Monday, August 31, 2009

The iPhone is Finally Ready to Fly to China

5-Pack Premium Reusable LCD Screen Protector with Lint Cleaning Cloth for Apple iPhone 3G 8GB 16GB [Accessory Export Packaging]Finally, the iPhone is ready to fly to China - which clearly indicates that more than 100,000 iPhone developers from all over the world will get a fair chance to hitch a ride along with the smartphone. On Friday, China Unicom (CHU – news – people), known as CHU announced the deal, which states that it will bring Apple’s (AAPL – news – people) iPhone to China by the beginning of the first quarter. This move will undoubtedly open up a huge market, as there are 687 million wireless subscribers across the country.

Jeffrey Fidacaro, the Susquehanna Financial Group analyst argued over the deal on the same day. He said that the deal would eventually translate into another 2 million sales of the iPhone if Apple gets successful in grabbing 3% of the 65 million of China Unicom’s postpaid subscriber base to 70 million.

OtterBox Impact Case for iPhone 3G, 3GS (Black)The deal, however, is quite unusual – nothing similar to the ones that Apple had signed so far. According to the deal, China Unicom, instead of sharing its revenue with the Cupertino, a California base company will buy the handsets directly from Apple. The deal further declares that the iPhones sold by China Unicom will not have the capability of Wi-Fi, which means the people of China will not have the benefit of Wi-Fi connection on their iPhones.

However, the deal - without any such clause could have been a huge opportunity for the iPhone developer, who put in all their efforts to create unique applications for the samrtphone platform, which they wish to cater to every user across the world. Colin Smith, the vice president and co-founder of Freeverse, one of the finest mobile phone game developers said: "China was definitely the big one,"-and it was indeed. Even though, North America (the iPhone first went on sale here) is and will remain the strongest market for Freeverse, nearly 40% sale of some of the games developed by the company has been across Europe. As Smith believes that the popularity of a game varies from market to market, in his view about China he says: "It's a big unknown for us,".Apple iPod touch 8 GB (2nd Generation--with iPhone OS 3.1 Software Installed) [OLD MODEL]

Even though, there are a lot speculations and assumptions around the market regarding the acceptance and popularity of the iPhone in China, it seems that the device will undoubtedly change the outlook of every smartphone user in the country and will also open up a new horizon for iPhone app developers.

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AT&T and Apple’s Agreement – As Explained to FCC

AT&T, in a letter to Federal Communications Commission (FCC) clearly acknowledged that the company has made an agreement with Apple to block VoIP applications from using the cellular networks provided by them. However, in the agreement it was also said that the VoIP apps, which use Wi-Fi would be taken under consideration, i.e. these apps would not be blocked. Well, this could mean that iPhone developers will now have limited scope for developing more interactive apps for the iPhone and iPod Touch platform. Here is an overall gist of the agreement between AT&T and Apple.

In the agreement it was clearly stated that Apple would not take any affirmative step to enable an iPhone to use the wireless service of AT&T, which includes 2G, 3G and Wi-Fi for making VoIP calls without the prior consent of the company (AT&T). However, AT&T and Apple also agreed that if any third-party iPhone app developer enables a device in order to make VoIP calls using the wireless service of AT&T, then Apple would have no objection in taking serious action against that third-party developer.

The concurrence of the party on this provision was distinctly important considering the risks they assumed this would bring in marketing the iPhone. The willingness of the party and their ability to assume the risk involved in investing for the iPhone and its pricing strategy were quite predicated in some significant parts based on the assumptions made about the monthly service revenue generated by iPhone users.

Both the parties would require assurance that the revenue that comes from AT&T voice plans available to the customers of iPhone would not be reduced due to the activation of the iPhone’s VoIP calling functionalities. As a result, both AT&T and Apple agreed that Apple would not take any step to enable an iPhone to use the wireless service of AT&T in order to make VoIP calls.

The price that consumers pay for the iPhone (particularly the broadband enabled iPhone 3G) would likely have been much higher than what it is now if this arrangement was not made. While the agreement was being made AT&T clearly indicated Apple that the company wouldn’t object if Apple enables VoIP applications for iPhones using Wi-Fi connectivity instead of the 2G or 3G wireless data service of AT&T.

