AT&T has started selling the iPhone 4 both online and at its retail stores, leading to another round of lengthy lines for the popular new handset. Mac Rumors reports that some lines are more than one hundred customers long, and a search of Twitter shows a large number of people in lines across the country. AT&T was originally expected to offer the iPhone 4 on launch day, announcing only two days prior that it was pushing its walk-in sales launch back to June 29 due to limited supply. AT&T is offering the iPhone 4 on a first-come, first-serve basis.
A number of iPhone 4 owners are experiencing a couple of new bugs unrelated to the ongoing reception issues. Over three hundred replies have been logged on one Apple discussion board thread dealing with a proximity sensor issue in which the iPhone 4 prematurely activates the screen, leading to inadvertent button presses and even accidental hang-ups. Another lengthy thread deals with a problem where the Camera app crashes immediately after opening. In both cases, it is unclear whether a software update will be able to fix the issue, or whether a hardware replacement will be necessary for those affected. [via AppleInsider | Mercury News]
Apple has posted its new television ad for the iPhone 4 online. Based heavily on a video shown during the company’s keynote address at WWDC, the minute-long spot focuses solely on the iPhone 4’s FaceTime video calling feature, and shows a number of different people using FaceTime in different ways to communicate. As it was during the keynote, the video is accompanied by the song “When You’re Smiling” by Louis Armstrong. Apple’s new iPhone 4 television ad can be viewed on the company’s website. [via Daring Fireball]
The component costs of the new 16GB iPhone 4 are roughly $188, according to research firm iSuppli. Based on their own teardown, iSuppli estimates that the iPhone 4’s high-resolution 3.5-inch “Retina display” is its most expensive component, costing an estimated $28.50. According to BusinessWeek, iSuppli estimates that the phone’s A4 processor costs $10.75, the gyroscope chip $2.60, and the accelerometer $0.65. “Over the years, the iPhone has generally tended to hover in the $170-to -$180 cost range because Apple seems to be trying to hit some kind of budget,” Kevin Keller, who helped conduct the iSuppli teardown, told BusinessWeek in an interview. Notably, iSuppli’s estimate does not include costs such as labor, shipping, advertising, research and development, or patent licensing.
Apple has posted a new support document explaining how to configure a firewall or security software to enable iPhone 4 FaceTime video chats over Wi-Fi. The document claims that while FaceTime will “just work” on most Wi-Fi networks, the feature may fail on some networks protected by a firewall. According to the document, port forwarding must be enabled for ports 53, 80, 443, 4080, 5223, and 16393-16472 (UDP) for FaceTime to function correctly on firewall-protected networks. For all other Wi-Fi related issues, Apple refers users to its general Wi-Fi troubleshooting document.
Due to the massive popularity of the iPhone 4, Apple’s shipment estimate for new online orders of the handset has been pushed to three weeks. It took less than 24 hours for Apple to sell through its launch-day allotment of iPhone 4 units online, pushing the estimated ship date back to July 2; hours later, the date was pushed back again, to July 14. In a brief statement included in the company’s announcement of 1.7 million iPhone 4 units sold in the first three days, Apple CEO apologized to customers who were turned away because of limited stock; despite the supply issues, Apple is on track to launch the phone in an additional 18 countries by the end of July. [via AllThingsD]
Apple has announced that it sold more than 1.7 million iPhone 4 units from Thursday, June 24 through Saturday, June 26. “This is the most successful product launch in Apple’s history,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “Even so, we apologize to those customers who were turned away because we did not have enough supply.” The iPhone 4 is available now in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, and Japan, and will be available in an additional 18 countries—Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland—by the end of July.
Apple is offering new iPhone 4 users a dedicated toll-free hotline for them to call to test the FaceTime feature of their new handsets. Mobiture reports that calling 1-888-FACETIME and instigating a FaceTime call allows users to video chat with an Apple representative who can tell the caller how to use the feature and offer advanced tips. The service is available from 8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. Central Time; Wi-Fi is, for obvious reasons, required for the service. [via Engadget]
Apple has issued a statement on the reception issues some iPhone 4 users are reporting when holding the device in their left hands, with their palms bridging the small gap between the upper and lower steel plates. According to Engadget, Apple said, “Gripping any mobile phone will result in some attenuation of its antenna performance, with certain places being worse than others depending on the placement of the antennas. This is a fact of life for every wireless phone. If you ever experience this on your iPhone 4, avoid gripping it in the lower left corner in a way that covers both sides of the black strip in the metal band, or simply use one of many available cases.” Notably, a large portion of Apple’s promotional material for the phone up to this point has featured people holding the phone in the exact same manner, and while the service changes do not appear to be as severe as the loss in service “bar” indicators suggests, the issue is gaining media attention and could become a larger problem should it become more widespread.
