Saturday, September 22, 2012

Black iPhone 5 easily scratched?

There are early reports that that black iPhone 5 loses its good looks quickly and easily. Now that is definitely a strong vote against it for me, since the beauty is the main attraction for me.

And now: two cute blondes smashing phones!

Damn, seems the 5 is actually rather more easily scratched!

This could be a problem for Apple. I think they had to take back a lot of the first generation iPod Nano, because that one was really easily scratched, being all plastic. I even saw that personally, mine got a colossal scratch which I don't even know how happened, since I always treat my gadgets with kid gloves.

A friend of mine who worked in the field tells me that the fault does not have to be in the design. A lot of things can go wrong in the finishing of such things.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Kindle Fire, tex-to-speech

To recap:
Kindle Paperwhite does not have text-to-speech, or indeed any audio capabilities at all. We are many who are very unhappy about that.

KP is not sold in the UK, but surprisingly, Kindle Fire is. But many of the most attractive services are not included, for example Amazon's own movies. Or indeed text-to-speech or audiobooks! I guess it saves me from buying two Kindles, but it still leaves a bitter taste in my mouth.

There are still no text-to-speech in iPad apps for Android or iPad. I think the barrier can't possibly be technical (as they claim it is for the Paperwhite), because many apps do have text to speech. Blio for instance even has it for ebooks! But it's not the greatest voice, and of course it won't play Kindle books.

Text-to-speech on the iPad is still a sorry mess. You can now in some apps get it, but only from selected text, and you can't just select several pages. There are a bunch of apps which will do it, but they app pretty much will only do it with copied and pasted text, or text you write yourself, or PDFs. Not what I'm looking for.

Some writers push the theory that Amazon deliberately cripple their devices in calculated ways, calculated to make more people need to buy more than one device. It is supported by small indications, like the Kindle fire being unable to change line height in the books.
I dunno, it would seem to be against the ethos Bezos (hey that rhymes) has loudly stated recently, that they make their money only on content, not on forced hardware upgrades/purchases.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The first iPhone keynote

It's funny now see these things which we already take for granted, being presented as brand new.

And there were many people who said it would fail, simply because it cost $600. What a limited and dull view on the world. This was like the first Ford T: expensive and a bit slow, but a revolution, and boy, did people want it.
(The first iPhone, like the first Mac, had some limitations: it didn't have copy/paste, there were only Apple's own apps for it, it didn't even have 3G, and the camera sucked. But no bird flies fully grown from the egg.)

(I'm still on the fence about the iPhone 5, btw. Dang. So many nice details, but nothing really definitive.)