However, AT&T always remains updated and regularly reviews its policies about the features and capabilities that are available through the iPhone to ensure attractive options for its worldwide customers and also to provide iPhone developer a better platform to explore their abilities.

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Apple’s Answer Regarding Rejection of Google Voice App did not Satisfy FCC

Apple’s rejection of the Google Voice app and the other similar third-party apps was highly criticized by not only iPhone developers, but by almost every iPhone market analysts, users, journalists as well as bloggers. Even though Apple’s application rejection is not very new to people, this particular incidence has indeed drawn immense attention and criticism from every part of the world. This issue was so far dragged that the FCC got involved in it and started questioning Apple for their actions.

However, the officials at Apple did not turn down FCC - they answered all their questions and made it clear why they rejected Google Voice app from appearing in the App Store. According to the company, the application has not been approved because, when submitted for review, the app appeared to alter the distinctive user experience of the iPhone by replacing its core mobile telephone functionalities and Apple’s original user interface with the app’s own user interface for different actions such as making telephone calls, voice mailing and text messaging.

Apple had put a lot of effort in developing its distinct and innovative way of seamlessly delivering the core functionalities of the device. But, the Google Voice app replaces the Visual Voicemail of Apple by routing all calls through a different Google Voice telephone number, which supports storage of any voicemail preventing them from being stored in the iPhone itself. Just in the exact manner, the app replaces Apple’s SMS text messaging features with the Google hub for managing text messages. Moreover, enabling Google Voice app would automatically transfer entire Contact’s database of the user to Google’s server. Apple has stated that since the company has not yet received assurance from Google about the data being used in an appropriate manner or the other issues, it cannot fully agree on approving the Google Voice app.

Even though the reason Apple showed might seem genuine, the answer did not fully convinced FCC. However, by taking this action Apple has clearly indicated that iPhone developer should not build any application that might try to replace existing core functions of the device. So, from now on every single iPhone app developer should be a little careful and make sure that his application is absolutely unique and does not try to replace or imitate any of the core functionalities of the iPhone.

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Friday, August 28, 2009

Facebook’s New Application for iPhone 3.0 Offers a Lot More than its Previous Version

The much awaited Facebook Application for the iPhone 3.0 is finally available in the App Store. The 3.0 version, which was under development for months, brings in some added features and improvements to the app that is probably one of the most heavily used applications ever developed for the iPhone platform. On an average, nearly 12 million people from all over the world use the Facebook iPhone application every month. The new and upgraded app holds quite a few numbers of extra features, which make the app more interactive, convenient and easy to use.

The modified layout of the app suggests that it would give room for adding on additional apps in the manner similar to the iPhone platform. While the application notification is now featured in the new version, iPhone developer do not have much scope for integration. However, with so many users, it seems that the iPhone application developer will now have a fair chance to add new features that could be integrated into the app.

Here is a list of features that are available in the new version of the Facebook iPhone app, which would surely help you to know the app better.

  • The application includes a new feature known as News Feed, which has been live on Facebook for quite sometimes now. This News Feed Interaction offers options like comments and other similar actions.
  • One of the most notable features that have been integrated in the app is the full support for Facebook Pages, which will allow you to check out any Page including personal profile, post status updates or photos directly from your iPhone.
  • The new homepage navigation is perhaps the biggest navigational change that has been incorporated in Facebook for iPhone 3.0. Even though the app features several new buttons by default, you can further add your own friends and Pages on the second page if you wish to.
  • Viewing upcoming events, checking out the details of each event and RSVP are the other features that you can enjoy on the upgraded version of the app.
  • The app further supports complete photo management, which includes creating and deleting albums, uploading photos to any album, photo deleting and photo tagging etc.
  • A lot of users as well as iPhone developer are quite excited about the video uploading feature offered in the Facebook app for iPhone 3.0.

However, these are only a few of the whole range of amazing new features that you can enjoy on the new app for the iPhone 3.0. To enjoy all these and more, you simply need to go to the App Store and download the Facebook application onto your iPhone.

