Apple has received regulatory approval for a WLAN Authentication and Privacy Infrastructure (WAPI) compatible version of the iPhone. Engadget reports that the approved phone’s model number, A1303, suggests this is a WAPI version of the iPhone 3GS, instead of being a next-generation device. Currently, iPhones sold in China lack Wi-Fi capabilities, as Apple did not have a version with WAPI — China’s homegrown wireless networking technology — ready. It is unclear when the new handset will launch, or what, if any, pricing difference there may be between it and the version of the iPhone currently available from China Unicom.
ABC’s announced update to its ABC Player app for the iPad is now available. In addition to allowing video content to be streamed over a 3G data connection, the update also supports landscape orientation in all views and proper handling of the iPad’s orientation lock. Other improvements include more responsive player controls, better display of parental ratings and other bug fixes and stability enhancements. iLounge editors who have tested the update report impressive video quality over the 3G network with smooth playback and almost no pre-buffering time. The ABC Player service remains available to U.S. users only and is a free download from the U.S. App Store.
Pandora Media has released an update to its popular Pandora Radio streaming music application, adding native iPad support, album artwork and performance improvements. Now a Universal application, Pandora Radio 3.0.2 introduces an enhanced user interface for the iPad, displaying higher resolution album artwork and providing detailed background information on artists. The update also provides album artwork for iPhone and iPod touch users and improves audio streaming performance and support for older iPhone OS versions. Pandora Radio is available from the U.S. App Store as a free download.
Krypton has introduced its new Flex Case and Screen Armor accessories for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. The Flex Case is a form-fitting silicone case for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS offering push-through protection for the power and volume buttons, open access to all other ports and controls, and one of four graphic designs on the rear. It sells for $30. Krypton’s Screen Armor is a series of film screen protectors offering non-sticky application, an included microfiber cleaning cloth, and either a clear, anti-glare, mirror, or 360-degree privacy finish. It is available now and sells for $13-$25 depending on the finish.
Scosche has posted a video preview of its upcoming iKit in-vehicle iPad mount online. The iKit takes the place of a double-DIN radio inside the vehicle, using a standard mounting kit to provide secure installation. USB and 3.5mm auxiliary ports are available for audio input and for charging the iPad, and connect to the device using a supplied, specialized 30-pin cable. The iPad itself sits inside a cradle, which attaches to the vehicle mount using a ball joint system. Once installed, the iPad can be rotated from horizontal to vertical orientation. Scosche’s iKit in-vehicle mount for the Apple iPad is currently in development; pricing and release information has yet to be announced.
The winners of our Yamaha Earphone Giveaway have been announced. In the giveaway, 20 iLounge readers won a pair of Yamaha EPH-30 Earphones. Congratulations to all the winners! Don’t forget to enter our Vaja $100 Gift Code Giveaway, our Giveaway of the Month for May.
iLounge is pleased to announce the Vaja $100 Gift Code Giveaway. In our Giveaway of the Month for May, iLounge and Vaja are giving away five $100 Gift Codes good towards purchases made at VajaCases.com. To enter, simply fill out and submit the form on the giveaway page—the giveaway will end on May 31, 2010 at 11:59PM Pacific Time. Good luck!
Silicon Alley Insider reports that ABC is planning to release an update to its ABC Player app for the iPad that will allow video content to be streamed over a 3G data connection. Following the release of the iPad WiFi + 3G model last week iLounge discovered that the ABC Player app refused to deliver any video content when used over a 3G connection, responding with a pop-up notification advising users to “Please connect to a Wi-Fi network to use this application.” and that “Cellular networks are not supported at this time.” An ABC representative had previously told Silicon Alley Insider that the app had been designed to use Wi-Fi only “based on a variety of business and technical considerations” and it was theorized that licensing rights may have been the cause of any business issues, while the technical issues may have been due to the unavailability of lower-quality live video streams suitable for slower 3G networks. Regardless, these issues seem to now be resolved and ABC has already submitted its updated ABC Player application to the App Store, which will be available for download pending Apple’s review and approval. [via Mac Rumors]
Apple may be facing an antitrust inquiry over the company’s recent decision to ban apps made with cross-platform development tools from the App Store. Citing a person familiar with the matter, the New York Post reports that the U.S. Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission are in negotiations over which body will oversee the inquiry into Apple’s policy, with the decision only “days away.” According to the report, the inquiry will focus on whether or not the policy stifles competition by forcing developers to choose between building apps that only run on iPhone OS devices or apps that are able to run on a variety of competing operating systems, including those from Google, Microsoft, and Research In Motion. The report also points out that the launch of an inquiry does not mean action will be taken against Apple, instead serving to determine whether a full-scale investigation will be needed; Apple could be subpoenaed for further information should an investigation be necessary.
If you received an error message during the sign-up process for AT&T service on your iPad with Wi-Fi + 3G, you might want to check your credit card bill. At least one iLounge editor has seen his card double-billed for one month of unlimited service after the initial sign-up process hit a snag. It is unclear how many iPad with Wi-Fi + 3G users may have experienced a similar situation; if you’ve had trouble with your AT&T iPad billing, please share your stories in the comments below.
iFixit has posted a full teardown of the iPad with Wi-Fi + 3G, finding several noticable differences between it and its Wi-Fi-only counterpart. The 3G model uses an Infineon PMB 8878 X-Gold baseband chip, the same as found in the iPhone 3GS, as well as a Broadcom A-GPS which is found on the communicaitons board, partially explaining why the Wi-Fi only model lacks GPS functionality. Unsurprisingly, the 3G model houses new antenna assemblies for cellular and GPS connectivity; these join the antennas previously found in the iPad with Wi-Fi for Bluetooth and Wi-Fi communication. Judging by the teardown photographs, it appears that Apple used a microSIM instead of a full-sized SIM card in order to fit the component between the side of the unit and the large internal battery. Overall, iFixit notes that while the inside of the iPad with Wi-Fi + 3G is “not nearly as barren” as the Wi-Fi-only model, it’s still “not jam-packed.”
Apple has announced that it sold its one millionth iPad on Friday, 28 days after the device’s introduction on April 3. In addition to unit purchases, iPad users have already downloaded over 12 million apps from the App Store and over 1.5 million ebooks from the iBookstore. Notably, the announcement also reveals that there are now over 5,000 apps for the iPad in the App Store. “One million iPads in 28 days—that’s less than half of the 74 days it took to achieve this milestone with iPhone,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “Demand continues to exceed supply and we’re working hard to get this magical product into the hands of even more customers.”