Steve Jobs' sculpted form

Fortune magazine commissioned artist Karen Caldicott to create a Steve Jobs sculpture for the publication.

The creation features Jobs in tell-tale garb, replete with trimmed white beard, glasses, and (naturally) an iPod, though Apple’s CEO is seen here to be holding an older, second generation iPod nano.

The news first appeared on collaborative illustrators and artists weblog, Drawn!, which offers regular information and links submitted by its creative members.

More recenly, Caldicott created a sculpture of disgraced US politician, Eliot Spitzer.

It’s not known if Fortune presented the sculpture to Jobs in recognition of Apple becoming the most admired company in America.

Apple keeps promise, angers many

An outcry of criticism rocked Cupertino yesterday as optimistic iPhone application developers complained the company had done exactly what it said it would – rejecting thousands from its new iPhone Developer Program.

Reports claim thousands of developers both small and large have applied to join the scheme, but the vast majority have been rejected, generating this hail of criticism.

The reports ignore Apple’s earlier promise that it would accept only a limited number of developers for its iPhone Developer Program at this point.

"During the beta iPhone SDK program, a limited number of developers will be accepted into Apple’s new iPhone Developer Program and offered the ability to get code onto iPhones for testing," the company said in a March 6 press release.

Developers want to be able to test in-development software on an iPhone so they can be ready to ship these solutions when Apple opens the doors to third party applications in June.

Membership of the iPhone Developer Program costs from $99 per year and is required in order to test applications on an iPhone.

Despite the frustration, Apple’s rejection letter isn’t final. It reads: "The iPhone Developer Program is available to a limited number of developers and we plan to expand during the beta period. We will contact you again regarding your enrollment status at the appropriate time."

With in excess of 100,000 developers already downloading the iPhone SDK, Apple may be facing some technical hurdles as it tries to launch the scheme. While the effect of the delay may deter some from pouring huge resources into application building now, currently rejected developers may be invited to sign up in the months ahead, as Apple tweaks its scheme.

iPod as seen from space

OK, we know astronauts like to take their iPods with them – the European Space Agency even launched an iPod playlist competition last year – but this picture’s interesting in a different way.

You see, what we have here is a picture of an iPod on the flight deck of the Space Shuttle Endeavour as photographed by the crew on board the International Space Station. To the left of the picture you can clearly see that tell-tale white iPod sitting on the flight deck. It’s the first time an iPod’s been photographed inside one space vehicle by someone in another.

On a tenuously related note, check out the internet clamor greeting the sale of the most expensive iPod shuffle ever seen. Auctioned by Norwegian jeweller Thomas Heyerdahl in a charity auction (to raise cash for the Soil Association), the £20,000 music player and earplugs are made of 18-carat white and pink gold and encrusted with 430 diamonds.

War report: iPhone + iTunes v. Blackberry + Puretracks

Remember we pointed out RIM’s need to make moves to combat the threat of iPhone? Now the company has hitched up with Puretracks to offer a music service to Blackberry users. The new deal means the Blackberry now offers some of the entertainment-friendly features of the iPhone, but the move may be too little, too late.

Sure, a move to offer Puretracks support is nice, and yes, it does mean RIM is actively preparing its flood defenses to stem the imminent iPhone wave on its business in the enterprise market, but Puretracks lacks the hype, catalogue and accustomed user base of the Apple service. In essence this is just another move by the majors to reduce Apple’s grip on online music distribution. Ensuring healthy competition in the digital music market makes sense in some ways, but we all know the majors want to foster such competition solely in order that they can force higher prices on online music sales. That’s what all the major label disputes with Apple seem to come down to, at any rate.

Puretracks is partnered with all the major labels, but the Canadian-based service hasn’t announced track pricing yet, is available only in the US, and The music store will be available on the BlackBerry Pearl, the BlackBerry Curve and the 8800 series, which already have music players inside. The service launches on April 1 (no joke), hopes to reach other markets in future, and the partners hope in future to offer support for WiFi capable handsets. One thing is immediately clear. Apple has a fight on its hands as it tries to seize a chunk of the enterprise market with iPhone.

iPhone 2.0? Hacked!

