Despite Apple’s claims of much stronger aluminosilicate glass for the iPhone 4, Engadget is reporting that the back of their iPhone 4 review unit is scratched after just five days of use. Omitted in the blog’s full review, the scratches—described as “nasty”—only became visible in bright light. While iFixIt’s teardown indicated that the iPhone 4’s front panel is made of Gorilla Glass, the service company was unable to positively identify the material used on the back of the phone, although it is also some type of hardened glass.
TomTom International has updated its series of turn-by-turn navigation apps to take advantage of the new multitasking features in iOS 4. A required update for iOS 4 users, TomTom 1.4 adds support for the new background location feature available on multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices. The update provides continuous visual driving instructions on iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS devices even while the user is on a call and background navigation for iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and third-generation iPod touch devices allowing users to open other applications while still receiving spoken turn-by-turn directions. The update also adds several other new features including updated maps, sharing of routes via e-mail, the ability to add departure reminders directly to the iOS Calendar and a new fuel-efficient “Eco Route” selection. TomTom 1.4 for the U.S. & Canada is available from the App Store for $60 and is a free update for existing users. Versions for other regions can also be found via TomTom’s App Store page.
iLounge has posted our official gallery of iPhone 4 unboxing photos online. Though repeated leaks of the iPhone 4 hardware made the device’s appearance anything but a surprise, and our prior iPhone 4 unveiling shots covered a lot of territory, this new gallery shows you what to expect step by step when opening the package up and removing the iPhone 4 from its protective spot in the box—including the absence of the SIM card removal tool, what sort of protection iPhone 4 arrives wrapped in, and little tweaks to the included accessories. Keep checking our Flickr account for more photos of the iPhone 4 throughout the next day.
iFixIt has posted a complete teardown of the iPhone 4, confirming a number of the device’s specs while revealing others. Notably, the device has 512MB of RAM, as had been reportedly confirmed by Apple during WWDC. Like the iPhone 3G and 3GS, the iPhone 4 has two Phillips #00 screws on the bottom, which serve to release the rear case offering immediate access to the 3.7V 1420 mAh Li-Polymer battery. According to the teardown, the iPhone 4’s A4 processor houses a 1GHz ARM Cortex A8 core; the gyroscope is believed to be manufactured by ST Micro, and iFixIt believes Apple is the first to ship a product containing this particular part. In addition, the iPhone 4 unit examined in the teardown contained Samsung flash memory, the same Cirrus Logic audio codec chip used in the iPad, Broadcom Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS chips, and, iFixIt believes, a front glass panel made of Corning Gorilla Glass.
Firemint has released an iPhone 4 update to its popular Real Racing game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Real Racing 1.22 features new graphics for the iPhone 4 Retina display with higher-resolution textures, more detailed car interiors, updated menus and improved graphical performance on the iPhone 4. The update also promises smoother graphics on iPhone 3GS and third-generation iPod touch devices through the use of anti-aliasing in iOS4. With this version Real Racing adds support for the iPhone 4 gyroscope to provide more responsive and accurate controls for iPhone 4 users in addition to accelerometer-based controls. iOS 4 Fast App Switching is also supported to allow users to exit the game and automatically pick up where they left off when returning to it. Real Racing 1.22 is available from the App Store for $5 and is a free update for existing users.
AT&T has announced that it will not have any iPhone 4 inventory to sell on a first-come, first-serve basis until June 29, five full days after the device’s official launch on June 24. Customers who pre-ordered the device from AT&T online should have their device delivered this week, while customers who pre-ordered for store delivery should receive a call letting them know when their iPhone 4 is ready for pickup. As of June 29, AT&T will be offering the iPhone 4 on a first-come, first-serve basis, while supplies last, in its retail stores, on its website, and in business sales channels.
