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Apple Losing Touchscreen War

samzenpus posted more than 5 years ago | from the what-about-the-battle dept.

Cellphones 392

An anonymous reader writes "While Apple's iPhone may be the first device most people call to mind when they think of a touch interface mobile, the 3G device is still lagging behind in the touchscreen shifting stakes — it's getting a sound thrashing from Moto and Samsung, who've cornered the Asian market where touchscreens are popular for their ability to let users input Asian languages without all that fiddly Qwerty nonsense."

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It was HP, not Apple (-1, Troll)

ilovesymbian (1341639) | more than 5 years ago | (#24963925)

It was HP, not Apple that started the touch screen. So Apple has nothing to lose really. And Moto and Samsung rock! Apple is just hype.

attn (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24963953)

I just shit my pants :(

Steve will fix it, don't worry. (5, Funny)

ardor (673957) | more than 5 years ago | (#24963965)

Steve Jobs is not a human with a reality distortion field, Steve Jobs is a reality distortion field with a human body inside.

Re:Steve will fix it, don't worry. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964415)

reality distortion field with a human body inside.

Jobs may be a Distorton, the elementary particle of the Reality Distortion Field of the Standard Hype Model. I dare not even try to conceive of an anti-distorton.

Re:Steve will fix it, don't worry. (4, Funny)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965049)

Given that he's actually inside the distortion field, for all we know he could just be a horse. Or a broom.

one day all screens will have touch/stylus input (4, Interesting)

WillAdams (45638) | more than 5 years ago | (#24963981)

Hopefully before that day comes, Apple will start making tablets again --- I really need a replacement for my Newton MessagePad and my Fujitsu Stylistic is just too big to travel w/ me constantly as the MP did (and my Sony PRS-505 ebook reader does --- something that size, w/ pen input would be perfect).

William

Re:one day all screens will have touch/stylus inpu (5, Interesting)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964315)

That would ROCK. They could just slap a touchscreen on top of the bottom clamshell of a Macbook air.

It would be perfect for college students taking notes and reading e-textbooks and a myriad of other applications.

Somewhat offtopic, and forgive me for being ignorant, by why havent tablets caught on? I'd buy one in a heartbeat if it Just Worked(tm). Most of the "tablets" out there are just laptops with flippable screens == too much complexity and too many fragile moving parts.

I usually can't stand Macs but if Apple were the first to do a simple, elegant, full-screened "iClipboard", I'd be all over it.

Forget the iPhone, it's UI is way too goddamned slow for a mobile device.

Re:one day all screens will have touch/stylus inpu (5, Insightful)

omeomi (675045) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964411)

Somewhat offtopic, and forgive me for being ignorant, by why havent tablets caught on? I'd buy one in a heartbeat if it Just Worked(tm).

Looks like you just answered your own question there...

Re:one day all screens will have touch/stylus inpu (2, Insightful)

snoyberg (787126) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964735)

I think his question is "Why hasn't it caught on on the manufacturing side to make a tablet that Just Worked(tm)?"

Re:one day all screens will have touch/stylus inpu (5, Insightful)

jfim (1167051) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964533)

There are "slates", which are only the screen and a stylus, but text input is very annoying. Think of the amount of text you might enter in a single day, or just even in a single slashdot post. Would you rather write it with a stylus or type it?

Re:one day all screens will have touch/stylus inpu (4, Insightful)

0xABADC0DA (867955) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965103)

Which brings up an interesting question. Up until now Western languages have had a huge advantage for computers since keyboards can have one button per letter because of the small alphabet and context-free characters. It is really easy and fast to input characters to form words using dedicated buttons.

Now with accurate, sensitive touch screens, will word-based writing systems like Chinese actually be better suited now for writing?

Re:one day all screens will have touch/stylus inpu (1)

gfreeman (456642) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965177)

If I'm submitting a story I'd rather cut and paste it from a previous slashdot article.

Re:one day all screens will have touch/stylus inpu (1)

dal20402 (895630) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964767)

Pure tablets haven't caught on because text input from them is a chore at best, and most of what most people do with a computer is text input.

I suppose it's possible that better virtual keyboards and haptic feedback may improve the situation, but not enough for me... without a breakthrough, I'd rather have a powerful MacBook Air-like machine than a tablet.

Re:one day all screens will have touch/stylus inpu (1)

aero6dof (415422) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965087)

Somewhat offtopic, and forgive me for being ignorant, by why havent tablets caught on?

Personally, I haven't given them even a second glance because they seem to be priced at some high-premium above regular laptops. I know the touch hardware costs more to add in, but the price differential looks like double the otherwise equivalent laptop. As an additional side issue, I'd have to deal with Windows or reduced Linux support.

Unleash the Fanbois! (4, Funny)

AMCandel (1116349) | more than 5 years ago | (#24963993)

Apple Fanbois, attack!

Re:Unleash the Fanbois! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964373)

By the will of Steve, we will!

Just remember that these ANALysts are referring to simple touchscreens as well as the iPhone's multitouch display.

Just because Apple hasn't shipped as many touch displays doesn't mean they're falling behind, they prefer the higher end touchscreens which command a premium.

Once you've tried the multitouch iPhone you'll understand the difference between the JebusPhone and every other device.

