iPhone OS 4.0 to Feature Flashlight Mode? Video

We are not sure if this is a bug or a feature but if you try to push the power/sleep button for three times in a row on the lockscreen, the iPhone goes right into flashlight mode showing bright white screen. I have also tested this and it appears to be working on iPhone OS 4 Beta 4.

iPhone OS 4 Flashlight Mode

Could this be one of those useful little things like “Screenshot Capture” in iPhone which Apple is so good at implementing? Most likely yes. What do you think?

Apple is now all set to unveil the next-generation iPhone for general availability at the annual WWDC 2010 conference on June 7. iPhone OS 4 is also expected to be released at the same event. [via MacStories]

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Andy Rubin: The frequency of Android updates will slow


The frequency of major Android OS releases will soon slow down considerably, Google’s VP of engineering Andy Rubin said in an interview on Monday. Instead of several major releases per year (2009 saw three major releases), Rubin said Android is headed towards a more mature phase of its life cycle in which the number of updates must be controlled to allow developers to catch up. In other words, expect to see two or even one major release per year. Here are Rubin’s own words:

We’ve gone through a lot of product iterations because we had to bring the product up to market spec. Quite honestly, the product when we launched it, it didn’t really feel like a 1.0, it felt like kind of an 0.8, but it was a window of opportunity and the market needed an entrant at the holiday season. So we launched it, and from our internal 0.8, we got to 1.0 pretty quickly, and we went through this iteration cycle. You’ve noticed, probably, that that’s slowed down a little bit. Our product cycle is now, basically twice a year, and it will probably end up being once a year when things start settling down, because a platform that’s moving — it’s hard for developers to keep up. I want developers to basically leverage the innovation. I don’t want developers to have to predict the innovation.

We know the Android Army is going to pounce all over these statements as soon as this post goes up and that fans of other OSes will invariably get involved, but let’s try and keep it clean and civil, shall we?



Asus, MSI Tablets Lead the Charge Against the iPad

Apple is set to face some competition as Taiwanese-based PC makers get their iPad challengers ready. Companies such as Asus and MSI are showing Android- and Windows-based tablets that they say will be cheaper than the iPad.

At the ongoing Computex trade show in Taipei, Taiwan, Asus announced its first tablet, called the ‘Eee Pad.’

The Eee Pad has a 12-inch touchscreen display and is a “full-featured slate computer that serves as a multimedia player, e-reader, compact PC and internet device,” says the company. The Eee Pad has an Intel Core 2 Duo processor and Windows 7 operating system. The company is also offering a 10-inch display version of the Eee Pad.

Asus rival MSI is offering two tablets of its own: One featuring the Windows 7 operating system and the other powered by Google’s Android OS. The tablets, called ‘Wind-Pad‘ have 10-inch screens, 2 GB of RAM and 1.6 GHz Atom processor. The tablets will offer 3G and Wi-Fi capability. Both the tablets are expected to be available in the third quarter of the year.

“We understand that people are only willing to pay less than $500 for a tablet,” Andy Tung, vice-president of sales for MSI told Wired.com. “And because the OS is one of the biggest costs in the device, our Android tablet will be at least 20 percent cheaper than the Windows version.”

Seperately, Korean company Yukyung Tech has demoed an Android tablet under the brand name ‘Viliv’ that has a 10-inch capacitive touchscreen and claims to beat the iPad in terms of display quality. The Viliv X10 tablet has an ARM-based processor, USB port, SD card reader, Wi-Fi and 3G capability. The company hasn’t offered detailed specs or pricing for the device.

MSI ‘Wind-Pad’ Tablet

Apple’s iPad has jumpstarted the tablets category. Since it went on sale in April, at least 2 million iPads have been sold, Apple says. Not surprisingly, other PC makers have taken notice of the demand and the hype.

Dell has said its 5-inch Android tablet will go on sale in the U.K. starting June 4. The Dell Streak will be free on a $36 (£25) a month data contract with O2, or you’ll be able to buy it outright for $630 (£429).

Consumers that buy these new crop of tablets will consider factors such as mobility and applications, says Tung.

“If you are looking at netbook-like super-mobility then a Windows device will be important because you will want to do more than just surf with the tablet,” says Tung. “But if you just want a portable web device, then Android is a better choice.”

At a time when HP has reportedly given up on its Windows-powered Slate in favor of a Palm webOS-based tablet, the arrival of Windows-based tablets should be good news for Microsoft and its fans.

