Event

iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iOS 7 what did we get

On Tuesday of this week, Sept. 10th, Apple held their event. We speculated on what we would get and talked about the other questions that still remained to be answered. Well now we have our answers. The iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iOS 7 were shown off so what did we get? Well we’re going to cover some of the details and also talk about some of the questions that are now created about where do they go form here. The video of the keynote is now available on the Apple site, go watch it.

So to go through what we got to see at the keynote, there was the

iPhone 5c (Android Free)

The iPhone everyone thought was going to be cheap turned out to be “less expensive” instead. No one should have been surprised since Apple doesn’t do cheap and yet they were. When netbooks proliferated the computer landscape Apple did the MacBook Air. It was far from cheap but “less expensive” than a MacBook Pro. The iPhone 5c is the same. It is far from cheap but at $99 for a 16GB model on a 2 Year contract(US) it’s cheap enough that it becomes a throwaway phone. It’s something parents can buy their teen as an emergency phone. It’s a phone people less interested with the latest and greatest technology as well as people coming from a feature phone can buy without sticker shock.

So the iPhone 5c comes in five colors, white, pink, yellow, blue and green. Yes pink, not red or fuchsia they proudly proclaimed it pink on stage.

5c

The phone internals are the same as what is in last years model, the iPhone 5, with the exception of a slightly bigger battery and a slightly better FaceTime camera. This is impressive because I own an iPhone 5 and it is one hell of a smartphone. The wallpaper that comes on the iPhone 5c will match the color of the phone plus with iOS 7′s transparencies the OS will play even more on the color aspect. The pricing on contract is 16GB at $99, 32GB at $199 and $549 off contract. The pre-orders for the iPhone 5c will be available tonight and the phones will go on sale next Friday Sept. 20th.

iPhone 5s (Forward Thinking)

The iPhone 5s is the flagship model and brought a lot of things that were already rumored but became reality. The iPhone 5s comes in three colors, Silver, Gold and Space Grey. The silver and gold models have a white face and white accents while the space grey is the only model with a black face and black accents.

i5s

So they have added one more color, the gold but for me it sucks because I don’t like the white face. I wonder why they didn’t have the gold with both a white and black face? Perhpas this is just my personal color bias but I would have loved a black and gold model. It’s a trivial thing I will just get the Sky Grey model but I’m just a little sad at the lost oppurtunity :_(

Starting down bottom you will notice that the home button no longer has the little rounded rectangle on it. It also now has a stainless stell ring around it with the introduction of the Touch ID fingerprint scanner. The Touch ID will be used to unlock the device as well as authenticate a user for app store purchases. It can be trained to know up to 5 different finger prints and has 360 degree readability. The all new A7 chip inside is a 64 bit processor, the first in mobile and although it may not make sense on the iPhone it’s forward thinking for other iOS devices and future iPhone models. The new iOS 7 operating system (OS) is also 64 bit taking users along for the 64 bit transition of iOS devices. Now 64 bit typically means the ability to address more memory but it also means instead of doing things faster it does more things at the same speed. So you still end up accomplishing more but in a different way. Just imagine two people trying to eat as many hot dogs as they can. One guy takes normal sized bites but eats as fast as possible. While the other guy eats at the same speed but he takes bites twice as big. Even though he’s eating at the same speed as the first guy the bigger bites means he’ll finish faster. The ability to address more memory might not make sense now but in the iPads or in future generations of the iPhone and iPads that ability to address more than 3GB or RAM will make sense.

Continuing with the upgrades inside was the introduction of a new chip the M7. The new chip measures motion by taking readins from the accelorometer, gyroscope and compass. A task that would have be done by the A7, so that frees up some computing cycles on the A7 chip itself. The M7 chip allows for a new breed of apps while adding to the existing functions of the phone. The chip knows if you’re driving, running, walking, or sleeping. So for example if you switch from driving to walking the Maps app will switch from driving directions to walking directions automatically.

The cameras on the iPhone 5s got some upgrades too ofcourse. It now has a dual LED flash which is able to combine depending on the lighting of the scene being photographed to create better colors and skintones. The back camera now has a larger sensor, larger pixels and a larger aperture which all combine to let in more light for better pictures. This combines with the camera app in iOS 7 for new features like. Burst mode which snaps multiple shots at 10 images a second, great for action shots. Slow motion video, the camera shoots video at 120 frames per second allowing the user to play back the video at 1/4 of the speed for interesting effects. The front camera also has larger pixels along with better backside illumination. Better backside illumination allows more light to the sensor resulting in better pictures and video for great FaceTime calls and world renowned “selfies”.

