch user, you need not be incommunicado. If you're in the vicinity of a Wi-Fi hotspot, you can use your device to make calls, including calls to landline and cell phones. In this review in the Wall Street Journal, Walt Mossberg tests three apps — all FREE — that let you make calls without needing $70/month phone service like your iPhone brethren.



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