Wednesday, 12 October 2011

iPhone 4S packs Bluetooth 4.0 - no, you still can't beam anything over

   After a selective benchmark that only displayed the results where iPhone 4S excelled, Apple now tries to claim the title for "the first Bluetooth 4.0" phone. The FUD spread by Apple pretty much consists of obscure features such as collecting data from various sensors or connecting headsets, features that are available for everybody since bluetooth 1.0. Of course as with any bluetooth iteration there's lower power consumption and higher transfer rates - of course useful for phones that can actually beam data; so far the best bet is a jailbroken phone. It's unknown if Apple may allow sending files via iMessages to iOS only devices so Bluetooth is actually in the same status quo it's always been in on iOS.
   Unfortunately for Apple, the file transfer and the remote SIM access protocols are parts of the Bluetooth standard and with those missing it simply "ain't got no standard", just the same way iPhone doesn't really have USB but that is another story.

Kudos Apple for making the news and deceiving your fans all over again!

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Apple Siri-ous about copying Android, innovation nowhere to be found

  Samsung                      HTC                           iOS5         
  After succesfully replicating the Android notification system, Apple has made the next step to the voice control feature.
    The next "real hip" thing on every mobile gadgetry website you'll find will be Apple's "Siri", a voice recognition app that can make calls, record messages, play music, launch another application or google something up for you, nothing more than Vilingo could do since 2010 when it was released. I say nothing more because nothing less certainly doesn't apply. But as the process of copying the iPhone 2G from Samsung didn't really go too well, Siri too has a few shortcomings:
  • The voice quality on Siri is not quite there yet
  • It's harder to activate than the the double tap on Galaxy S2
  • It still seems to lack voice activation compared to Samsung's Galaxy series
  • It's only available in English and it can't recognize accents
You can check the ripoff after the break:

[iPhone jokes] Apple innovates again, are you SIRI-ous?

iPhone 4S benchmarks out: mixed results for the A5 CPU

   So the iPhone 4S benchmarks are out and it would seem they are nothing less than amazing. Unfortunately the graphics benchmark that was released by Anandtech earlier today is as synthetic as it gets; the tests used were "offscreen", in other words no image was rendered during the test. Offscreen means that the would-be-rendered image is HD but unfortunately none of the tests used an actual 720p output and monitor to verify the results.
   Should you want to play games on an external monitor iPhone 4S is expected to perform better thanks to the fact that the image is mirrored as the iPhone real HDMI output does not consist of a real HD 720p image as Apple kindly informs us:
Apple Digital AV Adapter mirrors exactly what you see on iPad 2 or iPhone 4S so that everyone in the room can enjoy it on your widescreen TV[...]
   Mirrored means that the screen image is actually cloned and scaled to 720p instead of having to be rendered as a second HD output. In this case most android devices suffer a larger performance drop while displaying a better quality output.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Sprint confirms our woes, won't take chances for iPhone 4S cheap plastic

Not even a bumper makes it 100% safe
    Sprint is voting thumbs-down on having its Total Equipment Protection plans available to the iPhone 4S, probably following the bad experience with iPhone 4. According to SprintFeed, the only choice is to purchase the AppleCare+ Protection Plan or go through a third party to have any protection from accidental damage. Hopefully this setup isn’t permanent, but we’re not going to hold our breath. Just as a reminder, that $99 AppleCare+ can only be added at the time of purchase. But ask yourself, what’s worse? Paying $99 (the price of an iPhone 4) upfront, or paying an extra $649.99 for a new 16GB iPhone 4S after dropping your phone?
   Meanwhile you could go for a device with gorilla glass, it's incredibly hard to scratch, almost impossible to break, it doesn't shatter like cheap plastic, it doesn't bend like aluminum. Wouldn't it be awesome if the most beautiful and important part on your phone would also be the most resistant one?

iPhone 4S: Antennagate, check! Brain damage, check!

iFixed nothing
    Apple claims that the iPhone 4S features a new antenna design, intended to prevent any risk of 'Antennagate' reoccurring. But did they really fix or innovate anything? Let's start with fixing things. In the mockup on the right you can see that by "not holding it right" you are shorting 3 of iPhone 4S's antennas and you will be jamming the forth one once the phone touches your ear.
   The 4S's new dual antennas can automatically switch when sending and receiving information, a trick Apple claims is "a first" for a mobile phone.
    We won't go into explaining the dangers of SAR and why most manufacturers place the antenna on the bottom of the phone, away from your brain. You should know though that at any given time the best working antenna on iPhone 4S will be the one on top since it's the only one not shorted, it's the one the device will choose for best signal. It's right there next to your gray matter where most of the SAR radiation will dissipate.

   Frølund Pedersen, professor at Aalborg University's Institute for Electronic Systems in Denmark and one of the big names involved in the events of Antennagate last time around, feels that Apple's latest iPhone might be treading on toes stems from patents he and his associates apparently sold to Samsung some years earlier.

At the iPhone 4S launch, CEO Tim C(r)ook and co were quoted as saying,
“Improving on the innovative stainless steel external, dual-antenna design of iPhone 4, iPhone 4S is the first phone to intelligently switch between two antennas to send and receive.

Pedersen disagrees, primarily with the fact that Apple dubbed this an 'innovation',

"When Apple says that it is new, it’s not true. It has been in use for very long. For example in the DECT cordless phones. Both in these and in some other phones“