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iPhone 1.1.3 Update Confirmed, Breaks Apps and Unlocks

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the peak-into-the-itech-future dept.

Cellphones 412

An anonymous reader writes "Gizmodo has gathered conclusive evidence which confirms that the iPhone Firmware 1.1.3 update is 100% real. It installs only from iTunes using the obligatory Apple private encryption key, which nobody has. The list of new features, like GPS-like triangulation positioning in Google Maps, has been confirmed too. Apparently it will be coming out next week, but there's bad news as expected: it breaks the unlocks, patches the previous vulnerabilities used by hackers and takes away all your third-party applications."

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412 comments

Just need to wait until it's jailbreaked... (3, Insightful)

Kagura (843695) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854048)

My phone is activated and I use AT&T. There is no way I am upgrading until I can use my apps with it, too. And it'll suck, period, if I have to reinstall all my apps. I would consider doing so for the GPS triangulation.

Re:Just need to wait until it's jailbreaked... (1)

Kagura (843695) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854074)

I know it's not GPS triangulation, but rather done through the cell towers, by the way. :)

Re:Just need to wait until it's jailbreaked... (1)

skeftomai (1057866) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854182)

I believe the app Navizon has triangulation which links into the Google Maps app.

And lo... (5, Funny)

ravenspear (756059) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854050)

I felt a great disturbance in the airwaves, as if millions of helpless iPhone apps cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

They cried out, "don't raze me bro!!!"

Re:And lo... (1)

SeaFox (739806) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854328)

I felt a great disturbance in the airwaves, as if millions of helpless iPhone apps cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

They were all using their iPhones on T-Mobile.

Walled Garden (2, Insightful)

Divebus (860563) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854058)

I'm not a developer, but I'm really thinking this Walled Garden thing is for the birds - which makes me want one of these less and less.

Re:Walled Garden (3, Insightful)

kannibal_klown (531544) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854258)

Well they're *supposedly* opening up 3rd party apps next year when they release a real SDK. I guess only time will tell.

As for unlocking them, eh. The only thing I'd really want that for is for when I go to Switzerland each year. Instead of paying the higher AT&T fees I could go with a prepaid card over there.

Re:Walled Garden (0)

macs4all (973270) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854304)

You apparently missed the announcement that Apple is releasing a fully-supported SDK [slashdot.org] (Software Development Kit) in February 2008. That means that software developers will no longer HAVE to "hack" the iPhone (or iPod Touch) to install custom apps. Instead, there will be a "legal" way to do it. Then this back-and-forth between Apple and the iPhone hax0rs will simply vanish.

Re:Walled Garden (2)

digitalchinky (650880) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854400)

No, you mean there will be a manufacturer approved method of creating 3rd party applications, it has nothing to do with legality, and everything to do with the corporate bottom line. I'll likely be similar to the current Symbian 3rd edition stuff, pretty much useless for the types of people that are currently doing these modifications.

Not remotely GPS-like.. (3, Informative)

Junta (36770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854060)

It gives a vague couple-mile area that you should be in or around. Google has been working to give this to phones lacking aGPS, but it's not a good excuse for lacking the feature when my zero-charge (one-year contract zero money) phone does have it.

Re:Not remotely GPS-like.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854128)

Actually, the AGPS I had on my phone while I was in Thailand was down to the city block area. The phones tell you where you are to the nearest intersection or large shopping area, similar to the accuracy of GPS before the DoD removed the artificial error.

Re:Not remotely GPS-like.. (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854156)

Hard to see how it could be "a couple of miles" if you are working with microcells on every second or third intersection.

Re:Not remotely GPS-like.. (1)

digitalchinky (650880) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854484)

Smaller localized footprints are useful in large central business districts where there are many service providers and tall buildings, or inside shopping centers, subways, and other high traffic areas, but errors in this type of positioning could easily be as high as 30 kilometers once you start heading out of the major centers. I'd prefer to know exactly where I am with a real GPS and the luxury of turn by turn navigation, even if I am just out walking.

Re:Not remotely GPS-like.. (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854704)

the luxury of turn by turn navigation

Cycling to work the other week through the Melbourne CBD I followed this car being driven by this guy who seemed transfixed by the GPS attached to his windscreen. He can't have had good GPS coverage because there were tall buildings on all sides and he slowed right down before each intersection, presumably to wait for his navigation system to catch up. Then he got a red light (that happens if you go slow enough) and stopped 10 metres back from the stop line, apparently with all his attention on the GPS.

I use one too, but I try to make am firm distinction between tactical and strategic navigation.

Close enough for the cigar (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854260)

If the iPhone can automatically center you even around the right quadrant of a city, a simple search on your current street address will quickly pinpoint where you are. But you probably donb't even need that since you could simply see on the map where the cross-street you are near to is located.

What does this have to do with Monica's vag? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854542)

Close enough for the cigar
What does this have to do with Monica's vag?

Re:Not remotely GPS-like.. (4, Informative)

Nyeerrmm (940927) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854444)

It changes depending on your location. Down around my house, in a suburban area, the circle is about half a mile, but it tends to be accurate within a quarter mile. However, when I was downtown a few nights ago, I noticed that the circle was within about .2 miles i think, and the location within .1 mile.

I'd imagine towers are denser in most dense walking areas, allowing more accurate positions (with more intersecting hyperbolae), and that's where I see the feature being most useful. T

That is, the feature isn't a replacement for something like a Garmin or TomTom, but I can see it being very useful for when you're lost in a pedestrian area and have time to look at a street sign and get your precise position once it gets you very close.

