After spending big on its star-studded Super Bowl commercial, Samsung is planning to dominate your TV during tomorrow night’s Academy Awards. The company has purchased six commercial spots for the Oscars, though you won’t be seeing a repeat of the Seth Rogen / Paul Rudd ad. Instead, Samsung intends to tell a running story throughout the evening, with each of the six commercials fitting in as its own piece of the narrative. According to Ad Age, the campaign will follow a video game publisher as it attempts to release a title called Unicorn Apocalypse. Legendary Hollywood director Tim Burton will reportedly be appearing in the final, 90-second ad — an appropriate fit given the occasion. Beyond that, we’ll just have to wait and see what…
A long-delayed set of anti-piracy rules could be put in place early next week. Sources have told both The Daily Dot nd TorrentFreak that five major US ISPs — AT&T, Verizon, Time Warner Cable, Comcast, and Cablevision — will roll out their Copyright Alert System on Monday in a partnership with the entertainment industry. Also referred to as the “six strikes” program, the CAS is a graduated alert system that starts with “educational notices;” if ISPs continue to find copyright infringement, they’ll send further reminders and finally throttle or temporarily block internet browsing. It’s distinct from more controversial “three strikes” proposals that would cut off users from the internet completely.
According to TorrentFreak, Verizon…
Week three of Mobile Nations Fitness Month is underway, which means we have winners to announce for the first two weeks of the February! Everyone who participates and tries to make some positive change in their life is a winner in my book, but without further ado, let’s see who our contest prize winners are!
Week 1 – Stepping up contest
$20 iTunes gift certificates
Week 1 – Exercise MY way contest
$100 iTunes gift certificate
Week 2 – Eating Clean contest
$20 iTunes gift certificates
Week 2 – Nutrition MY Way contest
$100 iTunes gift certificates
Congratulations everyone! If you won a prize in the first half of Fitness Month, we will be in contact in the next day or so with more information on claiming your prize. If you didn’t win, there is still plenty of time to enter over in the forums for the daily/weekly prizes, plus we’re giving away a FitBit right here on the blogs!
We’ve gotten a ton of feeback this morning about the iTunes Store or App Store being down, inaccessible, or just plain ornery this morning. Some of us here at iMore can get to it fine, others can’t get to it at all. Apple’s System Status tools shows an issue over the last hour or so:
Multiple Store Services – 9:40 AM – 11:50 AM – Some users affected
Users may have been unable to make purchases in the iTunes Store, Mac App Store, and App Store.
Which sounds like it’s over, but still seems to be lingering for some.
There’s not much we can do at this point except hope Apple’s fixed it, and those fixes will get everyone back in and enjoying their content and games asap. In the meantime, let me know if you had any problems, or if you’re still having problems.
Apple has just released iOS 6.1.2 to address some small issues. That doesn’t mean that an update can’t render a jailbreak useless. Fortunately planetbeing is reporting that evasi0n appears to still be working under iOS 6.1.2. Obviously, you’ll still need to hold off on updating until evasi0n is updated to recognize iOS 6.1.2 as a supported firmware.
Not yet able to test all devices, but it’s looking good for 6.1.2. iPad mini wi-fi and iPhone 5 are still jailbreakable.
According to planetbeing, even though the iPhone 5 and iPad mini have been confirmed to be working with evasi0n on iOS 6.1.2, more testing is still needed before the evad3rs can release an update to support the firmware. This also doesn’t mean you should update to iOS 6.1.2 right now, unless you’re willing to lose your jailbreak for the time being.
If you’re jailbroken, we recommend waiting for evasi0n to be thoroughly tested and updated. After that, remember you must do a restore and update through iTunes and not use the over-the-air (OTA) software update feature to update to iOS 6.1.2 or you could run into issues while trying to jailbreak.