"Call" back in a year (5, Informative)

wisebabo (638845) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964971)

Not even remotely comparable figures. iPhones aren't even being sold in places like CHINA, Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam, etc. They've only been selling in some other countries for a month or two (Singapore, India).

So if the iPhone has 20% of the OVERALL Asian market, it must be COMPLETELY DOMINATING the few (1?) market it's been in for any length of time: Japan.

Time to buy more Apple Stock.

Apple is a niche player? (5, Insightful)

bigtallmofo (695287) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964027)

"All the other handset vendors - including Apple - are essentially niche players," ABI Research noted.

For some background, I'm in IT and I work almost exclusively on Microsoft products and groan all you want but I'm a fan of theirs. I recently wanted to buy a smart phone. Mostly, something that was good at general web surfing, reading email and more. I saw my friends' iPhones and it was exactly what I was looking for but I have a natural anti-Apple bias so I didn't get one.

Then I started a search for a phone that met the requirements I have that didn't have an Apple on the back of it. Last Friday, I eliminated the final contender (AT&T Tilt) and gave up and bought an iPhone 3G.

It's not perfect, but it is amazingly good. I've yet to see a Windows Mobile device come close to it. The Samsung Omnia and Nokia Tube mentioned in the article don't appear to be available and to be honest, I didn't realize the other Windows Mobile devices sucked until I held them in my hand.

Does anyone know of a Windows Mobile device that matches the iPhone in web surfing? I'd love to hear about it.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964173)

Maybe the Sony Ericcson Xperia X1 when it comes out... maybe, and with Opera.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (4, Insightful)

lantastik (877247) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964271)

If web surfing is such a high priority for you, you are not looking for a smart phone, you are looking for an iPhone.

Pick almost any other smart phone feature and put it head-to-head against the iPhone and the iPhone loses.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (1)

ceejayoz (567949) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964851)

If web surfing is such a high priority for you, you are not looking for a smart phone, you are looking for an iPhone.

If you don't have proper Internet on your phone by now, I really don't think you have a right to call it a "smart" phone.

The technology is there, the computing horsepower is there, and some phones have had it for a while. There's really no excuse at this point.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964985)

If you don't have proper Internet on your phone by now, I really don't think you have a right to call it a "smart" phone.

The technology is there, the computing horsepower is there, and some phones have had it for a while. There's really no excuse at this point.

If you can't install arbitrary applications on your phone by now, I really don't think you have a right to call it a "smart" phone.

The technology is there, the computing horsepower is there, and some phones have had it for a while. There's really no excuse at this point.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (4, Insightful)

kisrael (134664) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965093)

"Pick almost any other smart phone feature and put it head-to-head against the iPhone and the iPhone loses."

This was a more defensible stance before the app store got under swing....
it seemed ridiculous that my Palm was a better To Do and journaler than my iPhone, but Appigo's Todo and Twitteriffic now make it the best device I've owned.

Probably the keyboard isn't fantastic for stuff that involves a lot of symbols, but in combination w/ its word recognition I can practically touch type.

This device is amazing.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24965171)

Two words - enterprise functionality. Or lack thereof.

Yes, yes, I know it has push email now, I've also read a lot of reports saying your battery will be gone in 6 hours if you turn it on.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (2)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964335)

I saw my friends' iPhones and it was exactly what I was looking for but I have a natural anti-Apple bias so I didn't get one.

What's so "natural" about an anti-apple bias? Even if you are an admin in a MS shop? In the IIe days I liked Apple very much; but when my kids were in school and they had the expensive Apples with dinky keyboards and clumsy one button mice I hated them. These days Apple seems to have gotten their shit back together; were I to buy a whole computer rather than swapping out parts like I've done for twenty years, I'd buy an Apple and make it triple-boot between its native OS, MS XP and Mandriva.

Speaking of which, when I think of touchscreen I think of Linux [meritgames.com] . Almost every bar has a Megatouch game computer, and they run Linux.

Apple? All they have with touch screen is afaik the iPhone. Which may possibly be my next phone if anybody but ATT has them (I'm thinking of using US Cellular for my next provider)

Re:Apple is a niche player? (2, Informative)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964561)

They also have the iPod touch, which is an iPhone without the phone, GPS, microphone and camera.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (3, Informative)

dal20402 (895630) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964813)

As of Tuesday, it has a mic jack and a speaker. Apple has already said there will be Wi-Fi VoIP applications.

If you're always in a Wi-Fi environment and have a 2G touch, you may rarely need a phone anymore.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (3, Funny)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964355)

Well, as they say, an Ubuntu user is just a windows fan who's used Vista.

Disclaimer: I use and like Vista for my laptop and gaming, it's just a joke people.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (1)

lupis42 (1048492) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964389)

I hear very excellent things about the HTC touch pro, from a guy I know who does dev for them. The one he had to play with was CDMA, and the casing wasn't 100% final, but the main points are all there: Fast Processor, Lots of Memory, VGA screen, good touchscreen, copy-paste functionality, decent camera, BT, GPS, support for fast networks (3G or EVDO rev. a), and it runs Windows mobile. Might not be cheap, but I plan to get the CDMA one when it comes out, if you're on GSM, they should already be available.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (1)

Sobrique (543255) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964539)

I'm following the release of these with interest. The real key is how well they've done with the interface - the rest of the specs look pretty awesome. Unfortunately that's also not something you can just check out on a website.

