Monthly Archives: March 2011

The Steve Jobs Action Figure Fiasco

Steve Jobs Doll
I remember when the Steve Jobs action figure was release back in November 2010 and I hesitated in ordering one, because I figured ‘there’s time to order it later’ .. well, a few weeks later, of course, Apple lawyers took action and removed the action figure due to impersonating a person (Steve Jobs) without consent.

Steve Jobs Speech BubblesThe doll, made of plastic, resembled Apple CEO almost exact with the trademark black turtle neck, blue jeans and New Balance 991 sneakers. All the way to hair cut and removable rimless glasses. You could even go as far as interchanging speech bubbles that have become known as Apple-speak like Jobs’ “One more thing…”

Banned Pineapple CEO FigurineWeeks later, the same company that developed the original figurine, named M.I.C., began selling the “Pineapple CEO” doll online for $89 which was basically the original doll, but this time disguised as a ninja with a cloth around it’s head and could be changed to hold ninja stars, instead of the iPhone. The base was also modified so you could ‘mix and match’ and that way didn’t appear like the Apple logo… but yet once again Apple’s lawyers stepped in

Mr. Jobs has not consented to the use of his name and/or image in the Product. Unauthorized use of a person’s name and/or likeness constitutes a violation of California Civil Code Section 3344, which prohibits the use of any person’s name, photograph or likeness in a product without that person’s prior consent… The figure and its stand are replications of Mr. Jobs image and Apple’s trademark. The thin attempt to “disguise” the figure in its current iteration does not impact the fact that you are plainly trading on Mr. Jobs image…

While the site is still up, the dolls are listed as discontinued. (Sorry guys and girls) It was a nice run and I’m kicking myself in the butt for not managing to get one before they stopped selling them, but this truly was a (very) limited edition figure.

Would you buy one, if they were available?

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App Review: Angry Birds Rio

Angry Birds Rio IconIf you’re like me and love wasting hours upon hours playing a game on your iPhone and/or iPad, then this one is for you. This past Tuesday Rovio, makers of the Angry Birds series release Angry Birds Rio available for download in the App Store for 99 cents ($2.99 for iPad)

For anyone that’s not sure what the hype is all about consider that I recommend this as THE first game any iOS owner should jump into. It’s a physics-based slingshot style game that allows you to launch ‘angry’ birds into piles of cleverly-placed debris with the ultimate goal of eliminating as many of the enemies as possible with the least amount of flying birds. The controls are simple enough that a 3 years old could do it.

Angry Birds Rio Screen Capture

You can earn achievements for getting the highest score and now that the game is available through the Game Centre you can challenge friends.

Angry Birds Screen Capture 2

A simple yet addictive game that’s well worth every penny. This recent release titled “Rio” adds 60 new levels that has twists adapted from the feature film with the same title.

If you’re not sure about buying the full game, you can search for the FREE version and get access to limited levels. Try before you buy. Rovio even had a feature trailer in anticipation of this game’s worldwide release. Check it out…

I’m rating this a perfect 5/5.

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An iMac Update is Coming April/May (Rumour)

iMac on WhiteWith all the recent buzz about iPads and iPhones, we’ve all managed to overlook the iMac! Sources at CNET, via Twitter, suggest that a new iMac is set to release in April/May.

CNET iMac Tweet Capture

If you’re keeping track, the last update to the iMac lineup was in July 2010 and that was when they announced the Intel Core i3, i5 and i7 processors with ATI Radeon graphic cards.

Major things that could be part of this iMac ‘update’ would be similar to what we saw a month ago to the refresh of MacBook Pros; Sandy Bridge processors and would likely include the new high-speed Thunderbolt port. There doesn’t appear to be any cosmetic changes reported, but in the end, no one really knows except Apple.

I’ve been considering an iMac for home use the past few weeks and have only been holding out because I had dreams of one day waking up and seeing/hearing an Apple keynote address announcing an iMac “Touch” …. Yup, exactly as it sounds. The speed and luxury of a desktop, with the ease of an iOS device. Maybe it’s just a dream, but I have a strong feeling that one day it will become a reality.

For now, an updated iMac will have to do.

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Blackberry Messenger for iOS? (Rumour)

Blackberry Messenger LogoLooks like someone, not entirely sure that it would Research in Motion or not, is looking to bring the Blackberry’s popular messing application to iOS. A report suggest that BBM is being developed for iOS and Android platforms.