Earlier in the week I compared iPhone Twitter app timeline views, and since fair is fair, it seemed only right that I do the same for iPad Twitter apps. And again, Twitter’s cold war with client developers notwithstanding, there’s some amazing investment to be found here. Now, while the iPad doesn’t enjoy the the breadth of Twitter apps, due to the larger screen there’s an even better opportunity for depth. Instead of the 15 + 3 I found for the iPhone, here are 8 + 1 for the iPad.
Gridded up, there’s a lot of variety, from more expansive versions of essentially the same iPhone interfaces, to bold takes on what’s capable at tablet scale. Like before, I used the exact same feed point for each client, with the exception of the legacy app at the bottom. It includes an @mention so that we can see how, if at all, a client highlights or otherwise distinguishes that type of post. I also got rid of ads, wherever possible, to keep things clean. However, I didn’t open popovers for basic controls, because they aren’t omnipresent parts of the layout.
Here then, in order, from top left to bottom right, are:
- Twitter, Twitterrific
- Tweetbot, Tweetglass
- Twittelator, Osfoora HD
- Echofon Pro, TweetCaster
- Tweetie (discontinued)
Yes, once again, the timeline view is only one aspect of a Twitter app, and can’t properly address features and flourishes like gestures, notifications and filters, parallax image embeds, sorting, and other ways some of the clients have innovative and provided extra enjoyment and value. We’ll be covering differentiators in a future comparison.
And if you want DVD-style extras, and a peak behind the scenes of your favorite Twitter apps, check out:
- Debug 1: Loren Brichter and Tweetie
- Debug 2: Paul Haddad and Tweetbot
- Iterate 35: Gedeon Maheux, David Lanham and Twitterrific 5
- Debug 5: Craig Hockenberry, Sean Heber, and Twitterrific
Meanwhile, look over the designs above and let me know what you think. Which Twitter apps do you use on your iPad, and are they the same ones that appeal to you most in the comparison above? Any of the timelines attractive enough they encourage you check out an alternative app?
And since this all began with Phil Nickinson’s Android Twitter app timelines comparison, how do you think they compare to Twitter apps for Android tablets?
President Obama will be holding a townhall follow-up to his State of the Union speech on Google+ at 4:50pm ET today. We’ll be covering the speech in separate posts. Readers are invited to watch the “Hangout” live in the YouTube video below:
Absent fact, rumors run rampant. It’s only natural. Secrecy breeds curiosity, and huge fall releases of almost every product in Apple’s lineup leads to speculation about what, if anything, they have left for the new year. The broad strokes are probably obvious — there’ll be new phones and new tablets, but this year we’re seeing renewed rumors of bigger and less expensive phones, and of watches and television projects as well. Like any year, we also have major newspapers publishing leaks, and financial analysts reporting nonsense. So what can be made of all of this?
Last night I took a look at the idea of an iWatch, and the difference between it being an iPhone- or iPad-level business, and an Apple TV-style hobby. The iWatch project — regardless of how the device is eventually named or marketed — sounds like its a go. We haven’t heard anything specific about feature sets or timelines yet, but we have heard it’s moving forward.
If the entire project sounds like a dumb idea to you, however, just remember how dumb Apple phones, tablets, mini tablets, and set top boxes sounded to many back before — and even after — they were first announced.
Conversely, it doesn’t sound like there’s much if any movement on an iTV, or actual Apple television panel. What was in the lab remains in the lab, what was being explored is still being explored, but the realities of that market haven’t changed.
iPhone 5S, bigger iPhone, and less expensive iPhone
iPhone 5S — or whatever Apple ends up calling the S-class internal update to the existing iPhone 5 platform — sounds like it’s well underway and will once again be the major phone product from Apple in 2013, just as the iPhone 5 was last year, the iPhone 4S was the year before, and so on.
With the iPhone 5S keeping the focus this year, the bigger iPhone sounds like it’s still more prototype than product. Last month I did the math on how Apple could scale the existing iPhone 5 platform to a 5-inch form factor, and followed up with how the interface would scale to 5-inches with it. Technically, it all seems solid. In terms of go-to-market, however, it doesn’t sound imminent.
