Watching Google tiptoe around its relationship with Apple as it rolls out Android is one of the most enjoyable aspects of watching the industry these days. This is perfectly illustrated in the words of Rich Miner, group manager for Google’s mobile platforms, who said, “there’s a much larger potential market on Android than for the iPhone.” A truthful statement in all likelihood assuming that the OS is robust upon its global release later this year and available on handsets from HTC, Samsung, Motorola, and LG as expected. Miner then took a few shots at the iPhone SDK saying, “There are things I saw people doing with the first version of the Android SDK that it seems like you can’t do with the iPhone at least at the moment.” He then noted that the SDK had been downloaded 750,000 times (compared to Apple’s 100k in 4 days) as of February. Naturally, he then applied a thick, brown coat of public relations salve saying, “[If I were a developer] I’d certainly be looking at the iPhone, and if you believe there will be lots of Android phones out there, as we do, I’d be developing for both platforms.” Kumbaya my BossEricSchmidtSitsOnTheAppleBoard, kumabaya…
As we expected, Apple just loosed the iPhone into Ireland and Austria. €399 nabs the 8GB model while €499 takes the 16GB unit home. T-Mobile has the honors for Austria as it does in Germany while O2 carries the flag in Ireland as it does in the UK. Interestingly, Irish subscribers are not entitled to Visual Voicemail or free WiFi even though you get both on O2 UK — neither country offers an unlimited data plan. Tsk tsk. Regardless, early adopters from those countries already had their unlocked iPhones months ago which makes the launch just a formality at this point.
Read — Austria
Read — Ireland
Sure, we think the iMac is a nice machine, but sometimes you want to add a PCI card or six, and when the cheapest beslotted Mac starts at a whopping $2,799, mods like Hideo Takano’s Mac Pro Mini just make you wonder what could have been. Of course, there are no slots in this bad boy either since it’s based around a stock Mac mini with a 2.33GHz processor upgrade, but it is a mighty impressive effort — actually, check out Hideo’s whole Mac Mod Lab site for even more sick Mini mods.
Sorry Microsoft and Apple, you may have had some fancy smartphone sales this year in your cute little American way, but globally there’s no question who’s the real leader in this segment: the Symbian OS shipped on 77.3 million units in 2007. That’s a 50% growth over 2006 sales, with over 141 different phone models from eight licensees. If the new hotness from Nokia this year at MWC is any indication, those numbers aren’t going to go away very soon, but Sony Ericsson’s adoption of Windows Mobile for its flagship XPERIA X1 certainly spells a modicum of trouble for Symbian land. Of course, there are many more low-end Symbian smartphones than there are cheap Windows Mobile phones, and Apple’s iPhone is still a premium product , but the line is becoming increasingly blurred.
We’re not exactly sure how this all went down, but we trust Erica Sadun over at TUAW when she says that it appears that the iPhone’s SDK key — which will probably be required by all “official” third-party apps — has been leaked. Two different sites currently have the key posted, but it’s all just for show until next month, when the SDK hits for real — and the code is undoubtedly changed.
Rumors have been swirling that Apple will be offering movie rentals over iTunes for weeks now. Now it would appear that Warner Bros have joined Disney, Twentieth Century Fox, Lionsgate and Paramount in the initial launch. This, according to sources speaking anonymously to Bloomberg. The announcement is expected to be made on January 15th according to the report, presumably during Jobs’ MacWorld keynote. Both new releases and older titles will rent for $3.99 for 24 hours. Bloomberg’s sources also indicate that Fox may join as a supplier of movie downloads. While the details may change, an iTunes rental service announcement on Tuesday seems a near certainty given the recent multi-source, confluence of data.
Looks like there may have been a possible leak of the next version of Apple’s iPhone firmware, 1.1.3. According to Gear Live, it can now handle SMS to multiple recipients, the springboard (home screen) supports reordered icons and pagination (as well as web bookmarks), and Google maps gets hybrid view and that nifty cell-based location system. If this is all Steve plans to announce iPhone-wise at Macworld next month, we think there will be more than a few disappointed iPhone users out there. Then again, home screen pagination would kind of imply an SDK to make use of all those slots, so maybe the real news is under the hood.
