My wife’s car was making a squealing noise a few weeks back, so I stopped by Keith’s tire and automotive shop to have him take a look at it. While I was waiting, I asked him if the economic mess we’re in was hurting his business. “No,” he said, “it’s great for business. When times are hard, people put off buying a new car…but they spend money fixing up the one they already have.” I call this “Keith’s Law,” and it applies to more than just cars.
Apple’s retail sales for computers and mobile devices fell in January, but iTunes App Store sales remain strong. In addition, the number of iPhone and iPod touch accessories seems to be growing by leaps and bounds. A number of articles in this issue are devoted to ways you can “fix up” your iPhone or iPod touch to make it do what you want. Do you want to have more fun? Take a look at “Gaming Now…” and “Free Internet Radio Apps.” Need to shed some pounds? “Lose Weight with the Help of Your iPhone” will help you. Are you a struggling musician? One of our authors thinks that a few apps turn the iPhone into “A Musician’s Best Friend.” And if you’re a news junkie on a budget, take a look at “News, Sports, and Weather for Free.”
Need an accessory to spruce up your iPhone? Plenty of new ones were announced and on display at computer expos in January and February. Check out the Computer Electronics Show and Mobile World Congress reports in this issue. Are you less that satisfied with the iPhone’s battery life? “Overcoming Those Battery Blues” will help. Other articles look at cases, stands, connectivity, and power solutions that will enhance your iPhone experience.
Product reviews are helpful, but experience is the real teacher. A quick and painless way to get this is to read what others have done. “A Portable Biking Computer” describes how one user enhanced the iPhone’s GPS capabilities for outdoor activities. “Dealmaker’s iPhone” describes how the iPhone improved a consultant’s efficiency. And “Switching from Palm to iPhone” describes a day in the life of a new iPhone user.
Finally, the App Store has been a great boon to enterprise users. This issue shows you how to “Improve Productivity with These Business Apps,” “Time Tracking on the iPhone with Tick,” access “Lotus Notes on the iPhone,” and much more. Healthcare professionals will be interested to hear about the “Robust and Affordable Medical Apps” that are available.
So until the next, improved version of the iPhone or iPod touch is released—or until we can afford it—Keith’s Law is in full force. Check out the apps, accessories, and Web resources that are already available. Fix up what you already have!