Re:Not remotely GPS-like.. (1)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854644)

It works pretty well and its free. What are you complaining about?

A general idea of where you are is all you need.
It takes what? 5 seconds to zoom in to your exact location.

Re:Not remotely GPS-like.. (4, Funny)

Dr. Hellno (1159307) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854674)

In defense of this clearly defective feature:

This way big brother might know I'm in the red light district, but at least he won't know whether I'm in Marv's Muff Emporium or Kinky Kurt's Krotch Kingdom

3rd party (5, Interesting)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854072)

The iPhone SDK will probably be released at Macworld (January 14-18).

Re:3rd party (2, Interesting)

LeafOnTheWind (1066228) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854234)

This isn't offtopic - if there's an Apple SDK, apps won't need to be installed by hack. They'll be Apple supported. Basically, wait and see and don't let Gizmodo jump the gun ;)

Tis the Season (2, Insightful)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854114)

Apple giveth, and Apple taketh away. Why they keep fighting their users makes no real sense. How long before, no matter how neat the gadget, the masses decide that Apple simply isn't worth the trouble?

Re:Tis the Season (4, Insightful)

Bryan Ischo (893) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854150)

To answer your question: a long time, since the vast majority of users, vocal Slashdot geeks aside, don't give a rats ass about hacking any piece of consumer electronics they own. Most people buy products based on the features that the product claim to have, not on features that they *want* the product to have and believe that they can get by hacking the device.

A correlary of this statement is that Apple really isn't fighting its users, as a group. It's just fighting a small minority of users who hack their iPhones, so your statement about Apply "fighting their users makes no real sense", itself makes no real sense.

Disclaimer: I don't own an iPhone, but I might if I was richer.

Re:Tis the Season (3, Informative)

Doomstalk (629173) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854220)

By "small minority" you mean almost 18% of all iPhone owners. [boston.com]

Unlocking is not the same as running applications (3, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854306)

The original poster was talking about users running applications. Apple is also taking away region unlocks, but that's a different matter and a very different issue and there are arguments that make sense for both sides of that conflict.

Re:Unlocking is not the same as running applicatio (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854534)

The original poster said:

Apple giveth, and Apple taketh away. Why they keep fighting their users makes no real sense. How long before, no matter how neat the gadget, the masses decide that Apple simply isn't worth the trouble?
What is Apple taking away? Applications AND unlocking. ~18% unlock. Apple is therefore fighting at least ~18% of their users. Are you, by any chance, retarded?

But that's not taking away anything at all (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854680)

Buying an unlocked phone, you know you can't update the firmware. At least that would be true for all but the stupidest of the 18%. Therefore the figure *really* affected is less than you say, far less.

Re:Tis the Season (1)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854236)

Apple really isn't fighting its users, as a group. It's just fighting a small minority of users who hack their iPhones

Well, I've seen figures (guesses? estimations?) that put the number of unlocked iPhones at 1/6 to 1/3 of total iPhones sold. - that is not a small minority.

Re:Tis the Season (2, Interesting)

noidentity (188756) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854582)

Apple really isn't fighting its users, as a group. It's just fighting security holes that could allow malware, found by a small minority of users who hack their iPhones and who unfortunately rely on these holes to run their home-made software [...]

Corrected that for you.

Re:Tis the Season (1)

edwardpickman (965122) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854204)

Because most users don't care if it's hackable or not. The masses you are talking about are a small percentage of their user base. Far more are interested in unbundling it but the device is sold bundled so there shouldn't be any shock when they rebundle it on you by disabling the hack. Look I want to buy a hybrid car but I can't expect them to make any model available today as a hybrid. If I want a hybrid I have to buy what is available. Similarly if I convert a car into some form of biodiesel or hybrid I have to assume I'm breaking warrantly so if something happens to the engine there's a chance it won't be covered. I'm not sure how much clearer they have to be when they say they don't want them modded or unbundled and at this point they don't intend it for 3rd software. I do know of companies working towards 3rd party apps but they are still a ways off and they are working with Apple towards that goal. I think most people will get what they want out of an iPhone eventually but they are working on their schedule not yours. If you don't like them don't buy one. It's a free market system. If large numbers don't buy they'll respond but the simple fact is they are selling them faster than they expected to so I doubt they are afraid of the detractors. Everyone boasts about so many other devices that they consider potentially superior. Why's it so important that iPhone do or allow precisely what you personally want? Get a competing product and be happy. Everyone wins.

Re:Tis the Season (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854298)

Look I want to buy a hybrid car but I can't expect them to make any model available today as a hybrid. If I want a hybrid I have to buy what is available. Similarly if I convert a car into some form of biodiesel or hybrid I have to assume I'm breaking warrantly so if something happens to the engine there's a chance it won't be covered.

To take your car analogy one step further, once you've done your hybrid/biofuel conversion, you're probably not going to take it back to the dealer for work. Similarly, once you've unlocked your iPhone, you should be wary of upgrading the firmware. Just as it would be dumb to ask your dealer to reflash your ECU back to stock and "brick" your car, it would be just as dumb to update your iPhone firmware back to stock and "brick" your iPhone.

Re:Tis the Season (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854394)

Your comparison is flawed.

You can mod your car every which way and they can't prevent you nor can they "undo" it. Moreover, the mods don't void the warranty.

Re:Tis the Season (1)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854632)

You can mod your car every which way and they can't prevent you nor can they "undo" it. Moreover, the mods don't void the warranty.

A bunch of DSM, NISMO, Honda and Subaru fanboys would be laughing at you right now if they were so busy crying about broken heads, transmissions, and warranty's. Some were voided for just showing up at a racing event or car show.