HTC ups your nerd cred (1)

seanonymous (964897) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964987)

If you're trying to avoid the perception that you purchase devices based on their 'cool factor' then HTC is the way to go. HTC stands for High Tech Computer. That is so uncool. That sounds like the name of a company that produces beeping keychain toys for the dollar stores.

Add Windows Mobile, and no one will ever accuse you of using style as a deciding factor.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964457)

You could had bought HTC modell with a keyboard which you pull out from underneath: Touch Pro (Raphael)

It's probably quite close to the iPhone but runs Windows instead.

Personally I think the iPhone looks very nice in functionality but there is no way in hell I'd "legally" buy one with subscription for the insane prices they are charging. Half a thousand dollars or so sure, but no subscription.

Also I don't like that Apple wants to decide what you want or should do, what you should get and so on. I'm not much of a phone user at all but if I would get a new one I guess I would get a cheap walkman series one from Sony-Ericsson or more likely wait for Google Android to get released and get a phone I can actually use as if it was mine and in any way I want.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964933)

I have HTC Touch and its interface is unusable without a stylus (everything is too small for a finger).

This device sucks!

Re:Apple is a niche player? (1)

PainKilleR-CE (597083) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965139)

I used to have the T-Mobile Wing (one of HTC's older products), and my only complaints about it are condemnations of touch screens in general. Finally the touch screen took a ding that made it unusable and I went looking for a new phone. I didn't really want a Blackberry (the keyboard's too small), but that's what I ended up with, since T-Mobile's selection pretty much sucks and Apple's got everyone on the touch screen bandwagon for the next couple years.

I'm surprised you bought an iPhone based on reqs. (2, Funny)

wisebabo (638845) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964555)

I'm surprised that you bought an iPhone based on requirements. Not that they aren't important or that the iPhone doesn't satisfy them but most people (like me) think the user interface is the most compelling reason to use an Apple product and are willing to let a few technical spec's fall through.

Still I'm happy you made the right choice! :)

Re:I'm surprised you bought an iPhone based on req (3, Insightful)

snoyberg (787126) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965033)

I think this post sums up the term "fanboi" nicely.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (2, Informative)

Umuri (897961) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964581)

Your problem is you didn't mess with non default. Which as anyone knows, default will not get you the best in 95%+ of cases.

I have an HTC-6800 (mogul for sprint users, titan/ppc-800 for others). The built in I.E. sucks, but if you put opera mini on it, it works wonderfully. Add to that wifi and a bigger ability to customize than the iphone, and i'm quite happy with it. Non quirky gps is also a plus.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (2, Informative)

genghisjahn (1344927) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964755)

I have the HTC Mogul and while it is not nearly as pretty (as far as GUI) it is very functional. The Exchange Direct Push is great. Email, calendar, contacts are all in both places, where ever I put them...no manual synching. For browsing, I use the IE Mobile for lots of sites that have mobile specific sites but the real winner is SkyFire's browser for Windows Mobile. Full site, zoom in, drag around on the screen, play flash, real audio, youtube...it all just works. If I flip the keyboard out the whole thing goes landscape. I am NOT saying it is a good as the Iphone experience. I am saying I get a lot of other things (direct push, GPS, google maps, pocket office, .Net compact framework so I can write my own apps) for a web browsing experience that is near to the Iphone experience by using SkyFire. You must get the lastest ROM from HTC. It sucks with the one that comes on the phone.

Re:Apple is a niche player? (1)

0xdeadbeef (28836) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964917)

Dude. Android [openhandsetalliance.com] . Maybe you've heard of it?

Um, doesn't the phone have asian language input ? (2, Insightful)

Space cowboy (13680) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964041)

I was under the impression that it did, and that it even used its predictive-text system with the pictogram-style input ?

Add that to the question: "What the hell has Apple got to "lose" regarding touch-screens anyway?" and it looks to me like someone wanted some hits, and Apple is a good brand-name to use to get them....

Simon the cynic.

Re:Um, doesn't the phone have asian language input (1)

sandysnowbeard (1297619) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964215)

Though you could hack it in, it wasn't officially added until the iPhone 3G came out, at which point I think the old iPhones got the capability in a software update.

I believe said capability also included a non-qwerty interface. It could be that Apple was waiting to perfect that interface before unleashing the Asian language input.

Re:Um, doesn't the phone have asian language input (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964277)

The iPhone does have Chinese input.

Moreover, the article isn't really news at all. The iPhone was just released in most of these markets and isn't officially in China yet anyway. However, being here in Hong Kong (or even in the mainland) you see the iphone everywhere. So just give it time.

Plus, who ever heard of a "touchscreen war"?

Re:Um, doesn't the phone have asian language input (1)

Yokaze (70883) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964301)

I don't know about other languages, but in Japanese, you enter the latin transliteration and get a list of possible representations in japanese / chinese characters, instead of drawing the character like you can do on other devices.
That said, since firmware 2.0 [engadget.com] , the iphone has handwriting recognition.

Re:Um, doesn't the phone have asian language input (2, Informative)

shawnce (146129) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964419)

I was under the impression that it did, and that it even used its predictive-text system with the pictogram-style input ?

Yeah as of iPhone OS 2.0 it has a rather robust input system. Apple wasn't targeting the international market before the 2.0 OS.