The iPhone 5s will be sold at the same prices previous models of iPhones have sold at. On a 2 year contract (US) 16GB at $199, 32GB at $299 and 64GB at $399 while off contract the 16GB iPhone 5s starts at $649 (US). There will be no pre-order available for the iPhone 5s and they will go on sale next Friday Sept. 20th. You can get them at your local Apple store or by going to a carrier store. Although carrier stores usually don’t get as much stock on launch day as the Apple store.

iOS 7

The new OS has undergone some drastic changes to the look and feel while still doing most things the same way it always has. The new OS will be released to everyone next Wednesday Sept. 18th. It will support iPhone 4 and newer, iPad 2 and newer and iPad Mini. Beyond the new look and colors there are many refinements as well as new features that enable a user to get things done faster and easier. The notification center is now available from the lock screen to enable glancable information. There is a new Control Center that gives the user quick access to some of the typical phone controls like Wifi, Airplane mode, Bluetooth, etc. The Control Center is also available from the lock screen. Some users will not like the new colors and look of the interface and icons. Some will not like system changes like swiping down from anywhere on the home screen to open Finder instead of swiping the home screen right. You can’t please everyone but I have a feeling that this iOS will please almost everyone and that is Apple’s aim with it.

iOS 7

iWork (Free)

The next big announcement was that iWork for mobile which they listed as consisting of Keynote, Pages, Numbers, iMovie and iPhoto was going free. It will be going free for new iOS devices and as I have been told devices running iOS 7. This is awesome news for me since I already own two of the five software and would love to have the others. It will be a great bundle and should be yet another plus for users looking at upgrading their iOS device. It will also be a great addition to users upgrading to iOS 7. When users install iOS 7 there should be a prompt like there is now for downloading iBooks and the Podcasts app. It will now also include the five apps listed above.

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Questions

Naming
Now that this has all been revealed there are a few questions that come out of these new introductions. With the release of the iPhone 5c the iPhone 5 model is gone. So going forward what is Apple going to name their iPhones? Next year will be the iPhone 6 and most likely the iPhone 6c with the iPhone 5s internals. However if there is an iPhone 6s there would be an iPhone 7c. Apple can call these devices whatever they want and it will sell but having the c model with a higher number than the flagship iPhone just does not seem feasible to me. They could also just kep the iPhone 6c name for release with both the iPhone 6 and 6s by upgrading the internals inside based on the previous year’s model. However even though the device is different having the same name just doesn’t seem sexy enough in my opinion. What I think is that they will drop the “s” model and just stick with full number releases from now on with the “c” model alongside. So there will be an iPhone 6 and 6c, 7 and 7c, 8 and 8c, etc. There would also be the possibility of them dropping the number altogether and having just the iPhone and iPhone c like they did with the iPad. However that also has it’s own advertising downsides.

Screen
Now that the iPhone 5s is out the rumors of the iPhone 6 are already starting to swirl. The biggest thing is that Apple will release an iPhone with a bigger screen. We are one year away so there is plenty of time for this rumor to pick up steam. I’m still not sure how I would feel about a bigger screen and it would depend how big of a screen. I love the screen size right now and the ease of using the phone with one hand. However if there was a 5″ iPhone I would definitely buy it. Any bigger than 5″ and for me personally that is too big. I would have to pass on that model and that will be the question Apple will contemplate if they are thinking of doing a bigger screen iPhone. Users all have different sized hands along with different opinions on what size is comfortable and what size is too big. As with Apple’s devices they make decisions based on what benefits the majority of their users. So if they do go to a bigger sized screen I’m sure it will be at a size that will please existing users and entice some users. But it wont please everyone so we’ll see if it happens at all.

64 bit
The A7 chip and iOS 7 are both now 64 bit. The upcoming iPads will have the new chip so does the 64bit come into play on those devices which would make much more use of more than 3GB of RAM? Or is this a future play for 7 or 8th generation iPhones/iPads that will eventually use RAM capacities north of 3GBs?

Well one thing is for sure it was an interesting event with some great devices launched. So are you getting a new iPhone 5s or 5c?

Pictures: The Verge, Apple

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WWDC

WWDC 2013 Live Stream

Today is the day, it is Apple’s World Wide Developers Conference or WWDC for short. The first keynote is at 10AM PT or 1PM ET and it will be viewed by MANY! If you want to join in on the keynote fun you can by catching the WWDC 2013 Live Stream provided by Apple. You can catch the live stream here but you wll need to be running Safari on a Mac or using an iDevice(iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch).