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3 Top iPhone Apps for 2009 Till Date

Within a year’s span, the App Store has been packed with more than 60,000 different kind of applications specially designed for the iPhone and iPod Touch. At the beginning of June this year, the store already crossed 50,000 apps and now, it receives nearly 300 applications every day. For an application storefront this young, the figure is indeed overwhelming. Among the thousands of various sort of applications it is really hard for iPhone users to pick-n-choose the best of the lot. Most consumers usually rely on the ratings provided by Apple and the iTunes Store. On iTunes, the ‘New and Noteworthy’ and the top applications are listed categorically, which surely help most iPhone users to make up their minds.

Since, this rating is based completely on unit sales; it quite disturbingly gives lead to the apps worth $0.99. This however, is extremely annoying and discouraging for most big iPhone developers as they back out from putting high budgets and serious resources for developing really useful applications, which in turn does injustice to the millions of deserving users. Apple, attempts to offset the ninety-nine cent gimmicks with a ‘Top Application List’, which may be helpful for customers but doesn’t actually do justice to the App Store.

However, there are few third-party services and tools under process, which would help users to make the right choices and explore the App Store in the best possible way. Following is a list of 3 top applications of this year so far. This rating has been derived from the popularity, usefulness and demand of the applications.

  • Slacker Radio – This is probably one of the most practical iPhone music apps after Pandora. It carries a huge catalog and offers Premium accounts with features that users have long been loathing about. As soon as you create an account on, the application starts streaming music to you. With numerous amazing features and options, Slacker Radio is undoubtedly one of the best music apps that any iPhone app developer has ever created for this platform.

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  • Hey Where Are You – This is an extremely well-designed social networking application that helps you to keep a track on your friends, colleagues or family whereabouts. This amazing location service application rightly utilizes Apple’s new Push Notification service to notify users about the location of the person they wish to track down.

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  • Bento – Bento is an amazing productivity application that allows you to organize your busy schedule in one single iPhone application. iPhone developer FileMaker Inc. has bought Bento, one of the most popular personal database into iPhone and iPod Touch to make life a bit easier for iPhone users. With extremely convenient features and easy-to-use functionalities, Bento by far is one of the best of its kind.

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There are however, many other iPhone applications featured in the App Store that are worth mentioning and there are also thousands more in the row and under process.

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Monday, August 17, 2009

Minigore – One of the Best Flash Games on iPhone

Category: Games

Released Date: 30 July, 2009

Seller: Chillingo Ltd © Mountain Sheep

Price: $0.99

Chillingo Ltd, one of the most popular iPhone app developer has once again come up with an amazing game for the iPhone and iPod Touch platform, which is likely to become popular among iPhone users of all age group. Minigore is one of those amazing games that most high school goers played to avoid long boring history lectures. This fascinating flash-based iPhone gaming app recreates the excitement of other similar games like the Boxhead or Goldminer (iPhone app released recently. It is perhaps one of the most exciting and enjoyable flash games that users as well as iPhone developer have played or designed for the iPhone.

Minigore puts you in the shoes of a charming Scottish shooter who is given the task of killing hundreds and hundreds of weird looking enemies. There are however, no such levels in the game – the higher you score the more enemies you’ve got to kill. However, the game gets more and more interesting as you play further. The game control of the app is pretty simple and is designed to make it easier for the users to make through the difficulties.

It is true that unless you play Minogore, you can never understand its greatness. But for an overall idea, here is a brief description about the different features of the app.

John, the Scotsman can be controlled with the help of two virtual sticks – the left stick controls movement and the right one is used for shooting.

The app offers three different weapons – machine gun (with unlimited ammo), a shotgun with double barrel and an exploding booby trap (helps to trap the unsuspected attackers).
A level of fascinating 3D world that is rendered in the amazing storybook style of the app – features extremely well-designed bushes, trees and props.

The furries, who come in different shapes and sizes include – small Minifurry, Furry, Giant Furry and the most dangerous Firefurry.
Online leader board with on-game chatting option to compare and share your high scores with other players.
You can enjoy the apps original soundtrack while you play or listen to music from your personal collection.
Well, these are only some of the many amazing features you will find on Minigore. To know more and to experience the true excitement of the application, simply go to the App Store and download the application TODAY! Within such short period, Minigore has indeed become favorite of many users as well as iPhone developer.

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