That all said, I so wanted an iphone when it came out. I was so pissed it was not on my carrier. I am so glad I didn't get one now!

Re:Tis the Season (1)

Z0mb1eman (629653) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854288)

How long before, no matter how neat the gadget, the masses decide that Apple simply isn't worth the trouble?

If Sony's any indication, roughly never (or at least until the gadgets themselves stop impressing).

The cryPhone (2, Insightful)

Z80xxc! (1111479) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854120)

Why is apple trying so darn hard to stifle every attempt to develop for their product? I can sort-of understand the other carriers thing, as they and AT&T want their money, but the 3rd part apps blocking is just ridiculous. 3rd party apps are part of what made me initially interested in them; today I'm glad iDidn't get one. Even microsoft understands the importance of Developers, developers, developers, developers, developers, developers, developers...

P.S: article tagged cryphone.

Re:The cryPhone (4, Insightful)

supersat (639745) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854194)

Would you rather them leave the vulnerabilities unpatched so that any web site could 0wn your iPhone if it wanted to? Granted, there should be a way to load third-party apps without resorting to these kinds of hacks, but we'll see what Apple does when they release the SDK.

Re:The cryPhone (0, Flamebait)

jmv (93421) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854198)

What surprises me even more is why the hell people and developers bother with Apple products? Seriously, I just don't understand how you can piss everybody off *and* have a large loyal fanbase. Have they developed some mind control chip or are there more masochistic people in the works than I had previously thought?

Re:The cryPhone (1)

garote (682822) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854252)

Riiight. Because developers develop software for the benefit of the company that makes the platform. Not, say, for their own personal benefit, or the benefit of their fellow enthusiasts and users.

Ironic statements aside, compare the number of developers of Windows applications to the number of developers of OS X applications. Would you look at those numbers and declare that Microsoft must have a larger "fan base"??

Re:The cryPhone (2, Interesting)

Osty (16825) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854312)

Have they developed some mind control chip

Not quite a chip, but yes [wikipedia.org].

The whyPhone (2, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854240)

Why is apple trying so darn hard to stifle every attempt to develop for their product?

Why is Apple fixing known and demonstrated security flaws in products? I can't imagine why!

I would think the fact that they are soon releasing an API for the phone would be seen as an indication they in fact supporting development as best they can. But you simply cannot have Apple leave gaping security holes in a product open or someone WILL exploit them eventually. Would you rather Apple left open the hole that let anyone execute code on your phone with the right TIFF file?

Re:The cryPhone (5, Interesting)

oman_ (147713) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854264)

Apple wants to SELL the applications. If any coder can spend a weekend working up a decent solitaire game then that means they won't be able to charge $5 (or whatever) for their solitaire game on iTunes. The cell phone market has ALWAYS been about nickel and diming the customer to death. Charging for text messages?

The movement to provide on-demand services is NOT about improving life for the customer. It has ALWAYS been about improving revenue. Getting more for less.

and anyway...

I own a hacked iPhone with the 1.1.2 firmware with about 15 third-party applications on it. This thing is by far the most useful consumer electronics device I've ever owned (besides my pc of course). I don't have to upgrade to 1.1.3 and it is still useful to me. When it's cracked I'll upgrade.... but either way it's still a win/win for me.

iPhone upload question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854596)

OT, but ...
With the hacked iPhone can you upload files from Safari?

I need to check a website that only lets me in once I have uploaded my digital certificate & password.
I assume the password is no problem, but can I upload (via a web form) a *.cer file from iPhone Safari?
(I know piss poor security since the certificate can be freely copied. It is really only a password system, but I didn't set it up. And they don't care what I think.)
Once I am in I need to click thru a selection web form, and look at a few PDFs. Which I believe Safari lets me do, correct?

Doing this is pretty time critical and right now shackles me to my desk for most of the whole day. Where I able to handle this via a cell phone, my life would become much much simpler.

Two words (0)

ArchieBunker (132337) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854318)

support and liability. Think about them...

Re:Two words (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854348)

support and liability.

      Yes, because OS publishers have typically been liable for security holes in their products in the past and have had judgments against them... in fact, Microsoft is now out of business.

      Get real.

Re:Two words (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854628)

Only the State obtains its revenue by coercion. - Murray Rothbard
I assume that Murray Rothbard has never heard of muggers or armed robbers.

Re:The cryPhone (1, Interesting)

Bemopolis (698691) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854320)

Apple isn't trying to stifle 3rd party developers --they are trying to close potential security holes in the OS, such as the ones that are exploited to install 3rd party apps. As someone has already pointed out, Apple is interested in serving the large majority of iPhone users who want to use the goddam phone, not replace the keypad icons with images of boobies and penguins. Or penguins with boobies. I knew what the iPhone did and did not do when I bought it, it does it, I'm happy with it. If later they settle on a method to install signed 3rd party apps on the iPhone, I'll look into it. For now, I would prefer they concentrate their fire on any lingering security issues. As for Microsoft understanding the importance of developers, they pretty much have to. Windows Mobile is a major-league atrocity, and given the usual level of security quality control from Redmond, it's not like they could stop apps from being installed anyway.

Re:The cryPhone (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854378)

The lockout of 3rd party apps is again the carriers.

They want to block things that hurt their business including:
VoIP & IM apps that take away their call and message revenue
Apps that connect to the internet and use that nice "unlimited data" plan for things AT&T doesn't want it used for

The official line from the carriers is "unauthorized 3rd party apps are a security risk to our network" (although if this is true, why hasn't a carrier or phone maker come up with a demonstration on a simulator or a test network?)

