This morning I downloaded my first PAID FOR app from the iTunes App store! It was a game. Damn.

So much for "steering clear of stuff like that". I'm gonna post soon about the apps I've been using/trying out on the phone, but just thought I'd share on here rather then Twitter, dunno why. ;)

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I had a look at this new search engine today... Cuil

Obviously the first thing I decided to search for was me, see what profiles and sites of mine came up and how high in the rankings. It took a few term variations to find my stuff (not good for starters) and then when I did, there was something not quite right about the results where my actual website was listed. Namely the accompanying pictures.

Right... So in illustrating my site, we've got a picture of what appears to be maybe a hotel of some sorts and the logo of The Portland Hospital for Women and Children, ok.

So I have to say, thus far I'm not overly impressed with Cuil, the webserver that my site's on is undergoing an upgrade of some sorts at the moment, this could be throwing Cuil's results off a bit, so I'll be checking again, when I know that my site's back up, and if it's not back up soon getting onto Fasthosts to find out why!

Odd, nonetheless.


It's awesome, watch it! and if you're in the states BUY IT in iTunes (cos we can't over here in the UK :(        )

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Short showreel update

I've uploaded a slightly updated short showreel to my various profiles (YouTube, Facebook, MySpace, Ovi etc) as well as to my main website, The one on there's iPhone compatible too! ;)

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HURRAH, after only 3 days of owning the iPhone, I've actually made a call!! Albeit to O2 customer services to transfer my number from Orange, but still a call has been made.

It's pretty phone like, the ear speaker's not too tinny, I had a slight moment of panic when the O2 automation asked me to press a number, only to find when I took the phone from my ear, nothing was there!

It's ok though, I'd forgotton about the fact that the screen turns off when it's next to your face, and it quickly came back, I then figured out to tap the "keypad" button and I was away!

Debbie at O2 was very friendly and helpful, number will be transferred on the 16th and we had a quick chat about typing on the iPhone and how it takes a fair bit of adjustment.

The main thing so far (apart from tapping the wrong letters), is the preditction. All the "AMAZING MATHS" that goes into predicting what you're typing and it corrects correct words.

Example: I was typing "ported" into a tweet. iPhone was suggesting "porter", i typed ported, pressed space to go onto the next word and iPhone changed "ported" to "porter", I then had to go back and change it back again.

No while this is not the end of the world, it does slow down the typing process somewhat. The fact that pressing space accepts the suggestion and tapping the suggested word declines it, could be a bit backward. It's not suggesting every word like T9 or something, only odd ones, so it would seem better to tap the word to accept?? Have to see how that one goes.

Pownce it! Pownce it! today was the first real, proper like, test of using iPhone 3G's Maps to navigate my way somewhere. The somewhere in question was Radlett (for work I assure you).

In this instance, I didn't have any backup printed Google Maps as my printer had decided to run out of ink. Thanks. So I was relying TOTALLY on the iPhone (well I did have a road atlas in the car, and the A-Z may have helped, but I'm not sure if Radlett's in there), today helped in the fact that I don't have a 'known' route (as with yesterday), but knew I needed to go round the M25.

One of my concerns with navigating by iPhone, is that the thing keeps going to sleep. Luckily if you have the iPhone in 'tracking' mode, whereby it's using the AGPS to constantly monitor your position, this doesn't happen.

The next 
problem I discovered, is that after I'd got the route (as straightforward as normal GMaps), and pressed start to kick off the first step, the phone came out of tracking mode, I put it back in tracking mode and skipped forward to around step 11 or so, which was which junction I needed to come off the M25 at (the bit before this is easy ;), again the phone came out of tracking mode.

This happens pretty much any time you do anything, although i was able to zoom in and out (although I don't think you can zoom right the way in when tracking) without it losing me, but each time you advance a step in the directions, you have to re-engage tracking again. Thus it would be rather nice if it recognised each waypoint on the journey and updated itself.

Signal wise, which was my main concern prior to getting the phone, it held up pretty well. The thing with this is that the maps aren't stored on the device, so each time you scroll along, it has to download the next bit. If you're in a no-signal area, you'll lose the maps and just get a pulsing blue dot on a grid. Not very helpful. So far, I haven't had a problem, but I'm sure it'll crop up before the TomTom software's out!

A couple of things that helped with the whole satnav side of things are a couple of purchases I made yesterday from Carphone Warehouse in Tonbridge (as the O2 store and staff were SHITE)
, being a Griffin in-car charger and a holder. Tried it first in the centre of the windscreen, didn't like that, moved to to the right.. much better (as above).

An iPhone view of the world

So I eventually got to the location okay, reasonable straightforward, couple of unsure bits and brief wrong turns but all was well. I still needed to navigate my way back out and to the M25 th

Again, I made it okay (I know you were all worried there for a moment!), signal held up okay, as it should in a built up area, GPS tracked okay, what confused me a couple of times going this way though was the map.

