Now that sounds extraordinary. The big way Apple can really trounce Android and others in the mobile OS space is to figure out the big stuff; notifications, multitasking, but also make it do insanely cool stuff right out of the box that you don’t see on any other platform, and to do it in a seamless way. Stuff like Twitter integration, editing in the Photos app, makes iOS really stand out above the rest because of the sheer amount of cool stuff it does, and people like cool.

Today, fewer than 1% of iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch owners are Instapaper customers, despite Instapaper spending a lot of time (including today) at the #1-paid-app spot in the App Store’s News category for both iPhone and iPad. The potential market is massive, but most people don’t know that they need it yet. When iOS 5 and Lion ship, Apple will show a much larger percentage of iOS-device owners that saving web pages to read later is a useful workflow and can dramatically improve the way they read.

If Reading List gets widely adopted and millions of people start saving pages for later reading, a portion of those people will be interested in upgrading to a dedicated, deluxe app and service to serve their needs better. And they’ll quickly find Instapaper in the App Store.

I was curious to hear how Marco thought Reading List would affect his business, he’d previously speculated that Reading List wouldn’t do much damage, but at that time it was only on the Mac. Now after the grand reveal at WWDC that it would sync with your iOS devices as well, he’s put up another post.

I have to admit I undervalued how many features Instapaper has over the new Reading List, I completely forgot about it’s new social aspect, offline caching1 and social sharing (which I use a tonne to forward stuff to Tumblr and Twitter) all of which is stuff we’ll probably never see added to Reading List because it’s just the Apple way. I started out thinking he would really struggle but now i’m on the opposite side of the fence, I can see where he’s coming from and it might actually hell his business surprisingly even if he does lose some of his existing users to Reading List along the way who opt for the free service instead. You can also hear him talk about it in the latest episode of Build and Analyze.

  1. An epic shortfall of Reading List. It’s castrated without it.

The grand screw

In my humble opinion, one of the best features announced for iOS 5 was Twitter integration: making it “easier to tweet from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch”. You sign in once in Settings, and can then tweet directly from Safari, Photos etc. as well as Twitter integrating with Contacts allowing for quick @ messaging. It’s also the most worrying feature as well though, I would bet good money Twitter approached Apple to incorporate the functionality, not the other way around - and i’m thankful that they’ve taught Apple to do social - but I also that it’s also intended to stifle to Twitter client community on iOS.

iOS has produced some of the best Twitter clients out there: Twitterrific, Tweetbot, Weet, Tweetie, I could go on, but Twitter obviously feel threatened for some reason I don’t understand by third parties and have told them they plan to own the client space and that it would be a better idea for developers to focus their resources on plug-in’s to Twitter rather than clients. Twitter baked in is a move which shows they’re serious about this.

Admittedly the Twitter integration is as separate from other clients as the official Twitter app is and the integration will never really be shoved in your face unless you’re looking for it, but I would guess a lot of new users new users (and a lot of average ones) will probably use the baked in Twitter functionality and not much beyond it to share content when they’re on the go, removing the need for any Twitter app at all. You don’t have to go into your Twitter client for anything, just double tap, select ‘Send to Twitter’ and your done. Rather than going into the client, imputing the photo or URL you want to link, tweeting, and going back to what you were doing. Although your not using Twitters client, you are using the Twitter experience. And that’s what they want.

If these people did feel the need for a true client though, I’d assume the large majority of these average users would get the free official app and not pay for one of the other offerings. People will trust the interface (and the branding) and go straight to it before any other. Twitter have managed to work their way into the default system and will earn the users trust. Third part clients will now have to do really phenomenal stuff in UI and features (Tweetmarks maybe?) to stand out above the default.

I’m ever the optimist though, I am hopeful it will benefit the third parties somehow, the new integration could cause something similar to the Starbucks effect1 and actually make people aware or Twitter for the first time and cause people to look further for a better client once they outgrow the functionality of the baked in services. I’m also hopeful that authorizing Twitter when you first set up the phone might rid the OAuth woes third parties are having to go through at the moment, if clients could access the date in the Twitter settings you could conceivably authorize once and never have to again, making it a better experience for users and developers.

Update: There’s a silver lining for developers, and it’s rock solid.

  1. See Marco Arment’s post about what Safari Reading List means for Instapaper, the ‘Starbucks effect’ is why he’s so confident Instapaper wont be effected by the new feature Reading List and that sales might actually improve for him.

Brief speculation on Voice Recognition

Although iOS 5 looks to be a truly huge update, the one thing we didnt see in iOS 5 which was rumored was voice recognition. Now either the feature was just complete speculation from people and was never planned for iOS 5, or, as I think, it was true - someone had seen a version of iOS with voice recognition running on a device internally, but the version wasn’t destined to be iOS 5.01. I speculate that voice control will probably arrive in 5.1 or 5.2 as the flagship feature for the version in the same way AirPlay, AirPrint, Nitro JavaScript, Personal Hotspot etc. were the badass features in the iOS 4 version updates. They wouldn’t hold back a feature like voice recognition until iOS 6. It’s too much of a compelling feature. The only way they would wait until version 6 to release it would be if it took that long to perfect it, and as the rumor was already floating around, I would assume its mostly done.