The Icon Factory has released a major update to its popular Twitter client. Twitterrific 3.0 merges the previous separate iPhone and iPad versions into a single universal app for both platforms and adds support for iOS 4 fast app switching and interface optimizations for the iPhone 4 Retina display. Other new features and improvements include VoiceOver accessibility for the visually impaired, a light appearance theme, OAuth authentication and tweet integration for media upload services, new “Relationship” information on the user profile screen and a simplified and friendlier user interface for iPhone users. The update also fixes problems with shortening very long URLs and preserving draft tweets when network problems occur. Twitterrific 3.0 is available from the App Store as a free ad-supported version—a Premium upgrade is available within the app for $5 to remove the advertising and add support for multiple Twitter accounts. Twitterrific 3.0 Premium is a free upgrade for Premium users of the iPad version; users of Twitterrific 2.0 for the iPhone will need to purchase the Premium upgrade separately or use the free, ad-supported version with single account support.
De Voorkant has released an iOS 4 universal update to its archive file management application, iUnarchive. Originally released as an iPad application, iUnarchive 1.2.1 is now a universal app that can take advantage of the file management features of iOS 4. iUnarchive allows users to open and display the content of compressed files from other apps such as Mail or Safari using the built-in “Open In” option found in iOS 4. Users can then open individual files in other supported applications or open any additional nested archives contained within the original file. iUnarchive can open ZIP, RAR, 7-ZIP, TAR, GZIP, bz2, LhA and StuffIt archives, including password-protected files and can preview contained JPG, PNG, GIF, XLS, DOC, PPT, PDF, RTF and iWork documents as well as text files and syntax-highlighted programming language source files. iUnarchive requires iOS 3.2 or later on the iPad or iOS 4 on the iPhone and iPod touch. It is currently available from the App Store for $1 for a limited time and is a free update for users of the iPad version.
Return7 has released an update to its photo geotagging application PlaceTagger adding iOS 4 background location support. PlaceTagger allows users to track their location while taking photos using a standalone digital camera and then later use that location information to automatically add geotags to photos during import into iPhoto or Aperture or export geotag information via a GPX file for other applications. The addition of iOS 4 background location support to the latest version will allow PlaceTagger users to more effectively track their location without having to worry about leaving the PlaceTagger application constantly running. Although PlaceTagger provides options to balance location accuracy and battery usage, the release notes indicate that “PlaceTagger will consume more battery in the background than it will in the foreground” suggesting that background location tracking inherently consumes more power or simply may have fewer configuration options available for power-saving. PlaceTagger is available from the App Store for $10 and is a free update for current users.
A number of iPhone 4 owners are reporting that their new phones arrived with portions of the screen exhibiting a brown or yellow discoloration. Mac Rumors reports that users on both its forums and on Apple’s Support Discussion forums are complaining of the hardware issue. At least one iPhone 4 owner was told to take their problematic device to the nearest Apple Store Genius Bar, although the same representative admitted that there are no replacement units available at this time. It is unclear how widespread the issue may be, but it appears to be affecting a non-trivial number of users. [Photo by Apple forum member elitemrp]
Update: An AppleInsider forum member named austingaijin claims that the discoloration should dissipate within a few days of use. He states, “Apple is using a bonding agent called Organofunctional Silane Z-6011 to bond the layers of glass. Apparently, Apple (or more likely Foxconn) is shipping these products so quickly that the evaporation process is not complete. However, after one or two days of use, especially with the screen on, will complete the evaporation process and the yellow “blotches” will disappear. How do I know? I was involved in pitching Z-6011 to Apple.” [via Engadget]
Apple has released its iMovie app for the iPhone 4. Announced at WWDC 2010 on June 7th, the iPhone version of iMovie provides iPhone 4 users with a mobile version of Apple’s Mac iMovie application, providing the ability to edit videos directly on the iPhone via onscreen Multi-Touch controls. Users can add video from the iPhone library or record directly using the built-in camera, scrub through and trim videos, and add background music, photos, titles and basic transitions. A selection of five themes is available within the app, with each theme including its own distinct set of titles and transitions. Additional features include support for location services to automatically insert maps and appropriate place titles, inserted photos with a Ken Burns effect and ducking support for lowering background music and highlighting audio. Movies created in iMovie can be exported in Medium, Large or HD formats, shared via e-mail or MMS or uploaded directly to MobileMe or YouTube. iMovie runs only on the iPhone 4 and is available from the App Store in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany and Japan for $5.
The iPhone 4 has officially launched in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, and Japan, with customers standing in lengthy lines to get their hands on Apple’s latest handset. iLounge editor Jeremy Horwitz found a substantial group of people waiting to enter the mall and begin queueing outside the Apple Store when he arrived at the Walden Galleria in Buffalo, NY at 5:30 a.m. Our publisher Dennis Lloyd found a similar crowd waiting outside the Apple Store in Costa Mesa, CA, and reports from other cities across the U.S. indicate that most Apple Stores have and/or had impressive crowds awaiting the launch. Notably, the line outside Apple’s flagship 5th Avenue store in New York City—which TUAW describes as longer than the lines for the iPhone 3GS or even the iPad’s launch—wraps around a full city block.
