For the past seven years, cutting-edge Apple users have been spoiled by a constant stream of features and enhancements that have kept Mac OS X fresh and exciting. While putting the brakes on what once was an annual update, Apple has managed to keep rolling out significant OS upgrades worthy of their $129 price tags, and Mac devotees have become accustomed to watching Steve Jobs ceremoniously pull back the curtain on round after round of killer apps.
When you pick up your iPhone 2.0 in a few weeks, the first place you may want to take it to is the gym. That’s what Engadget is predicting anyway. According to a press release from 24 Hour Fitness yesterday stated, "Nike and Apple worked with major gym equipment manufacturers to make their cardio equipment Nike + iPod compatible so gym members can easily track and record workouts on cardio equipment like treadmills, stair steppers, elliptical trainers and stationary bikes." The gym giant will be the first to do so, however only selected gyms in its system will offer Nike + enabled equipment beginning in July. The press release only mentions the iPod nano, however Nike has made it clear that Nike+ would eventually be available for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Engadget muses that with new iPhone on its way and the App Store about to launch (not to mention the patent application that included this graphic), July just might be your month to start that exercise program that you resolved to do back in January.
MarketWatch is reporting that the way has been cleared for the iPhone to reach the largest mobile phone market in the world. According to Gao Songge, deputy director of China Mobile’s general department, the only thing holding up the deal with Apple was Apple’s insistence on requiring that China Mobile share revenues. Apple dropped those demands on Friday and now the iPhone is set to hit the Chinese market 540 million mobile users. There is no timetable set for a Chinese release of the iPhone. Yet with the prospect of Apple stores opening in mid-July and the introduction of 3G service in time for the Beijing Olympics, it might not be that far off.
China will get its first Apple retail store this summer according to an article in Shanghai Daily. Apple China’s website announced that the new store will be located in the Sanlitun area of Beijing, the city’s most fashionable district. The Shanghai Daily says that an industry insider has tipped them off with some details, “Apple will open the three-floor store on July 19 and will open a second Retail Store in Beijing during the Olympics.” The Chinese newspaper also postulates that the new iPhone may join the other Apple products available in the new stores. There has been no official word from Apple China on the exact opening dates and times of these new stores.
Apple emailed notice to developers that iPhone SDK beta 8 (build 9M2199a) is ready to download and that they are now accepting iTunes App Store submissions. Apple states: Beta release 8 is compatible with the ﬁnal iPhone OS 2.0 release and must be used to build and sign any iPhone OS application to be submitted to the App Store. As a reminder, you must be a member of the iPhone Developer Program to submit apps. The final firmware release of iPhone 2.0 is rumored to launch Friday, June 27 and expected to hit OG iPhones before the launch of the iPhone 3G.
iPhone Atlas posted an article reporting that an AT&T minion employee spilled the beans on upcoming MMS support coming to the iPhone. You know, the text messages that include pretty pictures instead of the annoying ViewMyMessage.com service AT&T wants you to sign into every time someone sends a MMS message to your iPhone. We're joining the rest of the internet calling shenanigans on this alleged memo. The image above doesn't really help the case. First, the image has the carrier as T-Mobile and secondly, the app on the iPhone in question is SwirlyMMS. SwirlyMMS adds, you guessed it, MMS support to jailbroken iPhones. So lets get back to speculating on the more important issues of the day. Like, where's copy and paste, and what time will I have to leave work to get an iPhone. Come on people, priorities. Via Gizmodo
Like sands trickling through the hourglass, so are the details of the iPhone 3G. With two weeks to go until the phone's initial launch, AppleInsider's sources say that iPhones will be relatively expensive in Europe. Apple is also reportedly pushing international carriers to offer flat-rate data plans instead of selling data access by the kilobit, so the plans will also be pricey. France Telecom's Orange announced the pricing and plans for the iPhone 3G's debut in France on July 17. As we've already told you, Telefonica has announced 300,000 preorders in Spain and the U.K., but an Apple memo claims that no preorders will happen at Apple Stores here in the States, no way no how (Apple can't wait to have another launch-day frenzy on its hands, we're sure). At least one O2 employee has been telling British customers that they'll be able to sign up for -- but not activate -- their iPhone 3G contract before the phone launches on July 11. Then they'd just have to come back on July 11 to buy the phone and activate the contract with a confirmation code. Of course, that O2 employee might be totally wrong, but we certainly hope this is true and that AT&T does something similar in the U.S. so the launch day lines keep moving. Finally, FBR Capital Markets analyst Craig Berger reports that Apple has boosted its iPhone 3G orders to more than 15 million by the end of 2008. Mac orders also up as much as 20 percent. That's a lot of freakin' iPhones. Curiously, the same report says that lower-priced iPod nanos will be coming our way soon as well.
We briefly mentioned this on Monday, but there's more info about the Mac OS X Trojan horses recently sighted. One of them, seen in the wild, is disguised as a Mac program called PokerGame.app. If you type in your administrator password at the prompt, the hacker will be able to remotely access your Mac through a SSH tunnel. But another Trojan, so far just a proof of concept, actually gives the hacker root access, via an ARDAgent vulnerability in the operating system. This has naturally led to more concern about the rising threat of Mac OS X malware, and we're sure to hear more about it as the Mac platform becomes more and more popular. Prominent hacker Dino Dai Zovi offers some suggestions for Apple to put better malware protection into Snow Leopard. Until then (and even after then, of course), it's up to everyone to stay vigilant.
Telefonica announced 300,000 pre-orders for the iPhone 3G in Spain and the United Kingdom. They have allowed customers to go to their websites to reserve the iPhone 3G since it was announced earlier this month. Telefonica will sell the device in twelve Latin American countries, the Czech Republic and Spain on July 11. Telefonica sells the iPhone under the O2 brand in the UK and Ireland.