Category: IOS


Japanese consumers have been known to be very loyal to its own local brands when it comes to electronics, but an international company has succeeded in taking a crack in this very difficult market.

A report from IDC Japan declared that the iPhone is the top-selling handset of any kind in Japan. The launch of iPhone 4S soared the Cupertino-based company into a 26.6-percent market share of all cellphone shipments in Japan last fall. Yes, the iPhone has even outsold clamshell feature phones that have been a staple in Japan despite the early rise of the iPhone and Android.

The FujitsuToshiba alliance is at second place with 18.3 percent, bolstered by the launch of its Arrows smartphones. The pie chart is then shared by Sharp (15.7 percent), Kyocera (9.8), and Panasonic (8.8).

On the full 2011 stats, meanwhile, Sharp remained the dominant smartphone brand with 20.1 percent, followed by Fujitsu-Toshiba at 18.8 percent. Apple is at third with 14.2 percent, eclipsing Panasonic (10) Kyocera (9.7).

This milestone is a significant success to the iPhone even without having to inject Japanese-specific features like 1Seg TV tuning, FeliCa NFC payments, and the wireless battery charging.

Source: The Mainichi Daily News, via Electronista


The iOS 5.1 OTA update

Just hours after the iOS 5.1 update was announced at Apple’s iPad event in San Francisco the update is live for you to download.

The update brings Japanese language support for Siri as well as the option to selectively delete photos from Photo Stream in iCloud. Also, the lockscreen camera shortcut is now constantly visible on the lockscreen and more.

Go check your iDevice for the update, but keep in mind that you may experience issues with its download. If you get an error message just keep trying or leave it for tomorrow as the Apple servers are probably having trouble coping with the high initial demand.

Apple just unveiled the brand new iPad on Wednesday. As far as we can tell it’s just being called the “new iPad.” Not the iPad 3 or the iPad HD, although there are references to the “third generation iPad” on Apple’s website. It’s a pretty stunning device and I’ve already argued that it offers new enhancements to change the tablet game all over again. You may have been there for our live blog or hitting the TechnoBuffalo homepage as we broke the news, but in case you weren’t, here are the top five features of the new iPad as we see them.

Retina Display

The Retina Display is definitely the highlight feature of the new iPad. It doubles the sharpness of the previous iPad 2 with a 2047 x 1536-pixel resolution. That’s like having an HDTV in your shoulder bag, folks, except it can be used for email, gaming and more. You already know that. Just know that it’s much sharper and a huge advance over any other tablet’s display currently on the market. Yes, I’m fanatically in love with the Super AMOLED Plus screens on Samsung’s smartphones, but the sharpness just wins this round for me, hands down.

4G LTE Support

Oooo weeee! This is what we were looking for and Apple included it. The new iPad is capable of running on AT&T and Verizon’s brand new and super fast 4G LTE networks. Here in New York City, I’ve noticed that both are capable of providing faster download and upload speeds than my Time Warner Cable connection — that’s impressive and I’ve loved the speeds on other smartphones and tablets, including the Motorola Xyboard 8.9 tablet that I use regularly. Add in support for sharing the connection with other Wi-Fi enabled devices and the new iPad is that much sweeter. Better yet, the tablet supports HSPA+ and HSDPA networks, which means you’ll be able to take advantage of “4G” or 3G speeds in international markets. Seriously, it supports all of these bands:

  • Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n)
  • Bluetooth 4.0 technology
  • Wi-Fi + 4G for AT&T model: LTE (700, 2100 MHz); UMTS/HSPA/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (850, 900, 1900, 2100 MHz); GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
  • Wi-Fi + 4G for Verizon model: LTE (700 MHz); CDMA EV-DO Rev. A (800, 1900 MHz); UMTS/HSPA/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (850, 900, 1900, 2100 MHz); GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)

Quad-Core Graphics

Apple’s new iPad is equipped with a dual-core A5X chip, but it also supports quad-core graphics. That means we can expect some killer games, including Epic Games’ Infinity Blade: Dungeons. As a huge fan of Dungeon Hunter 2 and other dungeon-crawler hack-and-slash style games I can’t wait to give this one a whirl. NVIDIA has killer games for its Tegra 3 quad-core processor in the pipeline too, and that chip offers 16 graphics processing cores, but at this point I think Apple’s going to beat it to the market with the amount of games available. It’s going to be a wait-and-see approach here, though, and I won’t make too many judgements until I try games that take advantage of the quad-core GPU in the new iPad and NVIDIA’s Tegra 3 chipset.