If the rumour is true, the app could be available for the Android this year, and the iOS variant would be available later, due to Apple’s restrictive app-approval process.

The software might even be available to both platforms for free, in a slimmed-down variable of the Blackberry native. But RIM may keep a hand in the app by tagging on a price plan for the service, in either a one-time or retention price plan.

My take on this is GREAT and THIS CAN’T BE FOR REAL. A couple of reasons why I’m having a hard time swallowing this pill is when I ask myself “Why would Blackberry bring their most popular selling feature to rival devices?” … Do they just want to vanish altogether or what? But then I think about this as a move to ‘own the entire messaging app category on every major smartphone OS’ … Ok, so it may be true. And then imagine taking a cut of everyone that has to pay for the subscription. Would it work? … I think it could.

A lot of iPhone users I know love their devices, but sometimes wish they could interact with their long-lost BBM buddies, and often consider going back to the Blackberry because of this ONE feature they can’t take advantage of. BUT, then they remember all the great things they can do with their iPhones, above and beyond anything they could have dreamed of with the Blackberry, and they reconsider.

I would like to stress the fact that this is just a rumour at this point and the likelihood of this actually happening is slim. (I should clarify) The fact that RIM would develop such an app seems illogical.

I’ve done a little digging and actually heard of an app that is currently looking for testers to try something known as Mottix. I couldn’t find much information about this so-called app besides a Twitter account that provides updates, coincidentally named “BBMforiPhone”.

BBMforiPhone on Twitter Preview

So even if RIM doesn’t release something … It looks like someone else will.

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NFC Technology Could Be in Next Generation iPhone

NFC In Use on iPhone

I had mentioned this last month, but now it’s confirmed (sort of). New York Times is reporting that Apple is indeed working on NFC technology to be a part of the next generation iPhone.

According to two people with knowledge of the inner workings of a coming iteration of the Apple iPhone — although not necessarily the next one — a chip made by Qualcomm for the phone’s processor will also include near-field communication technology, known as N.F.C. This technology enables short-range wireless communications between the phone and an N.F.C reader, and can be used to make mobile payments. It is unclear which version of an iPhone this technology would be built into.

What does this mean?
NFC is short for Near Field Communications or in other words; A chip that would be placed inside the new iPhone that would allow users to make secure payments/purchases by simply holding your phone close to a receiving unit/terminal.

Think about Visa and Debit transactions at retailers without having to carry any cards in your wallet. Just pull out your phone, launch the app, confirm your pin and swipe through the air to send payment. That’s it. Quick, convenient and secure.

I’m already looking forward to retiring my wallet.

Photo courtesy of Cult of Mac.

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Smart Cover Hack for iPad 1

If you’re a diehard Apple fan like I am, you’ve already heard about the iPad 2 that was released March 11th, in the US, and releasing this Friday, in Canada. And I’m sure you’ve also heard about Apple’s Smart Cover specifically designed for the iPad 2. If you saw that cover and wondered if it wold be possible to rig it up to work with the original iPad, then great news for you! It can.

Some clever people at The Russians Used a Pencil have managed to ‘hack’ the original iPad to work with the Smart Cover, which was solely intended for use with iPad 2.

While the cover looks flush placed on the iPad, when it’s removed, the magnets are clearly exposed. The sleep/wake feature of the smart cover also isn’t compatible with the iPad 1… Uh oh. I’m such a picky person when it comes to styling, I want my device to still look sleek while remaining fully functional – so much that I would likely skip on this mod for my iPad and just wait until I bought the second generation before even considering a smart cover.

This is what the placed magnets would look like on the side of your iPad 1. (And the main reason I wouldn’t even consider the hack) – But this blog is about giving my followers tips, so if you’re going to try this mod … take pictures and let me know how you like it.

iPad 1 Smart Cover Magnets

Besides, I’m not even completely convinced that I like the smart cover that much anyway. It is a great concept, but it doesn’t cover the back of my iDevice. I can’t have the back exposed like that. When I pick up my iPad 2 (Hopefully, this weekend) I’ll look into a case that fully protects my investment.

Here’s a quick video of the hack in action.

Oh yeah, I guess I should mention that I’m planning to be one of the thousand or so people waiting in line this Friday for the release of the iPad 2 in Canada. Can’t wait!

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