All posts tagged ‘Apple’

File Under: Software & Tools

Rumor: Apple’s Finder App to get Cocoa Rewrite for Snow Leopard

Flickr_snow_leopard_mannequinApple’s OS X operating system ships with two primary application building frameworks — Carbon and Cocoa. Carbon was designed to make it easier to older, legacy apps running on OS X, while Cocoa is the newer, and according to Apple, better framework.

Apple has long encouraged developers to transition their Carbon apps to Cocoa, but the company has it’s own Carbon-based holdout — OS X’s Finder app.

However, according to AppleInsider, that may be changing with the upcoming release of Snow Leopard. AppleInsider’s sources, which the site calls “people familiar with matter,” claim that Finder will see a Cocoa rewrite for the release of OS X 10.6, Snow Leopard.

While Apple hasn’t given many official details about Snow Leopard, one thing it has said is that the next generation of OS X will be fully 64-bit capable. At the same time the company has delayed a 64-bit capable version of Carbon, which means if you’re building a 64-bit app, you need to be using Cocoa.

That’s why Adobe was unable to release a 64-bit version of Photoshop CS4 for Mac — the app is built in Carbon and it’s tough to build a 64-bit app when the framework you’re using doesn’t support it.

But Adobe isn’t the only company with apps written in Carbon, and it would seem awkward (or just plain untrue) for Apple to claim it had a 64-bit system when one of its own major apps didn’t fit the bill.

So while it’s just a rumor, the all 64-bit claim lends at least one practical reason why the rumors of a Cocoa-based Finder for Snow Leopard may well be true.

So far Apple has not announced a release date for Snow Leopard, though Macworld 2009, happening Jan 5-9 seems like a good bet, if not for the actual release, at least for a healthy dose of new details.

[Photo credit]

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Vote For iPhone’s Most Wanted Fixes

BrokeniPhone by JefferySimpson via FlickrJust for fun, Please Fix the iPhone website was created to allow iPhone owners to vote for their most wanted iPhone fixes and features.

The top of the list:

  1. Copy and paste
  2. Widescreen email in Mail program
  3. Flash Content in mobile Safari
  4. Multimedia Messaging — send pictures to your friend via SMS
  5. Take a picture by clicking anywhere on the screen (or by one of the various buttons on the device) instead of by small icon

It seems pretty consistent with the complaints of various iPhone owners. If you don’t have an iPhone, now you know what you’ll be missing if you buy one. If you have one, join in on and contribute your spoiled whines at pleasefixtheiphone.com.

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Android: Does Everything an iPhone Can Do, Except Clumsier

Looks like the internet is quickly filling up on first hand reviews of T-Mobile’s new G1 mobile phone. The phone runs the first version of Google’s Android mobile operating system.

I had a chance to play with one, and from what I can tell, it is a fully capable phone. In fact, if you lined up all the features an iPhone has and compared them to the same list for Android, I bet the lists would look pretty similar.

  • Dialer with searchable contacts
  • Calendar
  • E-Mail
  • Full featured browser with zoom
  • Music Player
  • App Store
  • Music Store
  • Google Maps
  • A desktop that tells time

You get the idea. Android syncs seemlessly with Gmail and Google Calendar and can make use of a built in compass, and that is useful. On the other hand, the iPhone benefits from inheriting the iPod’s music playing prowess.

The thing is, the iPhone’s operational design simply trumps Android’s. Getting the same functionality out of Android is just clumsier.

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File Under: Business

How Much Is the Apple Tax?

Apple taxApple announced new notebooks Tuesday, but not before Microsoft unleashed the hounds, ranting about an Apple tax.

The concept, which has merit, is that Apple’s computers cost more than PCs. Just how much? Apple hinted at the number in its press event Tuesday:

Retail share: 17.6 percent market share of unit sales.

Revenue share: 31.3 percent of retail sales.

In other words, where one in five computer sales is an Apple, these account for one of every three dollars spent. Apple has more share of the revenue because its computers cost more.

No matter how you crunch the numbers, they imply that Apple charges at least 50 percent more than other manufacturers, maybe even twice as much. This isn’t a new revelation, but it’s an interesting method used by Microsoft, which doesn’t even manufacture hardware.

Some of the discrepancy in price could be due to the low end of the market. As in, Apple doesn’t produce a cheap laptop and most everyone else does. Many who are in the market for laptops, including the education market Apple is so proud of, are comparing MacBooks to laptops that cost half as much. To them, the Apple tax feels real, even if it’s an unfair comparison.

Though PC makers, like Dell, offer an astoundingly large selection of laptops, it’s still hard to determine exactly what is comparable. Factor in the details that Apple includes to make its machines higher end (or at least seem that way) and you’re quickly comparing apples to…. Oh, you finish the joke.

Many web developers have switched to Mac for reasons beyond hardware features or cost. The built-in Unix-ish command line is comfortable. It’s easy to set up a development environment similar to the servers that hold our code.

Is the Apple tax worth it to you? Regardless of whether you’re an Apple user, what would you want from other computer manufacturers?

Updated to include comparisons to low end of the market

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File Under: Mobile

Apple Zaps Another Competing iPhone App

MailWrangler on iPhone

Angelo DiNardi’s MailWranger app for the iPhone has been denied entry to the App Store because it “duplicates the functionality” of the built-in Mail app. The reason is similar to why Podcaster was rejected and it makes even less sense.

MailWrangler lets users check multiple Gmail accounts without manually logging in and out. Unlike Apple’s application, DiNardi’s uses the web interface via an embedded browser. He says Gmail in Mail is missing some other features, too:

“Using just the Apple Mail application you aren’t able to see threaded views, your google contacts, archive (quickly), star, etc without going through the hassles that are present when using Gmail’s IMAP on the iPhone.”

Several comments on DiNardi’s post support the need for MailWrangler’s features on the iPhone. Yet Apple could not find room in the App Store for MailWrangler. That’s the same App Store that has over 20 tip calculators, each one duplicating the features of the built-in Calculator app.

I’ve said before that Apple should not reject apps unless the code is malicious. More important is to have criteria applied equally to all apps. Making up new reasons to reject an app only makes a closed platform appear even less open, especially when the app may appear to compete with Apple.

Apple should be treating its app developers like royalty. These people are going to keep the iPhone as the platform of the future. Right now the developers need Apple more than the company needs them, but that will not last forever. Apple needs to make peace now, before it loses some of its biggest supporters.

[Screenshot by Angelo DiNardi]

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