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Adobe Flash manager speaks out on iPhone SDK terms

Following a change in Apple’s Phone developer SDK terms that outlawed intermediary, cross-compatibility tools from iPhone apps, an Adobe employee has responded to the new restrictions. Specifically, section 3.3.1 of the new iPhone developer terms states that “[a]pplications that link to Documented APIs through an intermediary translation or compatibility layer or tool,” such as Adobe’s Packager for iPhone that ships with Flash Professional CS5, “are prohibited.” Mike Chambers, Adobe’s Principal Product Manager for developer relations for the Flash Platform, says that “[d]evelopers should be prepared for Apple to remove existing content and applications (100+ on the store today) created with Flash CS5 from the iTunes store.”

Concerning the future of the company’s Flash-to-iPhone-app software, Chambers claims that the company “will still be shipping the ability to target the iPhone and iPad in Flash CS5. However, we are not currently planning any additional investments in that feature.” Chambers adds that he doesn’t have any plans to update or maintain his existing iPhone applications, as he thinks “the closed system that Apple is trying to create is bad for the industry, developers and ultimately consumers, and that is not something that I want to actively promote.” A recent report suggested that Adobe may be considering legal action against Apple over its refusal to allow Flash to run on its iPhone OS devices, and this recent decision to ban iPhone apps made using Flash software. [via Digital Arts]

Princeton identifies iPad networking issue

  • April 20, 2010
  • iPad

Princeton University has published a document outlining the iPad’s wireless networking issue that has led the school to block several of the devices from its network. According to the document, the iPad sometimes fails to release its IP address within the time allotted by the school’s Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) server, posing a potential problem for other devices that are assigned the same IP address by the server once the iPad’s lease has expired. Specifically, the problem is reproducible by allowing the iPad to lock its screen before its DHCP lease renewal time, and allowing it to remain in that state until after the lease has expired. The university is currently working with Apple to provide technical data which may be used to resolve the issue; it is also working with individual iPad owners, pointing them to a workaround for the issue. To date, Princeton has blocked only nine iPads from its network, some of which have since been unblocked; of the 41 iPads on the campus network, 25 have exhibited the issue.

Apple ships iPad Camera Connection Kit

Apple has begun to ship its iPad Camera Connection Kit to customers who pre-ordered the accessory. Unlike other Apple iPad accessories, the Camera Connection Kit wasn’t available for pre-order until March 29, and was listed as shipping in “late April;” a shipment notification received by iLounge claims the dongle set will arrive by April 22. The iPad Camera Connection Kit includes two separate 30-pin connectors, one with an SD card slot, and the other with a USB port that can be used to attach most digital cameras. A recent report claimed that the USB-to-iPad connector may also provide support for USB audio devices, although this has yet to be confirmed. For more information on the Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit, see our First Look article.

iPad Wi-Fi + 3G to arrive on April 30

  • April 20, 2010
  • iPad

Apple has announced that iPad Wi-Fi + 3G models will be delivered to U.S. customers who pre-ordered in time for “late April” delivery on April 30. The new models will also be available at Apple retail stores the same day beginning at 5:00 p.m. As with the iPad Wi-Fi, Apple retail stores will offer a free Personal Setup service to each customer who buys an iPad Wi-Fi + 3G at the store, including helping them to setup email and load apps. Apart from selling for $130 more than their Wi-Fi-only counterparts, the iPad Wi-Fi + 3G models are also 0.1 pounds heavier, feature a prominent black strip at the top of back plate for antenna access, offer up to nine hours of web surfing over 3G, and are slightly larger than the Wi-Fi-only models.

New iPad 3G pre-orders being pushed to May 7

  • April 19, 2010
  • iPad

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According to Apple’s online store, new pre-orders of the iPad 3G will not ship by the end of April. The store’s iPad page lists new Wi-Fi + 3G orders as shipping by May 7, while the already-released Wi-Fi models are shipping in 5-7 business days. Apple has been accepting pre-orders for the iPad 3G since it opened orders on March 12, but up until this point, all 3G pre-orders had been expected to ship later this month. Apple recently began emailing customers who pre-ordered an iPad 3G, confirming that their devices would ship in “late April.”