The AC that submitted this obviously doesn't know that the iPhone isn't limited to only QWERTY input and the referenced article makes no statement on that is why Samsung and Moto are currently more popular. Looks like a little bit of trolling going on...

http://www.apple.com/iphone/features/keyboard.html [apple.com]

Re:Um, doesn't the phone have asian language input (3, Insightful)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964449)

I got the impression that they were referring to the other phone manufacturers having captured the market well before apple even entered it. Just my $.02

In the palm of my hand. (1, Insightful)

Ostracus (1354233) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964045)

"While Apple's iPhone may be the first device most people call to mind when they think of a touch interface mobile, the 3G device is still lagging behind in the touchscreen shifting stakes â" it's getting a sound thrashing from Moto and Samsung, who've cornered the Asian market where touchscreens are popular for their ability to let users input Asian language without all that fiddly Qwerty nonsense."

As opposed to PDAs using a stylus.

asdipfgslda (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964055)

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Happy Birthday America :) (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964067)

xoxoxoxo to all

Chinese input (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964111)

On my iPod Touch, I can enter Chinese without all that fiddly Qwerty nonsense...

If touchscreens are so all-fired popular ... (4, Insightful)

overshoot (39700) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964139)

How come I can't find any here in the USA?

For those of us with fingers larger than pencil points, QWERTY is just a waste of precious real estate.

Re:If touchscreens are so all-fired popular ... (5, Funny)

MooseMuffin (799896) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964245)

Larger than pencil points? Clearly you are not evolutionarily suited for the modern world.

Re:If touchscreens are so all-fired popular ... (2, Interesting)

hey! (33014) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964499)

One of the things that Apple engineers excel at is tuning obscure user interface parameters to enhance usability, but not in a way you can easily ... er ... put your finger on.

I had the very first Apple "BlackBird" laptop -- a true landmark machine. It had a touchpad in an era when laptops came with trackballs -- basically inverted mice. It worked flawlessly and intuitively. It was years before I ever found a Windows laptop whose touchpad wasn't irritating by comparison. Apple somehow managed to make the touchpad accurate, and most of all responsive without being squirrelly.

I have an iPod touch for watching video podcasts. It has an onscreen QWERTY keyboard that I expected to be horrible, but is actually OK. You wouldn't want to type on it, but it's fine for even reasonably complex URLs. I have large fingers and contrary to expectations I don't find myself hitting the wrong key all the time, although it does happen.

I still prefer the classic Graffiti on the Palm, but the iPod QWERTY keyboard is acceptable; better than any hardware keyboard I've used on a smartphone.

Speaking of Palm, the Chinese version of Graffiti is, I am told, extremely good. I know a person who's been using her Palm for years to compose emails back home to her parents in Taiwan because she finds it preferable to a keyboard.

Re:If touchscreens are so all-fired popular ... (1)

dal20402 (895630) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964923)

You wouldn't want to type on it

This is what I thought when I only had an iPod touch. Then I got an iPhone 3G and started texting with it away from home.

It's surprisingly good. I can type with it at 1/3 to 1/2 my speed on a full-size desktop keyboard. The key is to have faith in its autocorrect feature and just keep typing... 95% of the time the correction is right, and the rest of the time it's faster to just correct at the end of your text or paragraph.

Now that the iPhone has good international input methods, it's really not a problem that it doesn't have the market share of Moto or Samsung... Macs hardly have the market share of HP either.

Re:If touchscreens are so all-fired popular ... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964509)

For those of us with fingers larger than pencil points, QWERTY is just a waste of precious real estate.

In that case, just use your trouser snake.

design improvement idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964175)

I would probably be more compelled to use on if the icons were tattoos on 's thighs and it gently moaned when you did things...

Right Question.... Wrong Answer. (5, Interesting)

sampson7 (536545) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964191)

This article fails to address anything meaningful. It has no facts, no helpful statistics, and no meaningful analysis. The real questions are:

1. What are the touch screen statistics in the United States? What share does Apple hold domestically?

2. Is there some reason why Apple is not competing in the international market? Is Apple having their lunch eaten by companies that are "household names" in Asia, or is the product inferrior? What is Apple's penetration in those markets over the past year?

3. How do these numbers change if were to include things like Black Berrys and other "smart" phone without touch screens?

4. Why are 80 percent of touch screen phones marketed in Asia? Why aren't the touch screens being created for the Asian market showing up here? I find it hard to believe that ease of displaying Asian fonts is the only reason. Is there some lack of American infrastructure? Lack of interest from American consumers?

As someone who loves bleeding edge technology, I'm frustrated by the lack of options in the US and find the whole international marketing strategy wonderfully interesting. But this article is a slow boat of fail because it lacks any analysis or insight.

Re:Right Question.... Wrong Answer. (1)

the_humeister (922869) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964425)

As someone who loves bleeding edge technology, I'm frustrated by the lack of options in the US and find the whole international marketing strategy wonderfully interesting

It's been like that for the past few decades. I think the issue is that people in the USA tend to keep their gadgets for longer periods of time whereas more people in Asia tend to replace their gadgets faster. With few exceptions, the latest and greatest tends not to sell well here.

Re:Right Question.... Wrong Answer. (4, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964519)

Why are 80 percent of touch screen phones marketed in Asia? Why aren't the touch screens being created for the Asian market showing up here?

