apple iPhone smartphone

iPhone MMS is Live!

MMS is live now available via update on iTunes. 2 second download and a restart and you’re good to go….

iPhone Satellite smartphone

uSirius Starplayer iPhone Preview released…

Just got the preview loaded on my iPhone, and will mess around with it on my trip today, and report back later…

On an initial first look, it looks like they took care of the majority of feature requests and I assume the few minor bugs that existed…

The “Auto Tune” feature is a great addition, from app launch to playing last tuned station is about 17 seconds, and I’m showing about 3 bars of 3G coverage…

More to follow when I have time…


Not AroundMe

So on my drive up to Philly, around Salsbury MD, I decided that I wanted some coffee, along the lines of a “Triple Venti Mocha”, but I wanted something besides Starbucks (FYI there is a grand total of 1 Starbucks on the eastern shore). So I grabbed my handy iPhone and launched “AroundMe” and looked up coffee, digging thru the many Dunkin Donuts, there were several choices. Two were way out of my way, one was right off the freeway, but it was closed weekends, and the two others that were listed were/are apparently out of business, phone disconnected. I decided to extend the the search further North, when the only thing that pops up is the Starbucks in Seaford, the same Starbucks that closed about 6 months ago.
This puts my faith in “AroundMe” in question, as the one time I really needed it, going to try a few lookups around areas I know and try again, but 6 month old data makes me question the data.

iPhone Satellite smartphone

uSirius Starplayr for the iPhone…

It has been a hectic week, so I am a little late on posting this…

As much as I enjoy(ed) starplayr2, I am enjoying the iPhone version so much more.

Going to start off with what’s wrong with it, at least what’s wrong that can be changed. This is a fairly short list, and most of my issues appear to be under consideration from what has been posted in the forums…

  1. Volume control is in a bad place, between the channel up down buttons, I have accidentally changed the channel more then a few times, and since the forum post to request the change is one of the developers, I guess this one will be addressed…
  2. Shake to shuffle, needs an on off switch, or what I saw suggested in the forum an “Off, Shuffle Favorite Channels, Shuffle All”. Had it change channels on me a couple times when setting my iPhone down. I am not really feeling the shake to shuffle here, since it takes several seconds to stream the new station, it kind of takes the spontaneity out of it, like the instant action like on something like UrbanSpoon or itunes.
  3. Background play, I know that it cant play in the background out of the application, but it would be nice if it would continue to play while I am looking through the station list and such.
  4. Play last channel on launch, sort of related to #3 above, my now second favorite iPhone audio app Pandora does it, and when I launch an audio app I want to hear audio.

And thats about all I see wrong with it, and it is still a beta…

The setup was about as simple as you can get, select your service, enter your username and password, and hit Done, thats it. Then all you need to do is pick your channel in 1 of 4 ways, Scroll through All Channels, Genres, Presets, or Search, and after a few second of buffer building you’ll start hearing your audio selection.

I have been trying my best to put uSirius Starplayr through its paces in various scenarios. I Have had it running on all 3 modes Edge, 3G and WiFi all are fully functional, and even using edge in the middle of a large hospital(will explain that in another post) with real bad signal (barely 2 bars edge) I had maybe 2 or 3 dropouts over a 3 plus hour session, and even the battery consumption was not that big of an issue. Tried it on the road in varying levels of coverage, and had one issue of  the application crashing, restarted the app, and it picked right back up.

Since I have yet to  be impressed with any of the “Portable” hand held satellite receivers  from either XM or Sirius, this is a great alternative to those devices, and means one less thing to carry and charge. Then you also need to take into account that the Stiletto software does not support OS X, and lets not forget those stylish Antenna Headphones.

Stylish Headphone Antenna
Stylish Headphone Antenna

The only downside that really cant be addressed by anyone other then at&t,  is the same with any of the iPhones network based applications, no service, no data, no workee. Since I live in rural Southeast Virginia, and spend a fair amount of my free time out in even more rural Virginia, it is a fairly rare occasion that I am not in any coverage and unable to use data services, so that has not really become a factor. Since I am usually horribly lost at that point and only paying attention to my GPS not and not anything else…

All in all this is a great, really great application and lives on the front/main page of my iPhone. 

Here are the obligatory screen shots.

apple iPhone mapping Photography smartphone

Earthscape Errors

Daliesque MacBook Pro

Daliesque MacBook Pro


I have been playing with earthscape for a while now and I still think it is pretty cool app, but needs some work, and a couple of days ago I talked about these errors, but didn’t have any details. Well I made a trip up to DC and had some issues with the accuracy, as well as some in the office this morning…

Here is an example of a picture that is right on, standing still in a Starbucks parking lot…

This picture was taken real close to the location on the map, but not uploaded for a while (Maybe an hour), because of crappy coverage, I had several EDGE bars, but data was not moving to the earthscape servers.

Sitting at a signal light 4 3G bars of coverage, I get this

Here is an example of the moving vehicle issue. This picture was taken while going over the Rappahannock river, but the earthscape app puts me a mile down the road…

Then we have this picture which was taken about 30 feet from this picture and neither are correct.

This picture and this picture were taken at the exact same place, yet are miles apart.

It seems to me that unlike the way the iPhone Camera app works by GPS tagging the picture when it is taken, the earthscape app doesn’t do that and as far as I can tell the picture isn’t GPS tagged until the “Use Photo” button is pushed. The question is then why doesn’t earthscape tag the picture as soon as it is taken, because they don’t I checked, unless they decided to .

Just to clarify I do understand how GPS works, and limitations when under cover etc…, but the same device in the same environment should have the same error regardless of application.