iNews Review

Apple Intros 2G iPod touch, High Demand for 1G iPhone, and Lots of New Apps and Cases

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

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2008.09.12

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.

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News, Reviews, & Opinion

Apple Introduces New iPod touch

2G iPod touch

Apple on Tuesday introduced the second generation iPod touch featuring a thinner contoured metal design, a 3.5" widescreen glass display, 802.11 b/g WiFi wireless networking, integrated volume control buttons, a built-in speaker for casual listening, a built-in accelerometer and other advanced sensors, and Apple's Multi-Touch user interface.

The 32 GB model holds up to 7,000 songs, 25,000 photos or 40 hours of video; the 16 GB model holds up to 3,500 songs, 20,000 photos or 20 hours of video, and the 8 GB model holds up to 1,750 songs, 10,000 photos and 10 hours of video.

2G iPod touchThe new iPod touch works with the new iTunes 8 Genius feature, allowing customers to automatically create playlists while on the go. Users can preview the playlist Genius creates, refresh the list to choose different songs and save Genius playlists to enjoy again later.

The new iPod touch also features built-in Nike + iPod support making it an incredible workout companion. Users simply place the optional Nike + iPod sensor ($19 US) in their Nike + shoe to seamlessly connect with the new iPod touch to track miles run or sync with the latest generation gym equipment.

The new iPod touch is available immediately for a suggested price of $229 for the 8 GB model, $299 for the 16 GB and $399 for the 32 GB model through the Apple Store, Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers. iPod touch requires a Mac with a USB 2.0 port, Mac OS X v10.4.10 or later and iTunes 8; or a Windows PC with a USB 2.0 port and Windows Vista or Windows XP Home or Professional (Service Pack 2) or later and iTunes 8. Existing iPod touch users can update to the latest 2.1 software for just $9.95 to add the new Genius feature. iPod touch owners who already have the 2.0 software get the 2.1 software update for free. Simply download the latest version of iTunes onto your Mac or PC, and purchase the 2.1 software update via iTunes.

*Battery life and number of charge cycles vary by use and settings. See www.apple.com/batteries for more information. Music capacity is based on four minutes per song and 128-Kbps AAC encoding; photo capacity is based on iPod-viewable photos transferred from iTunes; and video capacity is based on H.264 1.5 Mbps video at 640 x 480 resolution.

2G iPod touch 'Improves a Five Star Product'

PC Magazine's Tim Gideon says:

"The most interesting improvements that come with Apple's iPod touch 2G aren't the physical tweaks, like its slimmer profile or new built-in speaker. It's what's inside. This huge screen isn't just for Coverflow or video viewing anymore - it's for games and apps. Calling it the 'the funnest iPod ever,' Steve Jobs wants you to consider the new touch a portable gaming device, and if 'Spore' is any indication of what's possible, he'll get his wish. The Genius playlist feature is a welcome, if somewhat imperfect addition, and the touch remains the best portable media player on the market at any price - even if the earbuds still suck. Oh, speaking of price, the touch 2G is cheaper: you'll pay $229 for 8 GB, $299 for 16 GB, and $399 for 32 GB of storage. (The original 16 GB touch debuted at $399.)"

iPod touch 2.1 Update Available to 1G iPod touch Owners

AppleInsider's Aidan Malley reports:

"Original iPod touch owners on Tuesday night got first crack at the 2.1 feature set with Apple's promised firmware update for first-generation players.

"The update is available through iTunes and adds many of the new features present in the second-generation iPod touch that aren't dictated by hardware choices."

Huge Demand for Original Apple iPhone

BloggingStocks' Brian White reports:

"When Apple, Inc. released the iPhone 3G back in July, little did it know (most likely) that the device would have issues worldwide connecting to 3G networks, causing consumer frustration on a level we've rarely seen with any Apple product. Well, some consumers have apparently given up and they're moving back to the older, slower, original iPhone, which is causing a cottage industry to spring up around the older device...."

6 Common Complaints about the iPhone 3G

Network World's Brad Reed says:

"The iPhone's 3G incarnation generated lots of hype at its launch, but it's quickly gaining a reputation for having slow data speeds and inconsistent voice service. Indeed, the iPhone 3G has been such a disappointment to a couple of users that they've even sued (one sued the company for allegedly producing misleading advertisements that promised data speeds at twice the rate of the original iPhone).