Apple confirms late April iPad 3G delivery

  • April 19, 2010
  • iPad

Apple has started sending out emails to customers with iPad 3G pre-orders, reassuring them that their device will ship later this month. The email reads, “Thank you for your recent order of the magical and revolutionary iPad 3G. We would like to confirm that your order will be shipped in late April as communicated at the time you placed your order. You will receive a confirmation notice when your order has shipped.” Notably, this is the first time Apple has openly referred to the 3G-equipped model as the “iPad 3G” instead of the “iPad with Wi-Fi + 3G;” it is unclear whether Apple will begin using this new name in a broader sense.

Stranded Norwegian PM using iPad to govern

  • April 16, 2010
  • iPad

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Norwegian prime minister Jens Stoltenberg has been using an iPad to manage the situation in his home country as he is currently stuck in New York, due to the volcanic cloud from an Icelandic volcano that has grounded many flights into and out of Europe. “There are good means of communication, I have close contacts with my office all the times, and there are a lot of activities in Norway where we try to reduce the consequences of the volcano in Norway,” Stoltenberg told CNN. “It’s very normal for a PM to travel abroad so this is not different from the other travels, it’s just lasts some days more than expected. We have the internet, the mobile phone. I also use an iPad, which is excellent.” [Photo via Flickr]

Some colleges rejecting iPad due to network, security concerns

  • April 16, 2010
  • iPad

Some US universities are rejecting the iPad from their campus networks due to connection and security issues. The Wall Street Journal reports that both George Washington University and Princeton University have disallowed usage of the iPad due to security issues. GWU said its wireless network’s security features don’t allow the iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch to connect to its network, while Princeton said it has proactively blocked about 20% of the devices after noticing malfunctions that could cause problems for the entire system. In addition, Cornell University has reportedly seen connectivity issues and is also worried about heavy bandwidth usage. Cornell’s information technology director, Steve Schuster, told the WSJ that the school is “working to ensure the iPad does not have devastating consequences to our network,” adding that when the iPhone arrived on campus it overwhelmed the network’s bandwidth capabilities. Despite these challenges, at least two schools — Seton Hill University in Pennsylvania and George Fox University in Oregon — plan on giving every incoming student either an iPad and a MacBook or a choice between the two when they arrive on the campuses this fall.

Art Authority creates a virtual art museum on the iPad

Open Door Networks has released the iPad version of its Art Authority application. Expanding upon the iPhone version released in February, Art Authority for the iPad takes advantage of the larger screen and enhanced UI of the iPad to provide an impressive interactive virtual museum experience. Works are displayed within the app framed and hung on textured walls accompanied by titles, dates, and other information. Tapping on a work provides a pop-over for users to access additional details on the selected work or artist or view other related items from the period and artists’ influences. As with the original iPhone version, a customizable full-screen slideshow is also available with images presented in higher resolutions appropriate for the iPad. Works can also be saved to the iPad photo library to be used as home screen or lock screen wallpapers or shared with others. The application provides access to an online database of over 40,000 paintings and sculptures and over 1,000 western artists across all historical periods. Art Authority for the iPad is available from the App Store for $10.

Orange, O2, Vodafone to support iPad 3G in UK

  • April 16, 2010
  • iPad

Current iPhone carriers Orange, O2, and Vodafone have announced support for the iPad with Wi-Fi + 3G in the United Kingdom. All three companies will be offering dedicated monthly tariffs for the device, although exact details have yet to be revealed. Orange said it will also be offering service in France, Spain, and Switzerland, in addition to the UK. Earlier this week, Apple announced that it was postponing the international launch of the iPad until the end of May due to “surprisingly strong US demand;” international pre-orders will begin on May 10th. [via Engadget]

Direct-to-iPad rentals don’t transfer to iTunes

Movies rented from the iTunes Store using the iPad cannot be transferred back to users’ iTunes libraries, iLounge has discovered, and must be viewed solely on the iPad. When Apple introduced movie rentals as a new iTunes Store feature, it noted that movies rented using iTunes on a computer or on a portable device could be transferred to and from each other during the duration of the 30-day rental period. Movies rented from a computer version of iTunes can still be transferred to the iPad or any other Apple device, and of course, items purchased rather than rented using the iPad transfer back to iTunes in the same manner as with the iPod, iPhone, and Apple TV.