The keynote is goign to cover things like the next iOS version coming, iOS 7. The new upcoming Mac OS, OS X 10.9, and any Apple device hardware refreshes. Like I said it will be watched by many so the live stream may be slow or un-responsive. Luckily many of the tech blogs will also be live blogging the event so it’s also a good idea to have their feed open too. Unfortunately all of the T3kd bloggers will be working so we will be unable to cover the event this year. However here are a few links to other blogs covering it, iMore and Engadget. If you have an Apple TV you can also catch Apple’s WWDC 2013 Live Stream just power it up and there should be an “Apple Events” channel.

I will be watching to see what Apple will be including in iOS 7. We put together an iOS 7 Wishlist you can catch here just to get caught up on all the hype. We also did a post on all the iOS 7 Concepts that have been created and my thoughts on why some people will be a bit underwhelmed with iOS 7 no matter what it brings to the table. It looks to be a very exciting keynote as everyone Apple watches with anticipation so join in on the fun at 1PM. I can just imagine the excitement at the event in San Francisco!

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Sale

1Password 4 now 1/2 off

This is happening for a limited time only so if you’re not already using 1Password on your iOS device or your computer better get it while it’s hot.

If you don’t know what 1Password is it’s an application to store your passwords and sensitive information. It is secure and built by a trusted name so there is nothing to fear about using it. We did a post awhile back about putting together a secure password and one of the things about having secure passwords is for them all to be different. This app makes that possible because you can lock all the passwords away safely and you only need to remember one secure password, the one to open up the 1Password app.

Right now if you buy 1Password like we said it is 1/2 off:
1Password 4 for iOS is $8, regularly $16
You can get the iOS app which is universal here
1Password for Mac is $25, regularly $50 and if you buy the Mac version right now you will automatically get a free upgrade to 1Password 4 when it is released for the Mac.
The Mac app is located here

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iOS7Cncpt

iOS 7 Concepts

Now with under a month until WWDC the reveal of iOS 7 is nearing. T3kd already put up a post about what we want to see in iOS 7. With all the rumors of Sir Jony Ive stripping out Skeumorphic elements to give a very different look to the User Interface (UI). Many iOS 7 concepts are being released based on the perceived “Flatter” design. It is a pretty exciting time since some of the well known sources in the industry have heard that the UI looks so different polarizing filters are being used to prevent others from seeing the differences. It is also rumored that people working on the new OS X operating system (OS) have been pulled off to help finish up iOS 7 in time for the reveal.

I have read, talked to and heard people who are talking about how much the iOS interface needs a change. But in the current mobile space with competitors bringing out new features where does a new interface rank? Me personally, I would rather Apple make changes and introduce features that make iOS easier and more intuitive to use. Things like the rumored Flickr and Vimeo system integration but also things like being able to intuitively add attachments to emails in the mail app and attachments opening automatically without the need of a share sheet. If things like that are being sacrificed to throw a new look and feel on the UI then I can do without the UI update in favor of newer, better features. If both are being done at the same time then hey I say bring it on. I also think a lot of people need to be prepared for the reveal of iOS 7 and I don’t know if the iOS 7 concepts are helping. The concepts are great ideas but they have no concept behind them of how much work would be required to implement these new “revolutionary” ideas. Also the time it would take along with the difficulty, in order to make these ideas a reality. Would you be accepting if Apple didn’t announce a new iOS version at WWDC, but instead promised to release a new and revolutionary iOS 7 next year? Most people would answer no, and even the people who answer yes secretly know they would grumble and complain if it happened. So we all want our iOS 7 concept cake and to eat it too.

So if you are expecting iOS 7 to look flat like the Windows Phone interface you will be disappointed. If you are expecting Android type widgets you will be disappointed. If you are expecting most of what is in the iOS 7 concept videos etc. you will be disappointed. This is the problem I see that these iOS 7 Concepts make because people want or expect things that just aren’t possible at this time to include in iOS 7. Which then leads to an underwhelming at the actual reveal of iOS 7 when it’s compared to these flashy concept videos and renderings. These are the concepts I’ve seen jso far, I’m sure there are tons more out there. Gizmodo Australia did a post about eight iOS 7 Flat UI Mockups, iDownloadBlog posted about a new flat iOS 7 UI concept and Forbes talked about whether or not Sir Jony Ive will let a flat iOS 7 fall flat.

