At last week's event Steve Jobs gave previews of iOS 4.1 and iOS 4.2. The former updates the software for the iPhone and iPod touch, and the latter, to be available in November, will upgrade the iPad, and the three devices (iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad) will use the same software. TidBITs has a helpful short article on the new update, and describes new features such as high dynamic range photos (HDR) and Game Center. HDR sounds pretty amazing.
When the iPad was launched, one of the cool apps initially available was one from Netflix that let you stream movies to your iPad. Late last month the Netflix app was also released for the iPhone and iPod touch. Netflix's streaming movie service has been skyrocketing in popularity, so it's great to see these apps becoming available.
If there's any doubt that the iPad is a hit, that can be assuaged by looking at the number of iPad-like competitors hitting the market. Technologizer has posted a list, with images, of 32 "iPadversaries." The most astonishing is the Toshiba Libretto W100. It actually has two screens joined by a hinge. You can perch it like a laptop, and one of the screens becomes a keyboard. Just think, a year ago this market didn't exist, and now it's exploding with creativity.
The value of social media is that you learn about music that you might like. The new social media feature in iTunes 10, called Ping, lets you know what music your friends are listening to and purchasing. But in using Ping, you have to decide how much you want others to know about your own listening and purchasing. A very helpful article on Macworld explains the privacy features in Ping. It's worth checking out if you're intending to enable Ping, which is turned off by default.
At yesterday's event from Apple, perhaps the most unanticipated announcement was Ping, the main new feature of iTunes 10, which is now available for download via iTunes or the Apple website. Steve Jobs described Ping as a cross between Twitter, Facebook, and iTunes. You can read more about in on the Ping website or in the New York Times. Ping lets you connect with your friends and see what music they're listening to or buying.
Some of the biggest news today at the Apple event today was the new iPod touch. It was hardly a surprise, since everyone had pretty much guessed the new features. Still, it's fun to see Apple always moving ahead. As expected, it has a camera (including HD video), a front-facing camera for videoconferencing, the FaceTime software first offered in iPhone 4, and the new and very impressive 960 x 640 retina display. The new iPod touch starts at $229 for the 8GB model. It's amazing how far this device has come.
Change of Address.org has posted a great top-10 list of apps that will make your life easier if you're faced with a big move. The list includes Move planner ($1.99), which they describe as "must-see" for people moving. It comes with a range of very handy checklists — and they seem to have thought of everything. The app lets you modify these lists or create your own.
Apple does things differently. Other companies find out what people want and then give it to them. Apple's Steve Jobs imagines what he thinks people will like — and need — once they see it, and then Apple creates it. So out comes the iPad, a gizmo that was largely sui generis. And now Resolve Market Research has conducted a survey to find out what people like about it and are using it for. The results are fascinating. According to their article on Mashable, manufacturers of gaming devices and ebook readers ought to be worried.
Yesterday Apple release iOS updates for both the iPad and iPhone. (Read the details on Yahoo for iPad and iPhone.) The iPad upgrade may be the more important, in that it fixes the WiFi issues. The iPhone upgrade fixes the issue with the signal-strength bars.
According to a short article in the New York Times, Apple will be holding a press conference on Friday to address the complaints about the reception of the iPhone 4 if you hold it in a particular way. No word on who will speak. A recall is doubtful. I'm hoping they'll send a free Bumper case to everyone. Apparently having such a case resolves the problem.