iNews Review

iPhone's Growing Market Share, Canada Too Cold for iPhone?, FileMaker on iPhone, and More

This Week's iPhone, iPod, and Apple TV News

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2008.03.21

Mac notebook and other portable computing is covered in The 'Book Review, and general Mac news is in Mac News Review.

All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted.

iPhone News, Reviews, & Opinion

Apple TV News, Reviews, & Opinion

iPhone/iPod Add-ons

iPhone Add-ons

iPod and iPhone Deals

iPhone News, Reviews, & Opinion

iPhone Increases Market Share in Mobile Browser Wars

PR: Apple has increased its share of the Internet browser market in the US by 64% between December and March according to StatCounter, which provides organisations and individuals with a free website visitor statistics tool.(1) Globally iPhone/iTouch has more than doubled its share of the Internet browser market from 0.03% to 0.08%.

In March iPhone and iTouch increased their share of the total browser market in the US from 0.14% in December to 0.23% according to StatCounter which tracks in excess of nine billion pageloads per month over its network of two million websites. If one excludes iTouch from the figures then iPhone's market share of Internet browsing in the US (0.18%) is still well ahead of Nokia (0.01%). However, Nokia still maintains a significant lead over Apple in the global market with 0.25% to 0.08%.

"The key message is that iPhone is more than living up to its claims of being a user friendly Internet browser, unlike many other cell phones," commented Aodhan Cullen, founder and CEO of StatCounter. He said that iPhone web browsing peaked in the US on Christmas Day at 0.07%. "Presumably this was due to people trying out their new Christmas present combined perhaps with not accessing their PCs that day."

The StatCounter analysis finds that Microsoft Internet Explorer still leads the browser market overall with 44.5% market share in the US. But it is facing real competition from open source based Firefox which grew to 43.9% of the US browser market. Globally Internet Explorer is well ahead at 59% with Firefox on 33%.

The StatCounter analysis was based on a sample of 372 million page views globally from December 07 to March 08, including 71 million US page views.

(1) Note: Figures include iPhone and iTouch

iPhone Crushes Competition in Smartphone Usage

Ars Technica's Charles Jade reports:

"Analytics firm M: Metrics has a report [below] that confirms what every iPhone user likely already knows: other phones suck at web browsing.

"'The iPhone has certainly delivered on its hype,' said Mark Donovan, senior analyst, M: Metrics. 'Beyond a doubt, this device is compelling consumers to interact with the mobile Web, delivering off-the-charts usage from everything to text messaging to mobile video.'"

M: Metrics: iPhone Hype Holds Up

PR: Six months after the iPhone's US launch, has the device changed the mobile landscape? According to M: Metrics, the mobile media authority, the answer is yes. Today, the measurement firm reports that the iPhone is already the most popular device for accessing news and information on the mobile Web, with 85 percent of iPhone users accessing news and information in the month of January.

"The iPhone has certainly delivered on its hype," said Mark Donovan, senior analyst, M: Metrics. "Beyond a doubt, this device is compelling consumers to interact with the mobile Web, delivering off-the-charts usage from everything to text messaging to mobile video."

M: Metrics found that a staggering 30.9 percent of iPhone owners watched mobile TV or video, versus a 4.6 market average, and more than double the rate for all smartphone users. Usage of social networking is also popular among iPhone users: 49.7 percent accessed a social networking site in January, nearly twelve times the market average. Twenty percent of iPhone owners accessed Facebook, one of the first Web properties to customize its content for the iPhone, versus 1.5 percent of the total mobile market.

"This data indicates that the iPhone's widgets are and effective means to drive mobile content consumption," observed Donovan. "Two featured widgets, YouTube and Google Maps are extremely popular among iPhone users: 30.4 percent accessed YouTube and 36 percent used Google Maps. In comparison, only one percent of all mobile subscribers accessed YouTube and 2.6 percent checked out Google Maps."

Is Canada Too Cold for the iPhone?

iPhone World's dennis says:

"Lots of folks are wondering why exactly the iPhone wasn't released in Canada yet. Some think that it's because of the iPhone trademark uncertainty, others blame Rogers' data plan rates, yet others just don't consider Canada to be an important market for Apple.

"But the answer may be much more simple than conspiracy theory buffs expect it to be: the iPhone simply was not designed to operate in cold temperatures.