The american cellular market has the telco as the gatekeeper. Each handset that shows up here has to get past them; and they are only interested in 'showcasing' a limited number of handsets.

Re:Right Question.... Wrong Answer. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964627)

My thoughts exactly. While reading the article it was as if its purpose was simple to make Apple seem smaller than they believe themselves to be.

Honestly, the numbers to not surprise me at all. Everything they have over there, we do not have access to here.

It is is a bit of a shame that with all the technology out there, we are being restricted to a very narrow selection of hand held devices with our cell phone carriers.

I breath apple, I am talking laptops, desktop, servers, and software, but I do not own an iphone simply because I just don't like it.

My current phone is the Samsung blackjack v.1 (go figure) with windows mobile 6. Until I find something that is better, and not an iphone, I will stick with it since it does the job!

Re:Right Question.... Wrong Answer. (1)

magus_melchior (262681) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964699)

This article fails to address anything meaningful. It has no facts, no helpful statistics, and no meaningful analysis.

Maybe it's a veiled Ask Slashdot?

Re:Right Question.... Wrong Answer. (1)

legallyillegal (889865) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964759)

4. Lack of interest from providers. This coupled with the "I just want to make calls" mindset.

Re:Right Question.... Wrong Answer. (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964865)

Two facts I know about Japanese culture, having worked with Japanese people from Japan, personally:

1) In general, the Japanese mobile market has a wider availability of much more bleeding edge technology than just about anywhere else in the world. This is because the Japanese, in general, are gadget freaks. Imagine if Joe Sixpack in America were as much of a gadget freak as your typical Slashdot crowd, and now you will instantly understand why Japanese tech is light years ahead of anything available in the West, including iPhone.

2) Sorry to say guys, but the Japanese love Windows and Microsoft. Their very favorite application is Microsoft Excel. So if it ain't Windows, in general, they don't buy it.

Re:Right Question.... Wrong Answer. (0)

KaeloDest (220375) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965007)

Agreed this article was as light as a popcorn fart.

If you only count the current and possibly the previous iteration of so called 'iPhone killers' then maybe in asia their local home brew version will rock, but when you factor in the BBs and other models with a physical screen than the article might be considered just regular flame bait.

In a country that prides itself on style versus function (U.S.A.) It should come as no surprise that Apple succeeds. If the devices are measured on customer satisfaction or human interface design then again apple seems to have it all over other so called 'smart phones'

But if you count it by market share and factored it by fanboy pride - how else can you explain BB not being included (as being the owner of a physical 'qwerty' layout) In the 8 or nine years that I have been anchored to a BB I have _never_ considered getting one for personal use. Now that I have my iPhone the work BB is 'retired'

Summing it up like this... My boss wants to show me all of these other phones that he bought. Me I have nothing to prove.

Models? (2, Interesting)

wandazulu (265281) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964195)

If Motorola and Samsung have the market sewn up, essentially, what are they doing it with? This is the first time I had even heard Motorola *had* a touch screen phone.

Also, why aren't they sold in the US, then? I read about Motorola wanting to spin off their phone division, all the problems they've had, then I'm told they have these phones that I might be interested in (I don't have AT&T so no iPhone for me) but don't seem to be available.

Re:Models? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964621)

motorola has the motoming and its successor in china for years. its not sold anywhere else except china. thats why u never heard about it. chinese characters are a bitch to type with t9, which explains motoming's huge success in china.

motorola also had the a1000, and the m1000 (for japan) years ago. it ran symbian too.

as someone pointed out, "international marketing strategy" means that moto (or any other company) doesnt sell all their phones in 1 market because each region has its own particular needs, etc.

Apple: "But We Invented It!" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964199)

Apple really had nothing to do with the new touch screen technologies. The just happened to be in the right place at the right time as third party companies came about perfecting them. The only reason multi touch has become so prevalent now is because patents on them have expired so they are effectively free game. Apple can't hold onto it, and everyone else is free to exploit it.

This is excellent. Competition in the consumer-grade cell market will only make the products better and less expensive. These are exciting times.

Re:Apple: "But We Invented It!" (1)

jeffb (2.718) (1189693) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964405)

Apple really had nothing to do with the new touch screen technologies. The just happened to be in the right place at the right time as third party companies came about perfecting them. The only reason multi touch has become so prevalent now is because patents on them have expired so they are effectively free game. Apple can't hold onto it, and everyone else is free to exploit it.

I beg to differ.

More Apple FingerWorks Patents Surface [hrmpf.com]
Apple wants you to control a touch panel or computer with almost anything [appletell.com]
Multi-Touch Technology And Where It's Going Next...Oh And Apple Didn't Invent It Either! [crunchgear.com]
...as of August 2008, [Elias and Westerman] still file patents for Apple, Inc. [wikipedia.org]

So what. (0, Troll)

lantastik (877247) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964203)

In other news, Apple doesn't make the greatest media players, and their laptops are significantly slower than other lower-priced options on the market.

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964241)

If I get two Qwerty phones together will they form a philotic bond allowing for instant communication across the cosmos?

Take my Samsung Glyde, please! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964243)

My wife and I are excruciatingly unhappy owners of Samsung Glydes. The touch screens are nothing short of possessed.

