Tech Stuff

So yesterday Apple released it’s first major update of the year– an update to the iPhone firmware, and it was HUGE! Can’t believe they didn’t charge for this. They released a similar update for iPod Touch and charged $20 to it’s users who chose to download the update through iTunes.

iTunes certainly has taken on a life of its own! I didn’t see that coming.

Basically, there were 4 major components of the iPhone firmware update.

  1. The user interface has changed in that you can now move around the buttons on the home screen and you can have up to 9 different home screens. [I can’t imagine why anyone would need 9 home screens.] You can also place links to web apps and web clips on the home screen and the load time is significantly reduced that way. So, I was able to move the buttons I don’t currently utilize to another home screen, out of my way, rearrange the buttons in a way that made sense to me, and place a few of the web clip buttons on my home screen for sites I visit often. Real helpful stuff and time saving!
  2. Gmail now automatically supports IMAP. This didn’t really change anything for me, I had already manually configured my Gmail for IMAP.
  3. The maps– a LOT of changes here. Google maps can now pin point your location [somewhat]. It’s a pretty general locating but considering the iPhone is not equipped with GPS and they are using WIFI spots and cell phone towers to pin point your location the accuracy or sometimes inaccuracy is understandable. There are other map features that changed as well.
  4. iTunes– you can now redeem prepaid iTunes cards right from your iPhone AND the BIG NEWS of the day — rent movies right from your iPhone through iTunes. I’ll write more about that shortly…

The second BIG NEWS MAKER of the day came as Steve Jobs delivered his keynote address at the opening of the ’08 Macworld Conference & Expo. I read [as the address was being given] a live update blog of all the “goodies” Apple will be delivering over the coming weeks. And last night I sat down and watched the entire address. Pretty powerful stuff– as usual. There were basically 4 BIG things he had to say:

  1. Introduction of the update for the iPhone and iPod Touch.
  2. THE BIGGY– and I think this is going to be a revolution! movie rental through iTunes! I seriously think this may very well put other movie rental establishment out of business. Apple has the backing of all the major studios and has made it a “no-brainer” to rent movies from your TV [w/Apple TV– more on that next…], from your computer, iPhone or iPod Touch.
  3. The re-birth [if you will] of Apple TV. He candidly spoke on the failure of Apple TV to”take the market by storm” as so many of Apple’s products have done in the past and then went on to speak on it’s new roll in the movie rental sector. It’s very interesting how it ties into the whole movie rental part of the equation and will be interesting to see if it catches on.
  4. Another BIGGY– MacBook Air. For those who want portability and are willing to give up a little performance, hard drive space and their optical drive, the MacBook Air could be your answer. It’s clearly, by far,  the thinnest laptop ever [he actually pulled it out of a large envelope] and it comes equipped with a long 5-hour battery life, 80GB hard drive, and a 1.6 Ghz processor standard. Totally, totally wireless w/bluetooth as well and features remote optical drive software. Their thinking behind this is that we basically only use the CD drive now for loading software and everything else is pretty much done wirelessly. Do we see the beginning of a revolution?

So anywho… yesterday was a good techno day for all of us Apple heads and people who like techno stuff. Oh that every day could be like this…


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