Ex Apple CEO launches five new smartphones in the Middle East

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1984 --- Steve Jobs and John Sculley --- Image by Ed Kashi/CORBIS
1984 --- Steve Jobs and John Sculley --- Image by Ed Kashi/CORBIS

Former Apple CEO John Sculley has launched a new lineup of budget smartphones in the Middle East — although he admits Steve Jobs would like not be enamoured with them.

“Steve being Steve would say, you can do alot better,” he told Gulf Business.

The range includes various animal-themed devices, including the Octopus S520, the Falcon S451, Hornbill S551, Wolverine S501, and Obi F240. They are being launched by India’s Obi Mobile, a budget smartphone brand, which John Sculley co-founded.

FaceTime Works In The Middle East on the iPod Touch

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When the iPhone 4 launched in the Middle East — specifically in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Qatar — it did so without support for FaceTime. Needless to say, this prompted some speculation. Why would Apple have dropped theFaceTime capability only from Middle Eastern iPhone 4? Was it a carrier restriction… or was Apple trying to sidestep Middle Eastern governments getting interested in regulating the new video chat standard?

It now seems like the real explanation probably has more to do with carrier restrictions than anything else. According to iRamadah, FaceTime works in the Middle East on the new iPod Touches, despite the fact that even on the iPhone 4, FaceTime is a WiFi-only standard. Seems at this point more likely that the carriers kicked for whatever reason than anything to do with Big Brother.