So you were wondering if Apple was going to spread an extra thick layer of security over the new version 2.0 of the iPhone software?  You know – to keep the 1,000,000 unlocked versions from being updated and from being customers at the App Store?

Yeah, we didn’t think so.  iPhone 2.0 is already hacked.  Version 3 and 4, though just twinkles in Apple’s eye?  Cracked too.

The whole "security" thing?  Kinda a joke at this point.  Apple must really need those unlocked iPhone sales to hit its goals.

The real issue for Apple is that they are getting a bad rep from a security standpoint – which will seriously hurt them in the enterprise.

Seriously, Apple.  Just open up the iPhone to all carriers already.

iPhone 2.0 coming to Telstra in Australia?

Sensis, the search engine division of Telstra (Australia’s largest mobile carrier),  is hiring an iPhone developer to put its Australia-only search engine on the iPhone.  Why would a telecom put an Australia-only search engine on the iPhone?    Because the iPhone is coming to Australia.  When?  Soon.  You’ve been warned, mate – get out of that Optus plan ASAP…

Telstra has had a back and forth view on the iPhone – from  senior executives saying it was "Doomed" to complimenting it.

 

Original Job posting:

Design BA for iPhone search application
Contract Role

Description:

Are you a business analyst with experience gathering and documenting requirements for interactive web or mobile products? We’re looking for a BA with a technical front-end UI background to help us design cutting-edge search applications for the iPhone. This isn’t boring old specification-heavy BA work. This is exciting and agile BA work to help us envision mobile search applications that work great and look beautiful. Let us know if you think you’ve got the right combination of creative flair, geekiness, and detail orientation to get the job done.

Details:

  • 2-3 month contract
  • Melbourne CBD

Send a resume, cover letter, and salary requirements to brian.curtis@sensis.com.au

Sony, Nokia shudder at iPhone games plan

Apple’s iPhone will become one of the world’s leading mobile gaming platforms, as games developers worldwide make plans to deliver titles for the platform, now the iPhone 2.0 SDK (beta) has been made available.

Like RIM with its Blackberry in the enterprise market, Sony, Nokia and other manufacturers creating mobile gaming devices (such as the PSP or Java-enabled mobile phones) face a tough battle as Apple makes its biggest move yet into the gaming market.

Gamers can look forward to a wide selection of titles come June when the iPhone is finally enabled for third-party applications. Developers Feral Interactive, Artificial Life, Sega, iD Software, Gameloft, Aspyr, Freeverse, and Pangea Software have all confirmed hopes to deliver games for the platform.

Developers are excited at the potential of creating titles for the device, and its non-phone sister, the iPod touch. They want to explore the built-in movement sensors within these devices, and can’t wait to make products available for sale through the ever-busy iTunes Store.

EA CEO, John Riccitiello observes: "The animation technology in the iPhone OS enables us to build awesome games. I think iPhone consumers are going to be blown away by the games we create for this platform."

At the Apple event last week, EA demonstrated a version of Spore which uses the accelerometers inside the phone to allow gamers to control their game. Sega showed us an iPhone version of Monkey Ball.

Mobile gaming companies are moving into the space. Gameloft will introduce over 15 iPhone/iPod touch games by the end of 2008. Compnay president, Michel Guillemo, said: "The iPhone gaming environment opens a new era in mobile gaming and is exactly what we’ve been waiting for."

Long time Mac developers are also excited. "This is the coolest thing I’ve seen in game development in 15 years, except maybe for the Nintendo Wii," Glenda Adams, director of development for Aspyr Media told Macworld.