Re:The cryPhone (1)

kimvette (919543) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854406)

I finally tried an iPhone and I have to say while I'm extremely impressed, at $599 I'd expect to be able to unlock it and use it with any provider (my provider is Cingular, but it's the principle of the thing), I'd expect to be able to install third-party apps, and I'd expect 3G. Also, I'd expect it to provide GPS functionality since new phones include GPS receivers.

When I upgraded my phone, I went with the Samsung Sync. Although it lacks availability of 3rd party apps, I bought it for the short term - it has instant messenger clients (YIM, AIM, and MSN). 3G access, and surprisingly, is not locked. I bought it expecting to buy an OpenMoko phone by now (it's still vaporware) but the screen size is inferior to the iPhone.

APPLE: stop locking the phones, stop breaking third-party apps, and open the platform up. It may be a success, but you could be selling a hell of a lot more units were you to open it up. Much like your hold on OS X, you have an opportunity to OWN the market, taking it away from the leaders, and you're dropping the ball on it. Such a shame, because the iPhone is otherwise an amazing device.

What I love about the iPhone:

  - The interface is nice
  - The browser is AMAZING (it's the full-blown Safari/konqueror/khtml browser!)
  - Screen clarity is fantastic
  - ipod functionality is excellent, and the speaker has a decent volume.
  - WiFi capability
  - It's a nice-looking device
  - The sound quality is great

What I dislike about the iPhone:

  - The DRM. It's locked and they break third-party apps. Sure one can work around that but at $599 one shouldn't have to
  - The lack of instant message clients. To run IM clients you have to fire up safari and use the web-based clients.
  - No 3G. What the heck are you thinking?! Even "free" phones often include 3G now!
  - I think the touch screen may be a safety issue when placing a call on the road. I can dial my sync by feel without taking my eyes off the road. Not possible with a touch screen.
  - No [micro|mini|.*]SD slot
  - proprietary connector, not USB (although that's also true of my Sync)
  - Non-user-replaceable battery

Re:The cryPhone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854540)

$599? What month is this, June? The iphone has been $499 for quite a few months now. I own an iphone by the way and I feel that it was well worth the money spent. It is far and away the best phone I have ever used and might even be the best consumer electronic device I have ever owned. I am not saying it is perfect, there are quite a few improvements they could make but the usability is amazing and using it is a pleasure rather than a chore. I have not hacked it but I do look forward to the SDK being released in Feb. In the meantime it does everything I bought it to do so I have no complaints there.

Re:The cryPhone (1)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854602)

change through absurdity, basically the idea is to herd companies favoring control to become so draconian in their attempts to control their products that even the most dim-witted consumer will wake up to the fact that it is utter lunacy to buy said company's products.

Re:The cryPhone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854640)

Development, development, development is an incredibly complicated process that requires co-ordination, co-ordination, co-ordination, especially if you want to deliver a certain hallmark of quality and consistent level of usability that identifies your product above all others.
This motley crew of 3rd party developers can hardly be said to have a development road-map that is synchronised with that of the device manufacturer, Apple, or indeed with each other. Some are in it for the technical challenge, some just want to "stick it to the man", some are dying to be loved, popular, or to get laid, some want to do it for the money, etc. Where's the guarantee that these developers will "stay the course" and not just drift off to some other product platform when the inclination grabs them? Where's the testing to ensure that application A does not interfere with the stack used by applications B, C, E & J?
It is not surprising to read the remarks of users of jailbroken iPhones regarding the number of times they have to "re-initialise" or reboot their modded gadget in everyday use of their hacked applications. Does this gripe not vaguely remind you of one of the chronic ills of one particular software platform that "understands the importance of developers, developers, developers"?
This is precisely why Apple's iPhone is making such inroads and waves into an industry of which they have such little experience. Hitherto the mobile apps scene has been revealed as an absolute mess of bandit-country proportions and this is a big indictment of the existing Big Players on the mobile applications scene, who are reportedly hurrying back to the drawing-board to assess anew the slick, co-ordinated and planned approach to usability and user-interfacing that the iPhone has unleashed upon their cosy fiefdoms like a cluster bomb.
Hopefully, with the release of an SDK next year, the more committed and enterprising of these developers in the wild can adopt a more consistent approach to building elegant, cool, simple and reliable apps that echo the trademark Apple approach to making money the proper and considerate way.

Why do people like the iphone? (2, Interesting)

CodyRazor (1108681) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854126)

I cant help but find myself asking, with all the stories like this, why do people like the iphone so much? what benefit does it offer? all i can come up with is that its an apple product, and its riding on that alone. It has a cool touch screen, but thats about it. I have a nokia 6300 i got the other day which i think is awesome. And it can do almost anything an iphone can do. My previous N95 (which sucks, never buy one, too many faults to count) did more. Can someone tell me objectively what makes an iphone so great apart from just being an apple product? (which i fail to see as being a leigitimate reason)

Re:Why do people like the iphone? (1)

DraconPern (521756) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854136)

For me, it's the perceived (and probably real) feeling of responsiveness. You don't get a machine that seems to hang for a second or two while something loads.

Re:Why do people like the iphone? (1)

Doomstalk (629173) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854284)

It's got the best web experience of any phone on the market, bar none. Between the multi-touch interface, the hardware scaling, and Safari's excellent (as phones go) rendering engine, it's fantastic. I got an iPhone in September after using a Windows Mobile smartphone (the Cingular 3125), and my data usage went up by a factor of 10 because the iPhone's web experience was just that much better.

Re:Why do people like the iphone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854370)

Can someone tell me objectively what makes an iphone so great apart from just being an apple product?