Pictures

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Videos

The renderings and videos take a lot of talent, god knows I probably couldn’t come close to putting together one of these much less to make it look so polished. However and this is just personal opinion, the flat design that these concepts have just taken to the next level look too playlike to me. The iPhone and most other iOS devices as well as the operating system (OS) is about a polished aeshtethic. Apart from that it shows no balance, just because rumors say Ive is working on a “flatter” interface doesn’t mean the entire UI is going flat. Apple certainly isn’t going to ditch the rounded rectangle on app icons just like that. So enjoy the renderings and the videos and thoughts of what would be nice to have. But while you watch it keep in mind what I have said

“If you are expecting iOS 7 to look flat like the Windows Phone interface you will be disappointed. If you are expecting Android type widgets you will be disappointed. If you are expecting most of what is in the iOS 7 concept videos etc. you will be disappointed.”

Sources: 9to5 Mac.com, Gizmodo, iDownloadBlog, Forbes.com and Youtube

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App Store

App Store Hits 45 Billion Downloads

Despite underwhelming sales performance for iPhone during the last quarter, Apple had some good news today. They announced that the App Store has officially surpassed 45 billion downloads, which keeps it well ahead of competition.

With this announcement, Apple has seen more than 5 billion downloads in the past three months alone. They announced in January that the app store had reached 40 billion downloads, with half of those occurring in 2012. So despite slower than expected sales, Apple is still getting just as many downloads in their app store as ever, and are currently on pace to beat even last year’s total.

In fact, the number of downloads in the app store is especially impressive since Apple announced that 500 million iOS devices had been sold by January 2013. That means that at the time, users averaged 1,125 downloads of apps, music, movies, and other media for their phones. That seems like a fairly staggering number to me, but not at all surprising considering the amount of music that many people download.

They also announced that developers are making over $1 billion in app sales every quarter. This doesn’t include money made from advertising from within the apps themselves. This just goes to show how profitable the mobile market is for developers. With 5 billion downloads in this past quarter, that comes out to $5 per app download. That has to be intriguing for nearly any coder who has a bright idea.

Along with these announcements, Apple mentioned that their iCloud service has surpassed the 300 million user mark as well. iCloud is the one of the largest databases for cloud storage available to the public.

Clearly, Apple is doing very well on nearly all fronts. Despite a disappointing number of sales of phones as we reported on yesterday, the software side of things is doing fantastic. As they continue to set the pace for app downloads and developer revenue, their devices will continue to be home to the newest and best apps. As long as they have the best apps, sales will continue to go up for the hardware. It’s a vicious cycle, but Apple is still on top of their game.

Source: Engadget

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2Q Bnnr

Apple, don’t worry be happy

If you didn’t know yet Apple will be releasing their 2nd Quarter results today, actually in just under 2 hours from now. It will be covered by many blogs, talked about and read into for days to come by bloggers and also by the idiots on Wall St. I’m sure. ArsTechnica will be live blogging it as well as many other tech sites so be sure not to miss the action @ 2PM PDT(5PM EDT) today. Now doom and gloom has been forecasted for Apple for a while now, mostly thanks to brilliant Wall St. analysts, so it’s nothing new. I’m here to tell you that as far as it goes with Apple, don’t worry be happy.

If you listen to the analysts on Wall St. you would think Apple is going down in flames and probably be tempted to sell any shares you own. This would be a mistake because you get such ridiculous rumors like “Apple is looking to replace Tim Cook” or sentiments that the iPhone and iPad are not selling well. Meanwhile if you look at the numbers carriers like Verizon have activated 4 million iPhones in the last quarter. You would get better information about Apple by reading tech blogs like this one and the many others out there like it or listening to knowledgable people like Apple’s co-founder Steve Wozniak who says Apple will launch products that will Surprise and Shock us all. So after you hear the numbers and you are tempted to run for the hills or think the Apple is falling, the Apple is falling.

Just remember Apple has Billions of dollars in the bank, the iPhone and iPad are still selling in the millions of units for each quarter and they aren’t even close to being in a downward spiral. The shares might be falling but that is what all shares on the stock market do they fall and they rise. The only time you lose or gain is when you sell your shares. So while Apple’s shares might be far from the $700 high they once reached I remember a time when they were $85 a share. So at under $400 they are far from that with lots of gas left in the tank.

Sources: ArsTechnica, Cult of Mac

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Cheap Apps Bnnr

Don’t be a cheapskate when buying apps

The race to the bottom in app pricing has been talked about a lot. People will always pay the least they have to whenever they can but just keep in mind “A cheap app isn’t always good and a good app isn’t always cheap”. But as consumers, customers we get so much more for the price we pay when we buy an app. So please don’t be a cheapskate when buying apps.

