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Macs, Movies, Games, Books, etc. The Rants of a Mad Man.

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B&o Play Beolit 12 review

April 27th, 2012 by Raj

For those of you interested in my forever sporadic journalistic endeavours then you’ll be gleeful to hear my review of Bang & Olufsen’s new B&o Play product the “Beolit 12″ is available for your eyes to consume over on MacTalk. An excerpt of said article is here found below to tempt you to read more…

Its relatively small & lightweight but stocky in stature and had I not already mentioned it was a speaker you might be asking yourself “What is it?”, the design not giving a lot away to its function yet screaming Bang & Olufsen from its minimalistic pore ridden facade. At first I have to admit I found the whole thing a little ghastly but in the month it’s sat pride of place in my lounge room the more I’ve fallen in love with its simplicity and come to appreciate the thought put in to the design.

If you’d like to read more may I suggest you go here.
For the photographic kind there are lots of lovely images of the Beolit 12 here.

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Can Touch This – Video Review: Fruit Ninja

September 7th, 2010 by Raj

My apologies peoples, I have forgotten to let you all know of my further Internet whoring exploits over at MacTalk Australia. Back when I did an episode of “Can Touch This” for them I also filmed a couple of video reviews, one of which was for Australian made “Fruit Ninja”.

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news.com.au’s epic fail – How doth thou be so lame?

July 31st, 2010 by Raj

On today’s landing page for self-proclaimed “News website of the year”, news.com.au, you will find the above pictured link to a piece detailing what was an inexcusably massive cock-up on Apple’s behalf in relation to the release of the iPhone 4 in New Zealand.

What’s ironic is that in order to sell the story the website has decided to accompany it with a photo of Jermaine Clement, one half of the New Zealand comedy duo “Flight of the Conchords“, when in fact it has absolutely nothing to do with him nor does it mention Clement once.

It would seem that news.com.au has now, if not already, solidified its position as the online version of A Current Affair in my books. Congratulations.

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Guest host on MacTalk’s “Can Touch This” #61

July 28th, 2010 by Raj

Have you been missing the sound of my voice? Well I have good news for you, this week I join Anthony & Gav for episode 61 of the MacTalk produced podcast “Can Touch This“.

They were even kind enough to name the episode after something I said, “Your typical ham sandwich“. Tune in here to find out what that means and listen to us dissect the upcoming Australian release of the iPhone 4 and other related iOS news.

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Canadians screwed on iPhone stock at launch

July 12th, 2008 by Raj

No iPhone for you!

As if Canadians weren’t already the butt of the iPhone world, being America’s North American co-inhabiter they’ve been denied the iPhone longer than anyone would’ve thought. Today however that was all meant to change, I say “meant” because as any of the hundreds to thousands that lined up this morning were sorely disappointed in a severe shortage of stock.

Out of the four stores that I walked between checking out lines and chatting with their patrons I didn’t find a single store with more than 30 phones and then each store seemed to have a 50/50 split of 8GB & 16GB another move I find strange.

So who’s to blame? Well you could say Apple, they are the ones who’re distributing the device across the world today but the majority, whether they’re right or wrong, will say Rogers. Let’s for the moment forget the fact that Roger’s contract length is 3 years, a period that will surely go well beyond this generation of iPhones life-cycle, and again forget that they have a huge monopoly in being the only GSM provider in the country; what really puts the nail in the coffin for these guys is the past week’s worth of controversy in regards to their exorbitant pricing and that “supposedly” Apple decided they’d teach them a lesson by not supplying much stock.

Now there’s no “official” word that this was the case but all fingers point to Rogers. That said I can understand where they’re coming from, this things a cash cow for them. The 3 year contract, high rate plans, it’s money for jam, not to mention they have no competition why would you make your plans cheap? I’ve worked for a telecommunications company for 7 years and trust me the one thing that drives good pricing is competition and Rogers has none.

So blame who you will, it’s unfortunately not going to change the fact that there’s little to no iPhones out there today and you’ll most likely be waiting another week to get a “Jesus Phone” in your hands. Sorry Canada.

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My thoughts on the 3G iPhone

June 12th, 2008 by Raj

iPhone 3G

It’s OK people, put down the pitchforks and dowse the torches I’ve finally gotten around to documenting my reactions to good-old-Steve’s announcement on Monday for the 3G iPhone (Apple’s worst kept secret ever). This is how it’s going to work; I’m going to run through the bigger features of the phone and basically pick at stupid tiny mistakes just like every other blogger out there in teh internets using my trademarked sarcasm tone. You know you love it ;)

3G over EDGE
In Apple’s haste to launch the iPhone last year they pretty much forgot the rest of the world and built the phone using around it’s US-centric core market (as usual, but fair enough) meaning that if you were to use the thing in any other country you had data speeds of a mule. Granted the phone wasn’t actually supposed to be available outside the US (for the most part) but besides 3G being better and faster it actually opens up the Asia-Pacific market as well as more of Europe. Personally they should’ve had this in the first place if you ask me.

The App Store
For those of you who’ve unlocked your iPhone already you’ve probably got a great app on it called “Installer”. Well Apple have basically ripped it off and chucked in some DRM and a costing structure to provide a more “approved” style of application deployment. It will be interesting to see just how many people still unlock their phones now that this has come about (other than to use it on other networks) and just what will happen to the booming developer market utilising Installer. I’m sad to say it but I think it will disappear pretty quickly, but who knows hey?

