Turn by turn GPS slips into the App store under everyone's eyes

For those of you looking for turn by turn GPS on the iPhone, you are already late to  the party.  MacRumors discovered that XRoad Co.’s G-Map U.S. West and G-Map U.S. East (iTunes App Store Links) apps were released into the App Store back in October and January respectively.  Originally, they didn’t have turn by turn and were apparently not rated so well.  But a few updates later and you have some turn by turn action and some much happier customers

The application is almost a 1GB download so make sure you have a little bit of space left on your iPhone.  It also apparently "works" on the GPS-less iPod Touch.  Oh, a Europe version is on the way too. You can get the app from the following links for $19.99

G-Map U.S. West and G-Map U.S. East

More screenshots and video below:

 

Boxee removes Hulu, time for Understudy

Boxee got a little letter in the mail this week from ol’ Hulu requesting that they no longer incorperate Hulu in their little system.  Rather than go up against a consortium of the world’s biggest media companies, the team of programmers has complied and Hulu content will no longer be available on Boxee.  Remember, there is always Understudy or, even better, Plex for you Mac-equipped Hulu addicts.  AppleTV?  Notsomuch.

The official bad news from Boxee below:

 

Friends,

For those of you following the Hulu / TV.com story, we wanted to share the news that Hulu has also requested to be removed from boxee at the request of their content partners. 
We’ve put up a blog post on our site (http://blog.boxee.tv/2009/02/18/the-hulu-situation/) giving a little more insight, but we wanted you to hear it from us first.

Here’s the text of our post:
we love Hulu. they have built a great product and brand (including one the best Superbowl ads this year). since our early days in private alpha, Hulu was the most requested site by our users. so we built support for browsing Hulu on boxee, reached out to Hulu, showed it to them, and on Oct 20th, 2008 shared it with our alpha testers (without a formal partnership with Hulu). the response has been amazing. people love watching many of their favorite shows on Hulu via boxee. last week we generated more than 100,000 streams for them…

two weeks ago Hulu called and told us their content partners were asking them to remove Hulu from boxee. we tried (many times) to plead the case for keeping Hulu on boxee, but on Friday of this week, in good faith, we will be removing it.  you can see their blog post about the issues they are facing there.

our goal has always been to drive users to legal sources of content that are publicly available on the Internet.  we have many content partners who are generating revenue from boxee users and we will work with Hulu and their partners to resolve the situation.

we will tell them how users love Hulu on boxee, why it represents a great opportunity for them to better engage with fans of their shows, how boxee can help in exposing their content to new people, and why they should be excited about future opportunities of working with us.

we will blog/tweet as soon as we have any updates and hopefully we’ll be able to bring back the Hulu experience to boxee sooner rather than later.

Best,
Andrew

boxee press kit: http://drop.io/iloveboxee
boxee blog: http://blog.boxee.tv

The case for a $149 iPod touch?

I’ve made my case for a $149 iPod touch over at Computerworld.  Thanks for your input ;)

…Many Apple customers (myself included) really wish Apple would build a Netbook.  I want an Apple Netbook not necessarily for the cheapness, but more for the smallness (though the cheapness wouldn’t hurt) and of course to be able to run OSX natively.  Apple has said, again and again, that they can’t make a Netbook that would compete in price with the ASUS, Acer and HP‘s of the world and they’d be proud to produce.  They simply can’t get their margins, design and production costs down to the levels that the PC makers can.  Or they choose not to. 

But, when questioned on this, Apple execs always end up pointing to the iPod Touch and iPhone platforms as Apple’s answer to the Netbook.  And they really have a great point.  The Touch platform has most of the same capabilities as a Netbook but is cheaper and smaller.

Maybe it is time to step it up in this area.  The 8GB iPod Touch is already a great deal for $200.  But really, the purchase is just the beginning of the customer’s relationship with Apple.  Then, there is the iTunes and App store.  While they’d need to sell around $150-$300 of music and apps to break even on a $50-100 price drop, the price point might open Apple up to a whole new level of customer…

iPhone offline apps made possible by HTML 5 compliant Mobile Safari

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that offline web apps are on the way to iPhone and Android platforms in the form of Google Offline.  The trick is that newer browser technology allows the storage of cached information in database form.  In Firefox and Safari, you currently need Google Gears to do this.  Soon it will be built in (like in Chrome). 

Also, new betas of Firefox allow geolocation in the browser but as you can see from the video below, so do new versions of Webkit.  This should be standard in all browsers within a year.  The video from MWC 2009:

And also a Palm Pre running Google Maps as a web app, below