I wrote a post sometime last year about just this topic and since it’s now gone that means I get to try to bring some attention to the issue again. Over at Macworld Lex Friedman (@lexfri) wrote a great post “A $5 app isn’t expensive” it’s a great read, check it out, there are many great points. I’m also going to talk about the same topic and will speak on some of the same points but with my own opinions and point of view. To start off with let’s look at what we get when we buy an app. If I buy an app I’m not only able to run it on my iPhone. I can run it on my iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad or iPad Mini, if I owned all of those devices. I don’t need to pay again or pay a licensing fee for each device I just pay for the app once and I can enjoy it on a multitude of devices. The updates to apps so far have also been free. I still have apps I bought when I owned an iPhone 3G. Whenever there are updates to increase the functionality, enjoyment, etc. I get it without having to pay a cent.

Coffee, Beer and Smokes

Now I’m not saying buying coffee at Starbucks, a 24 pack of Bud or a pack of cigarettes is less worthwhile than an app. Every person can spend their hard earned money on whatever they want. My point is if a person just takes a minute to add up how much buying a Latte, 24 pack or cigarettes costs for a month or a year and then compare it to the cost of buying a few good apps at 2.99, 5.99, 10.99. It would be eye-opening what the difference in cost is and yet the apps will be entertaining, useful and relevant much longer than any of the consumables will last. Now I know there are people who might buy bargain price coffee or not drink or smoke at all. However that is not the point, most people have things that we spend money on, hobbies, interests things that we enjoy. Apps provide the same things enjoyment, productivity, creativity, entertainment. So why do we value them so cheaply when compared to other things?

Developers need to make a living too

I know the executives from Apple always stand on stage and show the image of a check for the Billions of dollars that has been paid out to developers. The amount seems enormous and paints a picture that every developer is rolling on easy street. Now while I’m sure many developers have been successful at making a living take a look at the number of apps that are in the app store. If every developer was raking in thousands of dollars the money paid out would be much larger. It’s a hard process to create these apps that help us to do things, create things, keep in touch, or just relax. Just like you and I these developers have families, mortgages and bills to pay. I feel like this is something that is partially Apple’s fault because by bringing big companies up on stage at their keynotes they have made developers out to be these big companies able to produce blockbuster titles. People don’t get to see the little guys who are trying to make it on their ideas and talent. So what happens when consumers shy away from the pricier apps? The standard of quality of the apps goes down because if only the cheap apps sell then developers will just make apps cheaply. Apps will get abandoned or never be updated because the developer will just move on to some other endeavor that will feed their family. Perhaps one day we will even start having to pay for updates, it might seem impossible now but never say never!

Race to the bottom

When I compare Apple’s app store to the Jailbreak app store “Cydia” it’s funny because it is not as I would expect. In Cydia there hasn’t been a race to the bottom with most apps costing 0.99 cents. There are many themes, tweaks and apps that are free whether supported through ads or they were just made out of the developers love of providing features or a theme. However many of the functional tweaks, apps or full system wide themes, tweaks like Gridlock 2, Infinidock, Zephyr and apps like BiteSMS, will cost 3.99 all the way up to 10.99 and people will pay. Perhaps because there aren’t a multitude of apps that do much of the same thing but cost less. Perhaps because the developers set the price and you either pay or move on. I’m not sure why but that is what I would love to see in the Apple app store. I’d love to see apps that cost what they are worth, for the gorgeous interface, brilliant features and the usefulness it provides to the customer. I’d love to see more developers making more polished apps because customers are willing to pay for them when they are put in the app store.

So the next time anyone is browsing the app store or a friend or family member has suggested an app. Try not to let yourself react in shock at the sticker price of the app and immediately close the app store. I’m sure many of us can afford that $2, $5 or $10 so just consider if what the app will enable you to do is worth the price tag. Don’t be a cheapskate when buying apps!

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PCast Bnnr

Apple’s new Podcasts app

If you didn’t know the Podcasts app from Apple has been updated. This might be the first step of the elimination of Skeumorphism in iOS. The podcasts app that existed previously had an analog representation of a reel to reel player when the “Now Playing” screen was flicked up. That is now gone along with the addition of a nicer looking interface with new features. I didn’t mind the old Podcasts app but I’m definitely loving Apple’s new Podcasts app so far.