"Here, we examine the six most common gripes that users have had about the iPhone 3G, from dropped calls to problems with mobile iTunes to lack of enterprise features...."

Best Cell Phones for Mac Users

PC Magazine's Jamie Lendino says:

"Whether you've got a brand-new iMac or MacBook or are still trucking along with an older G4 or G5, here are the handsets that will play nicest with your prized Apple computer."

Apps

Election '08 App Tracks Polls and Such in Real Time

CrunchGear's Devin Coldewey reports:

"After so long in gestation, the 2008 election season has actually kind of snuck up on me. And what with the App store being released, I thought there would be a ton of politically-orientated apps out there. Incredibly, there are virtually none, and certainly none this cool. You can track polls, electoral vote estimates and so on based on live data, and organize it by state, candidate, percentage and all that. It even has historical data built-in so you can look at trends. Best of all, it's nonpartisan...."

Yahoo Offers Social Connect App for iPhone

IDG News Service's Nancy Gohring reports:

"Yahoo launched a new application for the iPhone that connects a long list of popular social networks within one interface.

"OneConnect for the iPhone is a free application available in the Apple App Store that also integrates instant messaging and short messaging into one application.

"The Pulse feature in OneConnect lets users see a status list of their friends that pulls from social-networking applications including Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Bebo, Friendster, Flickr and Last.fm. The list is populated chronologically, with the most recent update from a friend on any of the sites at the top."

Home Control App for iPhone and iPod touch

PR: Savant Systems LLC, having lead the convergence of an open architecture platform to integrate automation and control, A/V switching, and general purpose computers, has announced the introduction of a downloadable application for Apple's iPod and iPod touch that runs natively on either device in order to provide 2-way control of any home system connected to one of Savant's innovative ROSIE automation systems. The new application providing complete home automation and media control will soon be available on the iPhone App Store for $199.

"Our application effectively leverages all the power of Apple's amazing mobile computing platform, enabling homeowners with a ROSIE control system to enjoy unprecedented levels of convenience and efficiency added to their daily lives," stated Savant president Jim Carroll. Savant's new application features intelligent 2-way communication from feedback-capable systems in the home, such as lighting, HVAC, security cameras and supported audio/video equipment. The application also incorporates the "gesture" control and "tilt" sensors found on both Apple devices.

Savant's new application has been engineered to provide complete control over the ROSIE On-Screen Display (OSD), which uses HD graphics to provide intuitive control of systems throughout the home. The application also includes a section dedicated to "themed interfaces" that can be customized by an authorized Savant dealer using RacePoint Blueprint software and a compatible ROSIE system on the network. "We wanted to give our customers the ultimate 2-way application to control their homes from the iPhone or iPod touch and make it easily downloadable for them from the iPhone App Store," concluded Carroll.

AcroBible Provides Fingertip Bible Access Anywhere

PR: AcroDesign Technologies have announced the release of their downloadable, native, NIV iPhone bible. The feature rich AcroBible costs $28.99 and is a download rather than an online, annual-fee based Bible. This means that users pay just once, and can access the bible anywhere, on planes, busses, etc. AcroBible is an offline Bible and needs no WiFi connection. Special features of the AcroBible include the ability to search for words or phrases, createbookmarks, attach notes to any verse, and highlight verses in up to six colors.

Personal notes and highlighting are backed up via AcroBible's www.ibiblespace.org. The AcroBible has one button back-up to the ibiblespace site which uploads all of the user's personal notes and highlights. When iPhone owners buy a newer iPhone they can restore their personalized AcroBible notes and highlighting to the new phone with just one button. Users can also type notes via their home computer and download them to their iPhone via the ibiblespace.org site.

AcroBible is a native iPhone/iPod touch application so the touch interface works like the built-in iPhone applications, making it easy to search and navigate the Bible. The interface is very attractive and very fast enabling users to traverse the Bible with almost no wait.

