Archive for the ‘Apple’ Category

Why does the iPhone take so long to sync?

Saturday, July 21st, 2007

I have had a few devices that I’ve sync’d with my computer and it seems that the iPhone is the slowest of them all. It takes 7 minutes to sync everything but media. Then it only takes 2 minutes to sync my podcasts. Maybe it’s just me, but 9 minutes to sync — not including video or music — is too long, especially considering the amount of changes that were made.

**Update** The reason for my long sync was Office 2004, once I updated to the preview of Office 2008, my iPhone syncs really fast!

**2.0 Update** The first few times I synced after updating to 2.0 took forever, but just keep syncing, and eventually the “backing up iPhone” flys by like it did before.

The problem is the applications — every time you add new apps it has to back those up which takes forever and for whatever reason it seems to take longer when I install the apps via iTunes than when I use the iPhone’s app store.

iPhone and Gmail work around

Friday, July 6th, 2007

Two of my favorite things work terrible together. Gmail is the best web mail application, I can’t imagine email without it, but the lack of IMAP is a real bummer.

POP has always sucked when used to keep up with your mail in more than one place, and Gmail manages to make it worse by; not giving you enough control over what gets POP’d, not marking items as read when POP’d, and putting sent items in your inbox. So until Apple and Google get together to make a Google mail equivalent to Goog’s Java app, here is the work around I use.

First you need a good IMAP service provider, since just about everyone has an AIM account, just login to and configure your mail. Then go to Gmail and create a filter that will forward just the mail you want to receive on your iPhone, to your AOL email address. Now from either or directly from the iPhone, configure a new email account. Call it GMail and configure it just like Google instructs, but instead of using their POP server, use AOL’s IMAP ( server (be sure to use Gmail’s SMTP server though). If you set it up in and sync over, you’ll have to edit the SMTP settings on the iPhone manually, cause the settings don’t sync over correctly — it should be obvious what the problem is, just don’t forget the special port number.

The only down side of this method is that you have to mark any email that makes it to your iPhone as read twice. But the good part is that you can send messages from your iPhone that not only appear to come from your Gmail account, but they also show up on as if you’d sent them from the website.

If you’re wondering why I just didn’t use Yahoo’s IMAP service, it’s cause the iPhone won’t let you configure a different SMTP server on an Yahoo account or a different from address. I thought about configuring the account manually, but I couldn’t figure out the settings. I even tried to sniff my iPhone’s traffic while it retrieved my Yahoo mail, I figured out the IMAP server IP, but I was not able to figure out the user name or the password since they were encrypted (I tried the ID and password I use to sign on to, no dice). If you know how to brute-force this let me know, I still have the TCP stream.

**Update** Yeah, Gmail adds IMAP support, so no more work arounds! But you can still use this if you want to make gmail push mail via Mobile Me.

The iPhone is so intuitive, even a baby can use it

Wednesday, July 4th, 2007


The ultimate iPhone review

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2007

My friends Ryan and Chris at Engadget have written the most comprehensive iPhone review you could imagine. It it 13k words, so you may want to take it in short segments. Also here’s a mini review from yours truly.

UI is fantastic, fast and couldn’t ask for anything more.
iPod, phone and photos functionality is fantastic. is a great example of a great iPhone web application.
WiFi integration is unbelievable, it really does just work.

I love Gmail and like the review says “One Engadget editor called the Gmail integration “a crime against humanity”. Email in general is really bad.
Safari crashes and it doesn’t identify itself as a mobile browser, so it always tries to load the full page, which can be painful over Edge.

The iPhone is the best phone I’ve ever had, hands down, but I can’t wait for software updates to resolve the issues.

Caught in action on the front page of the St Pete Times

Monday, July 2nd, 2007


I had tons of fun waiting in line for my iPhone — good thing since it wasn’t necessary to wait — and when they finally opened the doors, I was right up front taking pictures for Engadget’s live line coverage. In the process, I was standing behind the #1 iPhone customer (that’s me to the right) when the St Petersburg times took the picture for the front page of the Saturday June 30th edition. Definitely a fun experience.

Read (PDF)

How I finally got my iPhone activated

Sunday, July 1st, 2007


Like many, I had nothing but trouble activating my iPhone with AT&T. I was porting a number over from T-Mobile and adding to an existing AT&T account in my name. The problem was the porting, the email indicating the reason for the delay wasn’t very clear that I would have to wait 6 hours before using my iPhone, because until it is activated it is basically a brick. After 4 hours of waiting for it to activate, I called AT&T and Apple, and while Apple support was great, (other than not being able to help me) AT&T support didn’t have a clue what was going on. After two calls to each number I figured I had to wait it out and exactly 6 hours later I received an email indicating my number wouldn’t port. So being impatient, I tried to request a new number at which time the activation process indicated that I didn’t pass the credit check, which really bothered me considering I have been an AT&T customer in good standing so long they changed their name and back again. So I activated it as a goPhone till I was able to make a trip to the AT&T store.