One of the new features is the option of making your own station of podcasts. So I can create stations of my favorite  podcasts grouping them in whatever way I choose. The podcasts will also update automatically with new episodes and are stored in iCloud so that they are updated on all iOS devices. This means that you will only change the settings once on one device and whatever stations I create will only be done once. I have always wondered why the Podcasts app either had to be running all the time in order to get new episodes when they are available or would download when the app is opened. It seemed silly to me because I want the device to just check whenever the device wasn’t in use and connected to Wifi. It would find new episodes and automatically pull them in.

Now that it has these features I’m going to look forward and think that this app is going to be coming to the Mac OS. I think eventually Podcasts will be ripped from iTunes and this is the first step. I think it will be in the newest Mac OS version and as more people start to use the app on their mobile devices and on the Mac. Then Podcasts will slowly fade away from iTunes making it a little lighter. I wont go into the whole Skeumorphism issue beyond saying that in the Podcasts app it’s gone. In this case it’s not missed but it also wasn’t noticed by me. The new interface is nicer and functions more clearly to me. Like I said I like it so far and I’m just looking for it to come to Mac OS.

Podcasts
Podcasts
Podcast Options
Podcast Options
Podcast Settings
Podcast Settings
Rated Podcasts
Stations
Stations
Podcast

 

Player options
Player options
Sharing options
Sharing options
Podcast
Editting podcast episodes
Editting podcast episodes
Rated Podcasts

 

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Mailbox app acquired by Dropbox

Mailbox Acquired by Dropbox — May Assist In Speeding Up Rollout

Mailbox app's snooze featureMailbox is a handy little IOS app that everyone loves. It’s essentially a third-party piece of software that revamps the Gmail user interface. Sounds boring if you ask me but with a clogged waiting list of well over 260,000 people it’s clear that somebody wants it. Apparently this re-skinning of a free service is the next best thing since Angry Birds. The interest has generated a rather interesting takeover as Dropbox acquired mailbox for an undisclosed amount of money.

Dropbox is a similar information delivery services that allows the creation of shared folder in which users can store and transmit data and files – including large files that will choke most email clients. Dropbox also has a significant amount of revenue to spend which may be a good thing. Mailbox was desperately struggling with its own success.

Dropbox Acquisition of Mailbox May Save the Start-Up

The company reports that since launching, Mailbox has “grown 2000x and we’re already delivering more than 60 million emails a day.” It also stated that was “mind-bending growth for only a few weeks, and we’re just getting started.”

The company received $5.3 million in venture capital in 2011 but clearly couldn’t keep up with its own demand. In February it had to initiate a waiting list before users could access the service in order to ease the stress on tired servers. That list instantly clogged with hundreds of thousands of interested parties but had apparently stalled. Jacqui Cheng of ArsTechnica signed up five months before she was ever accepted into the exclusive group.

Now that Dropbox is behind Mailbox, the pressure will likely ease some and the bigger company would be smart to rapidly expand the smaller in order to meet customer demand. This forced strangulation could effectively kill the service if it continues for too long.

In a statement on the company blog, Mailbox officials said:

“Rather than grow Mailbox on our own, we’ve decided to join forces with Dropbox and build it out together. To be clear, Mailbox is not going away. The product needs to grow fast, and we believe that joining Dropbox is the best way to make that happen.”

Info Source: ArsTechnica | Image Source: Mailbox

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iOS 7 Wish list

iOS 7 wish list

This year will be the debut of iOS 7. There have been things said about iOS 6 like it’s boring, it’s getting old, it needs a revamp. While I don’t agree with all of those sentiments I do think there is a lot of room for improvement. This is the T3kd iOS 7 wish list. A list of the things that Apple will hopefully implement in the new iOS. Before I get started everyone needs to understand a few things about Apple and iOS. It’s been 5 years since the introduction of the iPhone and along with it the iPhone Operating System, now iOS. In that 5 years Apple has spent time perfecting iOS while throngs of people learned to operate it. They are not going to drastically re-write it now that everyone knows how to use it.

What they will do is make changes that add to the Operating System (OS), keep it simple and retain the familiarity. Our iOS 7 wish list keeps this in mind, sort off. The list has features that would make using iOS easier, more efficient and more productive for the user. Which is what a new OS should always do for the benefit of users. So lets jump into the wish list now.