Despite your sig which makes me think you are just a troll, I'll bite and enumerate why the iphone is better than any other phone on the market today.

1) The iphone is a full compliment to the itunes systems, meaning that while yes the ROKR had an itunes compatible player built in, it could only play music, and not the many extras that are part of the itunes experience offered today, including ringtones, movies, TV shows, and more.
2) The iphone includes a fully featured browser - this is unique in the hand-held computing arena. Unlike my LG Fusic where I have to browse to http://slashdot.org/mobile [slashdot.org] (not sure if the address is accurate), the iphone can go directly to http://slashdot.org/ [slashdot.org] and get this web page exactly as the slashdot team designed the web page - as well as a huge majority of any other web page on the internet.
3) The iphone brought visual voicemail to the cellular phone. While this is a feature that has been popular with certain telephony software packages which allow you to view and listen to your voicemail messages on your computer, this is the first time this feature has been available on a cell phone. Apple had to work closely with the network vendor (Cingular before AT&T bought them out) to bring this feature to market.
4) The iphone has the largest viewing space of any cell phone on the market because the keyboard is a virtual keyboard that is only displayed when it is needed. Until the iphone was announced, no other hand-held computer or cell phone had this feature - if a device used a keyboard, it took up anywhere from 1/3 to 1/2 of the space on the device. By utilizing a virtual keyboard, the iphone is able to use more space for a viewable screen.
5) The iphone does not require a stylus in order to operate. And while buttons are smaller than the finger, intelligent software understands which button you were trying to press through an algorithm which tries to determine both which button had more coverage, as well as which letter makes more sense in the spelling of the word/message you are trying to type. While other computing devices have touch sensitive interfaces, none are as sophisticated as the iphone.
6) The iphone syncs photos taken with the iphone into iphoto (on the mac). How many other cell phones automatically export as well as sync your photos into a photo manager?

Off the top of my head I was able to recite at least 6 features which make this device such a great device, with some of them being killer applications (who wouldn't want to view the real internet from your cell phone instead of the portion of the internet which can only be displayed on such a small view screen?). Methinks that if you really want to get into the discussion, perhaps you should investigate what intrigues you instead of blindly making derogatory statements which do nothing more than show your ignorance? For a first generation device, the iphone is an incredible piece of engineering from a company who analyzed user needs and designed a device around satisfying those perceived needs. Is this a tool for explorers and geeks? Obviously Apple has set limitations on how their devices are to be used based on their contractual obligations to their network providers. While I do not fully agree with those limitations, I would honor them should I purchase this device because of the functionality it provides me beyond any other device available today.

Re:Why do people like the iphone? (1)

CodyRazor (1108681) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854688)

Despite your sig which makes me think you are just a troll, I'll bite and enumerate why the iphone is better than any other phone on the market today.

Your posts default to 0 as well, friend. Clearly it is a joke. If it is not your cup of tea that does not make me a troll.

Apart from mac-specific features (which affect some 2% of the population) you didnt list anything there that my n95 didnt have. as far as non apple-specific features you listed, every windows mobile device iv had has had a virtual keyboard, thats been pretty standard since about 2000. My n95 had a virtual keyboard. It also had a fulyl featured browser, every device iv had for the past 4 or so years has, granted most have been windows mobile devices. Iv been using actual non-mobile internet since my HTC XDA2. also as far as viewing space, my previous HTC universal had a 640x480 screen, so much more viewing space. Every windows mobile device iv had including my N95 automatically synced photos my pc. not to mention the 5-megapixel camera.

I dont know what visual voicemail is, i live in australia which is even more backwards in terms of mobiles than the us, so il have to give you that, also i agree the touch screen is a good interface. personally i prefer buttons, but thats just me.

Also i must protest, i did not make any blatantly derogatory statements. It seems these days people cant distinguish between that and simply calling apple products into question.

So im still not aware of any killer app, or indeed anything more than a touch screen, as high end phones have been displaying full internet with better resolution literaly for years.

Also yes i have used the iphone on several occasions.

Re:Why do people like the iphone? (3, Insightful)

Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854532)

Its a good honest question.

I just bought an iPhone. 2 days ago. I am both pleased and underwhelmed. I find that it doesn't do as much as i would have hoped. It does a lot well, and the browsing is nice, i wish it were faster. Even in wifi mode, it isnt as fast as browsing on a laptop over wifi.

Its a great start. It really is a nice way to use a phone but i do think that it will be a challenge for apple or any developer when they open their sdk, to add more complex functions to the ui workflow.

Currently there is no copy and paste for example. How do you do it with just a touch screen ui? You only have so much screen space, plus you run the risk of touching other things on screen and activating their functions.

Its a great start, and the os will get more and more apps from apple over time, atleast i hope thats their plan. I hope they upgrade it with functionality and apps, even as new hardware versions come out, i hope the os and apps continue to be available on all of the versions over the years.

Itunes for windows absolutely sucks. My pc can run crysis at 1920x1080 with evertyhing set to very high except the shaders which is set to high.... but it can barely run itunes.

Itunes is a programming peice of shit. Apple really hates PC users. It shows. It is fucking obvious, and i feel ripped off in that regard. Apple NEVER supports their hardware on the PC, with quality software. It has been that way for a while now. Apple purposely neglects the iTunes software on windows and it is a fucking rip off scam. Its a bait and switch. Buy the hardware, but its a nightmare to use on windows. Just the way Apple wants. It does not at all inspire me to even consider buying a MAC. Its Apple's way of saying "See we told you PCs are slow and bad..." when in reality its Apple playing bullshit. They should be investigated by the feds for it and i'm dead fucking serious.