With the official launch still two days away, a number of iPhone 4 pre-order customers are reporting delivery of their new handsets today. A Mac Rumors forum member has posted photos of his unit, which arrived earlier today, despite his FedEx tracking information listing his delivery date as June 24, and after receiving an email notification from Apple stating that his iPhone 4 would arrive tomorrow. The member also noted that activation went quickly and without issue. Apple will officially launch the iPhone 4 on June 24.
Following yesterday’s iBooks 1.1 update, users have discovered that Apple’s built-in dictionary is no longer working with some e-books, a problem traced by iLounge’s editors to a difference in the way iBooks 1.1 chooses dictionaries relative to versions 1.0 and 1.01. The new iBooks appears to be using the language identifier normally stored within ePub files to determine which dictionary to use for a given e-book. Some popular e-book conversation applications such as Calibre do not insert the correct language identifier when saving in the ePub format, which will result in iBooks not knowing which dictionary to use. The problem appears to be confined to e-books that users have converted themselves or downloaded from third-party sources outside of the iBookstore, despite the fact that dictionary lookups for these books worked fine prior to the iBooks 1.1 update. More information on this problem and how to fix it can be found in our Backstage section.
U.K. retailer Carphone Warehouse is warning customers not to queue up outside its stores for the iPhone 4 launch, citing low stock. Citing an unnamed Carphone Warehouse employee, Macworld UK reports that the retailer has received only 16,000 iPhone 4 units thus far, and although it ordered 60,000, it expects to only receive “about half that.” The same staffer said that customers who queued up outside Carphone Warehouse in hopes of getting a handset would be “wasting their time,” and noted that employees are not allowed to purchase the device “until further notice.” Apple will launch the iPhone 4 in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, and Japan on June 24.
iPhone 4 units have started arriving at retailers ahead of the device’s June 24 launch. One such unit was photographed by a Walmart worker, showing off the phone’s new packaging. Unlike each past iPhone, the iPhone 4’s box does not feature a life-sized, forward-facing representation of the phone enclosed. Instead, it shows off only the top portion of the phone, facing the right, with its power and volume buttons, ring/silent switch, headphone port, auxiliary microphone, forward facing camera, and a portion of the display visible, all set against a black background. The sides and the top of the box, meanwhile, appear to be similar to past releases. A picture of the new 8GB iPhone 3GS packaging has also appeared online; it is identical to the past packaging apart from depicting a default iOS 4 installation instead of iPhone OS 3.
Apple has sent out emails to at least some of its pre-order iPhone 4 customers notifying them that their phones will be arriving on June 23, a day ahead of the official launch. The email reads, “You recently received a Shipment Notification email from Apple advising you that your iPhone has shipped. This email is to confirm that your delivery will occur on June 23rd. Although Apple and FedEx tracking information may currently indicate a later date, you can check the FedEx website the morning of the June 23rd to track your package to your doorstep.” While it is uncharacteristic of Apple to deliver any devices ahead of the actual launch date, with the large number of pre-orders, it is possible that both Apple and AT&T want to spread out the burden on the latter’s activation servers as much as possible after last week’s pre-ordering snafu.
Apple has released iBooks 1.1, the first major update to its e-Book reading and purchasing software for iOS devices. As revealed by Apple in its WWDC keynote address, iBooks 1.1 offers compatibility with the iPad as well as any iPhone or iPod touch running iOS 4, and features several noteworthy improvements, including PDF support, the ability to highlight text, add notes, and bookmark, the latter two of which are reflected in the book’s Table of Contents, wireless syncing of notes, highlights, and page position between devices, and, interestingly, support for iTunes Digital Booklet files once they’ve been marked as a Book in iTunes. iBooks 1.1 is available now as a free download from the App Store.
Apple has released its iPhone Software Development Kit for iOS 4 to all iPhone developers. Previously available only to paid developers, the updated SDK allows all registered developers a chance to develop OS 4-compatible apps, although the $99 annual fee will still be required for on-device testing and submission to the App Store. Notably, at least some of the accompanying documentation make references to iPhone OS 4, which was officially renamed iOS 4 two weeks ago. TUAW notes that Apple is expected to rescind its prior NDA covering iOS 4 developers now that the SDK and software update are more widely available. The iPhone SDK 4 s available now as a free download for all registered iPhone developers from the iPhone Dev Center.
