$399 for an Open Mac

Psystar is now selling several “Open Computers” that you can get OS X Leopard or Tiger installed on. These are cheaper than even the least expensive Macs and are actually high end machines that you would likely pay around $2000 for if it came from Apple.

Is it legal?…I don’t know, but I’ve heard alot of talk about Apple not following the law when it comes to monopolies on their software. There is a good story in Information Week outlining the possible law suits that may come about.

iPhone 3.0 Software

presentation

Macworld did a great job of giving us a live commentary of what the improvements would be for the new software.

Rather than repeat them all, here is the link to the commentary:

Macworld iPhone 3.0 Commentary

There will be additional announcements over the coming week, but they did manage to get some of the 15 features I wrote about.

  • Turn by Turn direction capability
  • push notifications
  • Cut/Copy/Paste (YEAH!)
  • landscape in all apps
  • Spotlight now implemented

It seems the Beta is available for developers immediately Developer Center (NOTE: this was unavailable at the time of writing- possibly due to the update happening)

The software and upgrades will be available to consumers in the summer. It will be available for ALL iPhones and for $9.95 an upgrade for iPod Touch users as well.

Why I Returned the Blackberry Storm

rejected

In a previous post, I talked about Why I got the Balckberry Storm. A couple days ago, I returned it and went back to a non-smart phone. Let me tell you why.

Over the course of the last year and a half, I have gotten quite used to (and fallen a little in love with) my iPod Touch.

When my Motorola Razr finally died about a month and a half ago, I toyed with the idea of switching to AT&T just so I could get the iPhone. In my research, it seemed that AT&T cell & 3G coverage just does not compare with that of Verizon (whom I have been with for nearly 8 years now).

I decided to try out the Blackberry Storm (see the post to know more about why).

  • From the very first day I had it, the Storm gave me trouble. I was not used to the ‘click’ touch screen. it required that I touch-select, then click the screen to activate. This is supposed to help avoid unwanted activations, but I just found it created a more frustrating and time consuming interface.
  • Dialing phone numbers required additional layers of menus, click the phone icon, then click the contacts, or click the recent calls, then searching, which was not as simple as the ‘swish’ glide you get with the iPhone, but instead, required multiple strokes across the screen to move to each new name.
  • Downloading music and other applications was a time consuming, and ultimately pointless endeavor as there wasn’t really a good media browser on the Storm anyways.
  • The Storm would not sync with my Mac laptops without downloading and installing additional applications (either free or paid) and having to get multiple applications to all work together and I do most of my computing on the Macs these days so this was a major frustration.
  • At this time there are no (supported) third party applications for the Storm. Supposedly there will be a RIM Application store available by Spring 2009, but I wouldn’t hold your breath.
  • The fact that Blackberry is just trying their hand at touchscreen interfaces, the Storm was still extremely buggy. I am a bit of a power user and pushed the device (obviously) to its current limits with downloads, applications, internet browsing and streaming of music. It was crashing and freezing up multiple times each week I had it.

Are these reasons for other people not to get it? Absolutely not. Overall, I think that as an alternative to the iPhone on the Verizon network, the Storm is a good phone. For those that are used to the RIM style of organization (I actually really like the smart menu button) the Storm will satisfy.

For those that are looking for something similar to the coolness and usability of the iPhone, the Storm still has not got what it takes. Maybe give it another year to work out the bugs, clean up the interface and make some usability changes.

iPhone Free Applications Review Part 2

This is part 2 in a series. If you haven’t already read it, Please read Applications Review Part 1.

I have gotten rid of several of the applications I originally downloaded just because they were so bad that they caused the iPod to shut down and restart or just return to the home screen when I would try to open them. It made me realize that people don’t necessarily want to hear about applications they don’t want anyway. Therefore, in part 2 I’m going to focus on the applicaitons that I think are really exiting, useful or just plain fun. I’ll save the reaming of poorly designed, conceived applications for a separate bog entry.

Cube Runner
cube runner screen shot

This is a highly addictive game where the accelerometer is used to fly around cubes that fly at you. It is simple, it works smoothly and there are multiple levels to try.

One of the best things about it is you have the option to switch to landscape view (press the ‘i’ in the corner for options).

Can’t wait to share high scores on the web.

Pandora
Pandora iPhone application

I have used Pandora for well over a year and highly recommend it as a fabulous souce of new music that beats 1 direction internet streaming radio hands down. To make this available on a mobile platform means that we can create custom radio stations and be able to listen to them anywhere and anytime with a Wi-Fi, 3G or cell service. If you do not already have a Pandora profile, I recommend setting it up on the web first and create some stations. Then link your iPhone to your login and start fine tuning your stations. You can go to Pandora. Continue reading