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Quickoffice puts an office in your pocket

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There may be bajillions of apps available on the iPhone App Store, but most of them are certainly not geared towards serious business use. Business users may be wondering if there are apps out there that aren’t flashlights or fart sound generators.

If that sounds like you, Quickoffice might be a breath of fresh air. A set of three interrelated applications — a word processor, spreadsheet app, and file manager — Quickoffice puts a Microsoft Office-compatible office suite in your pocket thanks to the world’s best smartphone.

TUAW has a full review, including a plethora of screenshots. Steven Sande puts all three apps through their paces, revealing a competent (if somewhat buggy) set of applications. Sande particularly likes Quickword’s copy and paste implementation, calling it “fun.”

Curiously, the Quickoffice suite is not compatible with files created by Apple’s iWork suite. It also does not allow saving of .docx or .xlsx files — though it can view both. Quickoffice is able to view and edit Office 2007 files on the Symbian platform. (Quickoffice also has a version for Android-powered smartphones.)

Read the rest of the TUAW review for more information. For business users looking to get some real work done on their iPhones, Quickoffice might be a solution, albeit an imperfect one.

Apple supposedly working on media pad, iPhone lite

There’s been a slight confirmation of all the rumors swirling around about a possible Apple tablet, from the pages of BusinessWeek no less. Now these are still unconfirmed rumors, but according the BusinessWeek’s source the upcoming device will “define the … category” of tablet media pads.

BusinessWeek writers Spencer E. Ante and Arik Hesseldahl have the full scoop, and include a few details about an “iPhone lite” smartphone Apple is supposedly developing for Verizon Wireless. The iPhone lite will be slightly smaller and thinner than the iPhone currently gracing AT&T’s network. Software or other capabilities are not mentioned, but BusinessWeek’s sources state that the device is manufactured using a “system on a chip” design and will therefore have an enormous profit margin. Apple is expected to continue manufacturing the original iPhone for AT&T while simultaneously selling Verizon iPhone lites.

The Apple tablet, or “media pad,” as it is dubbed by BusinessWeek, is another intriguing development. Supposedly slightly smaller than a Kindle and all touchscreen, the device would let users listen to music, view photos, and watch high-definition videos. The media pad will also let users place calls over Wi-fi using Voice-over-IP (VOIP) services. BusinessWeek’s source states that the media pad will define an entirely new category of consumer products.

One of these devices is expected to be released this year. Since Apple is already prepping a new version of the iPhone for this summer, it’s likely that the iPhone lite will wait. Apple may introduce the new media pad as a “one more thing” surprise at WWDC this summer. Developers would certainly need to adapt to the 10″ screen expected on the device.

There is definitely consumer interest in such a device as well. Apple is likely to use its iPhone OS on a media tablet, albeit a modified version targeted for a larger screen. If this tablet takes off, Apple will solidify mobile touch as the company’s second core computing platform. The company has been moving in the consumer electronics direction for years (since the original iPod’s introduction), but a new device midway between the iPod touch and a Macintosh signals that the company is preparing to put all its might behind the new touch platform.

(Via Engadget.)

Voice dialing coming to iPhone 3.0

Voice dailing (and more) is coming to the iPhone with the OS 3.0 update. Users will not only be able to control the phone by speaking — it will talk back as well.

According to a report from Ars Technica’s Chris Foresman, the new features, code-named “Jibbler,” will be incorporated as enhancements to the SpringBoard app launcher program. Jibbler might be activated by squeezing the iPhone’s headset button and holding it while speaking. When released, the device will attempt to interpret what was said (i.e. “Call Mom”).

The phone will also likely include the same voice synthesis technology found in the new iPod shuffle, either by giving the user an auditory response — “Calling Mom” — or by “reading” data like CD track names back to the user. While the iPod shuffle’s voice prompts are pre-recorded the by the host computer, the iPhone would have the hardware muscle to render voices in real time.

None of these features would require new hardware, so they may just be one of the (probably many) unannounced features of the upcoming iPhone OS update. Ars also found some hooks in the iPhone’s code for accessing Jibbler, so these features may eventually be opened up to developers as well. Voice recognition features are already present in Google’s Search app, albeit handled by a third-party server, so there would certainly be a demand for voice capabilities from developers.

(Via Gizmodo.)

New iPhone OS beta features discovered

Apple released a third iPhone OS 3.0 beta to developers last week, and already interested parties have been investigating the new software to see if they can tease out any clues as to Apple’s future plans for its popular smartphone.

AppleInsider has a complete rundown, including extensive screenshots. Some of the highlights:

  • Safari will allow you to close out and clear all of open browser windows, even the last active one. Currently, users need to create a new, blank window in order to close out their final lone browser window. In beta 3, even the final window displays a red X button in the top left corner; clicking in causes the window to be quickly replaced with a fresh, blank one.

  • Users will have the option to display the phone’s remaining batter life as numerals, rather than a tiny battery icon. A set of .png resources in the new beta’s Springboard application show each of the numerals in both black and red; it is assumed that the red numerals will be used once battery life drops below a certain threshold. According to rumors, users will also be able to choose whether they want their remaining battery life to be displayed as an icon, numerals, or both — just as they can choose with the battery life on the desktop version of OS X.

  • A new preference pane allows users to disable any of the three types of push notifications (text alerts, sounds, and app icon badges) or turn the alerts off entirely to get a little extra juice out of the iPhone’s batteries.

  • Data Detectors — bits of smart code that auto detect things like street addresses or dates and let users do things with them — appear to be enabled as well, at least in the Notes application. Data Detectors are already part of the desktop Mac OS X and let users, for example, click on a street address in Mail.app and be taken to a Google map of the location in Safari.

  • More precise song scrubbing is coming to the iPod app. Currently, tap-and-drag scrubbing can’t match the precise scrubbing that physical iPod touch wheel makes possible. Apple is attempting to address this issue by letting different finger positions dictate different scrubbing speeds.

This is likely to be the final beta released by Apple to developers before the company unveils new hardware in June. Even though a few new features have been revealed here and there, Apple probably has a few big surprises up its sleeves as well that it’s keeping out of these developer releases.

Component Manufacturers Of Next-Gen iPhone

Ok, here’s a list of component manufacturers provided by, Digitimes.com. Nothing too dramatic to report. The list confirms (if it’s correct) that there will be a 3.2 megapixel camera instead of the current 2 megapixel. It’s also great to just see ‘bluetooth’ in writing some where as well.. :)

Next Gen iPhone

Microsoft Office On iPhone: April Fools Joke without the Punchline?

I’m a huge fan of April Fools Day. Some don’t get into the spirit of it, but I abask the settin of fooled or be fooled. What I don’t like is when someone makes an April Fools joke, but forget to those involved that it really is a gag. That’s what I take away from this TechCrunch article. That or it could be true.

According to Stephen Elop, President of Microsoft Business Division, we coud be seeing Microsoft Office heading to the iPhone. The rumor has been circulating for quite some time now, but nothing substantial to report until now. No details were mentioned in the article, which leaves me with a suspicious feeling.

Also, I don’t understand why a Microsoft Office program would be so useful on the iPhone. Specifically the text editor. The iPhone isn’t exactly known for its writing capabilities.

So, what’s your take on the rumors, real or fake?