Unlike the Apple TV, however, the iTunes Store does not provide any notification of this restriction when renting a movie on the iPad; the information is hidden unless the user chooses the “Learn About Rentals” option, or looks within the iTunes Store Terms of Service—it is similarly buried in a just-published Apple KnowledgeBase Article on Viewing and downloading HD content on iPad. Although similar to restrictions for the Apple TV, this differs from renting movies directly on iPhone or iPod touch devices, which can still be transferred back to iTunes during the rental period.

ABC Player for iPad streams 650,000 television shows

The Wall Street Journal reports that the free ABC Player app for the iPad has been downloaded 205,000 times and used to watch 650,000 television episodes in the 10 days since the iPad’s release. According to ABC this has in turn generated “several million” ad impressions, and Disney-ABC television President Anne Sweeney indicates the network is pleased with the initial results. The ABC Player application allows iPad users to watch free, ad-supported television content on the iPad with five 30-second ads presented within each hour of programming in a manner similar to broadcast television. A direct link is also provided for each episode to allow iPad users to purchase the ad-free version from the iTunes Store. This coming fall ABC expects to begin providing more interactive advertising similar to that already found on its web player and eventually expects to allow affiliates the ability to sell specific advertising that would only be seen by users in their specific local markets. The ABC Player app is available from the App Store as a free download.

Israel bans iPad imports

  • April 14, 2010
  • iPad

Israeli newspaper Haaretz reports that the Communications Ministry in Israel has blocked the import of iPads to that country, directing customs officers to confiscate any iPads that are brought in from the U.S. According to ministry officials the iPad has not received the approval required for wireless devices to operate in Israel, the problem being that its wireless technology is “not compatible with Israeli standards.” Specifically, FCC regulations allow Wi-Fi devices sold in the U.S. to broadcast at higher power levels than are permitted in Europe and Israel, potentially preventing U.S. iPads from being approved for use in Israel. The ministry has requested information from Apple’s Israeli distributor, iDigital, to determine whether it will be able to approve importing iPads under Israeli communications regulations. [via Daring Fireball]

Apple delays international iPad launch

Apple announced this morning that it will be posponing the international launch of the iPad until the end of May. Citing “surprisingly strong US demand,” in a statement released today Apple indicated that it expects demand for the device to exceed its available supply “over the next several weeks” and that they have already taken a large number of U.S. pre-orders for iPad 3G models which remain on track for delivery by the end of April. The iPad was originally scheduled to also launch outside of the U.S. at the end of April, however Apple now plans to announce international pricing and begin taking online pre-orders in other countries on Monday, May 10th for delivery by the end of May.

Apple claims ownership of ‘Pad’ trademark

Apple has begun banning App Store applications that contain the term ‘pad’ in the app name. Previously, the company contacted Jesse Waites, maker of ContactPad, to inform him that an update to his application would be rejected because “it [was] inappropriately using ‘Pad’ in the application name.” The company also included its product work mark guidelines, which states that the developer can use the mark “in a referential phrase such as ‘runs on,’ ‘for use with,’ ‘for,’ or ‘compatible with.’” Following Waites’ rejection, Chris Ostmo, developer of journalPad and journalPad Bible edition, received a similar notice from Apple regarding his apps’ names, and emailed Apple CEO Steve Jobs explaining his position on the matter. 9 to 5 Mac reports that Ostmo claimed to have “spent tens of thousands of dollars” on marketing and media exposure for the two apps, both of which will need to be renamed.

