Mix: 3G iPhone concern, Apple patent, iPod slowdown, Bandwidth hog | iLounge News

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Mix: 3G iPhone concern, Apple patent, iPod slowdown, Bandwidth hog

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By Charles Starrett

Contributing Editor
Published: Thursday, April 24, 2008
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The Chicago Tribune’s RedEye is expressing concern over buying iPhone accessories before the launch of the 3G model, expected later this year. “I can’t buy those headphones because I have no way of being 100 percent sure that the plug will fit into the next iPhone,” RedEye’s Scott Kleinberg writes. “And this problem isn’t just with these headphones, of course. I can’t see myself purchasing an iPod speaker or any special kind of dock. The pin connector at the bottom could change drastically between now and the 3G iPhone launch.”

An illustration found in a newly-published Apple patent filing covering the handling of “Structured Electronic Documents” on a portable device - websites, in other words - shows a “Share” feature of the Safari browser yet to appear in any iPhone software release. The feature, which is shown as accessed via a button labeled “Share” appearing in the upper-left corner of the screen when entering a URL, would allow users to send a link to the URL via email or SMS, or email the content of the page. It is unknown whether this feature will appear in a future release of the iPhone software, however, the features appear to have been dropped for practicality reasons, and Share transformed into “+” for the current-generation iPhone software. [via MacNN]

Given the iPod’s decelerating sales growth, New York Times editor Saul Hansell has written an article explaining how Apple is preparing for an iPod slump. Hansell first points to the continuing stream of revenue generated by current iPod owners in the form of music and accessories — a category which brought in $881 million for the company last quarter. This, Hansell believes, combined with the transition of the iPod from a media player into a pocketable computer like the iPod touch, along with strong iPhone and Mac sales, will help Apple overcome any decline in iPod sales it would otherwise face.

Shaw Wu, analyst with American Technology Research, recently told Fortune that the average iPhone user consumes a considerably greater amount of data bandwidth than the typical cellular device user, to the extent that it could affect Apple’s dealings with carriers. “Our sources indicate that the success of iPhone with its Safari web browser is putting strain on AT&T’s EDGE network in areas with higher user density. We have been told that iPhone users are consuming ‘well over’ 100 MB per month (compared to Blackberry around 10 MB,” Wu said. The analyst suggests that carriers will offer fewer incentives to potential iPhone customers because of the additional data burdens they place on the networks.

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Apple releases fourth iPhone SDK beta, adds OpenGL ES support »

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Comments

1

I don’t believe that the hardware for the 3G iPhone will have any dramatic changes.  It’s likely that all the changes will be strictly internal.

Posted by Galley in Greenville, SC on April 24, 2008 at 1:49 PM (PDT)

2

Apple hasn’t revised the dock connector on the iPod/iPhone line for a long time now, and I can’t see them doing it any time soon. The dock connector does everything Apple needs it to do - it fits the slim form factor, it transfers audio and video in good time and outputs both. Logically, the next interface between iTunes and iPod/iPhone will be wireless, but they’ll still need a power input and it would make sense for them to keep the dock connector.

As for headphones, he’s right you’re not 100% guaranteed to get your headphones to work, but if you buy iPhone compatible headphones with the slim L-jack, I reckon you’re 99.9% certain that they’ll work with a future device. Sure Apple reached a little with the slim jack, but a lot of headphone manufacturers have responded by slimming down their connectors.

I reckon carriers are definitely panicking over the prospect of unlimited 3G data and the iPhone. In the UK, 3G means rip-off data packages, expensive a la cart video sports highlights and handset browsers which seem to deliberately limit web browsing. I can only imagine what’ll happen with the iPhone.

Posted by gjd on April 25, 2008 at 2:13 AM (PDT)

3

I can’t see how apple would change the dock connector physically again. I suppose eventually they are going to be able to get it so slim, that they may have to reengineer that particular dock connecter, but I don’t see that happening soon.

Now, how different accessories may communicate with this dock connector is another story. See the video out snaffu with the classics as a good example of that.

Not sure about this headphone thing. I know apple screwed up and made it so the iPhone’s recessed headphone port caused problems, but some adapter plugs were available.

I guess in the end, when it comes to technology we can “#####” all we want, but maybe I’m just getting more use to the idea that “forward compatibility” just isn’t high on many tech people’s lists.

Though when it comes to that I always think of how Gameboy made the awesome idea of making the gameboy advance combatible with all old cartridges. That was a cool move…

Posted by studogvetmed in Loveland, CO on April 25, 2008 at 7:40 AM (PDT)

4

iPod has obviously more features, even iPhone is well-developed but the competitors are developing their projects. Look at Sansa Fuze progress comparing to e-series though they are still behind…

Posted by kern on April 27, 2008 at 11:24 PM (PDT)

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