Posts Tagged ‘iOS 4’

Blast tie fighters out your window

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

There is a new Star Wars game heading to your iPhone this month that uses a very interesting backdrop called ‘augmented reality’. Augmented reality technology uses what’s around you, and lays graphics and infomation over it. So basically, your playing field for your game layout will be ‘wherever you are’. Although in this case we don’t believe that it will have influence over the game mechanics, it does make for some neat looking gameplay.

The game Star Wars Arcade: Falcon Gunner is coming out this month for the iPhone, and it looks quite dashing for an iPhone game. Simply hold up your phone in front of you, and your surroundings suddenly become the scene for a bunch of invading Tie Fighters.

So in addition to your phone distracting your from your daily endeavors, you now need to alot more time fighting against the Empire. And we all can make time for that.

Story lead by Billy Holcomb aka Schlitzboy.

Will Apple fall down, go boom?

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

UPDATE – FRIDAY 7/16/10 1:30PM CDT:
The Press Conference is over. The proximity sensor issue will be a software fix but no questions and no answers about the problem with the WiFi antenna on the iPhone 3 and 3GS being disabled when upgrading to iOS 4.

The overall feeling from this has been that there is going to be just enough done for damage control. Since they don’t actually admit there’s a problem, I think we’re supposed to see the free cases as a boon from our Overlords at Apple. It seems even that effort is condescending when supposedly no problem but Apple just wants to make sure its “customers are happy”.

Overall, I’m disappointed in the response. There was a lot of finger pointing, a lot of chest puffing, and a lot of calling out specific blogs and news outlets as being liars and posting inflammatory information. There’s some good news in all of it for people who have problems with the “death grip” but overall I’m left with the feeling that we’ve been given a piece of candy because we held our breath till we turned blue…

UPDATE – FRIDAY 7/16/10 1:20PM CDT: Jobs reiterated several times that every smartphone has “antenna problems” when held without a case and managed to sidestep the question of whether an apology is due to the customers who bought phones on day one. There’s no apology here, no admission that there was something wrong with the phone, no recollection of any data that came up before the release that would have shown there was a problem with the antenna, and a lot of finger pointing at other manufacturers that have the same issue but just aren’t as “popular” as the new iPhone.  Over all, Jobs is coming off somewhat jerk-ish, posing the issues and stories that have arisen since launch day as “over reacting” and, in some cases, completely false.

Oh, and he didn’t fail to get his jab in at Gizmodo saying that sometimes “a website buys a stolen phone” in reference to why details about the device weren’t released to phone case manufacturers before the launch. He’s essentially saying that if they release details about a new product that people will stop buying older products… Sorry, but that rates a “Well, DUH!” from me.

UPDATE – Friday 7/16/10 12:50PM CDT: The Apple Press Conference is ongoing and the news is that Apple will be providing free cases to essentially anyone who asks for them.  iPhone users will be able to request the cases online late next week and the offer is good until September 30th.  They’re also waiving the restocking fees for anyone who wants to return the device if the “case solution” isn’t acceptable. Jobs has also stated that AT&T will be resetting contracts and fully refunding payments for any plans involving a contract that was started on an iPhone 4 when the device is returned.

The thing is, Jobs is admitting there’s a problem with the phone’s antenna without saying there’s a problem. He’s basically saying that there’s a problem with signal strength on every smartphone on the market when it’s gripped a certain way (based on which phone you’re talking about) but that the reason this has gotten so much attention is because the iPhone 4 sold so many units in so short a time. At least that’s what I’m getting out of his speech.  But it’s worth noting that Apple’s stock price has risen since the beginning of this news conference.

To the bottomless pit!!!

Original Post: Steve Jobs and Apple are taking a beating in the public opinion. The iPhone 4’s antenna issue has been getting a lot of press, which alone would be enough to tarnish a public image, but there’s been talk of the issues with the proximity sensor on the new device where it can either turn off the phone when a user puts the phone to their face (resulting in the call being lost) or inadvertently place the phone into speakerphone mode when the screen touches the user’s ear. And now reports are coming out that iOS 4 is causing issues with the WiFi radios on the iPhone 3 and 3GS causing them to become non-functional even when the software is rolled back to a prior version.

This is beginning to play out like a publicity nightmare for Apple. Not that it’s an oil spill in the Gulf doing billions of dollars worth of damage and with the potential to destroy an ecosystem but Apple is going to have to do some major damage control to keep their fanbase intact. There are too many things going on to continue saying, “You’re holding it wrong” or “It’s a software problem”. And by pointing out that there was a software glitch that made the phones “overestimate” signal strength and that the signal was actually weaker in most of the phones than what was shown on the screen’s bars seemed all too much like Apple was willing to point a finger at AT&T’s oft scorned network for the “death grip” issue.

Apple’s stock is beginning to be hit by the consumer doubts. Again, not as hard as say BP’s stock because of the “little” problem in the Gulf but it’s been driven down by the conceived unwillingness of Apple to fix the problem. Yeah, it’s only down 14 dollars in 3 days but the issue here would appear to be even investors are losing confidence in Apple’s previously sterling reputation.

Add to this that Apple has flatly denied a design flaw, refused to replace defective devices, and essentially created the majority of the bad press with their refusal to admit that there actually is a problem and it’s easier to understand why some of the company’s diehard fans are beginning to criticize Steve and Co.

Even some of the fanboys are jumping ship. Staunch defenders of Steve Jobs and Apple’s products are saying they’re finally fed up and are returning the phone. In some cases, they’re doing it until the issues are cleared up while in others, the new shiny Android run phones are beginning to find their ways into the lives of those who up until recently lived and died by their reliance and support of Apple products.

Rumors have circulated that a “silent recall” is in the works. Individuals who have gone to the stores to replace their device (claiming other issues because saying they have the “death grip” problem gets them nothing) have stated that the new device worked perfectly, suggesting that Apple may be quietly replacing the flawed devices with models that do not have the flaw.

So it’s no surprise that Apple has announced a press conference scheduled for tomorrow to address the recent issues and concerns investors, fans, and consumers have with the rash of problems that have been plaguing Apple recently.

Industry analysts are assuming that one of two things will happen in tomorrow’s press conference. That Apple will recall all of the initially released devices or will be providing free “bumper” cases which have been shown to alleviate the issue. The recall is less likely as there have been three million of the devices sold but may, in the long run, be the best way to repair an image which is now tarnished. The bumper cases seem more likely but free or not, many customers are bound to feel that this is merely a band aid to a problem that may rear its head again somewhere down the line.

"I promise when I take over the world, I won't hold it wrong..."

Regardless of what is said in tomorrow’s press conference, it’s hard to understand why it’s taken Apple so long to react to the problem. Of course when the issues make an appearance on David Letterman and Consumer Reports independently confirm the antenna problem in a controlled environment, it’s possible Apple may have been planning on staying mum on the whole affair before it got so much attention.

It’s hard to believe that a company that started off so strong nearly went under back in 1997. Harder to believe that a $150 million investment from Microsoft would be the turning point and that 13 years later, Apple would be challenging Microsoft for technological and financial dominance. And even harder to believe is that Apple would start getting press as becoming as bad as Microsoft in terms of customer service and the threat of a monopoly. And then a Microsoft executive comes around and compares your new phone to one of the worst fiascos in OS history (yes, Vista). Yikes.

Tomorrow, we’ll see if Apple will return to the humble, yet powerful, force it has always been or if it will continue to take the path of most giants. The bigger they are…

Gritskrieg – End of Line