It’s been approximately 175 hours since opening day and the iPhone craze is still going strong. At the Apple Store in downtown San Francisco, eager patrons have lined up every morning this week, with long lines continuing to scale Stockton Street regardless of the store’s closing hours. (Above, a cell phone quality photo of the store’s front, taken by a discreet salonista on her way to work.)
We called several of the other high traffic Apple Stores here in the Bay Area to find out if they were experiencing the same kind of morning rush. At the Apple Stores in Burlingame, Santa Clara, and Stonestown Mall, no one answered the phone. At the Chestnut Street location in the Marina, a female employee answered the phone on the sixth ring and exasperatingly declared the line was up to two hours long. The Stanford Shopping Center location managed to keep their cool after all this time; A levelheaded Mac Genius informed us that the line was only half an hour long and added that only the 16GB model was available.
This presents quite a problem for existing customers who show up prepared to do the quick switcheroo between OG and 3G. Not to mention, new customers hoping to jump on the iPhone bandwagon. The long lines only emphasize the fact that AT&T didn't get the stock they needed and that the Apple Retail Stores are still getting hammered as demand for the iPhone doesn't seem to show signs of subsiding. The official page for iPhone availability nationwide also shows that stock is sold out at numerous retail locations. As a result, those anticipating a quick trip to the Apple Store for their iPhone will be faced with long lines, a number of overworked employees and may still walk away iPhone free.
Computers can’t understand the analog waves that make up old VHS tapes and pre-DV camcorder videos. These curvy patterns contradict the binary world of “off” or “on,” so you need to digitize those sources before your Mac can “see” the picture. Pinnacle’s Video Capture for Mac is a fin-shaped box that handles this job—and little else. Plug in an analog video source, and the unit translates it into a 640-x-480-pixel MPEG-4 file your Mac can recognize. It works, but armchair archivists will immediately wish it had a few more features beyond its single trick.
Long lines, incompetent sales people, and unpredictable weather make acquiring the iPhone an almost impossible feat. Don’t do things the hard way; By the time you’re finished with the whole activation process, you’ll feel too exhausted to even enjoy the new features of your iPhone 3G. Instead, you can spend a little extra money and save yourself the hassle of waiting in line by purchasing an unlocked iPhone 3G directly from the Red Party Crew themselves, China.
So those awesomely unstoppable bags of wacky known as the iPhone Dev Team, who roam through the countryside jailbreaking iPhone and iPod touch firmware, are getting set to release the first PwnageTool for jailbreaking the iPhone 2.0 firmware update that was only unleashed, oh, five days ago.
But the team announced on its blog today that the PwnageTool won't be able to unlock the iPhone 3G to run on other wireless carriers. If you have an iPhone 3G, the tool will jailbreak the handset to run unsupported apps while still maintaining App Store support.
And the team is still working on a "baseband unlock" of the iPhone 3G, as well, so I guess someone should start a pool to see how quickly they get that accomplished. (Those cats are wicked smart, yo.) Read more about it on their bloggy blog.
Apple is still pretty far behind the two leaders, though; Dell enjoys a 31.9 percent slice of the pie, and HP's chowing down another 25.3 percent. Acer, in fourth place, slipped to an 8.1 percent market share. So Apple isn't in a position to pass HP anytime too soon. (Unless everyone reading this goes and buys 100 or so new Macs. Bookmark this page; we can wait.)
But the Cupertino company is also enjoying the largest growth in shipments—Apple moved nearly 1.4 million Macs in the second quarter of 2008, which is up 38.1 percent over the same quarter in 2007. Dell's growth in the same period was 11.9 percent, and HP's just 5.6 percent. (Poor Acer's shipments were down more than 20 percent -- AppleInsider has a handy chart.) Apple is outpacing the computer market as a whole, too, which saw a 4.2 percent boost over last year.
From its animated opening cut-scene to its dazzling DayGlo-infused tracks, Crash Bandicoot Nitro Kart 3D brings console-style racing to the iPhone. If you don’t immediately recognize the name, Crash is the furry, PlayStation-born answer to Nintendo’s Mario—and he’s got the kart-racing cred to prove it.