TweakerSoft AroundMe 1.0 for iPhone

PR: TweakerSoft introduces AroundMe 1.0, their new application for the iPhone. By leveraging the iPhone's unique abilities, AroundMe quickly acquires the user's location and allows them to choose the nearest bank, bar, gas station, hospital, hotel, movie theatre, restaurant, supermarket, theatre and taxi.

AroundMe shows a complete list of all the businesses in the category tapped on, along with the distance from where the user is located. The selected listing is then displayed on a Map and plots the route to the nearest address. The chosen information can be added to the contact list or even emailed to a friend.

AroundMe also includes a Nearby listing too. Use Wikipedia to easily discover information about a chosen locale. Fast, easy and accurate, AroundMe is an ideal day-to-day companion.

Language Support: English, German, French, Italian, Swedish, and Portuguese

Minimum Requirements: iPhone 2.0 or later

Pricing and Availability: AroundMe 1.0 for iPhone is only $1.99 and available exclusively through Apple's App Store.

BdPricer 1.0 for iPhone and iPod touch

PR: Bad Dog Apps, a Mac OS X Software house with over 10 years experience with the Mac OS X, has announced the availability of BdPricer for the iPhone and iPod touch on Apple's App Store, extending their line of existing iPhone products like BdTranslator and our menu bar based applications BdContacts, BdCalendar and BdTranslator, too include our first of many new iPhone applications.

BdPricer is the perfect shopping companion, for the smart shopper. Simply enter the product you want to compare the price for and let BdPricer do the rest. The user can scroll or page through the found products; preview the price range of the products, read both product features and reviews, seller reviews, along with detailed product specifications on items if available.

BdPricer keeps track of all your searches and allows you to bookmark common searches. Product items can be stored and searched on in the favorites view. Use the BdPricer's quick look up directory to find common items form 15 main product categories, with over 150 sub categories and 3,000 sub category items, to instantly find the products your are interested in.

BdPricer gives you the power to negotiate on the spot when making any buying decision. Use the information to make the right product choice or pricing to negotiate a better price. Features also provide the option to navigate to the store that has the product on-line to order it right from your phone.

If you are buying anything over the price of $50.00, BdPricer will probably pay for itself on your first use. This powerful application aids the consumer to stay on top of all purchasing decisions through comparative pricing. Never shop blind again, use BdPricer for all your purchases at major USA retail chains.

Note: An internet connection or 3G wireless is required to do live product searches using Google Shopping, also all returned information is in English. Product and pricing information in from American retailers in US dollars only, depending on your location in the world you may or may not be able to order products form there websites.

Language support: English, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Swedish.

Pricing and Availability: BdPricer for the iPhone is available on Apple's App Store today for $9.99 .

ZeptoPad: Handwritten Note-Taking App for iPhone and iPod touch

PR: Ubiquitous Entertainment Inc. announces the launch of ZeptoPad 1.5, an upgraded version of the handwritten note-taking application ZeptoPad, now on sale for the iPhone and iPod touch. A video available on YouTube:

http://jp.youtube.com/watch?v=02_GqDD1w8k

This product will show at AppleExpo 2008 in Paris, 17th-20th September. The functions added to the ZeptoPad 1.5 are as follows:

New functions provided by ZeptoPad 1.5

Copy / paste of multiple figures and texts

Thanks to this newly added function, users will now be able to copy and paste multiple figures and texts using the editing tool.

Three display modes available

Instead of the single display mode originally offered, ZeptoPad 1.5 will allow users to choose from a total of three different display modes: plain, ruler, and grid. An especially high level of demand had been expressed for the grid display function.

Zoom out function

After using the ZeptoPad special feature, which allows the screen to be expanded and higher levels of detail in drawings, users will now be able to zoom out so as to quickly display entire drawings within a single screen.

Redo function

In addition to the undo function offered previously, ZeptoPad 1.5 will also include a redo function, providing users with a greater level of control to edit content.

Rotate / expand / shrink

In addition to the move function offered previously, ZeptoPad 1.5 will allow users to rotate, expand, and shrink imported images and the entire drawn area of text and figures. Enhanced basic functions - The maximum number of worksheets that can be saved has increased from 16 to 320. - The maximum number of paths that can be drawn has increased from 96 to 256. - The resolution of pasted images has been upgraded from 32x32 to 128x128.