  1. Similar to when Joshua Topolsky and Engadget reported on the rumor of an iPad with an SD slot from a source, I think the source was correct, but it was probably a next generation iPad, not the iPad 2.

Take this with a grain of salt, but the creators of popular first-person shooter Halo may be working on a new online game for iOS and Android devices. As noted by TouchArcade and GameInformer today, a new filing at the USPTO confirms Bungie Aerospace has trademarked “Crimson”, a “computer game software for use on mobile and cellular phones.” Sounds intriguing, but what’s Bungie Aerospace? The company is likely a subsidiary of the “real thing” Bungie, and that’s already been incorporated in Delaware and Washington. Mounting speculation suggests that this new company is the official mobile division of Bungie, something that the Halo developers hinted several times in the past. Bungie has been busy hiring and opening positions for mobile developers in the past months, so it seems pretty clear at this point that something in mobile is going on. And mobile these days means two things: iOS and Android. If Bungie is really working on a new mobile game, than we can assume it’s most definitely coming to the iPhone or iPad.

Really excited about this, i’ve always trusted Bungie to make a solid game and hopefully whatever Crimson is will be no different. Viticci also made the comment ‘A new iOS game would sure make for a big announcement at a certain Apple event in September.’ and I think it would be interesting to see if this pan’s out at all, we’ve already got stunning games like Infinity Blade and Rage and adding a game from Bungie to the mix would make iOS an even more compelling gaming platform than using Sony’s Experia Play where the most notable game available as of now is Crash Bandicoot, it would also be insane not to launch the new iPhone with the A5 processor, putting it at par with the iPad 2. Whether it happens or not is a different story, nevertheless it would be nice to see Apple and Bungie reunited again since Halo was first introduced as a game for the Mac and now Apple finally have a great gaming platform.

Naughty, naught Nokia. It’s pretty shameful that this even made it onto their website in the first place, one would assume there a processes in place to stop crap like this happening.

I Was Just Thinking…

I’ve recently started using Ecoute, the iTunes client by the guys from PixiApps, and i’m in love with it, using it I realize how large and cluttered iTunes is when it could just be a tiny window. But I do miss just how linked in iTunes is with Apples network - I can listen to podcasts in Ecoute (which is a huge step forward from the last update) but I can’t download new ones, if the guys at PixiApps added multiple libraries, podcast updates within the app and iPod syncing it would BLOW MY MIND.

I realize it would take a lot of backwards engineering and it’d be pretty much the same story as Audion I posted earlier this week - the developers constantly updating the app so it would work after Apple patched the exploit - but all that functionality packed in a small little window would be amazing. Apple need to stop shoehorning any shit they can into iTunes and break it up for the launch of Lion at least. I don’t even care if its all apps (iOS and OS X) in the Mac App Store, media in iTunes (with an interface like Ecoute) and Ping all on its lonesome - it just needs to change.

Looks like The Incident is coming to the Mac. Mind = Blown.

Word to the wise.

Looks like The Incident is coming to the Mac. Mind = Blown.


Word to the wise.

You Can Now Install Android On Your iPhone Entirely Through Cydia

Well that’s all well and good. But why? Why would you want to in the first place? I realize it’s a massive step forward from the previous cumbersome installation process being able to do it by downloading a couple of packages from Cydia, and I admit the people who work these things out amaze me. But I genuinely can’t foresee any benefit of having the option to dual boot into Android. Unless of course the next version of Android is amazing and puts it way ahead of iOS (doubt it) but even then they’d have to find a brand new process to install it on your iPhone, I assume it would be like finding a new way to jailbreak an iPhone again every time an update comes out. I agree the only real foreseeable benefit of being able to boot into Android would be trying out Android apps, but hopes of this are completely shot down as the Marketplace apparently requires a license. I’m going to end this with one last thought, installing this will also consume a lot of memory, right? Now do you really want that precious memory wasted on a crappy OS like Android? Huwbert out.


Leaving aside why you would want to run Android when you have access to iOS, we were absolutely amazed when hacker David Wong figured out how to install and dual boot Android alongside iOS on the original iPhone earlier this year. Even so, we were reluctant to try the hack ourselves: the process was convoluted, to say the very least.

It’s amazing, though, how far the instructions have come in a little over half a year, though: you can now install Android 2.1 Froyo on your first generation iPhone or iPhone 3G so simply that you don’t even need to have a computer handy to do it.

That’s right: as long as your iPhone or iPhone 3G is already jailbroken and running at least iOS 3.1.2, you can now install Android on your handset entirely through Cydia.

Redmond Pie has a step-by-step guide that is pretty much idiot proof, if you care to try it for yourself.

I’m impressed: I just wish I had an original iPhone handy to try it out for myself. Any commenters brave enough to try it and tell me if they get access to the Android Marketplace as well? Trying out Android apps is about the only reason I can see to do this, besides the coolness factor, but while Android is open source, the Marketplace requires a license.