When I got to the store I had to wait behind a few others with the same problems, the employees were very nice and helpful — especially considering the fact that since I bought my iPhone at the Apple store they didn’t credit for the activation. They told me that my number had ported over already and that my credit check was successful according to their system. So they called the porting department to verify everything was in order. Since I’d already activated as a goPhone they gave me a new SIM card and instructed me to activate again, but this time choose to use an existing AT&T number. Lucky for me, this time it worked.

The bottom line is that AT&T activated system wasn’t working and was reporting incorrect information. If you are having the same problem call AT&T and ask them to check the status of your port, if everything is ok, then try again.

I’m not sure what Apple could have done to make this any easier, but it seems that AT&T dropped the ball, the least they could do is give you a demo mode instead of denying you from playing while you wait.

iPhone: my motivation and my plan

Tuesday, June 26th, 2007

In honor of iPhone week, here is my 2 cents as we count down to iDay.

I have wanted an iPhone since I first heard the rumor that Apple would make a cell phone and there are a few reasons. I’m one of those people who have never liked their cell phone, each one dissapoints as much as the next, and while I haven’t owned as many phones as most people I know, I have had the first Blackberry phone from Nextel, a Treo 600, Treo 650, VX6700 and finally a Blackberry 8700c. While all of these have worked, none have been plesant to use and I could write a long essay on my annoyances. It isn’t the hardware that I haven’t liked, but the software and ever since the first time I used a iPod I have faith that Apple can really make the first cell phone I will enjoy using. For this level of usability I am willing to deal with EDGE and the lack of wireless sync. The second reason is I do get sick of carrying around both my cell phone and my iPod and finally it will be nice to own a device that will natively sync with my Mac.

My Plan

Like most people I have to work on Friday, and since I live in Tampa — which is a big area, but still only have the size of the greater SF area — I hope that it will be possible for me to just show up after work and get an iPhone. I am going to do what I can to get off early and there are a few outlets for me to try in my area, I just hope this is good enough.

What would you do for an iPhone?

Friday, June 15th, 2007

Jeremy from Living Digitally asked me how much I thought iPhones would be going for on eBay at launch. I really didn’t know what to tell him, I am probably being naive, but I really hadn’t considered that scenario. I guess I am hoping that there are enough to go around. The worst part is that in the past, every time I have seen gadgets go for unbelievable prices on eBay I have always persacuted the manufacturer for letting it happen and even pointed to Apple as a great example of how to service your customers while at the same time ensuring some eBayer didn’t get to profit from your product.

This also got me thinking, what would I do for an iPhone; and if I do happened to get one on the first day and can sell it on eBay for double, would I even keep it?

As much as I want an iPhone I am not willing to stay over night to buy one, or to pay a cent more than retail for it. And if the touch screen doesn’t live up to it’s hype, I will promptly return it within the 14 day return policy that most cell phones have.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I can’t wait for the next 14 days to be over so we can finally see if this thing lives up to the hype.

External eSATA pocket drive

Saturday, June 9th, 2007


From the very beginning I intended to use my old MBP hard drive as a pocket drive and I finally got around to buying an external case. I really wanted one that was USB powered, but since the drive itself was SATA, I also wanted an eSATA port. This feature came in handy when I wanted to test out enabling the eSATA port on my Series3. The drive does require a lot of power via USB, and interestingly enough only works in the right hand side port on my MBP. This is actually ok, just as long as I don’t have to use the dual USB cable that came with the enclosure.

I picked up an enclosure for $24 from Newegg and despite a few reviews stating the drive rattled, it looked like it hit the spot. It come with a few screws, so of course I used them, and what do you know, my drive isn’t rattling. Anyways, I formated my drive with both a FAT32 and HFS+ partition so I could use it to sneaker-net files between windows computers if needed.


BTW, I took these pictures with my new Nikon D40, I am still learning how to use it so would appreciate any pointers.

Some analysts crack me up

Monday, May 14th, 2007

I see this report stating that the iTunes video model will soon peak and not be successful, which I find pretty funny. The reason I find it funny is because it seems like a wanna be self fulfilling prophecy by big media, who just doesn’t get Internet media. Sure the instant gratification is great, but most people would rather use the VOD features of their main provider if that is their main goal. The reason why people download content from the iTunes Music store is the same reason they buy DVDs; they want to own the content and they want to watch it when they want, where they want. Saying the iTunes Video model will not survive is like saying DVDs will stop continue to be successful. The other models require that you be at your computer and you can’t fast forward through the advertisements.

When will these analyst learn that it is the freedom to watch what we want, when we want that makes iTunes –and DVD for that matter– popular.