Help page featuring multilingual support

In line with the global expansion of the App Store, the help page will be written in eight different languages. (Languages available: English, Japanese, French, German, Italian, Dutch, Spanish, and Portuguese)

ZeptoPad allows users to write and draw on their iPhone with a freedom that rivals the experience of using a paper notebook. "Zepto" is a prefix in the International System of Units denoting 10 to the negative 21st power. Accordingly, this application was developed to allow users to sketch without limitations, expanding and shrinking worksheets as they see fit. While previous note-taking applications have always focused on memorization, the aim of ZeptoPad is to support the act of thinking. Main functions of ZeptoPad Text input Users are able to record text data inputted via the keypad.

Handwritten note-taking

In order to create figures, which would be difficult to construct using text alone, users can input data by handwriting on the touchscreen. Data with a much higher level of detail can therefore be recorded.

Directory

Using this function, users can bring up a list of the worksheets they have created.

Worksheet sharing (Shake & Share function)

To share a worksheet, users can either attach it as an image to an email and then send it, or transmit it to another ZeptoPad via WiFi (using the Shake & Share function).

Note: A worksheet can be transmitted with the Shake & Share function when two iPhones (iPod touches) have ZeptoPad installed, are connected to the same WiFi access point, and are then shaken up and down simultaneously.

Protection

iSkin solo for iPhone 3G

PR: iSkin Inc. has introduced its new solo bodyguard for iPhone 3G: a sleek and stylish protector that echoes the iPhone 3G's beauty in a slim, fashionable package.

iSkinFeaturing a stunning high - gloss finish accented with subtle curves, the solo perfectly encapsulates the iPhone 3G and delivers protection against impact, scratches, dirt, dust, and everyday hazards. This protection and design is complimented by a touch compatible clear protective screen film to guard against scratches, integrated volume and power button protection, unobstructed access to all ports and controls, and a non - slip grip surface that helps keep the iPhone 3G and users well connected while on the go. And the solo's slim-fitting design easily slides into a pocket, purse, or any other compact space.

Offered in four high-gloss color finishes: Puma (opaque black), Baron (translucent red), NightCrawler (translucent blue) and Angel (opaque white), the solo is designed to give owners the flexibility of a color makeover for their iPhone 3G. In addition, its slim, sleek profile compliments today's high-fashion look with added sophistication.

The iSkin solo for iPhone 3G is available today at iSkin.com for $29.99 and will be available at authorized iSkin resellers in the coming weeks.

TuneWear Cases and TuneFilm for 2G iPod touch

PR: TuneWear announces protective cases and protective film for Apple's new iPod touch 2G. The new line includes our best selling silicone case series [IceWear for iPod touch 2G], crystal-clear polycarbonate hard shell case [TuneShell for iPod touch 2G], and clear protective film [TuneFilm for iPod touch 2G]. All iPod touch 2G products will become available in September.

IceWear for 2G iPod touchIceWear for iPod touch 2G

IceWear for iPod touch 2G utilizes our patented rib technology for a strong grip. Made of the same high-density silicone used in diving masks, IceWear for iPod touch 2G protects iPod touch 2G from accidental bumps and drops.

IceWear leaves the Multitouch display unobscured, allowing for complete control and viewing of the screen. Embossed edges around the screen help to prevent scratching when iPod touch 2G is placed face down on a flat surface. TuneFilm, a clear film which covers the Multitouch display of the iPod touch 2G for extra protection, is included free.

All ports on iPod touch 2G are left open for easy access. The headphone jack, dock connector and buttons are easily accessible. Attach and use the USB docking cable without the need to remove IceWear from iPod touch 2G.

The back of IceWear has small holes for attaching charms, neck lanyards or wrist straps. (not included) - SRP $24.95

TuneShell for 2G iPod touchTuneShell for iPod touch 2G

TuneShell for iPod touch 2G is made of crystal-clear polycarbonate allowing you to enjoy the full beauty of your iPod touch 2G while protecting it from dirt and scratches. This hard but thin case seems almost invisible when installed.