* The screens randomly accept commands, often registering touches inches away from the actual contact
* The screens often refuse to acknowledge any contact whatsoever
* Worst of all, they're prone to poltergeist behaviors. While placed on a conference table in a meeting, for example, mine started self-executing commands. After much laughter, the assistant director of a government agency who happened to be in the room received a call from my phone (much to the delight of the attendees).

While that example was humorous, the phone has executed deletes of several important contacts, downloaded software, and refused to accept commands to answer important incoming phone calls.

Several trips to Verizon, including software updates and replacements, have failed to resolve the issues.

Perhaps Moto is a threat to Apple, but claiming that Samsung's touch screens are a threat is an absurd claim at best.

Re:Take my Samsung Glyde, please! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964663)

Tsk tsk, you probably should have tried out the Glyde more thoroughly, before jumping on the bandwagon and buying a "cool" device to show off to all your friends.

Do you feel any cooler now, yuppie faggot?

Re:Take my Samsung Glyde, please! (2, Funny)

TheNetAvenger (624455) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964953)

Trackpads will do the same thing if they are dirty or have conductive grease on them.

Wash your hands once in a while, and this behavior stops.

Just in case you think this is specific to Samsung, or any conductive touch based technology, it is not.

Nobody else has FingerWorks IP, though. (5, Interesting)

jeffb (2.718) (1189693) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964259)

Anybody can build a touch screen that lets you poke at big static buttons, or lets you try to fatfinger a virtual keyboard. Only Apple has the FingerWorks patents to do high-quality, high-usability multitouch gestures [fingerworks.com] .

Disclaimer: I've been using a FingerWorks TouchStream keyboard for more than five years, so I'm a big fan of the technology. I've also been a Mac user since 1985 or so. But when Apple bought FingerWorks, they completely shut down all sales and support, leaving the existing user base swinging in the breeze, so I'm a bit... conflicted.

Bad ass again (1)

suck_burners_rice (1258684) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964321)

That's OK, because when all their computers start coming with touch interfaces (imagine that not only will you have the keyboard and mouse, but you'll be able to reach out and move/resize things right on the screen) then they're gonna be bad-ass again.

Re:Bad ass again (1)

east coast (590680) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964671)

I really think the touchscreen computer is going to be a big fail as long as the ergonomics of computers remain the same as they are today. Holding your hand up to a monitor for any real length of time is tiring and painful (and probably unhealthy after doing it for extended periods of time). Touch screen will work nicely for tablet form factor PCs but aside from that workspaces will have to be re-engineered to make them acceptable to the masses. I really don't think that early versions are going to be adopted well.

Not yet available in LARGE parts of Asia (5, Informative)

wisebabo (638845) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964349)

TFA says a big reason why it is lagging overall is because Moto and Samsung holds 80% of the touchscreen market in Asia. Considering that Apple has not even RELEASED the iPhone in CHINA, Korea and Vietnam to name a few countries it seems obvious why. Also, it was just released (like a month or two ago?) in places like INDIA, Singapre, etc.

On the contrary, seeing the crazy lengths people will go to here to GET an iPhone (I'm in Vietnam) I'm sure that that percentage will change. It is amazing to see, in a country where the per capita income is about $1K (CIA world factbook), lots of people carrying iPhones (a hacked iPhone is about $700 here). I was just in a cab and surprised to see the driver who probably makes less than $10/day using one (but maybe he "found" it from some unlucky person leaving it in the cab). The demand is so high that many telephone shops will have "iPhone" as the most prominent sign on their shops even though no-one in the entire country is an authorized reseller. Sorry but it is still a big big status symbol here.

Re:Not yet available in LARGE parts of Asia (3, Interesting)

wisebabo (638845) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964463)

Oh yeah, to add to my parent post. Not only do people really really want it, they're willing to do so without support for Vietnamese! So all TEXTING, note taking, calendar entries, address book entries, e-mailing must be done IN ENGLISH. Not only is there no language support for Vietnamese currently in the iPhone but there is no country support (like in the address field; "Vietnam" isn't even one of the countries listed). I keep showing people this and they keep wanting to buy mine off me. How embarrassing really.

Re:Not yet available in LARGE parts of Asia (1)

dorzak (142233) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964855)

The iPhone and iPod Touch with 2.0 or later can do Asian characters.

The article overlooks that. It isn't limited to just QWERTY.

Re:Not yet available in LARGE parts of Asia (1)

wisebabo (638845) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965085)

Yeah but 2.0 hasn't been hacked completely to work in Vietnam! So I'm stuck with 1.14.

Dumb title (1)

ciaohound (118419) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964367)

"Losing the war?" Only if somehow Samsung and Motorola's larger market share confers a strategic advantage in supplying devices with multi-touch screens. Balda supplies Apple -- do they supply the other guys as well, and are quantity discounts significant enough to marginalize all but Samsung and Motorola?

Touchscreen alternatives? (1)

Sobrique (543255) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964441)

I'm actually looking for a touchscreen phone/mobile device.

So far the HTC Touch (Diamond | Pro) and the Samsung Omnia (8Gb|16Gb) are looking promising contenders. They each seem to be doing different things with it, but doing at least a useful selection of them 'better than the competitors'.

Which is good, as I'm still not sold on the iPhone.

when will we see swype? (1)

corerunner (971136) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964477)

I'm in the market for a new phone and, although I prefer simplicity, it would be nice to have an easier way to write text messages. My coworker recently showed me a video demonstrating this new technology [swypeinc.com] that was developed by a guy who helped invent T9. It's unique because it doesn't require you to lift your stylus or finger to type.

