Macworld has posted a helpful overview of some of the choices for iPad users who want a data plan. As you likely know, a data plan lets you access the cell phone network to get access to the Internet without having the be in the vicinity of a Wi-Fi hotspot. Your options include buying the iPad 3G, with a cellular transceiver built in, and getting a data plan through AT&T, or using a small, shirt-pocket size device to receive a data signal from a cellular network and then broadcast it to your iPad. The device is itself a highly portable wireless router.
There's been some discussion of unwanted in-app purchases in our blog recently, and coincidentally a recent article on the TidBITS website explains a couple ways that you can avoid this. Both entail changing a setting, and neither is an ideal solution. But certainly both are useful if you're a parent wanting to make sure your child doesn't run up bill in your iTunes account.
This is something I haven't really had to deal with, because when I get a new Mac it automatically imports all the content and settings from my old one. But if you're faced with transferring your iTunes library to a new PC, popular radio talk show host Kim Komando takes you through it step by step.
Wow, what a surprise. According to the Verizon website, they'll begin selling the iPad on October 28 bundled with the MiFi Mobile Hotspot. They say this will give you WiFi just about anywhere. Prices start at $20/month for 1GB of data, compared to Apple's $15 for 200MB and $25 for 2GB. Like Apple's plans, these will be month to month with no obligation. This sounds like an excellent option, especially if you're in an area with weak or no AT&T coverage. You can see a press release on Apple's site.
First off, you have to realize that this study was done by SquareTrade, which sells warranties. That said, their study found that there's an 82% increase in broken screens in the iPhone 4 compared to the iPhone 3GS. Part of the problem is that now there's twice as much surface area to break. Hard to know what to make of this report, but it does suggest a protective case would be good idea.
The iPad continues to sell at a rate of 1 million per month — and is the fastest-selling consumer electronics device of all time, except for cell phones. And now even more iPads will be sold, thanks to their presence in hundreds of WalMart stores nationwide starting on Friday. Read more on MacWorld. The iPad is already on sale at Target stores.
MarketWatch's Cody Willard has put together a number of top-5 lists for iPhone and iPad apps. Check it out if you want to see what he feels are the 5 best iPhone apps for email, humor, getting things done, stock market quotes, and making music. And he offers up the top 5 iPad apps for Wikipedia, business travelers, reading, and toddlers.
First you hear rumors of a Verizon iPhone, then you hear that the rumors were unfounded. And now it's cropping up again — but this time the New York Times is reporting it. So it must be true, right? The Times says that an anonymous source (of course) who's in direct contact with Apple said that Verizon will begin selling the phone early next year. The article says that Apple really doesn't have a choice: it needs to sign up other carriers because the competing Android platform is gaining so much momentum. Anyway, I hope they're right, because in this corner of Southeastern Iowa we're stuck with pokey Edge speeds, and Verizon not only has 3G here but also much better coverage.
I tend to eat a vegetarian diet, and one of the really hard things about traveling is finding good vegetarian food. The $3 app Where to Eat, for both iPhone and iPad, has been indispensable. The app lets you select from 45 different cuisines and 30 different food types, including vegan and vegetarian. When I'm traveling, I simply select one of those two categories, and then the app shows a list of nearby restaurants, the distance, and their location on a map. I can quickly get directions, as well as other information such as the phone number.
NCH Software, a leading provider of audio and telephony tools, has just released Pocket WavePad for the iPhone. (There's not yet an iPad-specific version.) It lets you record audio and edit the recordings, apply audio effects, reduce background noise, and easily email or upload the audio files that you've recorded.