TuneShell has a completely smooth texture making it convenient to slip in and out of your pocket or bag. It snaps easily onto your iPod touch 2G and leaves the headphone jack, dock connector, switches and the Multitouch screen open for complete access to everything you like about iPod touch 2G. There are no screws or latches thus making this case easy to put on and easy to take off. - SRP $24.95

TuneFilm for 2G iPod touchTuneFilm for iPod touch 2G

TuneFilm for iPod touch 2G is a crystal-clear protective film for iPod touch 2G. Completely covering the iPod touch 2G Multitouch display, TuneFilm provides protection against dirt and scratches and gives you the peace of mind knowing that your iPod screen will be like-new for a long, long time.

TuneFilm for iPod touch 2G is sold separately and is included free with select TuneWear products such as IceWear for iPod touch 2G. - SRP $14.95

TuneWear Leather Cases for iPhone 3G

PR: TuneWear announces leather cases for Apple's new iPhone 3G. The new line up includes our high-quality Napa leather case series [Ambassador for iPhone 3G] and the leather shell case [LeatherShell for iPhone 3G]. All iPhone 3G leather cases is available in now from the TuneWear online shop.

LeatherShell for iPhone 3GLeatherShell for iPhone 3G

LeatherShell for iPhone 3G is a smooth genuine leather shell-type case for iPhone 3G. The smooth, high-quality leather feels good to the touch and protects iPhone 3G from dirt and scratches. The smooth texture and slim design make it easy to carry iPhone 3G in your hand, or slip iPhone 3G in and out of your pocket or bag. The combination of high-quality black genuine leather with white color stitching is perfectly suited to both casual and formal occasions. - SRP $29.95

Prie Ambassador for iPhone 3G

Prie Ambassador for iPhone 3G is available in five different fashion looks. Traditionalists can choose versions in black Napa leather with either white or red stitching to complement any style. Other models include gold, gold with white, and silver colored leather for iPhone users who are looking to attract more attention to their device. The sturdy metal clip attaches to just about anything and is removable. - SRP $59.95

Prie Ambassador for iPhone 3GAvailable in 5 color variations:

  • Black with Red stitch (B/R)
  • Black with White stitch (B/W)
  • Gold
  • Gold/White
  • Silver

TuneWear Protective Cases and Protective Film for iPhone 3G

PR: TuneWear announces protective cases and protective film for Apple's new iPhone 3G. The new line up includes our best selling silicone case series [IceWear for iPhone 3G], clear protective film [TuneFilm for iPhone 3G], the crystal-clear polycarbonate hard shell case [TuneShell for iPhone 3G], and the polycarbonate hard shell case with protective cover [TuneShell Plus for iPhone 3G]. All iPhone 3G products is available in now from the TuneWear online shop.

IceWear for iPhone 3GIceWear for iPhone 3G

IceWear for iPhone 3G utilizes our patented rib technology for a strong grip. Made of the same high-density silicone used in diving masks, IceWear for iPhone 3G protects iPhone 3G from accidental bumps and drops.

- SRP $24.95

TuneFilm for iPhone 3GTuneFilm for iPhone 3G

TuneFilm for iPhone 3G is a crystal-clear protective film for iPhone 3G. Completely covering the iPhone 3G Multitouch display, TuneFilm provides protection against dirt and scratches and gives you the peace of mind knowing that your iPhone 3G screen will be like-new for a long, long time.

- SRP $14.95

TuneShell for iPhone 3GTuneShell for iPhone 3G

TuneShell for iPhone 3G is made of crystal-clear polycarbonate allowing you to enjoy the full beauty of your iPhone 3G while protecting it from dirt and scratches. This hard but thin case seems almost invisible when installed.

- SRP $24.95

TuneShell Plus for iPhone 3GTuneShell Plus for iPhone 3G

TuneShell Plus for iPhone 3G is made of crystal-clear polycarbonate allowing you to enjoy the full beauty of your iPhone 3G while protecting it from dirt and scratches. This hard but thin case seems almost invisible when installed. The special feature of TuneShell Plus is the 0.4mm thick touch surface which covers and protects the iPhone 3G Multitouch display and still allows complete control of all the Multitouch functions such as flicking, tapping and pinching.

- SRP $29.95

In order to better serve the growing iPod and iPhone markets, TuneWear has expanded to a new office in Cerritos, CA as of September 1, 2008.

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