Beyond custom third-party applications, Sun has also confirmed itself to be looking at the iPhone SDK with the aim to port a version of Java to the device. While Apple has no plans to support this, Sun argues that making Java for iPhone available is well within the remit of the third party development agreement, and introduction of such technology would enable iPhone users to play Java games on their device.

What makes the iPhone so attractive to all involved is both the extent of its deployment and the suitability of its user base. While the Sony PSP has shifted ten million units in the US since March 2005, Apple has sold four million iPhones so far, and intends selling ten million by the end of this financial year. That’s a large potential market that justifies creating titles for the platform.

Better still, iPhone users are already accustomed to using the iTunes Store, and are already prepared to spend money for digital commodities. Other gaming platforms have faced an uphill struggle persuading less tech-savvy consumers to do the same.

While it’s far too early to say how the big game will play out, it’s clear Apple is exercising a two-pronged approach: beefing-up iPhone to appeal to core Blackberry users in the enterprise market while enabling its mobile to become a large deployment world-class casual gaming platform.

And all these reports ignore Apple’s second growing market: the iPod touch. That the touch will support the same games and systems means developers are looking at a much more sizable market than iPhone sales figures alone would lead us to believe.

Apple’s games development partners will play their hand in June.

….thanks to http://www.gameguru.in/ for the image

Refurb iPods price drop from Apple …retail prices to follow?

We’ve seen this before.  Apple, when they are about to do price drops start pushing the refurb prices way south.  This month,  the Apple Store started  dropping the refurbished 4Gb Nanos to $129 and the 8Gb ones to $169.

The iPod Classics dropped even further to $209 for 80Gb and $299 for 160Gb.

iPod Touches?  $229 for 8Gb and $329 for 16Gb.

Same is occurring in Britian.

Any given Tuesday….

iPhone: Exchange? Great, but what about Google Apps?

As an IT Administrator that is happily "exchanging" my headache of Active Directory/ Exchange server knowledge in for a company that wants to move to Google Apps, I am surprised that Apple has forgot its best buddy, Google – at least for the time being. 

The SDK announcement yesterday included no reference to Google Apps working on the iPhone.  While I’ve been using IMAP to check my Google Apps Email for awhile now (at push-like 1 minute intervals), it is a bit of a pain to connect to the Calendar and Addressbook through the EDGE web interface.  I would much prefer to use the native apps like Exchange now can.  I also know that I can sync my desktop Calendar and Addressbook.app to Google Apps and sync it periodically with the iPhone…but this isn’t really how I’d like to work (well since 1998) – and the point of the iPhone’s Internet connectivity is to be able to receive updates in real time. 

The iPhone doesn’t even support Leopard Server’s iCalendar or LDAP Addressbook.  This has to change – post haste.  It would be really surprising if Apple neglected the standards-compliant Google Apps in favor of Exchange.  Will we see an update soon?  I hope so!  Right?

 

Samsung and Adidas team against Apple and Nike

Samsung has teamed-up with Adidas in a direct assault on the Apple and Nike Nike+ partnership.

Samsung this morning announced its new initiative in partnership with Nike competitor, Adidas.The two firms have teamed-up to introduce a new product, the miCoach phone, which they are calling the "first true sports music mobile" and which will be available across Europe from mid-March.

Just like the Nike+ system, miCoach collects and analyzes personal data and then customizes training plans based on a user’s fitness level and specific goals, while offering real-time feedback during a workout using the phone.

The device offers a stride sensor and heart rate monitor, offering training tips and time updates, all to a musical accompaniment that’s tailored to the workout. 

Apple and Nike this week announced their plans. The partners intend extending their combined system for iPod nano users to integrate with gym equipment. The partners are working with major gym equipment manufacturers such as Life Fitness and Technogym to achieve this. The Nike+-enabled equipment will be installed at participating gyms, including 24 Hour Fitness and Virgin Active Health Clubs.

The upcoming battle for athletes ears and wallets seems set to play out a little like a WWE doubles match, with Samsung and Adidas attempting to "lay the smack down" against Apple and Nike.