Opera coming to the iPhone

Yeah, you heard that right.  An Opera developer has stated that they are working on an iPhone version of their browser to be released alongside the iPhone SDK – whenever it comes out.  Why?  It is hard to speculate – the Safari browser really makes the iPhone/iPod amazing.  Opera is persistant though.  They want their browser to run on every single device that exists in the universe – from toasters to spaceships, Opera wants to work on everything.  Oh and there is this thing called FLASH.

Realistically, though, they aren’t going to have much of a chance against Safari on the platform.  Opera is a solid browser and brings some awesome features to the fold (built in torrent downloading for instance) but the mobile Safari, with its panning and zooming features will be hard to beat.

I guess we’ll have to see.  Competition is always good for consumers (us) and perhaps they’ll come up with some new features that aren’t available yet on Safari.  We are looking forward to trying it out.

Video after the break…

He mentions the iPhone at the VERY end and (full disclosure) who knows exactly how seriously he’s thought about it?

Microsoft Windows Mobile 7 to ape the iPhone

An interesting blog post seems to have gotten some goods on the next version of Windows Mobile 7.  Unsurprisingly, Microsoft went to their old standby of copying Apple and getting rid of the stylus- using the touch interface, including pinching for zooming and swiping for panning, multitouch and even using accelerometers for landscaping and portaiting the screen.  It remains to be seen how "vigerously Apple chooses to protect its patents" – as Steve Jobs stated at last years Macworld..

 

 

 

VOIP comes to the iPhone – iPod Touch

2007 was a monumental year for iPod hacking and a major milestone looks to be acomplished just before the year ends.  The first SIP compatible VOIP solution for the iPod Touch (and hopefully soon the iPhone) should be coming our way in the next 10 hours (as we write this).

The SIP application actually requires a bit of extra hardware on the iPod touch because of the lack of an audio-in port on the device.  Thankfully they are selling the microphone as well.  The iPhone should eventually support this application without hardware modifications.

Hopefully this will light a fire under the VOIP industry, which hasn’t been quick to port their applications to the iPhone.  As of now – or in 10 hours – only SIP accounts are supported on the Tochmods VOIP client.  Raketu had earlier announced an iPhone application for their VOIP service but as the application was in Flash form, it wasn’t able to work on the iPhone.  It turns out they hadn’t even tested the device on their system.

It is about time that someone did it right!

video after the jump

Mossberg comes out (yet again) against the US mobile cartel

 

http://services.brightcove.com/services/viewer/federated_f8/452319854

You have to admire Walt Mossberg for taking his position as grand exalted leader amongst technology journalists directly to the US telecoms.  He is single handedly trying to break the hold on consumers that the Sprint/Tmobile/AT&T/Verizon Cartel has on the US Mobile industry.  To his credit, he has gotten Verizon to promise that in Q3 2008, that it will accept any device on its platform – as long as it meets a very simple set of requirements (like no VoIP?).  If he were running for Office, we’d vote for him. 

Of course, we’ll believe it when we see it.  Surely there will be a price to pay for being open.  But at least there is some movement.

In the video above, Walt also make it clear that the iPhone is the device that illuminates this anomaly.  It is a computer, not a phone.  It is much more powerful than any of the computers behind him (including – is that- a TI-99? – to the right of the Etch-a-Sketch).  Yet, you can’t change your ISP.

It is more than a bit surprising that there isn’t more flack about how the French can buy an iPhone without ties to a carrier, but Americans can’t.  French consumers clearly have it better than US Consumers.  The French laws are better than American ones.

Don’t get angry, call your congressman/woman. Ask them why the French have it better?

 

Positive iPhone numbers continue to pour in

A few weeks ago, Net Applications showed that iPhone was much stronger than anyone could have expected in terms of browsing market share.   This week, Canalys showed that iPhone sales have surpassed Windows Mobile in North America.  RoughlyDrafted did a lot of legwork on the numbers but the short of it is that iPhone is working Windows Mobile.

Can these numbers actually be right?  Is iPhone really outselling Windows Mobile phones?

Just as a comparison, Windows Mobile was selling well over 3 million devices/quarter globally at the begining of 2007.  If all these numbers are right, Apple is not going to have any problem reaching 10 million iPhones.

 

Raketu VoIP for iPhone. Don't dowit.

Some mysteries are hard to solve.  Some are easy.  The "will Rakatu VoIP service work on iPhone as the company states?" falls into the "easy" category.  The answer for the moment is NO.

