Friday, January 29, 2010

Let the Jokes Begin...

Whenever a company releases a product with a funny name, you know it's going to cop a lot of crap (like the Wii). Funnily enough, this skit about an iPad was done many years ago before it was released!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

iPad!!!!!!!!!!!!

After weeks of anticipation, Apple has finally released...the iPad!!! Think of it as a huge iPod Touch with an option for 3G data. Redesigned apple apps, full back catalogue support, and new SDK's on the way! Check out the video =]

Sunday, January 24, 2010

iPhone used to survive Haiti Earthquake!


wow...simply amazing. A story I found on the net.

"Apple’s iPhone, along with the help of a medical application, has saved at least one life in the tragic Haiti earthquake. American film maker, Dan Woolley, found himself trapped in rubble when the Haitian earthquake struck, injuring his head and leg. With no other place to turn he used his trusty iPhone along with help from a unknown first-aid medical application. The app helped him diagnose his broken foot, make a tourniquet for his leg, and described the best way to bandage his head to stop the bleeding. He even set the alarm clock to go off every 20 minutes to make sure he stayed awake and alert.65 hours later he was rescued."

Best apps for your girlfriend/boyfriend

These apps have saved me so much phone credit that I just don't know why I need a $49 cap anymore!

Voice Calling - Skype
Best to use at home with a wifi connection. Prior to having iPhones, I had to sneak out and grab the phone and quickly answer it as soon as Yi rang me to avoid waking up the whole house. Quite the pain...otherwise we would just call each other on mobile and talk for awhile. With the phone my arm often got tired and I had to switch arms to stop them from going numb. With the mobile I had loudspeaker but it burned lots of credit.

Now since we both have iPhones, we just lie in bed, with our headsets on, and talk on Skype for virtually no cost! WIN!

Messaging - Ping
I've already done a post on this, but this app seriously saves you so much credit money. Yi and I havent texted each other via SMS since we started using Ping! It just uses a tiny tiny amount of your 3G data to send text messages. Even with my 250mb/month data plan it is more than enough to send at least 20 pings a day. WIN!

Now the only problem we're having is how to spend all this excess credit we're building up!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

iPhone's Everywhere!

In my daily commute on the train, I will undoubtedly notice at least a
few other iPhone users around me.

Now people will have mixed opinions on this. Some people say iPhone
users are all sheep. I believe they are ignorant. I agree to some
extent that people who get iPhones but have no idea how to use it
properly would indeed be classifed as a silly little sheep who just
got one to look cool. However, for the majority of iPhone users out
there,we have chosen it because we believed it was a far superior
product to anything else out there.

And to see the Apple phenomenon in full force everyday when going to
work makes me admire Apple that much more!

Sure, some people want to buck the trend and stand out of the crowd
and have a phone no one else does, but for me, I value the amazing
features of the iPhone much much more.

Sent from the gPhone! [Mobile Blog]

Monday, January 18, 2010

OMG ITS GTA !!!

Need I say more?





With better graphics and more awkward controls than the DS version, what are you waiting for? Available on the App Store for $13...or ...for those with AppSync click here for the game!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

If you're lost on the road...

Man. The Maps app + a GPS app on your iPhone will mean you will never get lost again! Just the other day, me and some workmates were driving up to Gladesville for some indoor cricket. The driver got lost. Suddenly, a co-worker and I both whip out our iPhones and locate the directions in no time at all!

Later that day, I was meeting up with a bunch of friends to go to the Hooters at Parramatta. We were waiting at Westfields and were waiting for friends who was going to drive us up there . They were walking around too but we didn't know the area too well, but they said they were on Valentines St. We had no idea where that was...until once again, my iPhone saved the day! It's so handy when you're walking because the 3GS has an in-built compass and when you point it in whichever direction, the maps app will swing around to orientate you in the same bearing!

Oh and not to mention, I used my Tomtom app to help get them from Parramatta Station to Hooters! Hurray!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Epicness of the App Store


You know it's the deal breaker when it comes to getting an iPhone - the apps. I've always thought of the iPhone as an empty shell of a swiss army knife which gets filled with a new instrument with each new app found. The app store was a revolutionary step forward in digital content content distribution. Whatever you want, you can get it, in a flash, from the internet to your iphone in less than a minute! Distribution was simply not that easy and fast a few years ago!

Here's an interesting little strip which describes the economics of the app store. After reading this, you'll be wanting to start learning how to develop apps!!

Anyone who's got an idea for an app and is interested in developing it...drop me a line xD

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Data Plan Traps...ROAMING CHARGES with 3!!

