My new iPad arrived at around 11am, so here are my first thoughts and some unboxing photo’s. More to follow as I compare it to my 1st Generation iPad, with some screengrabs from both to get an idea of the improvement in screen resolution.
The new screen is the first thing that impresses, and the difference between icons for Apple’s updated apps and those still at lower resolution.
The iPhone Dev Team released version 0.8 of Redsn0w recently, adding compatibility with the latest iPhone 3GS hardware running firmware 3.0. I had previously jailbroken my 3GS using purplera1n but couldn’t pass an opportunity to play with the latest method. Below is a video for anyone thinking of trying the jailbreak but unsure of what is involved. It’s fairly straightforward, the only bit that requires manual intervention is putting the iPhone into recovery mode and even that is guided by the app. Another top tool from the iPhone Dev Team, many thanks for their continued work. Click the HD button to go to Vimeo and watch or download the full size version (bottom right corner of the page).
I had hoped O2 would be replacing the 8/16Gb iPhone 3G with the new 16/32Gb 3GS, but the AT&T pricing of $199/$299 made that look unlikely. O2 now have an iPhone 3GS pricing page and they’re not coming cheap.
The last generation iPhone 3G stays at £96.89/free, but the new 16Gb 3GS rises to £184.98 on cheap/shorter contracts, compared to £155.61 for the replaced 16Gb 3G. The 32Gb 3GS comes in at a wallet busting £274.23, or £175.19 if you are willing to sign up for a 24 month contract. That’s a TCO of £890.91 for a 16Gb model on the £35 tariff for 18 months, or £926.91 for 32Gb. The new 3GS is also available on pay as you go:
- iPhone 3G 8GB – £342.50
- iPhone 3G S 16GB – £440.40
- iPhone 3G S 32GB – £538.30
That’s an eye watering price for the 3GS, but since it includes 12 months of unlimited data it works out cheaper for anyone with light call and text usage.
The real issue here is the use of 18 and 24 month contracts, especially when Apple seem dedicated to a 12 month release cycle for its iPhone hardware. Macworld has some details for users looking to terminate their contracts to get the new model, and the bad news is that it looks like O2 will want the remainder of the contract paid in full. That means an iPhone 3G owner 12 months into their contract would have to pay £205.56 plus cost of new 3GS model, with the prospect of doing the same in 12 months when the next version is released.
Not exactly tech related, but worth mentioning anyway. I have recently started using the moneysavingexpert.com web site for lots of excellent advice on saving cash. There’s tips across a wide range of categories, including energy costs (currently the big news in the UK), insurance and mortgages. I’m currently trying out their tips for getting Orange Wednesday 2-for-1 cinema tickets using a £1 PAYG sim. They also have some advice for getting the cheapest 3G iPhone over the length of the contract, so I managed to get a gadget link in.
I’ve had a couple of experiences this week with iPhone’s that have made me ask this question. I frequently work with a consultant who has owned a first gen iPhone for nine months. He’s never been able to get sending an email through an AOL account to work reliably, so I had a look at the settings for him. We eventually worked out that the only time he could send emails was when the iPhone was close enough to connected through an open wireless access point. Receiving emails works fine, but not sending. The O2 stores he has visited were clueless about this problem, so I’m investigating for the next time I work with him.
While playing with the email settings I asked if he would mind me trying out the location awareness in Maps. Since the phone can use local cellphone towers to work out its location I expected this to have no problem. After a few minutes searching the iPhone still hadn’t worked out where it was so I gave up. My mobile is on O2 and I had maximum signal strength, so did the iPhone. Read more…
First reviews have now started to appear for the iPhone 3G, along with the usual rush of unboxing photo’s. I’m not looking to get one for a while (if at all) so I’m more interested in the version 2 software for the iPod touch. For those looking for iPhone news, here’s a list of links to the news and views.