Exchange (ActiveSync) Support
This is a biggie and RIM (the Blackberry dudes) will be shitting themselves now. It was bad enough that the iPhone last year encroached on their market share without having Exchange integration where as now they’re looking at a massive dip should everything actually work the way it’s supposed to. If I had shares in the poor Canadian lads I’d be jumping ship rather quickly, it’s not like they didn’t see it coming, we all knew Apple licensed ActiveSync from Microsoft some time ago which explains their soon to be released touch screen based Blackberry Thunder. Good luck RIM, you’ll need it!

MobileMe
“Exchange for the little people” as I like to call it. Forget that crap .Mac that Apple has been blatantly screwing people over with for years, this might actually be worth the US$99/year! MobileMe essentially syncs address book, calendar and email between your phone, web and computer. Better yet it’s fully supported over Mac’s & PC’s which shoves another hot poker in RIM’s ass. On top of that they’re bumping up their only DAV storage (iDisk) to 20GB and then you have the other stuff in there still like web hosting still, but no one really cares. Oh and what’s with “MobileMe”, the marketing guys take a few months off when you came up with that one?

GPS
Now this is what I really wanted. I have no use for GPS really but I’m a sucker for the technology, it just makes me all warm & tingly! Whilst Apple’s implementation of GPS in the new iPhone is basically locating you on Google Maps and geotagging photos wait until 3rd party guys really get things going. True there’s yet another social network that already have an app out (loopt) but give me car navigation, star maps and all that junk. I can’t wait!!

Black & White
Apple has a long history with white products, the iPod was one of the main reasons that Apple are still around today and they owe the colour a lot of praise for that; however, in recent times the colour white has been used more as a marker to separate consumer based products from professional. With that in mind I think it’s a pretty smart move for Apple to offer the choice. You’re student will generally like to stand out with the latest fashion of white while your law firm exec is most likely going to take the more perceivably accepted black approach. Also they’re only offering the white on the more expensive version, again another trademark (and clever) Apple move.

What’s missing
1. A 2nd video camera, for those six people out there that actually enjoy using video chat on your 3G phone you can’t do it. Personally I could care less but I’m sure you’ll hear lots of bitching about it.
2. There needs to be more memory! Yes it’s bumped up to 16GB, yes you get better battery life, and yes the thing’s supposedly cheaper but 16GB? Come on!! Minimum, MINIMUM 32GB please!
3. MMS or “Picture Messaging”. So the American’s might not use it much, the rest of the world does. I guess we’ll just have to resort to 3rd party apps again that have crippled functionality when it comes to that department for the time being.

Well I think that just about covers it all. I know there’s things like battery life I didn’t talk about much but I’m fine with the current life and it’s boring, so there. You’d have to be from another planet to not understand that I’m getting one the day they’re available on July 11th I mean come on people, it’s the iPhone 3G!!!

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The iPhone shows no love for Apple’s Address Book… Why iPhone? Why?!

March 12th, 2008 by Raj

addressbook_nolove.jpg

We’re all fairly aware that Apple’s implementation of Bluetooth in the iPhone is retarded to say the least. At this point in time Apple has limited the iPhone to doing nothing more than pairing with a Bluetooth headset, and even then that seems to be difficult for some of your more “independent” accessory manufacturers. Features like file transfer, computer syncing or even talk-thru that you can find on any two-bit phone these days are AWOL and we’re all still waiting for a postcard!

You’ve got to ask yourself why Apple has limited the iPhone’s Bluetooth capabilities so much so lets pop the shoe on the proverbial “other foot” for a moment. The iPhone is designed on top of the iPod, yes we all thought we’d have the ability to sync those wirelessly by now too but it was never going to be over Bluetooth. Bluetooth’s transfer rate is so pathetic transferring 8GB of music & video would take you an entire weekend and that’s provided the connection actually stayed active. With that in mind you could still sync contacts & calenders via Bluetooth but if you’re plugging it in to do music why would you want to sync it a 2nd time for your contacts? Apple have done the right thing keeping everything in one place under iTunes even if it does put iSync out in the cold.

When it comes to file transfers, Apple doesn’t even let you browse an iPhone when it’s connected via a cable or on your wi-fi network (well, until you hack it yourself) so why would they want to give you access via Bluetooth? You could argue that’s fine, but what about iPhone to iPhone transfers? I can only put this one day to security, the last thing Apple want is some script kiddie writing a Bluetooth virus that renders every phone it connects to useless.

OK, Apple Fan-Boy hat off now. There is one Bluetooth connectivity area that I think Apple have really dropped the ball on when it comes to the iPhone. Do you remember way back when Address Book got all cuddly with your phone and iSync was running a high pulling and pushing your contacts to that brand new Sony Ericsson T610 you’d just bought? Well there was also the fantastic ability to pair the phone with your Mac and send text messages (SMS) to any of your contacts with a mobile phone number from your computer! Not to mention when you received a new SMS it would pop up on the screen and you’d could reply promptly without having to lift your hands from the keyboard. Where’s my SMS functionality Apple? You wrote Address Book, I’m pretty sure you made the iPhone and wrote OS X’s Bluetooth bits too but I can’t even pair the thing with my computer let alone send an SMS through it! Come on guys, someone’s dropped the ball big time here! My brand new US$399 iPhone has less integrated ability than my four year old Sony Ericsson.

Oh and P.S. Apple, the T610 it did MMS too!

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