5-megapixel camera with 1080p HD video recording

Plenty — and I mean plenty — of other devices already offer 5-megapixel cameras, even 8-megapixel cameras, with 1080p HD video recording. But it’s nonetheless one of the newer and more appreciated features on the new iPad. It remains to be seen how great the images and videos turn out, but we know for sure that the iPhone 4S offers among the best recording and photo snapping cameras on the market today. Aside from, perhaps, Nokia’s freshly announced 808 PureView phone, which has an incredible 41-megapixel camera!

Killer Battery Life

Apple included a 42.5-watt-hour rechargeable lithium-polymer battery in the new iPad. Despite adding a better GPU, a faster processor and support for 4G LTE networks, there’s little to no sacrifice on battery life. The Cupertino-based company still promises 10 hours of battery and 9 hours of juice on 4G LTE networks. The iPad 2, by comparison, offers the same 10 hours of battery life and 9 hours of battery life on 4G LTE networks. Usually, we see a sacrifice in usability time when it comes to 4G but that appears it won’t be the case with the new iPad. Of course, we’ll know much more once we get a unit in for testing.

The new iPad is up for pre-order beginning today and starts at $499. It should arrive in your hands by March 16th. You can bet we’ll be doing in-depth video and text reviews of the new device as soon as we get our hands on one, so be sure to stick around!

Apple just unveiled the next-gen iPad at its event in San Francisco. Packing a Retina IPS display with the mind-blowing resolution of 2048 x 1536 pixels and a bumped up GPU, this shapes up to be one of the hottest slates on the market. And yes, the iPad has kept its Home button alright.

Strangely, rumors about the new slate being called iPad 3 or iPad HD turned out wrong and the new device is simply called iPad – just like the first generation device.

The event started with the announcement of iOS 5.1 – it’s available starting today and will roll out in Japan over the next few weeks, bringing Japanese language support for Siri, as previously rumored.

The new Apple TV also got a spot under the sunlight at the event – 1080p-capable, running iOS with a new UI with big “billboard images for movies”. It will be available for $99 and will be available next week with pre-orders starting today.

Moving on to the main course for the night, the new Apple iPad offers a Retina display with a resolution of 2048 x 1536 with around 263.92 ppi. Apple also says that it has better color saturation than the iPad 2.

The processor inside is not a quad-core A6 but a dual-core A5X with quad-core graphics. The camera is dubbed iSight – it’s a 5 MP BSI unit with auto-focus, sporting a 5-element lens. The new iPad’s camera offers 1080p video recording. The new iPad features 21Mbps HSPA+ and 42Mbps DC-HSDPA and 4G LTE up to 73Mbps.

The new iPad will keep its acclaimed 10-hour battery life, save when in 4G mode when it will be able to do 9 hours. The 16GB version of the new iPad will cost $499, the 32GB abd 64GB will be $599 and $699. The 4G versions will be $629, $729 and $829 for the 16GB, 32GB and 64GB versions. It will be available on March 16.

Along with the third-gen iPad we saw the iPhoto for iOS and updated iMovie app as well as new versions of Infinity Blade – Dungeons and Sketchbook Ink.

Crytek, the studio responsible for the Crysis franchise and the positively regarded CryEngine, are set to take a crack at the mobile gaming sphere with a puzzle game.

The game is called “Fibble – Flick ‘n’ Roll” and is currently set to launch for both the iOS and Android platforms during the spring of this year. The pricing and exact release date have not been announced.

The title supposedly sports easy to understand navigation and gameplay based on physics. It features leader boards for competition amongst friends and strangers, and it also rocks its own set of achievements.

In speaking with Develop during GDC, Crytek CEO Cevat Yerli expressed the company’s decision to get into mobile games as exciting. He went on to talk a little about what Crytek can bring to the platform:

“Going mobile is an incredibly exciting step for us as a game development company…

…The way that people play games on mobile devices is a real blessing. This allows us to get back to our roots, experiment and focus our energy on creating great gameplay experiences while still keeping Crytek’s high production values…”

The game’s first teaser trailer sits at the top of this post. You can head to the official site to see some assets or read about the game in a more in-depth fashion.

Does the prospect of seeing the traditionally FPS focused studio of Crytek try their hand at mobile game development excite you? Or, would you rather the studio works on more core titles for the PC and console gaming crowds?

[via Official SiteDevelop]

iOS App Store hits 25 billion downloads

A picture is worth a thousand words, or in Apple’s case, 25 billion. Two weeks after revealing its App Store was nearing 25 billion downloads, Apple announced on Saturday the incredible milestone had been hit. One lucky downloader just won themselves a $10,000 App Store gift card.