Many of you who have data plans for your smart phones with a 3 postpaid contract will no doubt already know what I'm talking about. For those who don't, let me explain.

When your mobile can't find reception to it's own cell network, it will roam on another network's cell towers. This makes for a seamless way while calling and incurs no extra charges. 3 does this by piggybacking on Telstra's network.

With data downloading, it is a whole different story.

Normally, mobile carriers will charge you roaming rates for overseas data use. 3 however, charges even when it roams locally!!

Hence, if you're on the move and you lose 3's reception, and you're using an app which requires data usage, then you may well be incurring roaming charges! However small they may be, I'm sure none of you want to pay anymore than the amount you're already being charged monthly! With 3, roaming on Telstra's network costs' 50c/MB. Now that may not sound like much, but if left unchecked, may start to rack up significantly.

How can we avoid roaming charges? There is a solution, but it's not very robust. Here's how on an iPhone:

By default, roaming is on. So we simply have to turn it off.

Step 1:
Go to Settings>Carrier. You should see "Searching" and it may take a few minutes to search all the different carriers your SIM card can connect to.

Step 2:
Once it loads, you should see a list of Mobile Carriers. You should find you are by default, ticked on "Automatic" which pretty much means roaming. Then underneath you should see 3(3G), 3, ROAMING, and Telstra. Select 3(3G) and you're done!

Now your phone will only access the 3 network and avoid the Telstra network.

Advantages:
No roaming charges!!

Disadvantages:
> Constant messages saying "Network cannot be found" due to 3's spotty network coverage since it can no longer connect to Telstra (even for calling!) which are terribly distracting whilst playing games!

>If you're on a train or out and about you will get these messages quite frequently.

So in the end, you have a trade-off. Do you want to live easy and incur charges, or escape the charges and cop a bunch of needless warnings on 3's dodgy network?

I'd like to see what the roaming experience is like for iPhone users on other networks. Please tell me about it!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

[App Review] Ping!

Time for another app review! My uncle came back from Macau today and told me to get this app called Ping! I went to the app store and downloaded the lite version for free. So technically any iPhone can get this app!

What it does is amazing. It lets you send a message to any other Ping! user.

Now you may be thinking, what's so special about that? I can do that with ebuddy! (or some other IM app)

Well this app is special.

> Firstly, there's no signing in/signing out hassle. No passwords to remember.
> Secondly, the messages you receive are pushed and so appear as if they were SMS's! Meaning Ping does not have to be open for you to receive messages!

Think about what would happen if everyone with an iPhone had Ping! Your SMS costs would go down like crazy!

It's also very simple to use. All you have to do is think of a Ping! ID...and you're ready to go! After that, simply send your message to another person's Ping! ID and that's it!

Advantages:
> Very slick way to send messages to other iphone users
> Simple to set up and use, hassle free

Disadvantages:
> May drain battery with push notifications enabled
> Requires 3G or wifi
> Some users will get stuck at "connecting" when they first open their app...
> Only effective if everyone uses it!! (or at least if your text buddy gets it)

So spread the word my fellow iPhoner's! Post in the comments your Ping! IDs and we can all connect!

My Ping! ID is gman98


Saturday, January 9, 2010

What you can do at an Apple Store...

This guy is amazing. Look at what he cooked up when he was burning time at an Apple Store. All he used was "Garage Band" (recording/editing the piano) and "iMovie" (recording/editing video), 2 apps available on any Mac out of the box!



Thank goodness for email!

[TUTORIAL] How to put videos onto your iPhone/iPod Touch

Unlike music files, which are predominantly in the popular MP3 format, video files have many many formats, such as AVI, MPG, MP4, MOV, WMV, and the list goes on. Stubbornly, Apple's products will only play movies in a certain encoding of MP4, and hence most of the movies you will typically download on your computer (AVI, MPG) will not work! So, how do we overcome this problem?

A whole programming industry of video converters has emerged over the years to help alleviate this problem. Unfortunately, most of them charge you for it, but if you snoop around enough, you'll be able to find some sweet freeware which will do the job for you.

What I've found today is a program called "Videora"

Now I haven't tested this software on Windows but it looks to be pretty decent. This program has a step by step guide to converting your videos for the everyday user. Check out the tutorial HERE

Just in case you missed the download for it, here it is.

Being a mac user myself, I use handbrake to do this for me, a very powerful video encoding program (and free!), despite Videora offering a Mac version. So let me know if you've had success with this program!

Friday, January 8, 2010

If you need help...


Comical yet oddly true!



Thursday, January 7, 2010

[TUTORIAL] How to set up Mobile Blogging by email/MMS

For all you blogspot bloggers out there who find something interesting to blog about when you're out and about, here's a quick tutorial to get you started!