Youtube and Google maps is incredible on the iphone.

Email needs some more functionality.

The iPhone needs Instant messeging through a native app running in the os (AIM, YAHOO, MSN, etc). Currently you can do it through webpages like meebo.com

I cant open a link in a new window in the browser. You can with a bookmarklet but, not natively in safari. This makes it a pain when browsing because it doesnt cache the pervious page, it seems quite slow when going "back".

There are problems, but overall, if the os is robust enough and there is enough ram and processing power, all it takes is some smart thinking in the ui department to continuously add features and improvements.

Like i said, its a great start. Apple needs to follow through and improve the software both on the iphone, and on windows!!!!!!!!!

Sorry wrote this while on a phone call so i appologize for the jumbled thoughts. :)

 

Re:Why do people like the iphone? (1)

suresk (816773) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854658)

I like my iPhone too, but the lack of IM functionality is pretty glaring. I can download and watch stupid videos off YouTube, but I can't use it for Google Talk? I've been able to use IM on other cell phones for years.

The conspiracy theorist in me says that this is at the request AT&T (or whatever their name is at the moment - I lose track) because it could compete with their income from text messaging. Who knows?

Mouse.... (2, Insightful)

ff1324 (783953) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854134)

Mousetrap...Mouse...Mousetrap...

I'm going to go out on a limb and say we'll see a fix for the fix by the end of January. So all the iPhone users can get their fix fix fix.

tagged suprising? (0, Troll)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854158)

why the fuck is this tagged suprising? apple released a shitty locked down phone and people hacked it. did you all think apple secretly liked you doing it or something? news flash - apple doesn't love you, won't give you hugs and kisses and will treat you exactly like MS would or any other large tech corp would.

the only suprise here is that apple didn't BRICK your iphones with the update.

Re:tagged suprising? (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854200)

why the fuck is this tagged suprising[sic]?

It is tagged "!surprising," as in "not surprising."

apple released a shitty locked down phone and people hacked it.

"Shitty" is a matter of opinion, the majority of which seems decidedly opposed to yours.

the only suprise here is that apple didn't BRICK your iphones with the update.

Apple patched the vulnerability used by third parties to add hacks. Since they are coming out with an official SDK and since this adds a way for users to add custom icons for Web apps it's not like there is not going to be third party apps, some people are just impatient.

You must be new here... (1)

TibbonZero (571809) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854224)

An exclamation point in computer logic [wikipedia.org] (and thus our logic here on ./) is a way of saying, "not" or a logical negation. As in, shirt = !black. Also sometimes referred to as a "bang" character.

This is adopted in several programming languages. There are other computer based meanings, but here on ./ it's considered to be understood as "not" when placed beside a word. So basically they are saying that this comes as no surprise.

Re:tagged suprising? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854700)

<Announcer Voice>
"Timmarhy has been nominated in three categories for this year's Dotty awards. Most Annoying, Most Likely to Entirely Miss the Point, and the perennial fan-favorite Most Oblivious"
</Announcer Voice>

The more I read... (0, Redundant)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854160)

... the less likely I am to buy one of these turkeys. If Apple is so intent on creating strict boundaries around their products, they can leave me out. iLife is sounding more like iDeath the more I hear about it...

Wake up Apple! (-1, Troll)

Vskye (9079) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854174)

Dear Steve Jobs, I will *never* buy a iphone if you keep pulling this BS. (along with the fact that you are tied into AT&T) Stop behaving like MS, or I'll just build another PC next year vs purchasing a iMac.. and of course, install linux on the PC.
 
Is that simple enough for you Steve?

Re:Wake up Apple! (1)

Stamen (745223) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854210)

Wow, yeah, they were so close to having you as a customer too... drat, foiled again; you showed them; take that Mr. Jobs!

Re:Wake up Apple! (5, Interesting)

Osty (16825) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854246)

Dear Steve Jobs, I will *never* buy a iphone if you keep pulling this BS. (along with the fact that you are tied into AT&T) Stop behaving like MS, or I'll just build another PC next year vs purchasing a iMac.. and of course, install linux on the PC.

Funny. Microsoft allows complete and open access to their Windows Mobile OS (whether or not you can load your apps onto the phone is left to the decision of the carriers). In fact they even opened the source [microsoft.com] for the OS (okay, it's a Shared Source license, and it requires having an officially licensed version of Windows Embedded CE 6.0, but the source code is all there if you want to modify it while building a new device of your own). I think this is a case where you want Apple to act more like Microsoft rather than less.

On the other hand, I'm an iPhone user. I spent a fair amount of time playing with Windows CE in the past, and while I like the system I was not a fan of any of the current phones using it today. So I bought an iPhone, and I like it. The current lack of an SDK isn't slowing me down, since I probably wouldn't write any iPhone apps anyway (as much as I'd like to think I would, I know that I'd just dabble a bit and never actually finish anything). Sure, there are some things that are missing (GPS, full Exchange connectivity, an IM app), but I can live without those at least for now.

How dare they! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854186)

How dare Apple fix security bugs that can lead to arbitrary code execution!

They're violating hackers' right to run their code on whoever's hardware they like!

Valid Security Concerns (4, Insightful)

bug_hunter (32923) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854192)

Okay, I hate the fact that the iPhone didn't come out with an SDK at launch, and the fact that there's an existing playform for building phone apps (Java ME) that they completely ignored, and Apple's "Buy a new one if you brick it" policy (Could they at least take your bricked iPhone for $100 or something so the hardware doesn't go to waste?)
BUT
most of the security circumnavigation is a result of buffer overflows and other stuff that could be used in theory by attackers as well so they are right to patch it.