The less expensive iPhone seems like it’s been on the drawing board for years, but so far Apple’s chosen to reduce the price of previous iPhone models instead of introducing new, deliberately less expensive ones. Massive deals with carriers in emerging markets, or the prospect of reducing the iPhone 5 to cheap or free on contract, and the pressure that puts on margins and ASP (average sales price) could be what ultimately causes Apple to change strategies and introduce the less expensive model. Like with the bigger iPhone, the way for Apple to get to a less expensive iPhone seems all worked out, it’s the timing that’s in question.
iPad 5 and iPad mini 2
To bring the full-sized iPad casing in line with the iPad mini’s, and to bring the iPad mini display up to the full size iPad’s Retina quality, will take improvements to the efficiencies of the screens, the LED that lights them, the chipsets that drive them, and the batteries that power them. All of those are coming, it’s just a question of when they get here.
If you want to imagine the iPad 5, look at the mockup I posted last month (above), or the mockup at the top of this post, or picture a 9.7-inch screen with an iPad mini casing, making it effectively a package that fits halfway between. If you want to imagine a Retina iPad mini, picture the existing iPad mini with a display as dense as the iPhone 5.
Achieving displays that dense in casings that thin and light is beyond non-trivial, so if you even think about calling them “boring”, please hand in your gadget-lovers card at the door on your way out…
2013 and beyond
Even with the massive updates last year, 2013 looks poised to hold its own. Even if some of the updates seem obvious and iterative, there’s a chance for new, ecosystem expanding, perhaps breakthrough new products in the pipeline as well.
Sexy next generation hardware aside, I still feel like the next couple of years need to be more about iOS 7 and 8, iCloud and Siri, than iOS devices, and even given the recent management changes and turnovers, people sound excited about not just the atoms but the bits as well.
That’s a good sign.
Earlier today a financial analyst “reported” that Apple would be holding an Apple TV SDK event sometime in March. We didn’t link to it because financial analysts have a lousy track record when it comes to Apple predictions, and whomever they’re writing for, it’s not media and it’s not customers, and I couldn’t think of a timely enough way to poke fun at it. However, Jim Dalrymple of The Loop, who has an excellent track record on sorting accurate rumors from nonsensical rubbish, has weighed in.
No spoilers, tap/click on over.
Source: The Loop
(The only thing I’ll add is that Apple appears to be continuing their channel partnership strategy when it comes to both the Apple TV and Siri, and while SDK and API can replace channel partnerships, they can seldom co-exist — there are few deals to be brokered when anyone and everyone can make their own app.)
I love it when great debates spark great opinion pieces — I already know what I think, I want to find out what everyone else thinks! — and when great designers like Louie Mantia and Dave Wiskus put font to screen to express their views on important topics like trends in iOS app design, I’m going to pay attention.
Mantia, for his part, is tired of people confusing and conflating skeuomorphism. From Mantia.me:
Skeuomorphism is a word that everyone disagrees on what it means (or suggests it means all of the above), but is often used to discriminate apps that use realistic textures for the sake of joy, beauty, and delight. When you’re talking about an app that uses realistic textures, call that “theming” or “skinning” because before last year, that’s what we called it, and that’s what it is.
Wiskus is tired of people complaining about the conversation itself. From Better Elevation:
This is a rare moment in any industry, and we should be savoring our opportunity to make such a significant impact. Wherever you sit on the issue, you should be passionate, you should have strong opinions, and you should want to participate-or at least follow along and consider the arguments. Because if you don’t care, why are you doing this job? If a conversation about design is enough to make you complain, is this even a career you enjoy?
Both pieces are fraught with awesome. Read them. And if you haven’t already, listen to both Mantia and Wiskus discussing just these very issues on the lastest episode of Iterate.
Source: Mantia.me, Better Elevation