What you need:
A phone which can send MMS. (typical phones)
OR
A phone which can send emails. (smart phones)

First, on your phone:
Step 1:
send an email to go@blogger.com with subject "REGISTER" and also include REGISTER in the email body. You should get a reply saying your device has been registered.

Then, on your computer:
Step 2:
Log into your blogger account. You should be at the dashboard.

Step 3:
For the blog you wish to associate your mobile blog posting with, click on the mobile icon next to the title:
Step 4:
You will then be given a code to email or MMS to go@blogger.com FROM YOUR MOBILE. Note: it will be different from the one shown below, that's just an example =]

Step 5:
Once you have received a confirmation message, you can now start blogging from your mobile device! Simply send the contents to go@blogger.com from the registered email or device. It should look something like this:

To: go@blogger.com
Subject: [Insert Blog Post Title Here]
[Insert Blog Post Contents in the email body]

Happy blogging!

Mobile blogging

I've just setup blogger on my iPhone! now I can just send my post as
an email and it will show up as a blog entry! How awesome! check out
my next post for the tutorial =]

Sent from the gPhone!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

...aaaand the iPhone Blows Away the Competition!



So much for the competition! Trying to compete with the speed of iPhone's internet browser is the Motorola Droid on the left, and Google's brand spanking new phone, the Nexus One (with a faster processor than the iPhone 3GS). Both competitors run Android Operating Systems (by Google)

Here's the Author's comments:
And I think you all know which iPhone, sorry, I mean, which phone won the test?
This just goes to show that even though the iPhone only has a 600Mhz processor, it can still perform better than a phone with a 1Ghz processor.
Where all the HTC HD2 people now huh?
Talk nah?!


Just goes to show that even after going on the market for around 3 years, the competition is still playing catch-up to the iPhone =D

[TUTORIAL] How to complete your album art collection!

I don't know about you all, but I was very anal when it came to filling out every single mp3 with it's corresponding album art. Yes it was painstakingly repetitive, but at the end of the day I felt like I had accomplished something beautiful - having iTunes and your iPod complete with album art is just such a sight to behold!

For English songs: the iTunes way

Step 1:
Go to "iTunes Store" on the sidebar, type the song name into the search bar and search it up! (no need for google!) You will need to note down the artist and the album name.

Step 2:
Make sure your songs are correctly labelled by "album" and "artist"

Note: if "album artist" is different to "artist", it will not work! However, leaving "album artist" blank is also fine. To check this, right click your song and select "get info". Alternatively, you can just add the "ablum artist" into a column category by right clicking anywhere on the bar which has "name, artist, date added...etc"

Step 3:
Right click on your song, and select "Get Album Artwork" and voila! your album art will pop up! You're done!

Tip 1: You can batch select/edit songs by holding down "ctrl" on windows and "command" on mac's while selecting songs. Alternatively, if the songs you want to edit are all in a row, just hold "shift" and press down/up.

Tip 2: If your music is being organised by Artist and you change the artist name, it may vanish when you confirm, as it will jump to it's new alphabetical location! Make sure your music is organised NOT by what you are editing!


Album Art for songs not in iTunes?
I know many of you listen to asian songs or perhaps indie songs as well. If you want to find album art for these songs, you'll have to do it manually. Here's how:

Step 1:
Obtain the album art somehow using a google search. Here are some nice album art searches for chinese songs:

Step 2:
Go to iTunes and right click your song. Select "Get Info" and select the very last tab on the right called "Artwork". Click "Add...", locate your album art photo, and you're done!

Tip: you can also batch add album artworks for songs in the same album by selecting all of them, right-click>Get Info> Double click on the "Artwork" rectangle.

Note: for this method, no correct labelling is required, although it's in your best interest as iTunes sorts your music using the music labels.

Save this for when you've got a free day to yourself at home! At the end of the day, you should get something like this!



The Wonders of Syncing!




Syncing is to share common information across different platforms. Today I discovered this wonderful thing and started syncing 6 things together -

1.Google Gmail Contacts and Google Calendar

2.iPhone Contacts and iPhone Calendar

3.iMac Address Book Contacts and iMac iCal Calendar


By the afternoon, after some very simple setup in the preferences of programs and some googling, I have successfully achieved syncing of contacts and calendars between these 3 platforms. The implications of this is mind-blowing!


I can now:

>Check my girlfriend’s schedule on my iPhone, since I can see her calendar as well. (stalker!)

>Add or edit an event on iCal or iPhone or on Google Calendar, and it will show up updated on the other 2!

