Two weeks after an iPhone 3GS was dropped in a swimming pool while recording video, the phone is still frickin’ working says its owner.
“I’m talking to you on it now,” says Khena Kara, the iPhone’s owner, speaking from his home in Nashville, TN. “It’s still going strong.”
Kara’s iPhone 3GS gained internet fame after Kara accidentally dropped it in a swimming pool while recording a video. The iPhone kept recording as it sank to the bottom, and as he fished it out. “It still frickin’ works!” he says in surprise as he pulls the iPhone from the pool. Kara posted the footage to YouTube, and it spread fast on blogs and Twitter. It has now been watched more that 500,000 times.
In the unlikely event that you’ve been yearning for more browsers on your Mac, and in the even less likely event that you wish you could splash out money for one; well, sunshine, your prayers have been answered.
For iCab, the last Mac browser that still costs money, is still being updated and has just reached version 4.6.1. And it can be all yours for 20 bucks. (I’m wracking my brains, and I can’t think of any other browsers that cost money these days – not since OmniWeb went free. Shout if you know of another.)
By all accounts, the iPhone 3GS launch has been a tremendous success for Apple. Despite launching in a down economy, the new model managed to sell as many units in its first weekend as its predecessor with little sign of slowdown. It’s also been an incredibly smooth launch. Though the iPhone 3G launch was marred by product shortages and buggy software, Apple’s kept a steady supply of hardware in the channel, and iPhone OS 3.0 is quite stable for such a new release.
But as effective as Apple has become in managing all of the aspects of the iPhone that it controls (hardware and first-party software), the launch also reveals the challenges the company faces in its efforts to take advantage of a larger network. AT&T’s signal strength continues to be a subject of much heated debate, and more crucially, Apple’s position as minder of a large software platform with thousands of developers looks increasingly untenable.
I don’t need to go into detail about the numerous cracks in the App Store facade of the last year: the baby shaking app, the unapproved porn, the copyright infringement, the excellent apps inexplicably rejected for arbitrary reasons and the apps that never made it out of the approval process one way or another. What I can say is this: the release of the 3GS has inspired a burst of app submissions the likes of which Apple has never seen before. When the App Store first opened a year ago, it had a flurry of submissions, but a smaller pool of developers. This is the first real “event” period since the iPhone dev community has grown, and the submission pool is not unlike the giant hyperwall of apps that dominated the conversation at this year’s WWDC.
A developer friend tells me that a pre-release version of his app was checked off and approved in a week in the period immediately before the 3GS announcement. The final release, submitted the day of the WWDC keynote on June 8, took nearly four weeks to get through the system, and I’m told that Apple has even notified its developer community that all apps are taking between three and four weeks to vet. That means it takes four times as long to get new products to consumers, four times as long to fix bugs, and four times as long to go from finished work to money-making.
If Apple wants to maintain the dominance of the iPhone and the success of the App Store, it needs to find a more effective way to manage the sheer volume of submissions it’s tackling. Too much crud is making it through, and too much brilliant code is sitting on the shelf. The iPhone is by far the best mobile platform today. Unless Apple learns to treat its developers better on the front end (I hear payment works brilliantly), they won’t be loyal when the next Next Big Thing comes around.
The United States Department of Justice has taken the first baby steps that could eventually lead to an official investigation of the Telecom industry and the effects its exclusive carrier agreements have on consumer prices and choices, according to a Wall Street Journal report Monday.
The initial review looks to determine whether large U.S. telecom companies such as AT&T Inc. and Verizon Communications Inc. have abused the market power they’ve amassed in recent years, according to people familiar with the matter.
Largely moribund and hamstrung by internal politics and inefficiency during the Bush administration, DOJ under President Barack Obama has seen renewed relevance as an arm of the Federal government and has lately signaled business as usual could soon be ending for an industry left to its own devices during the past decade or more.
Many people have long decried exclusive carrier agreements that make popular gadgets such as Apple’s iPhone available only to consumers willing to sign multi-year service agreements with AT&T and likewise Blackberry’s Storm to those who’d sign with Verizon.
The Wall Street Journal quoted the Justice Department’s antitrust chief, Christine Varney, saying she wants to “reassert the government’s role in policing monopolistic and anti-competitive practices by powerful companies.”
Spot the difference? One of these is a $30 iPhone Stereo Headset from Apple. The other is a $14 knockoff from the Philippines.
Thing is, the $14 copycat is as almost good as the original. It’s nearly physically indistinguishable. The sound is exceptionally good. And the microphone/remote works the same as it does on the genuine article.
Even the packaging is remarkably realistic.
Except there’s a few things that are off — a few minor details that give them away as fakes. Plus, they broke down after a week.
The audio manufacturer Shure is known for its excellent headphones, which makes it a favorite target of counterfeiters.
In May, Shure helped Chinese authorities bust knockoff shops run by twoÂ Shanghai companies that were making copycat Shure headphones. The raids uncovered large quantities of Shure E2c and E4c earphones, which sell for about $70 and $170 respectively, as well as headphones branded JVC and Audio-Technica.
Unlike copycats of yore, today’s counterfeiters are amazingly sophisticated and accomplished, turning out high-quality knockoffs that in some ways rival the originals. Flickr user digaderfox bought a pair of fake Shures on eBay last year, and documented the surprisingly high quality of the knockoffs on the photo site.
Paul Applebaum, Shure’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel, said counterfeiters are increasingly sophisticated. Some are setting up convincing factory-direct websites, or hijacking U.S. eBay accounts to make it appear goods are shipped domestically.
In the security video, the employee is seen opening the back door to the store after the suspect rang the bell at about 10.15 AM. She is led back into the store at gunpoint, and was shot soon afterward. The suspect fled on foot.
Police describe the suspect as a thin black male, aged 35-45, wearing a dark baseball cap and light-colored shirt and pants.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Arlington County Police Department Tip Line at 703 228-4242.
Or call Detective Alan Lowrey at 703 228-4199 or Detective Michael Austin at 703 228-4241. Det. Lowrey can also be reached via email at Alowrey@arlingtonva.us and Det. Austin can be reached at Mausti@arlingtonva.us.
Full text of the police description of the crime and appeal for help after the jump.