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Archive for April, 2008

AT&T’s Plan To Subsidize The iPhone

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I can hear early iPhone adopters grumbling everywhere. At first, there was an early price drop, so launch buyers paid $100 more than people who waited. Now, there’s even more reason for you to be discouraged. AT&T is planning on a $200 subsidy, for the new 3G iPhones coming out in June.

The news comes by way of Fortune magazine; in an article by Scott Mortiz. The price of $199 will be available to customers who sign up for a two-year contract.


Also, there will be two models when the 3G iPhone releases. There will be a 8GB, and a 16GB option, at $399 and $499 respectively. The new iPhone is slated to release on the one year anniversary of the first launch, June 27th.

Canada Will Be Getting The iPhone

Our North America brothers up north will finally be receiving their own iPhones. Rogers, a telecommunication company in Canada will be the initial carriers of the iPhone. It has been uncertain as to whether Canada would ever receive the iPhone.

Since the unveiling of the iPhone in the US, Canada has had to sit back and wait for a carrier to use the handset. No details have been given by Rogers, but the expect to have the iPhone available by the end of 08. Rogers was the first Canadian telecom to show interest in the iPhone after the 2007 release. They promised they would sell the handset, but they hadn’t released any progress until now.

It’s either a big coincidence, or a ploy for publicity, but the Toronto Star started a rumor about Rogers selling the iPhone by July. This rumor was started before the official Rogers’ announcement.

As soon as more updates from Rogers comes in, FreeMacBlog will be posting it.

Faster Macs Released Today

Today, the iMacs get an upgrade. The first significant upgrade comes by way of the processor. The fastest of the new series is 3.06 GHZ, with the lower end now being 2.4 GHZ. The other significant upgrade is the video card. The three lower end iMac models, have ATI Radeon series cards, with 128 and 256 MB respectively. The higher end model, comes with NVIDIA’s GeForce 8800 GS, sporting 512 MB. Here is full list of specs for each model:

20 Inch – 2.4 GHZ: $1,199.00

* 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
* 1GB memory
* 250GB hard drive1
* 8x double-layer SuperDrive
* ATI Radeon HD 2400 XT with 128MB memory

20 Inch – 2.66 GHZ: $1,499.00

* 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
* 2GB memory
* 320GB hard drive1
* 8x double-layer SuperDrive
* ATI Radeon HD 2600 PRO with 256MB memory

24 Inch – 2.8 GHZ: $1,799.00

* 2.8GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
* 2GB memory
* 320GB hard drive1
* 8x double-layer SuperDrive
* ATI Radeon HD 2600 PRO with 256MB memory

24 Inch – 3.06 GHZ

* 3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
* 2GB memory
* 500GB hard drive1
* 8x double-layer SuperDrive
* NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GS with 512MB memory

Apple, Taking On The Department Of Defense?

An interesting turn of events has taken place in Apple’s acquisition of P.A. Semi. In an EETimes report, the P.A. Semi deal could effect the DoD’s programs, as they used PWRficient processors in their systems. With the selling of P.A. Semi to Apple, it looks as though these processors will no longer be in production. This brings up an interesting dilenma.

According to the EETimes, over 70,000 of these chips were slated to be used in the next decade. Earlier this Monday, P.A. Semi announced that it was being bought, and could no longer gurantee manufacturing of the chips. So far Apple hasn’t released any details surrounding the buyout. But customers were told by the company, that Apple has no interest in their products, just the intellectual property and workforce.

This is definitely an interesting turn of events for Apple. They now own the company that was responsible for manufacturing processors for the DoD. If the statement about non-interest in P.A. Semi’s products is true, then this could be a huge blow to the DoD. Having to find a new company to rely on, isn’t an easy task to undertake. There’s not much else to discuss, until Apple announces its plans for the company.

What’s your take on this recent news. Would it be in Apple’s interest to continue letting P.A Semi developer their chips. Or is their plans to just own the intellectual rights and services the way to go?

Apple Buys Chip Designing Company

If there’s one thing that Apple prides itself on, it’s keeping all of their product lines “in-house”. It looks to be adding to that ideal by purchasing, PA Semi, a micro-processing chip designer company. Being reported by Forbes, Apple paid around $278 million for PA Semi. So just what is Apple gaining by this latest acquisition?

Their iPhone, and iPod line looks to be the main beneficiary of the buy. With ownership of PA Semi, Apple would be in control of its’ destiny in terms of chips it would use for iPhones and iPods. Another benefit of manufacturing its’ own chips, would be it could help to differentiate themselves from competitors using the same chipsets.

While this purchase looks good for Apple, it leaves Intel hung out to dry, so to speak. They have been trying to get Apple to buy into their “Atom” chips, which is their lower powered chip set.

It will be interesting to see what comes of this purchase in the long run. Hopefully this will help Apple set itself apart even further from its’ competition. It can definitely be said that Apple never does anything from a traditional manner. Which is probably why they have been so successful this past decade.

Apple’s “New Software” Section – Is It Enough?

In a post back on March 24th, FreeMacBlog reported on Apple’s decision to bundle Apple’s web browser, Safari in with a Windows iTunes update. This decision was met with heavy criticism by PC users and Mac users alike. It’s been close to a month now since the report, and Apple has decided to remedy the situation, somewhat.

Asa Dotzler
, has released an image of the new update screen for Apple software updates. Instead, of software downloads being grouped together with the updates, they now have a new section. According to Dotzler, this is a step in the right direction, but the box for the software download is still automatically checked. Like what Facebook did with their Beacon service, when it was an opt-out option instead of an opt-in. I definitely agree with Dotzler that this is a step in the right direction. I believe that Apple could actually learn from Facebook’s Beacon fiasco. The lesson being that people want the option to download a service, not automatically having it downloaded, with a choice to un-click it.

Anyway, here is the image released by Asa Dotzler. So what do you think, is the change for the Software Update screen enough? Or does Apple need to make new software an opt-in option instead of an opt-out?

Apple Software Update