>Add/edit a contact anywhere, and it will show up everywhere else! (still in testing...so far doesnt sync very quickly =/)


This is already in addition to synced mail accounts on the iPhone, Mail on my iMac, and Gmail, which was previously the only type of syncing I took advantage of.


Another thing you can sync is pretty much any file you want. You can do this using an app called “Dropbox”. I won’t bother explaining but instead I’ll just post up the video here. It’s really useful for:

>if you want to consolidate uni work/notes done on a laptop when you get onto your home computer!)

>if you get the iPhone/iPod Touch app, its a quick way to access word docs, pdfs or maps when you’re on the go!




This summarises today’s blog entry about the future - cloud computing. That is, putting all your information on the internet and accessing it universally from your various platforms. Never before have I been so amazed by the concept of the cloud, and can only await what the future of the internet holds for us all!




Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Best Jailbroken Apps!

So you’ve jailbroken your iPhone/iPod Touch! Now what can you do with Cydia and what cool apps are there? Here’s a handy starter guide to jailbroken goodness!

First you need to know that Cydia is the “app store” of jailbroken devices. Before you begin, you should add in at least these 2 “sources”, which list a whole bunch of useful apps:

http://apt.iwatcher.net/
http://cydia.xsellize.com/


See my tutorial “Get paid apps for free” on how to add sources onto Cydia (steps 1 and 2)

Once you have these sources installed, you should be able to just search in Cydia for these apps!

SBSettings
This is a must have app! Basically you swipe the status bar at the top and it brings down a handy little menu with toggles for wifi, bluetooth, 3G, airplane mode, bluetooth, brightness etc. I use it pretty much all the time, mostly to turn wifi on and off to save precious battery life. The normal way would be to go to settings>Wi-Fi>turn on/off, and that’s for wi-fi only!





Winterboard
You’ll love this if you’re into customisation. Don’t want your menu to look like everything else out there? Use Winterboard to customise your device with themes! Creators of themes upload them onto Cydia and you can browse through it in Winterboard themes in the categories tab of Cydia.


The “Illumine” Winterboard Theme I am currently using.

Backgrounder+Proswitcher
These 2 apps work wonders together. Backgrounder by itself lets you run apps in the background! My favourite use is when skyping.

When you skype someone, and you press home, skype logs you out because the program quits. However, with Backgrounder installed, you hold down the home button instead, to see a message “backgrounder enabled”, and you will exit to the home screen, but you will still be talking on skype! Backgrounder basically keeps the app running in the background while you can access any other app.

Proswitcher is an elegant way of switching between your backgrounded apps and closing them if need be. It works only when backgrounder is installed. However, native backgrounding apps (Phone, Safari, Mail, Messages, iPod) will show up with Proswitcher as well, which is another great feature.





See the loading circle badges next to Phone and iPod? That’s a feature of backgrounder which tells you they’re being run in the background!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

[UPDATED for 4.1] Get Apple App Store apps for free!

Welcome aboard pirates! So you don’t want to pay for your apps? Wish the price tag of that app you always wanted was “Free”?

This is the tutorial you have been looking for!

Firstly, your iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad must be jailbroken with LimeRa1n.
See RedmondPie's Excellent Tutorial >HERE

(Note: instructions are the same regardless of which iOS device you have)

Step 1
Open Cydia. It takes a little while to load up. Select “Normal user” when prompted. Once it has loaded, press the “Manage” tab at the bottom. You should see this.

Step 2
Select the “Sources” button, then touch “edit” and then “add”
When prompted, enter “http://cydia.hackulo.us
Cydia will then load up the files from this source you have just added.





You should get this warning message, tap on "Add Anyway":



Step 3
You should now see the following on your screen:


Tap on the newly installed "Hackulo.us" source shown in the red box, and you will be taken to a list of packages you can download.




Select “AppSync for OS 4.1”(as not shown above in the outdated image) and then select “install”. Cydia should reboot and your iPhone is now ready to play some cracked apps!

Now you’re thinking...how do I get apps onto my device now? It’s very easy. There are several websites which host all of the apps on the app store. Here is the most popular one so far:


Simply search and download the apps you want. Once they are downloaded, drag them into iTunes, and sync with your iPhone / iPod Touch. That’s it!

Let me know if you had success or any problems with my tutorial.

If you want to get pirated apps right from your iPhone like with the App Store App, then simply search for "Installous" in Cydia. It works exactly like the App Store, and lets you download the cracked apps right onto your iPhone / iPod Touch without needing to sync from a computer!


TROUBLESHOOTING!

If you get this problem when trying to install AppSync, simply restart your iPhone and try again!

"The requested modifications cannot be applied due to required dependencies or conflicts that cannot be automatically found or fixed."