This week, Michigan became the 23rd state to pass a law banning texting while driving. Oprah is urging people to observe a "No Phone Zone Day" Friday that would raise awareness about the distractions of using cell phones in cars. And Thursday, I appeared on CNBC's "Power Lunch" to talk about the potential dangers of distracted driving. Before my segment, "Power Lunch" ran a David Pogue segment based on this column that detailed apps that can help prevent you from texting or talking while driving. The whole flurry of activity, plus Pogue's … Read more
Now that the dust has settled on Opera Mini for iPhone's dramatic entry into the App Store and subsequent million-download day, the browser company has gotten to work addressing some user complaints in Thursday's Opera Mini for iPhone update.
The fixes, however, are subtle. The most significant one rights a network issue that caused Opera Mini to freeze at start-up. This release also set the app's fallback language to English rather than Arabic, as it previously was (in other words, an error with a language pack will now revert back to English.) Opera Mini is now also available in Hungarian, and the company says it has fixed backend bugs and stability soft spots.
However, Opera's mini update may disappoint some users who are on the lookout for Opera Mini to adopt multitouch pinch-to-zoom capabilities, finer-detail zoom levels, improved page rendering, and support for iPhone-optimized Web pages.
The fact that Opera Mini is a proxy browser that more or less beams an image of a Web page to your screen courtesy of Opera's servers, can account for some of the user grievances. For instance, Opera Mini isn't a native iPhone app, and therefore doesn't have access to the pinch-to-zoom technology of iPhone's Safari browser.… Read more
The saga of the lost prototype iPhone started with a 21-year-old Silicon Valley resident who says he regrets not trying harder to find its real owner, according to a published report.
Brian J. Hogan, a 21-year-old resident of Redwood City, Calif., is the person who found the iPhone and was paid by Gizmodo, according to a story published on Thursday by Wired.com.
Hogan's lawyer issued a statement to Wired and said Hogan was in the bar with friends when another patron handed him the phone after finding it on a nearby stool, asked around if anyone owned it, … Read more
Advertisers eager to hawk their products via apps on the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad may have to cough up $1 million or more for the advertising space, according to an article in Thursday's Wall Street Journal.
And marketers who want to be part of the launch of iAd, Apple's new platform for serving ads on its mobile devices, could pay as much as $10 million for the privilege, said the Journal, citing a source familiar with the matter. At the moment, advertisers reportedly pay somewhere between $100,000 and $200,000 for similar placement on mobile phone … Read more
I understand there's been something of a kerfuffle over a lost iPhone prototype that might even have been a stolen iPhone prototype. Or not.
However, I could not decide whether this was news until America's foremost newscaster, Jon Stewart, offered an opinion on this pressing matter of state.
On Wednesday, Stewart declared that this was, indeed, a topic worthy of comment. On his Comedy Central show, Intelligent America's barometer seemed somewhat disturbed at the plight of Gizmodo editor Jason Chen.
Moreover, he seemed concerned that Apple, once the underdog, had become something of an overbearing hound. The … Read more
Google's mobile development team has had a busy couple days fine-tuning what it likes to call its "iterative mobile Web," a phrase that, in plain English, extends to all the Google sites you can access from some iPhones and Android smartphones.
Earlier, it migrated a better search result for business listings from Google.com for the desktop to Google.com from the phones. On Wednesday, the team rolled out changes to the way it shows image results when you search from some of those two smartphones.
The redesign's objective is to squeeze more thumbnail images onto … Read more
As Steve Jobs announced at the unveiling of iPhone OS 4, Apple's iPad has already sold half a million units in its first few weeks of availability and in advance of the availability of the more expensive, but more flexible, 3G version.
This puts it on track to break most estimates of first-year sales. In defending Apple's entry into the space, Jobs noted that it was important for the iPad to do certain tasks better than either the smaller smartphone or larger notebook. Among those tasks were watching videos, reading books, and surfing the Web.
Indeed, the iPad'… Read more
A useful feature that Google rolled out for the Web last September has just made its way to U.S. Android phones and iPhones.
You might have noticed Place Pages as a newish type of search result that pops up on Google.com, often as the first nonsponsored listing. Connected to Google Maps (and Local search results), a Place Page gathers together key information about a location: the Web site, map, phone number, link to directions, and user reviews.
The mobile version, accessed through Google.com, similarly puts useful info for local businesses at your fingertips. "Local" is … Read more