Saturday, July 07, 2007

Recapping Some Apple News

Because I've missed so many days, I'd rather just brute force the big Apple news items since that's like half of what I have today rather than big one topic to write a whole lot about. First and foremost, AT&T claims to have activated over 600,000 iPhones as of Monday night! I don't know about you guys, but I'd call than a fairly successful launch from strictly a sales standpoint. Others claim that over 1 million are sold by now, and apparently a European deal will be announced soon as well. Still, the European thing is just a rumor. The reaction to the iPhone's released has been mixed with naysayers still naysaying and fans playing up its good points. It's no secret that it's not perfect though, and Macenstein has compiled a great list of what Apple can, and should, add to the iPhone. I think that if all these things were in the 2G iPhone, it would be a killer app of its own, and it's not altogether unlikely for Apple to listen up here. Apparently, they actually are working on getting Flash on there, to be released in a free update. Meanwhile, in the world of iTunes, Apple has started to drop prices on some albums. I don't have iTunes on my work computer so I can't see which, but it seems like it's mostly indie label stuff. Still, a pretty cool move, Apple. Unfortunately for them, UMG did end up killing their long-term contract and instead will be selling Apple music 'at will' to, as I had predicted, gain more bargaining power for variable pricing and also to give exclusivity deals to other music providers (ha, who else has the kind of share for that to help? Maybe Amazon, though their service still isn't out yet).

While we're on the topic of music, check out this list of over 90 great music sites. Aside from tablature, it has everything an audiophile could need to get his or her groove on. I literally spent like an hour playing around at some of those sites. I had no idea there were karaoke sites out there and was especially impressed by that since you could just get a media center PC rather than a karaoke machine.

With iPhone abuzz the past few months it's hard to imagine that other cell phones have actually been released. More recently, T-Mobile has announced unlimited VoIP calls from special phones for only $10 more a month. It defaults to WiFi when available and only relies on T-Mobile's network when you're not near a hot spot. I picture this being huge for international travelers, but I think that this could totally be T-Mobile's savior. It's infamous for poor coverage, so having hot spots at over 8,500 Starbucks and Borders and such for T-Mobile users should help out their cause.

Meanwhile, Sprint is dealing with the iPhone release by forcibly ending contracts with users who call customer service too much. Is it just me, or does this sound stupid and ridiculously misguided? What an awesome PR stunt to deter potential customers. It's bad enough that their site is butt ugly, but now they're going around ending contracts if you have service issues. I use Sprint and I don't even like their service much to begin with.

The Consumerist has staged a stunt that will hopefully go down in Internet history as brilliant: they rigged a computer with porn and monitoring mechanisms and sent it to their local Geek Squad to install iTunes. Of course, the Best Buy boneheads took the bait and were caught stealing personal photographs as well as porn. It got insane viewership from Digg, and I hope caused a shake up within Best Buy. More importantly, I hope people will be more prudent with protecting their more sensitive files.

For those of you who fear that your computers aren't secure enough. Computer World has a great round up of some of the best free security programs the interweb has to offer. I would call it a must-read and may be a much needed eye-opener for some of you more passive users.

I only have one piece of movie news because the rest is just video content (mostly trailers): Christian Bale has revealed that The Dark Knight ends in a way that's very amiable towards a sequel. I guess it's no surprise that they would want to make more movies, but it does make one wonder what he knows that would infer something like that so clearly.

Yahoo Movies has a number of exclusive new clips from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (that title never gets any shorter), and they're taking a while to load for me but they're pretty neat, nonetheless. Harry is definitely coming off as much more mature in this one from what the clips are revealing.

Since my girlfriend is a Jane Austen fan, I thought I'd mention the trailer for The Jane Austen Book Club about women in a book club who loves the books and end up living them out. Unfortunately, my girlfriend is none too happy with me right now, so hopefully that trailer makes her more likely to forgive me?

Apple Trailers has another high-def trailer for The Bourne Ultimatum and it looks just as good as the other one did.

Yahoo has a couple of trailers. One is for Gone Baby Gone, which doesn't actually make a whole lot of sense. There's a kidnapping case and some corrupt cops and that's all I got from it. The trailer for El Cantante is more coherent, but doesn't make me want to see it all.

Lastly, there's a red-band trailer for Good Luck Chuck that doesn't seem to have any new content other than a couple of curse words, but I could be wrong. Anyway, it's Jessica Alba half-naked, so I'm sure that guys will line up in hordes to see this movie anyhow.

No meme tonight...I'm kind of hurting right now and would rather focus on that right now. Take care, everyone!

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