"This winter brought the coldest weather in recorded Canadian history, with temperatures staying stable at below -20°C (-4°F) for weeks. In the meantime, Apple clearly states that the operating temperature for iPhone is 0° to 35°C (32° to 95°F), while the 'nonoperating temperature' is -20° to 45°C (-4° to 113°F)."

Is the iPhone the Next PC?

PC Magazine's Tim Bajarin says:

"When the iPod debuted with much noise and fanfare, most analysts and media saw it as just another MP3 player. Nobody could foresee how it would revolutionize the music industry and the music player market....

"By the time Apple introduced the iPhone, the noise and hype surrounding it was palpable. For the first time in Apple's history, the company had launched a product that finally met the expectations of the industry and marketplace. It has become a major force in the world of smartphones and telecommunications....

"Thanks to the recent launch of the iPhone SDK, we now have a glimpse of what the iPhone is going to be when it grows up. At the SDK launch, John Doer of Kleiner Perkins announced that Kleiner would put $100 million into iPhone software start-ups. His exact words in reference to the iPhone were 'This is the next PC.' Very few media reports recorded this comment, or if they did, they did not put it into context. In these few words, Doer told us exactly what the iPhone is destined to be."

Lotus Notes Comes to the iPhone

IDG News Service's Nancy Gohring reports:

"iPhone customers who use Lotus Notes at work won't be left out anymore with a new offering from Sybase iAnywhere.

"Sybase iAnywhere is set to announce on Tuesday that it is adding support for the iPhone in its Information Anywhere Suite, initially only for e-mail. That means that companies using Lotus Notes will be able to securely push e-mail messages to iPhone users.

"Apple recently announced that it plans to support Microsoft's ActiveSync technology in its second-generation iPhone software so that iPhone users can receive Exchange e-mail. But the announcement did not include a way for Lotus Notes users to receive e-mail on iPhones, so Sybase hopes to fill that gap."

Test Your Website with Apple's iPhone Simulator

CreativeTechs says:

"If you are a web designer, your clients may soon start worrying how their websites work on an iPhone. That's because after only eight months, iPhones now account for a remarkable 71% of all US Mobile Browser web traffic....

"Tucked away in Apple's free iPhone Software Development Kit is a terrific iPhone Simulator you can use to test and preview your websites. In the full version of this tip we'll show you where that iPhone Simulator application is hidden, and include a few tips on how to test various iPhone features."

Kit Turns iPhone into a Business Tool

McClatchy Newspapers' Julio Ojeda-Zapata reports:

"Apple's iPhone, for all its allure, has never been a BlackBerry-like business tool for briefcase-toting corporate types.

"That's about to change. Apple recently announced upcoming improvements for the much-ballyhooed touchscreen music-and movie-playing cell phone to better integrate it into workplaces, big and small. It also unveiled long-anticipated development tools that, for the first time, will allow third parties to create software for the famously computerlike handset.

"This is all sweet music for Marc Jensen, technology director at the Minneapolis-based Space150 advertising agency. Workers there have embraced the iPhone, he said, but have been unable to use it properly with the firm's Microsoft- based e-mail, calendar and contact-management infrastructure. The iPhone just didn't fit, he said, the way a BlackBerry or a Windows Mobile handset does.

"An alliance between Apple and Microsoft changes that, he said...."

Alternative Firmware for the iPhone

Hardmac's Lionel reports:

"A new stage has been reached by hackers of iPhone. Armed with their experience gained with the various updates of the iPhone firmware, they have managed to unblock the beta of the next big evolution of the firmware to be released in June, this is the same firmware that will allow the use of the AppStore.

"However they have gone further...."

Apple TV News, Reviews, & Opinion

Apple TV To Utilize Peer-to-Peer Technology?

Apple TV Source's Luck Kanthatham says:

"Could it be? Peer-to-peer, the same technology that made applications like Kazaa, Joost and Morpheus household names, might come to the Apple TV in the near future. Instead of using the current client-server model, Apple TV can really get a major speed boost IF it switches to using peer-to-peer technology."

iPhone/iPod Add-ons

Proporta Echo Screen Protector

Proporta EchoPR: Proporta have added a new screen protector to their collection which not only provides fantastic protection, but also doubles up as a fabulous mirror.