If you’ve ever watched an episode of The Flintstones, you know full well that cavemen (sorry, cave-people) had cars. Cro-Mag Rally lets you channel your inner Fred or Wilma, racing cutesy stone-age vehicles (Bone Buggy, anyone?) around a variety of cutesy tracks. The result? A cute little kart-style racing game, albeit a flawed one.
The iTunes App Store launched with not one, but three racers vying for the winner's circle that is your iPhone/iPod touch Home Screen. We pit Wingnuts Moto Racer, Cro-Mag Rally and Crash Bandicoot Nitro Kart 3Dagainst each other and learn that accelerometer-based steering doesn't always equal an innovative gaming experience.
Check out the road race for your iPhone/iPod touch after the jump.
Wizards, elves, dwarfs: If it’s not Tolkien, it’s probably Dungeons & Dragons. Underneath the Neverwinter Nights 2 videogame interface, the ghost of Gary Gygax rolls d20s to determine your success. These tested underpinnings and an almost paralyzing range of choices make Neverwinter Nights 2 an entertaining journey. Unfortunately, regular glitches and weak graphics keep the game from excellence.
If you’re like us, your iPhone bookmarks folder is filled with sites that provide an array of live sports score updates --- MLB.com, NBA.com, NFL.com, Scores Pro, ESPN, et al. Being a sports fan is a full-time business, and iPhone has made it easy to keep on top of our game, whether on the road, at work or at the beach.
And now, thanks to a little-known Web app-turned standalone native app, it’s easier than ever.
Feeling the need for speed? Find another game. Wingnuts Moto Racer will bore you to tears if it doesn’t frustrate you silly first. If that sounds harsh, it’s only because competing racers like Cro-Mag Rally and Crash Bandicoot Nitro Kart 3D offer better graphics, more varied gameplay, and fewer interface problems.
Apple enthusiasts, who are also Star Wars fans, will now be able to take the saga with them on the go. Lucas Arts is releasing a version of the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Unleashed for the iPhone 3G. Exciting? You bet, because the game will take advantage of the iPhone’s amazing touch screen features and will be one of the first full-length game titles released for the iPhone.
The game will be a scaled down version of its console counterparts, including the Wii and Xbox 360. The iPhone version won’t follow the third-person perspective, but instead players will travel through a series of static environments similar to that of the Resident Evil franchise. The phone’s accelerometer only changes the aspect ratio, while the touch screen will be used to control the main character (an apprentice of Darth Vader’s, set out to rid the galaxy of Jedis), including his lightsaber swings.
Lucas Arts has a trailer up (console versions only) for those interested in the whole plotline. Gizmodo also has some screen-shots of the iPhone in action. Star Wars Unleashed should provide about 2 to 3 ½ hours of gameplay. It’ll be available through the App Store on September 16, 2008.
Missile lock? That sounds like a bad thing, right? Teamwork and online multiplayer spice up this first-person shooter.
Giant walker robots blast rockets at your teammates. Enemy turrets rotate and rattle off machine-gun fire. A Star Wars laser beam—à la Reagan, not Lucas—etches a line toward opposing forces. Enemy Territory: Quake Wars is a futuristic first-person shooter that shares little with other hits named Quake. Instead of having you run down cramped hallways engaging in solo bouts against demons, Quake Wars requires teamwork and coordination to control objectives and win rounds. It’s a refreshing change, and few Mac shooters give the same sense of collaboration.
Yesterday, Apple made a big fuss over Psystar’s Mac OS clones. Today, they insist Psystar do a mass recall of all units running the hacked Mac OX system. That means that the Mac cloners days could be numbered. A recall of all Psystar units will undeniably bankrupt them. Apple also wants whatever profits the company has gained, in addition to, any dollars that may flow once the judge bangs the gavel.
According to Yahoo! News, a product recall is an “unusual step”. Mandated recalls are usually ordered by government agencies to rid the market of products that are potentially harmful.
Both Apple and Psystar’s legal team declined comment.
Read on the run with eReader. The app is free; the books will cost you.
When boredom strikes, nothing beats a good book at your side. eReader makes it possible, turning any iPhone or iPod touch into the next best thing since the Amazon Kindle. Granted, it doesn’t endow your device with all the Kindle’s features, but it does make reading on the run as easy as swiping your finger.