Jobs, in a typically brief response, wrote simply, “Its [sic] just common sense to not use another company’s trademarks in your app name.” Curiously, Apple’s Copyright and Trademark Guidelines page, linked to in the initial email to Waites, makes no mention of a “Pad” trademark, and neither does the company’s official Trademark listing. Judging by the language in both App Store correspondence emails and in Jobs’ response, however, it appears that Apple considers the “Pad” trademark to be under its ownership, and intends to defend it.

Adobe to sue Apple over Flash exclusion?

Adobe may be preparing to file a lawsuit against Apple over its refusal to allow Flash to run on its iPhone OS devices, and its recent decision to ban apps from the App Store created using cross-compilers such as Adobe’s Packager for iPhone OS, which debuted with Flash CS5. Citing source close to Adobe, IT World reports that the App Store policy change was the “last straw” for Adobe, despite the company’s refusal to talk about possible legal action. “We are aware of the new SDK language and are looking into it,” said Adobe spokesperson Wiebke Lips. “We continue to develop our Packager for iPhone OS technology, which we plan to debut in Flash CS5.” Adobe released Flash CS5 on April 12.

Colorware offering custom colored iPads

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Colorware is now offering its custom coloring service for the Apple iPad. Customers can choose from a variety of solid, metallic, and pearlescent colors for the device’s back plate, logo, and home button. New 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB Wi-Fi models are available for customization; the company is offering a mail-in service for current iPad owners, as well. Colorware’s new custom colored iPads are shipping in about three weeks from the time of the order and sell for $910-$1110; the send-in service costs $410, and takes roughly three weeks once the iPad is received by the company.

AppStar Games releases first title, The Iron Horse

AppStar Games, the new game publisher recently founded by acclaimed game designers David Crane and Garry Kitchen has released its first game title. Released initially for the iPad platform only, The Iron Horse is a railroad-themed game where players must build trains by tapping the screen to connect cars as they line up. The game speeds up as the player progresses and higher point values are earned for more accurate timing in connecting train cars. The game includes cinematic widescreen graphics of the Americana landscape and numerous classic train designs. The Iron Horse is available from the App Store for $2 for the iPad; an iPhone and iPod touch version is coming soon.

Laminar Research releases X-Plane for iPad

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Laminar Research has released an iPad version of its acclaimed X-Plane application. X-Plane for iPad combines many of the features of the X-Plane series of iPhone apps into a single application; the iPad version includes all 9 regions and 13 aircraft from the existing iPhone applications with 12 more regions and 27 more aircraft listed as “Coming Soon.” Users can choose to fly a wide range of different aircraft types including a Cessna 172, Boeing 747, F-22, ASK21 glider, Blackhawk Helicopter or even a Space Shuttle. Due to the larger iPad screen and more powerful CPU on the iPad, X-Plane can now display a full virtual cockpit view and more detailed, higher-resolution aircraft textures and terrain, including 3D buildings. Virtual cockpit interfaces also provide more detailed and completely interactive controls. X-Plane for iPad is available from the App Store for $10.

Apple iAd: iPhone OS 4 ad platform offers devs 60% of revenue

During Apple’s iPhone OS 4 event today, Steve Jobs announced the creation of a new mobile advertising platform which will be integrated directly into the iPhone OS. The new platform, named iAd, is designed to allow developers to easily add in-app advertising to their applications by supplying ads through a centralized advertising network without having to implement their own solution. Apple will take care of selling and hosting the ads, providing developers with the industry standard 60% of advertising revenue.

Jobs explained that Apple wants to provide incentives for developers to keep free apps as free, but that ads based on search have not been as successful on mobile devices as they have on the desktop as users spend most of their time in apps rather than searching in a web browser. He went on the explain that the average iPhone user spends 30 minutes each day using applications, and supplying even 1 ad every 3 minutes would equate to 10 ads per day. Jobs notes that with 100 million iPhone users, this presents one billion ad opportunities per day within the iPhone community.  Apple is also looking to improve the quality and accessibility of in-app advertising, with more interaction than typical web ads and allowing users to view advertising without being taken out of the application that they are currently using, thereby encouraging users to click on ads without having to worry about leaving the current app.

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