Its called the Echo, and it's available for the iPhone, iPod touch and 3G nano.

Proporta EchoThe Echo Mirror Screen Protector is available for the iPhone, iPod touch and 3G iPod nano. It offers you and your device more than any standard screen protector you'll land your hands on. When the backlight of your screen is turned on, the Echo works as a simple (yet brilliant) screen protector. However, when you switch your screen off, it transforms into a handy little mirror which not only offers the same level of protection that you'd expect from all Proporta products, but also looks pretty great too. Not only that, the Echo can also be washed and replaced and comes with a handy little application kit.

So now you can head out and look almost as good as your iPod will.

iJailBreak 0.6 Supports all iPod Touches, iPhones on 1.1.4

PR: AriX and Ben have announced the immediate availability of iJailBreak 0.6, the latest version of the popular open source Mac OS X jailbreaking and unlocking utility. iJailBreak 0.6 brings support for all iPod Touch and iPhone models running firmware 1.1.4. iJailBreak's 0.6.x branch is an automated iPhone and iPod Touch unlock and jailbreaker for Mac OS X, taking advantage of ZiPhone as its core.

AriX and Ben have announced the immediate availability of iJailBreak 0.6, the latest version of the popular open source Mac OS X jailbreaking and unlocking utility. iJailBreak 0.6 brings support for all iPod Touch and iPhone models running firmware 1.1.4. iJailBreak 0.6.x is a Universal application, meaning it will run on both PowerPC and Intel-based Macs.

Those who already have iJailBreak installed on their machine will have iJailBreak 0.6 pushed as an update. Those who don't need to download iJailBreak 0.6 from the iJailBreak website.

Once one has downloaded, installed, and launched iJailBreak 0.6, they simply need to connect their device and run iJailBreak. Depending on whether you want to jailbreak, unlock (on iPhone), or both, the process could take anywhere from 45 seconds to 3 or 4 minutes.

iPod Touch users will also be offered the option to freely install the iPhone applications, which normally cost $20 from Apple.

iJailBreak 0.6.x clears up previous issues with YouTube, Yahoo! Mail, and iTunes purchased songs, leaving you with the same great core experience that the iPod Touch and iPhone have come to be known for.

As with previous versions of iJailBreak, iJailBreak 0.6 is free/open source software under the GNU General Public License version 2.

iJailBreak's 0.6.x branch is an automated iPhone and iPod Touch unlock and jailbreaker for Mac OS X, taking advantage of ZiPhone as its core. The project is run by 13 year olds AriX and Ben.

iPhone Add-ons

FileMaker on Your iPhone or Treo in 15 Minutes

PR: How would you like to see your FileMaker database on your mobile phone? Now you can. In as little as 15 minutes, you can have a powerful FileMaker solution available on your mobile phone. How is this possible? JumpStart is a powerful web based application that connects to your FileMaker database and enables you to quickly recreate a web based FileMaker solution for mobile devices. JumpStart provides you with an easy to use visual interface. If you can point and click you can build a website.

FileMaker on your iPhone or Treo in 15 minutes. JumpStart is a powerful new technology created by FMWebschool. JumpStart enables you to use your FileMaker databases on mobile devices. Now you can access your data anywhere you have an internet connection.

What is JumpStart?

JumpStart is a web based application that connects to your FileMaker database. JumpStart provides a visual picture of your database enabling you to drag and drop layouts that you want to use and point and click fields and privileges that you want displayed. JumpStart writes special code so the websites display perfectly on mobile devices.

So this must be a very basic system right? Actually JumpStart creates a very powerful FileMaker web based solution for you. JumpStart automatically generates a full blown FileMaker website for you that enables you to create new records, delete records, edit records, search, display portals, display dynamic images and even allows editing of multiple portal rows with one click of a button. JumpStart automatically generates all of the necessary icons for navigation and interacting with the database.

What about Security can everyone see my database? The level of security you want to add to your site is up to you. JumpStart will automatically generate a login and logout system for you. This way the only people that can access the site are the ones that have a valid username and password.