[Thanks to everyone who sent this in]
We have cellular phone services all over the globe now. That almost implies a cell phone in every house. Much of this has been contributed by verizon cell phones.
You know it’s close to Macworld when even the New York Times is slinging rumors with the best of ‘em, and the Gray Lady is reporting today that Apple has deals in place with several studios for iTunes rentals — not just Fox, like we’d been hearing. Of course, it wouldn’t be an Apple rumor unless it somehow managed to make something as mundane as renting a movie sound like a super-classified state secret, and the NYT says that while it got the info from people “familiar with the negotiations,” they weren’t “authorized” to name the companies involved. We’d obviously expect Disney to have an interest, since Steve’s on the board — but as with all these rumors, only time will tell.
For those of you that don’t know it Microsoft and Google have been at each others throats for the last 3 years or so. Microsoft always has annoyed Google with MSN.com who’s search feature takes up a very low third place in the search engine race between Google, Yahoo, and MSN. Google who’s supposed number one rule is “do no evil” which was always a direct jab at Microsoft who so many feel is an evil corporation because they’re good at what they do (even though they’re one of the most generous companies ever when it comes to donations, school projects, and just generally helping people) started off a war with Microsoft however a few years back when Microsoft first started work on “Longhorn” which you guys now know as Windows Vista (yeah, I was around and monitoring very closely the progress of Longhorn and it will forever be just that to me, I know it’s a codename but you get attached when you were around these things from their beginnings) Google announced that they were making their own operating system to compete with Microsoft. They’ve been at war ever since throwing punches back and forth, buying companies, bidding wars, and lawsuits. Microsoft’s first punch back after the announcement of the Google Operating system was to kill off one of Google’s pet projects Google Reader, which was originally supposed to be a program much like library’s work where Google took every publication (books, magazines, you name it) was scanning them and offered them for free online. Microsoft being the only company with enough power and money to do anything about it took Google to court and destroyed the program in almost unpublicized lawsuits. The war had begun, Google with their cocky attitude pushed ahead full steam, and Microsoft let them. Recently the war has gone to the new playground of the internet social networking websites. Google and MSN fought a short lived battle over MySpace where Google won out rights to put advertisements on the site with a several hundred billion dollar deal. It appeared Google had been winning out with it’s deal with Double-Click going through it seemed they were gaining steam, their stocks soared to almost $800 a share and everyone predicted that they would break the $1,000 mark by the end of the year. Most companies would of taken this opportunity to split stocks and release some more to make sales of stocks jump, but Google with their big head and go get ‘em attitude wanted to be the next Berkshire-Hathaway (The company that Warren Buffet, good friend of Bill Gates, works for) who has never split stocks and currently to get a single share of Berkshire-Hathaway you’ve got to fork over $141,100. As the rest of the economy was dropping especially in the technology departments Google seemed to be on top, until that fateful day December 11, 2007 Everyone’s stocks dropped like a rock when Google was brought back to reality with $600 a share stock prices, but Microsoft continued to climb with the release of SP1 for Office 2007 and SP3 release candidate for Windows XP Microsoft was able to pull off the impossible and do what they do best, making gains in a bare marketplace. Before this Microsoft and Google had been at it over purchasing a minority stake in Facebook, Microsoft won out which started the decline of Google’s stock, then came the 11th, and now Microsoft is flaunting the fact that they may be very slow moving, but that doesn’t stop them from being THE slow moving behemoth of our time. Even though Google has all rights to text advertisements with MySpace all of your music on MS is now brought to you courtesy of the Zune, which is Microsoft’s MP3 player that inspired the Ipod, and once again Microsoft still won out that battle too. I’ll never own an Ipod being that they’re a direct rip-off of the Zune, which has STILL even with the Ipod’s popularity and publicity beat out the Ipod in both unit sales, and profits. Maybe that explains why Microsoft moves so slow at what they do, they fight on so many fronts, and they hate to lose. Take that Apple, and Google!!! I actually really like Microsoft fot those of you that don’t know… I can respect them as a corporation, a lot of companies I can’t even come close to respecting their business practices or company models, but M$ I can.
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