Personally I'm going to wait until after the SDK is released until I think about buying one, and anybody else who is currently trying to hack the iphone should do the same (even just to save their wallets from more brick costs).

Why no J2ME (4, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854292)

Okay, I hate the fact that the iPhone didn't come out with an SDK at launch, and the fact that there's an existing playform for building phone apps (Java ME) that they completely ignored,

I have been doing Java stuff for a long time. And I've even done a few small things in J2ME in the past.

But if you think about it, there's a good reason the iPhone doesn't have J2ME - it's not M. That is, nothing about the iPhone is anything like the reference J2ME platform, and it's really not a "Micro" kind of platform in the traditional sense of the word. But there's also no good Java GUI API to an all touch input device either, so you combine that with Java processor and memory requirements and it's really not a good fit for the iPhone, at least right now.

Now that XCode/ObjC has garbage collection, there's really no good reason a Java developer couldn't move over to Objective C if they really want to develop something for the platform.

When the API is finally released, we probably will see someone release a J2ME emulator for the iPhone which would be kind of interesting. But I think it would be some work to put that together.

Re:Valid Security Concerns (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854424)

Established or not, I am no fan of J3ME, having used it extensively for a recent project.

Re:Valid Security Concerns (0)

CODiNE (27417) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854630)

iPhones are not bricked by firmware upgrades. Please quit spreading that, you're a longtime slashdot user you know what bricked means.

Watch it, Apple... (1, Interesting)

PhotoGuy (189467) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854196)

I'm a recent admitted Fanboi of Apple. Held off for years, but the unix-based OS X with its stability, semi-open-sourcedness, slick and friendly GUI, and nice hardware, finally won me over. I used to develop-on-linux/deploy-on-linux. Now I develop-on-OSX/deploy-on-linux. Works well.

Anyhow, I like Apple's stuff, in general.

And I recently played with the iPhone. A nice piece of design, a nice piece of hardware. And possibly they are honouring their deal with AT&T by thwarting unlocks with each point release. But continuing to do so, and *especially* nuking 3rd party apps, is really going to alienate themselves from the market in the long run. I think the stat is that more than half of the iPhones are sold without getting activated on AT&T, meaning people are either unlocking them for other carriers, or using them as overpriced iPod Touch's. Apple is going to shoot themselves in the foot if they keep pounding so hard on the 3rd party carriers and 3rd party apps. (And where I live, I couldn't get AT&T if I wanted to. If I could unlock the latest gen of iPhones, I'd buy one. But I can't, so I won't. And the nuking of 3rd party apps is scaring me away completely.)

Apple has time to change their course on this a bit, but I think they'll end up with another Newton on their hands if they don't lighten up.

Hopefully TFA is incorrect or incomplete in some way.

Re:Watch it, Apple... (1)

coobert (1138959) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854274)

They've already announced a proper SDK coming out in Feb, that's not supporting 3rd party apps?

They're not being 'nuked' - they're using APIs that are going to undoubtedly change in OS updates. More of a byproduct than it being intended. 3rd party apps are most likely fucked for this reason.

I am constantly amazed - wait scrub that - consistently bored at the level of Slashdot's ferocity towards an issue of which they have the tiniest morsel of information to go on. Bah this is pointless, it'll just get downmodded by iPhone hating groupthink.

Re:Watch it, Apple... (1)

nick.ian.k (987094) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854442)

I am constantly amazed - wait scrub that - consistently bored at the level of Slashdot's ferocity towards an issue of which they have the tiniest morsel of information to go on. Bah this is pointless, it'll just get downmodded by iPhone hating groupthink.

You're right - suggesting that one's opinion is held by a small-but-presumably-correct minority and that it will result in dismissal by the implied incorrect majority is indeed pointless. In all seriousness: if it's pointless, why even mention it? Remember, you don't have to hit submit after formulating a statement/argument/comment. At best, you'll get someone with a similar point-of-view to yours modding you up, and then you'll have other people mod you down for both disagreeing with your statement(s) *and* to compensate for improper moderation generated by your "mod me down" spiel. You're effectively hurting the purpose of the moderation process while simultaneously complaining about improper moderation practices.

On a more on-topic note, I think you're wrong about iPhone hating group-think. People ranting on this issue probably *like* the iPhone, but dislike the ways in which Apple has restricted it. There's a long line to be said here about the question of just how much sense it makes to hand your money or time or community chatter towards something the "bad guys" are ultimately responsible for - it's paradoxical from an idealistic "vote with your dollars" perspective, but most people aren't big enough idealists. Some people will still buy the shiny toy in spite of this because they want to do cool things with, and they're well aware of what they're doing - they *like* the iPhone and *dislike* Apple's behavior. It's allowed.

Re:Watch it, Apple... (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854296)

For a start, your post is not OT.

But it did bring back an article I read more than 20 years ago. It was about the useless scripting language which developers had to use to develop apps for the Newton. When the API comes out it could be a total joke, if that is how Apple want to play it.

Bah (4, Interesting)

MistaE (776169) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854238)

Why does every one insist on giving the same old tired arguments every time an update comes out? Doesn't anyone remember that an SDK is coming out in a month (or less?) Everyone will be able to get their crappy Notepad++++ programs that way as well, and with Apple's approval no less.

The issue with the unlocking is a different however. But, until the US people stand up and actually say that they want universal unlocking for all phones e.t.c. exclusive deals like the iPhone will continue. (Speaking of which, there have been exclusive phones in the past, and there will be more in the future, why is the iPhone always singled out for this?