Once I create a FileMaker website how do I view it on my mobile phone? Once you use JumpStart to create your FileMaker website, you have two choices. You can instantly download the files that you created. JumpStart automatically zips them up for you. These files can then be run on any system with FileMaker Server 9 and PHP installed. Or you can automatically upload the files to FMGateway.com and your files will be available on your mobile device within seconds. This is an automated process; the only thing you have to do is decide what you want to name your folder. Your FileMaker website will be available to you and the world instantly.

Why can't I build this website myself without JumpStart? You certainly can, if you want to spend 20 - 30 hours and thousands of dollars trying to replicate what JumpStart can do in 10 minutes. JumpStart is so inexpensive; you can generate your website for $9.99. If you decide that you want to make some changes to the website, no problem. You can simply open JumpStart generated pages in any web editing program. JumpStart creates clean well coded web pages that can easily be edited.

How do I get started with JumpStart?

You can learn more about JumpStart at FMGateway.com. JumpStart is a free service to all of our hosting clients and cost $9.99 a month to non hosting clients. JumpStart allows you to create unlimited websites.

If you are a FileMaker developer or you just need to make your FileMaker solution available on mobile devices now you can. JumpStart provides you with an intuitive visual interface that will enable you to deploy your FileMaker database to the web in minutes. The future of FileMaker data presentation and interaction is mobile devices. Take advantage of this opportunity to JumpStart your future.

Sybase iAnywhere Secure Enterprise Email for the iPhone

PR: Sybase iAnywhere has announced availability of support for Apple iPhone within its Information Anywhere Suite. Information Anywhere now enables IT organizations to provide secure delivery of Lotus Domino and Microsoft Exchange enterprise email to iPhone users, in addition to a broad range of other mobile devices. Sybase iAnywhere's unique approach to providing enterprise email support for the iPhone reduces potential security concerns while still providing a rich user experience utilizing native iPhone applications.

"We've had significant demand from our customer base for iPhone support, as companies want to allow the iPhone as an approved device choice for wireless email, along with their other Windows Mobile, Symbian or Palm devices," said Mark Willnerd, vice president, Sybase iAnywhere. "In addition, we are excited by the recent release of the Apple iPhone SDK. We are currently exploring new possibilities for future product enhancements and additional iPhone support across our entire Information Anywhere Suite mobility platform."

Key advantages include:

  • Security: Information Anywhere provides iPhone support without requiring changes to an enterprise's messaging infrastructure. The outbound connection model adds an additional layer of security. Enterprises no longer need to open inbound communication ports to the messaging infrastructure, all mobile device connections end within the enterprise DMZ. Information Anywhere adds specific features to equip IT with the ability to eliminate security risks with iPhone devices, such as restricting attachments, preventing user access and removing email data from a device. All of these features reduce potential security concerns with iPhone use in the enterprise.
  • Offline Email Access: Information Anywhere supports the native iPhone client which provides a feature rich and faster user experience than found with browser-based email support. In addition, email is available for offline use.
  • Contact Data Access: Information Anywhere provides secure access to contact data, including corporate directory and personal contacts.
  • Multi-device Support: Information Anywhere addresses the extreme demand corporations face to support a variety of mobile devices. Sybase iAnywhere now supports the iPhone, in addition to more than 250 Windows Mobile, Symbian and Palm-based devices.
  • Broad Enterprise Email Support: Information Anywhere supports both Lotus Domino R6/7/8 and Microsoft Exchange 2000/2003/2007.

"We were glad to be selected as an iPhone beta participant with Sybase iAnywhere. The solution was easy to set up without any adjustment to our backend infrastructure and we were ready to go with our iPhone devices in less than a day," said Melkon Torosyan, project manager, Comdirect AG. "We are looking forward to deploying the solution because it addresses the needs of the users and the security concerns of our enterprise customers."

Information Anywhere wireless email support for Apple iPhone will be available by the end of March 2008.

iSee iPhone v3: The Next Evolution in iPhone Protection

PR: Smaller, sleeker, and more protective than its predecessor, the iSee iPhone v3 truly has earned the right to be called a Contour iSee. With a two-piece snap together polycarbonate chassis that is 30% lighter and 20% thinner, the v3 is still able to offer the full protection for which Contour cases are known.

iSee iPhone v3At Contour Design, the primary focus is to create the most stylish and protective cases imaginable. Always striving to find the next evolution in protection, we constantly revisit our cases, searching for ways to improve each and every design. So it is with great enthusiasm that we introduce the newest member of our iSee line - the iSee iPhone v3.