Apple has sent out an email to customers who reserved an iPhone 4 or 8GB iPhone 3GS for pickup on launch day, telling them to check their available iPhone pricing online and offering a list of items they will need to bring to the store. “Some customers received a confirmation email showing an incorrect price,” the email reads. “We apologize for any difficulties you may have encountered. If you’re currently an AT&T customer, you can confirm your pricing online.” In addition to checking their available pricing before heading to the store, customers are expected to bring a valid, government-issued photo ID, their Social Security number, a debit or credit card, and, if they are a new AT&T customer, their account number from their current carrier. Apple will launch the iPhone 4 on June 24.
Apple has released iOS 4 for the second- and third-generation iPod touch, iPhone 3G, and iPhone 3GS. The fourth major release of Apple’s mobile device operating system—previously called iPhone OS—the new software provides over 100 new features or enhancements, according to Apple. Among these are multitasking, folders, customizable backgrounds for the Home screen, a unified inbox for the Mail application, more fine-grained control over Location Services, support for Apple’s new iAd mobile advertising platform, and support for iBooks 1.1 on the iPhone and iPod touch. Several of the features—most notably multitasking—require more advanced hardware and are therefore only available on the iPhone 3GS and third-generation iPod touch, as well as future devices such as the iPhone 4. Interestingly, iLounge editors have seen a dialog box experienced when updating a second-generation iPod touch, warning not to “interrupt the update, which may take an hour or longer to complete” that was not seen when upgrading an iPhone 3GS. The iOS 4 update for the second-generation iPod touch weighs in at 315.0MB, the iPhone 3G update is 292.1MB, the third-generation iPod touch download is 366.4MB, and the iPhone 3GS version is 378.0MB. iOS 4 for the iPhone and iPod touch is available for download now via the update feature in iTunes, and will be coming to the iPad this fall.
Update: iOS 4 for the iPhone 4 is a 579.3MB download, more than 200MB larger than any of the other iOS 4 install bundles.
Pandora Media has released the anticipated iOS 4 update for its popular Pandora Radio application. As demonstrated by Apple at recent iOS 4 events, the latest version of Pandora Radio leverages the new background audio multitasking feature in iOS 4 to allow users to continue listening to their music while using other applications. With Pandora Radio 3.1 and a multitasking-capable device using iOS 4, Pandora Radio can operate in the background in the same manner as the built-in iPod application—audio continues to play in the background even after closing the app, and the device’s on-screen and headphone media controls will be used for the Pandora Radio application instead of the iPod application. Pandora Radio 3.1 is available from the U.S. App Store as a free download.
Best Buy’s launch plan for the iPhone 4 has been leaked online in its entirety, including inventory expectations, explanations and photos of merchandise displays, and more. Most notably, the documents reveal that “inventory availability is expected to be minimal,” and so stores will have the option of taking pre-orders from customers arriving on the 24 until 11:00 a.m. local time, with no guarantee of when their device might be available. The documents also state that Best Buy expects all inventory to be accounted for by launch day due to pre-sales. Finally, the company will be offering a number of cases from launch day, including offerings from Belkin, Griffin, and Rocketfish. Apple will launch the iPhone 4 in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, and Japan on June 24.
The first applications supporting Apple’s new iAd mobile advertising platform have appeared on the App Store. Avantar, developer of mobile search applications such as OneTap Movies, Showtimes, Munch and Yellow Pages, has updated several of its applications integrating the new mobile advertising platform. Apple’s iAd does not go live until July 1st, and at this time these apps appear to be showing either a test ad or an empty banner. The release notes for these apps originally cited iAd integration; this note has since been removed and replaced simply with “minor bug fixes,” however the apps themselves remain on the App Store and continue to display the iAd banners. Avantar’s App Store page can be found here.