I'm not a fan of the on-screen keyboard, especially if it covers the entire screen, but I could definitely deal with this slick input method.

Re:when will we see swype? (1)

cleatsupkeep (1132585) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964931)

The iPhone actually has a 3rd party application with this functionality (writingpad) I believe, but it cannot replace the keyboard in other uses (browsing, texting, etc.).

Assuming TFA is true (0)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964497)

The obvious question is "So what?" Apple right now could happily lose the touchscreen market entirely, and still be doing just fine with its laptops, iPods, iPhones, and iHippies.

Re:Assuming TFA is true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964963)

i doubt it, they live by the fashion, status, overpriced hardware, but people soon will want something innovative not the same products of last year but thinnier and rounder.

corepirate nazi execrable losing all badtolls (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964515)

there's no where to hide, & only 1 way out.

'The current rate of extinction is around 10 to 100 times the usual background level, and has been elevated above the background level since the Pleistocene. The current extinction rate is more rapid than in any other extinction event in earth history, and 50% of species could be extinct by the end of this century. While the role of humans is unclear in the longer-term extinction pattern, it is clear that factors such as deforestation, habitat destruction, hunting, the introduction of non-native species, pollution and climate change have reduced biodiversity profoundly.' (wiki)

greed, fear & ego are unprecedented evile's primary weapons. those, along with deception & coercion, helps most of us remain (unwittingly?) dependent on its' life0cidal hired goons' agenda. most of yOUR dwindling resources are being squandered on the 'wars', & continuation of the billionerrors stock markup FraUD/pyramid schemes. nobody ever mentions the real long term costs of those debacles in both life & the notion of prosperity, not to mention the abuse of the consciences of those of us who still have one. see you on the other side of it. the lights are coming up all over now. conspiracy theorists are being vindicated. some might choose a tin umbrella to go with their hats. the fairytail is winding down now. let your conscience be yOUR guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

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http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/31/opinion/31mon1.html?em&ex=1199336400&en=c4b5414371631707&ei=5087%0A
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/29/world/29amnesty.html?hp
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/06/02/nasa.global.warming.ap/index.html
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/weather/06/05/severe.weather.ap/index.html
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/weather/06/02/honore.preparedness/index.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/01/opinion/01dowd.html?em&ex=1212638400&en=744b7cebc86723e5&ei=5087%0A
http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/06/05/senate.iraq/index.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/17/washington/17contractor.html?hp
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/03/world/middleeast/03kurdistan.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin
http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/080708/cheney_climate.html
http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/20080805/pl_politico/12308;_ylt=A0wNcxTPdJhILAYAVQms0NUE
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080903/ts_nm/environment_arctic_dc;_ylt=A0wNcwhhcb5It3EBoy2s0NUE

is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=weather+manipulation&btnG=Search
http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=video+cloud+spraying

dictator style micro management has never worked (for very long). it's an illness. tie that with life0cidal aggression & softwar gangster style bullying, & what do we have? a greed/fear/ego based recipe for disaster. meanwhile, you can help to stop the bleeding (loss of life & limb);

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/28/vermont.banning.bush.ap/index.html

the bleeding must be stopped before any healing can begin. jailing a couple of corepirate nazi hired goons would send a clear message to the rest of the world from US. any truthful look at the 'scorecard' would reveal that we are a society in decline/deep doo-doo, despite all of the scriptdead pr ?firm? generated drum beating & flag waving propaganda that we are constantly bombarded with. is it time to get real yet? please consider carefully ALL of yOUR other 'options'. the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption. fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way. the little ones/innocents must/will be protected. after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit? for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available. 'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet, & by your behaviors. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable. some of US should consider ourselves somewhat fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate. it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc.... as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis. concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order. 'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

meanwhile, the life0cidal philistines continue on their path of death, debt, & disruption for most of US. gov. bush denies health care for the little ones;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/10/03/bush.veto/index.html

whilst demanding/extorting billions to paint more targets on the bigger kids;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/12/bush.war.funding/index.html

& pretending that it isn't happening here;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article3086937.ece
all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven

(yOUR elected) president al gore (deciding not to wait for the much anticipated 'lonesome al answers yOUR questions' interview here on /.) continues to attempt to shed some light on yOUR foibles. talk about reverse polarity;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article3046116.ece

Slashdot losing visitor war thanks to "idle" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964541)

Can the editors please make sure nothing from "idle" ever shows up on the front page again. Browsing work related tech sites is fine, browsing sites full of low-brow inane bullshit is not!

I know, I must be new here...

Re:Slashdot losing visitor war thanks to "idle" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24965057)

Take off your tinfoil hat, log in, and set your preferences. Idiot.

Touch screen problems (2, Interesting)

Jethro (14165) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964635)

A while ago I decided it was time to replace my trusty old Harmony remote, as some of the buttons don't work very well, etc.

I decided to get the then-brand-new Harmony One, which features a touch-screen where the older Harmony remotes have six or eight buttons around an LCD.

I returned it a week later. I just couldn't handle not having a tactile response. I don't want to have to LOOK at the remote in order to use it, and there's just no way to feel your way around with a touch screen.