Smaller, sleeker, and more protective than its predecessor, the iSee iPhone v3 truly has earned the right to be called a Contour iSee. With a two-piece snap together polycarbonate chassis that is 30% lighter and 20% thinner, the v3 is still able to offer the full protection for which Contour cases are known. From the removable silicone headphone and dock port plugs to the click through buttons shielding the volume and power switches, the iSee v3 has the iPhone covered.

"And if that isn't enough," says Mike Jackle, Director, Product Development, "we're also including a hard shell belt clip holster complete with our new universal attachment system. This case has it all!"

Key Features

  • Crystal clear hard shell protection with easy, two-piece snap together design
  • Removable silicone dock port and headphone jack protectors
  • Click through volume and power buttons
  • Locking holster with universal attachment system
  • Removable belt clip

The Contour iSee iPhone v3 is available now. MSRP is $29.95 the US.

The iSee iPhone v3 is part of the Contour Cases collection created by Contour Design, an industry-leader in innovative iPod accessories. Contour Design offers the best and most beautiful protective shells available anywhere for iPods. In addition, Contour Design, Inc., based in Windham, New Hampshire, is a manufacturer of innovative add-on products for Windows, Macintosh and UNIX workstations, specializing in the audio/video and ergonomic markets. Contour Design's European HQ is in Stanmore Middlesex, with distributors in all major EMEA countries.

Indie Movie Seeks 1 Million iPhone Downloads

PR: TimeCode Mechanics frontman Nathyn Brendan Masters, writer and director of "Wages of Sin" the film considered to be the first indie film for Apple TV now wants his film to be on your iPhone and is willing to put up or shut up. TimeCode Mechanics will start selling a special 99¢ download of the martial arts actioner "Wages of Sin" aimed directly at iPhone users from the TimeCode Mechanics website.

TimeCode Mechanics frontman Nathyn Brendan Masters, writer and director of "Wages of Sin" the film considered to be the first indie film for Apple TV now wants his film to be the first film on your iPhone and is willing to put up or shut up. TimeCode Mechanics will start selling a special 99¢ download of the martial arts actioner "Wages of Sin" aimed directly at iPhone users from the TimeCode Mechanics website.

Previously Masters best selling download was the Apple TV version sold through cutting edge digital film distributor Hungryflix who are also currently pushing iPhone, iPod, and Apple TV content, but Masters is ready for his film to be on your Apple TV units, iPods and now your iPhones. "Currently there are 5,000,000 iPhone users and fans; our goal is 1,000,000 downloads by the end of summer," says Masters. "I want everyone with an iPhone to grab a copy of the film. Right now I want our film to be synonymous with iPhone, and at 99¢ customers can't go wrong."

Wages of Sin, a.k.a. "Chicago Cop", is a low budget martial arts action movie that revolves around a cop framed for the murder of his partners, (lovingly named "Tarantino" and "Rodriguez") and said cop trying to clear his name while kicking every bad guy's butt in sight during the process.

The B grade actioner carries a rating equivalent to an R for it's hard-boiled characters, language and drug use but ironically reviewers have also made note of the film's overt Christian themes, with Masters being called "...a director to watch." by DVDVerdict. Direct to Video enthusiast and reviewer Gregory Conley of Yourvideostoreshelf.com writes, "Masters is extremely passionate..." and goes on to urge action fans to "Buy Nathyn movie..."

Masters hopes iPhone users will be willing to drop 99¢ to watch this B-grade homage to classic action, a far cry from the money others are asking for feature film even at Apple's iTunes and other sites. "The overall goal is to make the TimeCode Mechanics brand tantamount to portable media. Basically when people hear about our films they'll know they can get an inexpensive and enjoyable film for almost any format." Says TimeCode Mechanics public relations representative Richard Mavers.

Currently Masters is moving into HD production taking advantage of Canon's line of prosumer HD products. "I hope to get the funds together soon to grab an XL-H1 or A1." Says Masters, who also hopes that funds from current sales will aid in these purchases as well as help fund future features.

TimeCode Mechanics is a Chicago based production company currently focused on digital filmmaking and direct to viewer distribution via mail order or digital download.

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