The map stays compass orientated, rather than orientated to your direction of travel as a standalone satnav would do, this created issues on a couple of roundabouts, as not wanting to keep tapping buttons on the iPhone as I was driving, I opted for the "follow the blue line" approach. Which was reasonable successful, but a couple of time where it looked like I was going straight across the roundabout, I wasn't, I wanted the next exit over. A quick double back and I was sorted, but this was a bit of a niggle.

All in all it was a pretty successful first test.

Main points

  1. Tracking works fine
  2. Until you step through the directions, then it gets switched off.
  3. Data signal holds up well enough for the maps on most of today's route, built up and motorway, O2 needs some more 3G coverage tho!
  4. When you do lose signal, you're fucked.
  5. Have to think about the directions, due to the map orientation.
  6. Not bad for a basic feature, needs improving though.

Pownce it! Pownce it!

Up and running 2

First Blogger post from the iPhone typing with 2 thumbs in landscape mode.

Main thing so far is having to type in HTML mode rather than compose, will try again in a bit. Gotta work now ;)

Pownce it! Pownce it!

Up and Running 1

Ok, so finally got the iPhone activated around 9.30 last night, been playing around with it since then, and yes I buckled and installed PhoneSaber...It's AWESOME!

As I'm working today, I thought I'd investigate the Maps in more detail, specifically the directions and GPS tracking.

Now the location services do a pretty spot on job of finding where I am, and tracking me in a moving vehicle, so that was promising. I tapped in the destination post code and it gave me the same directions as it would using Google Maps on a standard computer.

The problem here is that I don't want this route, it takes me up and around the motorway, whereas I know the cross country route that takes around the same amount of time. That's the one I want (I've had far too much motorway driving recently).

Now on 'normal' maps you can just grab hold of the middle of the route and change it to where you want it to go.

No such luck (that I can find) on the iPhone. Nor, does it seem am I able to add a waypoint by dropping another pin in. I can get directions to or from that pin, but not via.

This is a bit of a bugger, now while it's not too big a deal for today's trip, as most of the journey I know and I'll print off the GMaps for the end bit, part of the idea behind getting an iPhone 3G is to save having to buy a separate SatNav. (Still no word on the TomTom software btw, will keep checking).

Obviously I need to do some more playing around and reading up as there may be something I can do with the maps here that I've not found yet, obviously comments are welcome. Now I'm off to print my Google Maps.

Pownce it! Pownce it!

Not funny now

Apparently according to O2's site, it could take 2-3 days!!! to activate the phone, which sucks big time. Them and Apple do seem to have been totally unprepared for this launch.

Pownce it! Pownce it!

Unboxing the iPhone 3G

HURRAH!! It's finally arrived, my brand spanking new iPhone 3G 8Gb Black.

It arrived in this rather dull browm box courtesy of DHL

Once into the box there's a load of O2 stuff on top; returns policy, old mobile recycling bag, 2 sim card envelopes (one with a sim card in, not sure why I have 2, mistake probably)..

and underneath, the iPhone box, all sealed :D

The SIM is all very straight forward stuff. It's attached to the get started leaflet.

There it is!!, It even looks amazing in the box!

Possibly the greatest thing I've ever held in my hand!!!1

Your wires sir; USB-to-Dock Adapter cable, ear buds (with the inline control/mic), UK plug adap and power...brick? more like a chunk of gravel.

A fancy Apple paper clip, namely the SIM removal tool

Paperwork; Apple stickers, IMPORTANT INFORMATION, 'Finger Tips' leaflet and iPhone microfibre cloth.

Finger Tips, is pretty much a quick start guide, or "this is what your phone can do"

Cables out of box, how small is the power block?!?

this small. L-R; Macbook, iPod, iPhone.

Go Go Gadget SIM Removal tool, or in this case to install the SIM.


After being told to plug in to iTunes (or make an emergency call if I wished), I have done so
Needless to say, I've been waiting for about 45 mins for it to access the store. yay for Day 1.

More to come once it's up and running.

Pownce it! Pownce it!

IT"S NOT HERE YET!!!! I was up early today, mainly cos I was waiting for a phone call from National Windscreens as to when they could replace mine.. Monday it seems :/

But I was hoping for an early delivery of my spanking new iPhone 3G (just logging into O2 now, to try and track it). It's a horrible empty feeling that Apple induces in people. I feel for all those people who are queing outside the various stores, especially those who are at the back of the line and could well not be going home with an iPhone today. I'm guaranteed one, but I don't know when today I'll have it (it should be today!!!)

Having just checked My O2, the order tracking doesn't work. :(

To try and satisfy my cravings, I've created two ringtones using Garageband and the instructions at TUAW and downloaded 3 free apps from the store.

  1. Friend is a Four Letter Word - Cake (this is what's on my current Nokia)
  2. Sonne - Rammstein

Apps (iTunes Links)

So far holding off on the PhoneSaber and Moo, although I'll probably buckle. Also on the cards at the mo is AIM, although early reviews don't look good, needs push.

Speaking of 'push' that's quite a big thing, I'm gonna see how well the basic POP handling is for my email before considering forking out for Exchange server or MobileMe.

Expect more ranting while I wait, then gratuitous unboxing photos/video when it arrives.

Pownce it! Pownce it!

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