Lock screen

Toggle to turn the lock screen clock and date On/Off – The iPhone has a beautiful screen, especially now with the larger screen. Except we never get to enjoy the beauty of the screen. There are always elements on the screen(clock, icons). The lock screen which is hardly utilized has the clock and date right in the middle of the screen. A toggle in the Settings panel would be the most simple addition that would give users the option of turning the clock and date on or off.

iOS 7 Wish list

Lockscreen clock off

Alternate Notification Center – The notification center is not accessible from the lock screen. It’s a security issue, who would want their information easily accessible if the device was lost or stolen? But why not have an alternate notification center when the device is locked. One that allows access to options and information right from the lock screen. It makes things easier and more efficient for the user. The alternate notification center could have toggles for Wifi, Bluetooth, Airplane Mode, Mute and Orientation Lock. It would have the weather and stock widgets for glance-able information.

iPad Specific Notification Center - Ever since the Notification Center was introduced the iPad has used the same one found on the iPhone. It looks silly on the bigger screen of the iPad and fails to use the larger iPad screen in a useful way. Steve Jobs was famous for saying the iPad unlike it’s competitors didn’t run scaled up smartphone apps. There are iPad specific apps that take advantage of the bigger screen with extra elements, features, etc. So why after all this time is the iPad still using the silly looking half baked iPhone Notification Center. The increased size of the iPads’ screens would allow more space for even more things within the Notification Center. The possibilities are endless, quick access app shortcuts, favorited apps, iPad specific widgets, etc.

iOS 7 Wish list

Full Screen Music app – When the device is locked I want full access and control of my music. The screen is big enough so why require the user to unlock the device to do things like switch to playlist, song, or artist mode. I want to see the list of songs in the playlist, go into Coverflow, etc. from the lock screen. The double tap of the home button to gain access to the controls ensures it wont happen without user input. The Apple Maps app does it so they already know how to implement it. What’s the hold up?

iOS 7 Wish list

Full Screen Music2

Album Art/Lock screen toggle – Times have changed a lot since the iPod was first introduced. While some people still have an emotional attachment or enjoy the display of their Album Art. Others are more emotionally attached and enjoy the image displayed on the lock screen. Whether it’s a new parent with a picture of their newborn or child. Or a personal image created by the user, many would rather see their lock screen than the Album Art. A toggle button in the lower right corner of the screen would give user’s the simple option to enjoy whichever they choose.

iOS 7 Wish list

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Ability to answer iMessages from the lock screen – User’s have different reasons and times when they aren’t able to unlock the device to answer iMessages. It is much quicker and more efficient to allow them to answer or dismiss the messages from the lock screen. This is another security issue since it would allow access to iMessage if the device were lost or stolen. So the setting to enable it should be under the passcode option. It would require the user to setup a passcode in order to use the feature. When replying to a message from the lock screen the user would be required to input the passcode first. As it is now if the device has a passcode it has to be entered to reply to an iMessage anyway. So not requiring the device to unlock and the iMessage app to launch before the user could reply would be quicker and easier while still keeping it secure.

iOS 7 Wish list

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Ability to dismiss lock screen notifications – When the device is locked and notifications come in they end up on the screen until they are checked. In cases when a user can’t get to the notification it ends up in a horrible mess as more notifications fill the screen. Especially when the notification is for a message so short it shows in the preview. If you have repeating alerts the notification will also buzz again if you haven’t responded to it. There should be a way to dismiss the notifications from the screen. They should either fade away after a set time like 10 or 15 minutes or allow the user to dismiss the ones they choose. The user could tap the app icon of the notification instead of sliding it. An “x” would appear on the notification allowing the user to clear it from the lock screen notification.

iOS 7 Wish list

Custom lock/unlock sounds – There are so many more things in iOS 6 that a user can set custom sounds for how about allowing me to change the lock/unlock sounds.

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App and folder icons anywhere on the home screen grid – These devices are supposed to be ushering in the Post PC era. If that is the case there are many little freedoms we enjoy in a PC OS that we still don’t have. Like the ability to put icons where we want on the home screen. Right now the app and folder icons are put on a grid in succession. I want the ability to put the icons anywhere on the home screen grid. This allows users to arrange icons how they like while still adhering to the grid. It allows the simple freedom of putting icons around the edge of the home screen if a user chooses.

iOS 7 Wish list

Local Siri functionality – Siri is Apple’s digital assistant. Able to make calls, make appointments, send messages and more with one big downside. Using Siri requires an internet connection. So even though for things like making a call or setting an appointment the data is all local, without an internet connection Siri is not available. The digital assistant is on break. This doesn’t make sense to me and also slows down the adoption of it dramatically. These functions need to be built-in so that Siri can perform the tasks without the need of going back to the servers first. The more people that use Siri result in the service becoming better at performing tasks and understanding what is being asked.