I do have an iPod Touch, and that's a major problem I have with it. Try using an iPod Touch while it's in your pocket while listening to music. Yeah, you can find the On button, but it takes a lot of practice to actually sue the slider without looking, and then just try skipping a track. Heck, it's easy to mis-press the thing when you're looking right at it.

I love the form-factor of an iPod Touch/iPhone as an information-display device, and the eye-candy is beautiful, but I'd prefer tactile over touch-screen anytime.

Re:Touch screen problems (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24965067)

it takes a lot of practice to actually sue the slider without looking

You need a better lawyer.

Asian countries not major GSM players? (1)

krzy123 (1201507) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964751)

Is GSM even prevalent in Asia? I thought in Japan and Korea most users are on CDMA. Could be wrong though.

I've used it (my hacked iPhone) in these countries (1)

wisebabo (638845) | more than 5 years ago | (#24965037)

I know the iPhone works in the following countries (because I've used it there): Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Hong Kong and I've heard it works in China. Also they offer it for sale in Japan, Singapore and India. So I assume that all these places (at the very least) are GSM.

Asian language Input rocks in iphone! (1)

vincarama (1362253) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964777)

I don't even know why this article will make it to slashdot! I have an 3g iphone and the asian language input rocks! The handwriting asian language characters recognition on the iphone touchscreen is so much better than anything I have used before on any PC! For the stat, motorola and samsung phones are around for so much longer and it won't be surprised they have a bigger stake now, but eventually apple will catch up!

Call me distorted... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24964817)

Call me distorted from SJ's reality distortion field, but I find it rather silly that everyone seems to have their panties in a knot over the "touchscreen" aspect of the iPhone, and either rush out to build a touchscreen phone of their own, or try to dismiss the iPhone as being a niche fanboi gimmick (while trying to create their own gimmicks).

From what I've experienced as an iPhone user, the touchscreen is only part of what makes the iPhone an iPhone. There is a whole lot of underlying design theory there, and touchscreen just happened to be what makes that part work.

Point in case, Kyocera used to sell a touchscreen cell phone about 10 years ago in Japan. Nothing at all like an iPhone, it was a touch sensitive monochrome LCD panel that was not scratch resistant etc., but it would essentially "shape shift" to get your address book etc. It was an utter failure, not because it was a touchscreen, but because there was essentially no reason to do it. The drawbacks of trouchscreens (there are plenty, even on the iPhone) outweighed the benefits of having it, and that's key. I expect bad ideas from 1998 to come back en-masse and plague the market with phones that look and operate like a Zune.

This is scary... (1, Flamebait)

TheNetAvenger (624455) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964859)

While Apple's iPhone may be the first device most people call to mind

This alone is scary, and the fact that it may be true is even more scary.

I have a digital voice recorder from 1997 that has a rather advanced touch screen, let alone all the PDAs and PocketPC Phones that existed YEARS before the iPhone.

Sometimes you just have to go, "Ok, the public in general is uninformed and borderline scary stupid."

(And before the fanbois go 'multi-touch', they should go look up multi-touch technology, as Apple didn't even invent the multi-touch interface on the iPhone, as it is a DIRECT clone of the TED presentation technology from several years ago, that was building on independant and MS multi-sensory/touch technology.)

Re:This is scary... (1)

TheNetAvenger (624455) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964881)

PS Also don't forget the Casio Watches from the 80s that you could write on the screen with your finger to do calculator functions, as well as even manage contacts.

Let me get this straight... (1)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964873)

Let me get this straight: Apple is losing the touchscreen wars in a market they probably have little impact in and a market that has devices that the Euro and American markets will rarely get to see? Someone please, stop the engineers at Apple from leaping from their office windows!

In other news: "American and French woodsmen are falling behind in the burgeoning chopstick market!"

Apple is well prepared for Asia now (1)

melted (227442) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964887)

You don't need the "fiddly QUERTY nonsense" anymore to enter Chinese/Japanese/Korean. Not since iPhone 2.0.

Apple wasn't the first anyway, and they won't own (1)

speedtux (1307149) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964893)

The first touch screen phones came from Handspring/Palm, and they were excellent at the time. In fact, they are still a decent choice for a low cost touch screen phone. Although they were designed for use with a stylus, there were many third party add-ons that allowed finger typing, many of them better than what the iPhone has.

The next touch screen phones came from Microsoft. Although the user interface is the usual Microsoft-ugly, they crash a lot, and the whole thing is trying to enslave you to Microsoft software, those were and still are powerful phones with a lot of third party software for them.

The iPhone? Yes, it's prettier than Palm and easier to use than Microsoft. It's slimmer and sleeker than both. It crashes a lot, but it does it with oh-so-much-style that you barely notice. Its games are hot, although its productivity software is limited due to Apple's attempts to protect its own business. No Flash and no Java limit it significantly. And the iPhone is more locked down and locked in than either Palm or Windows Mobile phones.

The iPhone will gather a significant percentage of market share in many markets, but it will not be the majority smartphone platform of the future. Between Nokia/Symbian, Google, Microsoft, and Samsung, Apple has some tough competitors.

No need for extra bells and whistles (0, Offtopic)

GPS Tracking (1347425) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964915)

Can't we just go back to basics? I just need a phone that I can use to dial out and accept calls on. I'm always in front of a computer, so why would I mess with a micro sized screen. I guess if everyone thought like me, Apple would go out of business.
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