Re:Bah (3, Insightful)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854332)

Speaking of which, there have been exclusive phones in the past, and there will be more in the future, why is the iPhone always singled out for this?

Because Apple has worked extremely hard to put themselves in the limelight, to maintain as high a profile as possible ... the price you pay for that is that any perceived foibles are yours and yours alone.

Apple has? (2, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854694)

Because Apple has worked extremely hard to put themselves in the limelight,

Because Apple has? Or the media has? Because every single phone since the dawn of time has "worked extremely hard to put themselves in the limelight". Apple just managed to actually succeed - and is being punished for that. Success is why Apple is being singled out, not because they tried any harder or any differently than other phones which get ignored.

Re:Bah (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854356)

Speaking of which, there have been exclusive phones in the past, and there will be more in the future, why is the iPhone always singled out for this?

Because in general the only phones anyone on Slashdot cares about are smart phones. Most smart phones makers (Palm, RIM) sell those phones through multiple carriers, so while often locked, they're locked to the phone service you have, not a competitor. The iPhone is the first really nice smart phone that a lot of people here would need to switch carriers to use without a hack, which is why people keep complaining. The issue is finally affecting them.

early bricks (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854254)

Early tests have resulted in over 300 iphones being bricked. Dont get caught out [dwarfurl.com] [ihack.com]

What percentage of customers are actually impacted (1)

HockeyPuck (141947) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854256)

Does anybody have any numbers that state what percentage of iPhones are hacked?

Re:What percentage of customers are actually impac (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854384)

the percentage is currently 16.93%
note that the 3 is recurring which means it is 16.93333333333333333 and the 3 goes on for infinity which is another word for 1 million so there would be exactly 74 pages just of 3's!

Nate? Were is AT&T? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854262)

Why is the carrier listed as 'Nate' in the clip? Great hack, but that looks like an unlocked iPhone to me. AFAIK there is no way to unlock 1.1.2 yet let alone '1.1.3'.

Nice way to get traffic to your site though.

Poison Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854280)

Do you not get it yet? It is a fairy tale for kids!!!

iSaved $599 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21854316)

That was my standard reply when asked what I thought about the iPhone and why I'd rather stick to my old nokias, and the price cuts didn't change my view on that device: if I pay for something, I wanna be in control of what that something does.
I still fail to understand how in Earth a closed, tinkerer-unfriendly, platform such as the iPhone can be considered geeky.

But does it BRICK hacked phones? (2, Interesting)

RobK (24783) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854340)

Are we safe in assuming that this patch does not render iphones unusable? Simply disabling third party apps and patching holes, NOT locking it up so that you have to go to apple and pray for forgiveness?

Jesus Christ, iPhone is not life or death (3, Insightful)

jhylkema (545853) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854350)

If you're determined to pay too much for a calling plan and an overpriced phone, this is what's going to happen. Sure, it looks cool, but it's locked down enough to make Microsoft blush. I mean, come on.

Mod me to hell, I don't care, I have karma to burn.

why Android will push out the iPhone (3, Funny)

peas_n_carrots (1025360) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854388)

The iPhone is a slick product. Kudos to apple for pushing the edge of UI design. But, once again apple's closed-system philosophy is their undoing. Yes they're releasing an SDK as a business response to Android. They're *responding* in this department, not innovating. That's why Google's Android will overrun the market and apple will be stuck with their ~3% market share just like the Mac.
Predictions are difficult, and I'm no seer. This one looks obvious to me though.

You are forgetting one important detail. (1)

NDPTAL85 (260093) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854464)

Customers. They're what makes a platform. Not openness, not features, customers. Thats what the iPhone has and attracts. And thats what the developers will ultimately follow. Android will have a good following no doubt, but the iPhone's will be larger. In just 6 months this incredibly CLOSED platform is already the #2 Smartphone in the US. In a few years it'll probably over take Blackberry for the #1. I don't see any one or collective Android product rivaling that.

A regular person isn't going to buy an Android unit just because some geek tells him he can install a thousand apps on it. They can already do that on a Windows Mobile, Symbian or Palm OS device. What a regular person wants is a FEW apps that work well. Thats where the iPhone excels and with the SDK that few number will get larger and larger over time. Remember, ultimately its NOT about what geeks want.

Jeve Stobs (0, Troll)

rice_burners_suck (243660) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854494)

Proof of my theory, that Jeve Stobs doesn't want people running third-party software on the uPhone. He obviously wants to allow exclusive access to fourth-party apps.

Mot sure if people realize this (1)

edwardpickman (965122) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854562)

I keep heaing people complain about Apple refusing to unlock the iPhone. Here's an ugly fact, they can't. They have a contract with AT&T preventing them from opening up the iPhone to other carriers, right or wrong they can't open it up without getting sued. Also it may be a condition of the contract they they prevent people from hacking them so they can use other carriers. Nothing is going to change until the contract is up. Once that happens expect changes. iPhone is now a proven product so now everyone is interested in getting a piece of the pie.

Re:Mot sure if people realize this (1)

pandrijeczko (588093) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854652)

Some of you fanbois are so far up Apple's ass, it's untrue!

Apple made a CONSCIOUS MARKETING DECISION to lock the iPhone down to AT&T (in the US) before releasing it - so please do NOT try to absolve Apple from this fact.

Bad summary (1)

boer (653809) | more than 6 years ago | (#21854666)

It installs only from iTunes using the obligatory Apple private encryption key, which nobody has.

Well obviously somebody has the key for Apple to be able to create the update packages, deliver them through iTunes and install them on the client devices.

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