But Microsoft’s vision for a tablet could fall short of consumer expectations, says Michael Cherry, vice-president of research for operating systems at independent research firm Directions on Microsoft.

“Microsoft’s vision for tablet is as an extension of the laptop family, so things you can do on a tablet is same as what you can do on a PC,” he says. “But the downside is the battery life doesn’t last beyond four hours and the device boots slowly–both of which are becoming negative attributes.”

Tung says that MSI has extended the battery life on its tablets to up to eight hours.

Ultimately, he says, flexibility and options is what will drive tablet sales.

“Apple has a very strong app store, which helps the iPad. But there are enough Windows and Android based apps out there to make our tablets attractive to consumers,” says Tung.

Photos: (Masaru Kamikawa/Flickr)

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iPhone App Helps Users Gauge Sexual Compatibility VIDEO

boink-iphone-app gbuzz-feed.png

App developer MEDL Mobile has just released an iPhone app to help men and women evaluate prospective sexual partners.

The app [iTunes link], which will remain free for the first two weeks following its launch, lets users draft profiles based on six categories of sexual likes, dislikes, positions, kinks and fetishes. Would-be sexual partners can then “boink” their phones together (using the same technology as the BUMP app, which lets users exchange contact information by bumping phones) to determine whether or not they would be good together in bed.

The best part about the app is that users’ preferences remain entirely private; it simply reveals whether or not they would make good sexual partners with cheeky messages like “Drop what you are doing and get to a hotel right now” or “Turn and run away.”

For those less concerned about user privacy, you can also post the number of “boinks” you’ve participated in to Facebook and Twitter, as well as read and share hookup stories with other users.

The app, the creators tell us, had to go through Apple’s strict approval process three times, mainly because of the descriptions and diagrams it contains of various sexual positions. “We had a bet going internally as to how many rounds it would take to get approved,” said Swartz, co-founder of MEDL Mobile. “We love the fact that Apple finally said yes. It shows they understand adults are using the iPhone in ways that are certainly mature, but don’t amount to pornography.”

While it’s a fun app, it has one of the worst user interfaces I have ever come across (see video below). In order to set your preferences and view your stats, you have to click on “Start Comparing” from the main menu and then pull up a second menu. If you want to get back to the main menu, you have to close the app and reopen it.

What do you think of the app? Is it merely a fun toy for friends to giggle about, or could you see it serving a more practical purpose?

image courtesy of iStockphoto, sofocles

Dell Inspiron 14z dips to $399, for now

It may be over a year since we first got our hands on Dell’s thin-and-light Inspiron 14z, but the laptop still certainly holds its own in its class, and Dell has now made an offer that’s awfully hard to refuse — it’s lowered the price to just $399. That will of course get you the lowest-end, Pentium Dual-Core SU4100 model, but you can upgrade to a Core 2 Duo for $65 extra, and the rest of the basic specs aren’t too shabby, including 3GB of RAM, a 250GB hard drive, and a DVD burner. Anyone thinking of taking the plunge better act fast, however, as the deal is apparently part of a 48 hour sale, and quite a few of those hours have already ticked away.

Dell Inspiron 14z dips to $399, for now originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 01 Jun 2010 18:02:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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SouthernLINC Wireless Announces Prepaid Unlimited Monthly Plan

SouthernLINC Wireless announced today that it has expanded its prepaid service offerings with the addition of the Prepaid Unlimited Monthly plan.

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New ASUS ROG CG8490 Gaming Station

Taking their inspiration from ancient and modern armour designs of both Eastern and Western cultures ASUS have created a new gaming station PC named the ROG CG8490, which they have just launched at Computex 2010.

ROG CG8490

This new monster gaming station is equipped with a Intel Core i7-980X six-core processor and 12GB DDR3 memory. Combined with
dual overclocked Radeon HD5870 graphics cards taking full advantage of direct X 11 features and unleashes a 20% balanced overclocking capability.

The ASUS ROG CG8490 also has a new thermal design with multiple oversized fans for quick for heat dispersion which gives the system superior stability.

ASUS have also released the world’s first 15” G51 gaming notebook with NVIDIA’s 3D Vision-enabled graphics and next generation GPU. Together with two other high-performance gaming notebooks the G53 and G73.

Unfortunately there are no details on prices or availability at the moment.

Asus Press Release

Via Slashgear