Tuesday, June 23, 2009

iPhone News

We note that over one million iPhone 3GS units were sold in just its first three days and take a quick look at iPhone world..

Three Book App Moments
OUP has made 11 of its reference dictionaries available for the first time on the iPhone and iTouch Apps at £8.99 each. They are searchable, have unlimited bookmarking and you can email the definitions to friends.

The available titles are: Oxford Dictionary of Accounting; Oxford Dictionary of Biology; Oxford Dictionary of Business & Management; Oxford Dictionary of Chemistry; Oxford Dictionary of Computing; Oxford Dictionary of Finance & Banking; Oxford Dictionary of Law; Oxford Concise Medical Dictionary; Oxford Dictionary of Music; Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy; Oxford Dictionary of Politics.

In another launch IDW Publishing is a new line of digital comic apps allowing fans to download comics directly to their iPhone or iPod Touch. The 12 new movie-related digital comics are a must-read for all TRANSFORMERS fan, setting the stage for the upcoming TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN film. The iPhone comics are supported with a custom landing page on the iTunes store and feature panel-by-panel viewing, easy to use controls, such as “swipe” navigation, and a convenient table of contents function. These come on the back the 40 digital comics, such as Star Trek: Countdown that IDW have already created.

After reference and comics we also note that The Audiobooks app has captured the number one Apple's free App spot for the books category. The app introduces a catalogue of 1,800 free audiobooks to iPhone and iPod Touch users and potentially offering a audiobook long overdue moment.

The catalogue of nearly 10,000 hours of listening is to be applauded as it uses recordings from the LibriVox Project, which is a collection of volunteer-read audio books from the public domain.

Market News
Meanwhile anyone who doubted that Apple had created the winner of the smartphone pack need to look no further than the news that a survey, by market research firm Crowd Science, found that 40% smartphone users who don't have an iPhone want one next time round and 80% upgrade to the next Apple device next time. Interestingly only 14% of non-BlackBerry users would switch to a BlackBerry device for their next mobile phone. According to Gartner Apple has doubled its share of the worldwide smartphone market in the first quarter to 10.8% from 5.3% a year ago. Another interest note from the Crowd Science study was that 71% of smartphone subscribers use them for both personal and business purposes, with only 3% using them just for business.

The Downside
One downside appears the news that all the exclusive carriers appear to wantto charge for tethering, or being able to use the iPhone as a mobile modem for the laptop. Some say its hard or almost impossible for them to detect and others point users to simple way to break it via benm.at. Tethering is an obvious benefit to mobile people and was made available as part of OS 3.0 so it seems harsh that the carriers are using to raise revenues and create a barrier to buy when it would be a major plus if it was free within the unlimited Internet access plans.

The other downside appears to be the news that the Interim Federal Communications Commission chair Michael Copps is calling for an examination of exclusive handset deals to establish if they are restricting innovation. US Senator Kerry wrote to the FCC suggesting that such deals risk giving too much power to dominant networks, with particular reference to the iPhone and AT&T.

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