The Elusive iPhone 5

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The blogosphere and news media have been abuzz recently with news that Apple may not meet its traditional product release dates for the iPhone 5 and the accompanying iOS 5, which is their mobile operating system. Several theories are abound as to why Apple may be switching up their usually structured release schedule ranging from supply problems in Japan to time constraints of their supposedly feature ladened updates to a shift in product release strategy. As a consumer waiting anxiously for the new iPhone I can tell you that being given a date range of somewhere between April and October (the last time frame to adequately take advantage of the holiday shopping season) is maddening.

The delays aside, the wait will probably be well worth it but that doesn’t mean I can’t keep from dreaming of its features.  AppleInsider, a leading Apple news blog, has been reporting that iOS 5 will most likely feature a free cloud storage and sharing service and more integrated voice commands, among other as of yet unknown features.

I think the wait will be worth it, for sure, but we want to know what you think: Will the extended wait for the new iPhone releases be worth it or will the Android OS maintain its current edge? Vote now in our very unscientific facebook poll or leave your thoughts in the comments section of this post.

iPhones Controling Times Square: The Hoax, the Hax, and the Underwhelming Truth

The Recruit, a middling spy thriller with little going for it besides Al Pacino, hinged around a mostly ignored plot point that was alternately ignored or made into the focus that blinded moviegoers to all other plot devices going on: Colin Farrell invented a piece of software that would give him the ability to stream content from his laptop to any screen or device around him. It was a fascinating idea, and at the time a couple of people on the burgeoning device-hacking/maker scene spent countless hours with some limited success creating devices to do just that. CarWhisperer was probably the most well-known, widespread, and widely covered success, though there were other far more shady projects going on simultaneously. Continue reading

iPhone 4 for Verizon Wireless is here!

After years of speculation and rumors, Verizon Wireless(VZW) COO Lowel McAdams joined his CEO Dan Mead and Apple COO Tim Cook on stage at the Lincoln Center Tuesday morning to announce that the wait is finally over. The iPhone 4 for Verizon is real, and it will be falling into customers’s hands as early as Feb. 3rd for existing VZW (Feb. 10th for the rest of us).

Verizon finally has the iPhone 4The gathered captains of industry spoke at length about Verizon’s network upgrades and planned changes, but it was obvious everyone only cared about one thing: What is the Verizon iPhone 4 going to be like?

Well, for starters, and much to the disappointment of millions, the phone is based around the CDMA chip-set. The chip, which is being phased out by Verizon for the new LTE 4G standard, is notorious for not allowing data and voice to be used simultaneously. That means if you’re using your phone as a navigation device and a call comes through, you’re temporarily out of luck and either have to wing it until your call ends or pull over lest you drive off a cliff.

On the plus side, not only is the CDMA issue scheduled to be corrected later this spring, but the Verizon iPhone has built-in mobile wi-fi capability. That means you’ll be able to use the phone as a portable hot-spot for up to 5 devices, something AT&T is doing their hardest to prevent on their devices. You also get access to Verizon’s unlimited data plan. It’s slightly pricier than AT&Ts plan, but doesn’t cap data transfer at 2 gigabytes per month.

The last major news is that Verizon is still not releasing the white iPhone 4, and remains mum on the exact date that it will be available, saying only that it will come out “later this spring”. Lucky for you, I happen to know a great place that will take your plain, boring, black iPhone4 and turn it white. So until Apple get’s moving on that, stop by and we’ll give your new Verizon iPhone4 a makeover before any of your friends get one.

Have you ever wanted to accept Visa/Mastercard? There’s an App for that.

Square Credit Card Processing DeviceHave you ever split a meal with a friend? Or maybe taken a taxi somewhere with a buddy? Unless you’re agoraphobic or just REALLY unlikeable, I’m going to assume you have.  You’ve also probably experienced that awkward moment when neither of you really have enough cash to divide the check evenly so one person pays more and you’re left with that uncomfortable ‘IOU’ feeling.

Well, not anymore! Who wants to owe money to a friend when you can just Square Up? That’s right folks, there’s a app for that. Square Up allows anyone with an iOS or Andriod OS device (iPhone, iPad, Droids, HTCs, Samsung Galaxy, LG Ally, etc.) to accept credit card payments from anywhere.  Not enough cash? Accept Visa!

Square Up is still a relatively new company started by one of the co-founders of the popular social media engine Twitter.  With a (free) device that plugs into your smartphone’s headphone jack, you can swipe a friend’s credit card and charge up to $1000 a month and receive it right away! Sure the credit card companies will still take a cut (2.75% + $0.15 per transaction) but it’s a lot simpler than a typical agreement a company would have to enter into.

SquareUp Credit Card Smartphone Device and AppHowever, the company is facing a few obstacles – the biggest of which is convincing people that this is OKAY. With the digital age still in its youth, there’s a lot of worry about identity theft and credit card fraud out there.  Let’s say you buy a pair of Yankee’s tickets from someone on Craigslist. Are you going to feel comfortable when he asks you to swipe your credit card to pay? Exactly.

Still, Square Up seems to be approaching consumers in the right light. They understand that promoting the trustworthiness of their product should be their first and primary concern.  Nevertheless, they have a long way to go if they really want this app to take off.  Read more about what Square Up is doing from the NY Times. Or go to and sign up to get started!

Why doesn’t my new car have an iPod dock?

iPod Car Mount
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I’ve been wondering, for a while now, why iPod docks aren’t standard features in new cars.  I’m not sure how long it takes car manufacturers to catch up to current technology but I expected to start seeing this trend years ago. Here’s what I’m thinking…

First of all, everybody already has an iPod. A recent study has shown that 100% of Americans now own at least two iPods or iPhones. Shocking, isn’t it? Okay well, I might have made that up but it doesn’t change the fact that almost everyone I know already seems to own one. Whether it’s a Nano, a Shuffle, or an iEverything (Release date TBD), we all have one.

Second of all, it won’t change the price that much.  If you’re already paying $15-50k for a car, what’s another hundred bucks to plug in your iPod? Nothing. Plus, car buyers flock to features like this and I’m sure the Fords and Chryslers of the world would make back any added costs through the additional sales.

So why not?

Hands Free iPhone Car Dock
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Is it because of cup holders? Sure a dozen cup holders might be useful if you’re taking your kids entire soccer team to an away game, but the rest of time that’s just too many cup holders. Couldn’t we turn some of that valuable cup holder real estate into an iPod dock zone?
There are plenty of companies out there making a fortune on customized solutions for this problem. I’ve seen all kinds of rigs that attach to your dashboard or even mount to the windshield. With all that ingenuity out there, you’d think the car manufacturers would notice?

What do you think? Leave me a comment and tell me if you’re on board with this idea too!