By industry standards, the App Store is still relatively young – it was only launched in July 2008, making it less than four years old. But that’s not even the most amazing part. Remember Apple’s “Thanks a billion” announcement in April 2009? That was just under three years ago, meaning since then, iOS owners have downloaded 24 billion applications.To put things in even more perspective, an average of 18 million apps were downloaded a day. I think it’s safe to say Apple’s App Store has been a success.

No winner has been announced yet, but I’m sure Apple is in the process of contacting the lucky person.

Did you download anything from the App Store last night? You could be the winner.

iPad 2 cockpit

Nearly a month after making a proposal to replace its inflight manuals with 18,000 iPad 2s, the U.S. Air Force has awarded a $9.36 million contract to Phoenix-based vendor Executive Technology to make the purchase. Apple’s tablet supposedly beat out competition from the PlayBook, Xoom, Galaxy Tab and Nook Tablet.

Bloomberg reports the Air Force will opt for the 32GB, Wi-Fi model at a subsidized price of $529 compared to the normal rate of $599. Someone ought to warn the USAF that Apple is planning an event for its next iPad next week. Actually, Executive Technology has acknowledged a refresh is looming, but noted it has a year to make purchases with the funding – so far 63 iPad 2s have been purchased.

The devices will act as electronic flight bags for paper manual and chart replacement, which can sometimes weight up to 40 pounds. In comparison, an iPad weighs in at a fraction. Apple’s iPad was previously adopted by both Delta and Alaska Airlines as part of a trial program in 2011. The USAF has plans to implement the devices largely the same way.

“Aircrews fly nonstop worldwide missions and require access to flight publications both on and off the aircraft, throughout all phases of flight,” Captain Kathleen Ferrero told Bloomberg in an email. In the USAF’s eyes, the iPad 2 was the perfect device for the job.

[via Bloomberg]

This tank-like iPhone case is perfect for outdoorsy Apple fans

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The iPhone is a slick, attractive device. It’s light, relatively small, and has an appealing combination of glass and steel. Have you ever wanted to take all of that and wrap it in a thick, heavy, camouflaged hunk of polycarbonate? No?? Well, in case you ever change your mind, a new Kickstarter project has you covered.

Meet the new Aqua Tek S from Snow Lizard Products. It will take the smart design of your iPhone and hide it inside of a tank-like case that could be mistaken for an Autobot.

It’s easy to mock the phone’s appearance, but there are plenty of good reasons to give your iPhone the Zack Morris treatment. What the Aqua Tek S lacks in svelte design, it makes up for in practical purpose. Hikers, campers, snowboarders, and extreme sports athletes will love it (Rollerman might be first in line).

This bad boy will keep your iPhone protected from water (waterproof up to 20 feet). It will protect it from drops. The project’s creators even claim that it will shield it from dirt. It has an extended battery hiding inside, with a solar charger on the outside; under the right conditions, this could keep an iPhone charged for days (or longer?) without a power outlet.

Despite its monstrous appearance, the Aqua Tek S could be a crucial accessory for a niche audience. It’s not as if anyone is going to put his iPhone in one of these to go to work or go shopping. It’s simply a way to take the device that you already use, and prepare it for your more extreme outings.

The Aqua Tek S has raised $3,271 of its needed $75,000 with 24 days remaining. You can find out more at the Kickstarter link below.

Kickstarter, via Max Borges Agency

Siri Reveals Its Ability to Speak Japanese

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Siri confirms Japanese support

Siri doesn’t currently support the Japanese language, but according to a recent report, it is coming soon. If you needed concrete evidence of this, then you only need to look as far as Siri itself, which has confirmed it has the ability to speak Japanese.

9to5Mac reports that when you ask Siri which languages it speaks, it replies, “I can speak French, English, Japanese, and German… but I’m always learning.”

Of course, officially, Siri only support English — with an American, British, or Australian accent — French, and German. But a recent rumor from Tech In Asia claimed the intelligent assistant would get support for Mandarin Chinese, Japanese, and Russian imminently.

All three languages are believed to be coming next month, though it seems from the images above that Japanese will be the first to arrive — possibly at Apple’s iPad 3 event which is expected to go ahead during the first week of March.

9to5Mac also notes that shortly after Apple first announced Siri at its Let’s talk iPhone event in October 2010, the company released a Siri FAQ that confirmed the feature would support Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Italian, and Spanish in 2012.

Does Siri speak your language yet?

[via 9to5Mac]