Internationally, the Associated Press is reporting that lines “hundreds” of people long were seen outside stores in nearly every country, including outside Apple’s retail stores in the Ginza shopping district of Tokyo, Japan, Regent Street in the U.K., and outside T-Mobile’s flagship store in Berlin and Softbank’s flagship store in Tokyo. The report also relays the story of a French shoe salesman who went to pick up the iPhone 4 on his lunch break only to learn that they were already sold out. “Either I’ll look elsewhere or come back later,” he said.
Update: Four and a half hours after arriving at the South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa, CA, iLounge Publisher Dennis Lloyd has yet to enter the Apple Store due to the lengthy reservation line. For customers still waiting, Apple has been providing free Smart Water, coffee, half sandwiches, lemonade, iced tea, and umbrellas for shade.
iLounge has posted a suite of brand new videos comparing the video capabilities of the new iPhone 4 to those of the iPhone 3GS and Flip Ultra HD.
A set of two 720p videos, filmed at the same time, show how the iPhone 4 camera directly compares against the Flip Ultra HD camera, a pocket-sized rival that Apple targeted last year with video camera updates to the iPod nano and iPhone 3GS. For the first time, iPhone 4 has the resolution to compete pixel for pixel against Flip’s higher-end recorder, and it has something Flip doesn’t: Tap to Focus during video, enabling the iPhone 4 to create depth of field effects, but also to render some scenes softly relative to the Flip since the latter device’s fixed-focus lens offers consistent sharpness without depth of field capabilities. The first iPhone 4 video is here, and the comparison Flip Ultra HD video is here. The second iPhone 4 video is here, and the comparison Flip Ultra HD video is here.
For those interested in seeing the iPhone 3GS versus the iPhone 4, a longer set of videos shows how the older 640x480 camera on the iPhone 3GS compares to the newer 1280x720 camera on the iPhone 4. Both devices now have Tap to Focus capabilities during video recording, but differ in both aspect ratio and lens width; the iPhone 4 crops and scales down its 5-Megapixel sensor to get the 720p frames it captures. Each set of two videos was recorded at the same time. The iPhone 4 video is here, and the iPhone 3GS video is here. Enjoy!
The Omni Group has released a major update to its flagship OmniFocus productivity application for iPhone and iPod touch users. OmniFocus 1.7 adds new refreshed high-resolution artwork for the iPhone 4 Retina display and adds support for several of the multitasking features introduced in iOS 4. When running on the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and third-generation iPod touch, OmniFocus 1.7 now provides fast app switching, local notifications of due tasks and the ability to complete some operations such as database optimization while running in the background. Local Notifications allow users of multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices to receive notifications when tasks are due even when OmniFocus is not the active application and regardless of whether the user is synchronizing with a back-end server or not. The previous synced calendar alert system continues to be available for users of older devices or users still using iOS 3.x or earlier. The update also includes several other minor changes including the display of completed projects within the Completed perspective and bug fixes related to audio recording. OmniFocus 1.7 is available from the App Store for $20 and is a free update for existing users. It can synchronize with the Mac version of OmniFocus (sold separately) via Wi-Fi or a WebDAV server such as iDisk or can be used by itself as a standalone application.
In a posting to its Facebook account, Radio Shack is warning customers that its stocks of iPhone 4 will be severely constrained. “The demand for iPhone 4 has far exceeded expectations across the industry. Due to limited supply, we will do our best to help you understand what to expect on launch day,” the company says. “In some cases, stores that took requests will not receive the iPhone 4 on June 24. We are sorry for any confusion and disappointment regarding this and will share future availability as soon as we have more information…. The quickest way to confirm that your store will have inventory is to call the store this week. For those who placed a Customer Request, please understand that due to limited supply we may not be able to fulfill all requests. We are making every effort to contact all customers who placed requests to let them know the status of phone availability.” Radio Shack also notes that all iPhone 4 pick-ups must be done by noon on June 24, or else the phone will be made available to the next person on the list. [via TUAW]
Apple has posted its new User Guide for the iPhone 4 and iOS 4 online (PDF Link). The 28-chapter, 200+ page guide covers a host of iOS 4 features—including syncing and file sharing, all the core, pre-installed applications, iBooks, Nike + iPod functionality, and accessibility. Notably, the Guide includes several iPhone 4-specific notes and illustrations, including those for SIM card installation, high-definition video syncing, putting a call on hold—you press and hold the Mute button on the iPhone 4’s call screen—placing a FaceTime call, switching between the device’s two cameras, and a note stating that movies rented on the iPhone 4 cannot be transferred to a computer as on the iPhone 3G and 3GS; although movies rented on the computer in iTunes can be transferred to an iPhone 4 unit. [via Mac Rumors]
Apple has released a statement confirming that white iPhone 4 units will be unavailable on launch day. In the statement, Apple claims that white models of the iPhone 4 “have proven more challenging to manufacture than expected, and as a result they will not be available until the second half of July.” Speculation about the availability of white iPhone 4 units has persisted since the phone was unavailable for pre-order alongside black models on June 15; this is also the first time Apple has publicly suggested that a black iPhone model is more popular than its white counterpart.