Siri Travel Mode – The device can sense when the user is travelling at a faster speed than possible when walking. There should be a travel mode where Siri activates and reads all notifications to the user. Then in the case of emails and iMessages it would wait for the user’s response. One thing hasn’t changed about society. When using Siri you feel and look just as crazy as when Bluetooth headsets were just introduced. When was the last time anyone in a public place used Siri to create an email, iMessage, appointment or dictation? We are still not comfortable talking to our devices in public. In travel mode the interaction with Siri would become like talking on a phone. Since it wouldn’t be a one sided conversation of commands. Siri would read an iMessage and then ask “Would you like to reply?” this leaves the outside conversation as “yes, blah blah blah.” Siri:”Would you like to send your message?”. The conversation would feel more natural and comfortable. It would also help with the problem of texting, emailing, etc. while driving.

Allow Siri access to more OS features – Siri should be able to do things like turn DnD on and off. It is easier and faster for users resulting in more use of OS features.

Allow Siri access to the alarm clock – I want to be able to say Siri “turn my alarm off for the next three days”, if I’m sick or don’t need my weekday alarm for some reason. The alarm should turn off and then re-enable three days later saving me the effort of maintaining it manually.

Additional Do Not Disturb(DnD) sets - I want more than just one DnD range. The time I don’t want to be disturbed is not the same on the weekend as it might be during the week. I want to click add just like you would for setting multiple alarms and then be able to add more DnD ranges. I want to be able to pick specific days for each range. So you could have weekdays, weekends, Holidays and turn them on and off just like you would alarms. Better yet turn them on and off via Siri.

iOS 7 Wish list

Quick Access Camera shortcut assignment - The iPhone camera is very popular. Our smartphones are usually in our pockets and with the stunning quality of the iPhone’s camera. It makes for the perfect camera. Starting with the iPhone 4 the popularity of the iPhone on photography based site Flickr passed the mainstay, Nikon D90 a DSLR. It’s an impressive feat. Now combine that with the fact that there are many third party camera apps provide functionality and features that aren’t available in the stock camera app and there is a chance to make it even more popular. The quick access shortcut on the lock screen is the easiest, fastest way to get to the camera. It’s too bad that there is no way to assign what is opened with it. The OS should assign whichever camera app is being used to the shortcut enabling users to get the most out of both the camera and their apps. The OS would do it automatically leaving the user with no settings to change manually.

iDevices in AirDrop - iDevices have now gone wireless many of the things that used to require plugging in to the USB cable has been replaced with wireless or on device options. However a few things still requires a connection to the cable. One of these is to transfer images to and from the device. The devices should be accessible through AirDrop. Then all that would be required to get or put images onto the device is a Wireless connection.

Thumb gesture app switcher – Steve Jobs said that the iPad doesn’t run scaled up phone apps. So he made it know that there is a distinction between an iPad and iPhone/iPod Touch at times. So why not have some iPhone/Touch specific multi-touch gestures that work on the smaller screen. I’d love a thumb swipe to open the app switcher. It would be faster, more intuitive and save the home button some clicks.

On-screen Rotation Lock – Rotation lock should be an on screen button that appears when the user has rotated the screen between orientations more than once. The app Pocket has already implemented this and it is so elegant and efficient. It needs to be system wide.

iOS 7 Wish list

Shared notes – Just like shared calendars I want to share notes between between Apple IDs

Ability to un-install native apps – I have never used the native Stocks, Weather, Compass, or Newsstand app. So why can’t I un-install them? The new Apple apps like Podcast, Apple Store, iTunes U, etc. can be installed and un-installed just like any other app. I want the same ability for the other natively installed apps. I understand if the core apps like Phone, Calendar, Messages, Safari have to stay for the basic use of the phone. If grandma’s stock or weather app was deleted I don’t think she would miss it. Even if she did a simple install would fix the issue.

iOS 7 Wish list

Glass app folder icons – This is my personal taste but I want to enjoy the beautiful Retina screen and my own beautiful background. The linen folder background is hideous but having it in the folder icon is even worst. Why not have an elegant glass look to the folder icons with the background blurred a bit and then a steel or aluminum style ring around the folder icon. (See app and folder icons anywhere on the home screen grid)

Device Connectivity – All iDevices should be able to connect without Wifi. Use BLuetooth or NFC or whatever works. Just get it done and allow users to transfer pictures, videos, notes etc. between devices easily.

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