How did we come to this conclusion so fast?  BECAUSE THEIR IPHONE PAGE IS IN FLASH.  We shit you not.  Take a look.

http://iphone.raketu.com

Someone didn’t do their homework – even a little bit – like testing it once.  Hope this doesn’t sour anyone to the VOIP thing.  It should be be done – it has to be done!! – and hopefully soon.

As for Raketu, Suggestion: go buy yourself an iPhone and give it a whirl before you release it on your site stating that it works.

UPDATE: We’ve gotten an email from the company pasted below.  They realized the error of their ways.  Still doesn’t work on iPhone however…

FAKE FAKE TomTom GPS on iPhone

So we saw this yesterday on mac4ever.com, a solid French(1) Apple site.  It looked so  fake, we glossed over it – and they did too. 

Why?

We noticed that the picture wasn’t at native resolution(2).  We also saw that they put it on top of a TomTom Card instead of plugging it into the port (3).  Wait, TomTom doesn’t make a GPS card(4) do they?  Also, if it was real, do you think they would have it on a wood table while going 14.2 Km/hr on a curvey road as the iPhone Tom Tom is showing(5)?  Maybe in a super gadget testing RV right?  – maybe that is why it is so blurry?  Also, maybe TomTom would make the adapter flush with the iPhone or at least even side to side and not skewed toward the right(6).

Plus we all know blurry images = fakes, right?

Edit: Engadget has seen the error of their ways and listed another flaw in the story – that barcode is from another fake image (7) and the image was sent from a notorious image faker(8).

Edit: The number 14.2 does not indicate speed, it shows that after 14.2km you should be staying on the right side of the road. So, that rules our fact number five (5) out…

VOIP on iPhone-iPod platform. Next killer app

Frankly, I don’t understand why there isn’t more hype about this.  As an expat living far away from friends and family, I rely on Skype at home to make and recieve calls.  Local calls.  Cheap local calls.  Lots of them.  When I spend two hours talking to American Airlines, trying to get my Christmas return tickets sorted, it saves me hundreds of dollars.

I use a Belkin Skype phone (which is awesome in every way except battery life).  I use Skype over Fring on my Nokia N95 which is simply amazing – especially over 3G. I use the MacOSX Skype client both at home and while at work.  But I’d sure love to use an iPod or iPhone for this.  It is just the perfectly natural fit.  The hardware can handle this.  As of today we have proof.

Now I am not saying it is Skype or bust.  I am perfectly happy to switch to any SIP or Vonage phone or whatever.  Just give me a US number and a reasonable price.  Better yet, give me a few choices, make some competition.  Turn this into a positive for consumers.  Apple, so far, has not made any movements at all on this, either on the desktop or on the portables.  A few possible scenarios exist:

  • Apple could be building its own VOIP network and planning to integrate it into iChat both on the desktop and on the iPhone.  Hopefully, they use the open SIP platform that allows it to communicate with many of the other phone systems in the world. Perhaps it partners with Cisco on this – part of the "iPhone" naming deal.
  • Apple could be partnering with Google and using its GoogleTalk/Jabber platform and plan integration across its line of products.  Google is likely looking to expand its Google Talk service so users can receive incoming calls.  This, in turn, could be connected with other google account services like email, calendar, contact list, etc.
  • Same thing as above but instead with Yahoo!.
  • Apple opens up iPod/iPhone for applications.  Vonage, Skype, Fring. SIP, etc. jump on board.
  • Apple buys Skype from Ebay and turns it into a defacto communications platform.  While it has the legacy phone number/SMS system, it also includes chatting and claims over 100 million users currently.  Skype is undervalued and not being developed properly by Ebay.  Apple has $15 billion in the bank.  Oh and *cough* 700Mhz Spectrum is also for sale. *cough*
  • Apple does nothing.  Waits for phones to die and instant messaging to take over in a few years.  Puts $15 billion in pork bellies and frozen concentrated orange juice.

Will we see a VOIP service at Macworld?  I certainly hope so – but if I had to bet on it, I’d say no.  Apple has kinda missed the whole VOIP boat so far.  I hope I am wrong and we see some big announcements – just about any of the above scenarios would be really exciting.  But, until Apple opens their eyes / rolls out their VOIP application, go hackers!

 

Weekend Humor – Macworld Bloopers

Steve Jobs and Apple are known for their riveting Macworld keynotes that have the technology world on edge.  They are usually pretty sharp on delivery and obviously well rehearsed.  However, not so long ago some of these keynotes went a bit wrong.  A funny and sometimes a bit embarrassing look at some Macworlds gone bad:

(BTW- check out Steve’s threads in OSLO – looks very strange with a tie!)

 

Thanks to JG2

digg_url = ‘http://9to5mac.com/macworld-bloopers-0230959534′;