Apple in Your Eye
Did you wake up today thinking that winning a $10,000 iTunes gift card could help your crappy life? You’re in luck! Apple is giving away that awesome prize to whoever downloads the 50th billion app at its store, which is expected to happen sometime later today. Just like your third-grade softball league, Apple is also giving away a $500 gift card to those who come in second through 50th place after it reaches its goal.
If you’ve been following the brief history of Twitter’s video-sharing app Vine, you may know that there are those who think the service has a porn problem, those who think it doesn’t and at least one sober soul who sees clearly enough to know that the problem doesn’t belong to Vine, but rather, to humankind.
If there’s one thing the Great iOS6 Map Crisis of ’12 has taught us, it’s to appreciate the mapping function we have, or rather had. Google Maps isn’t perfect (just try finding the High Street station), but at least it’s never turned any highways into roller coasters, unlike Apple’s new offering. And so Read More
We leave the Internet for 24 hours, and this happens: Something is seriously wrong with Apple’s app store. As in, if you updated Instapaper or Angry Birds Space HD Free yesterday, there’s a good chance it just crashed upon launch. Users are having to perform clean installs, while developers are dealing with annoyed users who assume the fault lies with the app itself.
No one wants to do either of those things while recovering from a holiday hangover.
Instapaper creator Marco Arment kicked up the initial fuss with a rather disgruntled blog post. As he tells it, no sooner had Apple approved the latest Instapaper update than Mr. Arment received a flood of customer complaints that the app was no longer working. He wrote:
Gif It To Me
The humble GIF has seen a renaissance in recent years, even evolving, in some cases, into an arresting artform. Now Gifture, which just hit the App Store today, hopes to make them into an entertaining alternative to the smartphone snap.
When Gifture’s press release first landed in Betabeat’s inbox, the sight of an Instagram-like interface and the prospect of yet another social mobile photo app left us unimpressed. Then we clicked through to a sample post, only to find a charming animated image of Astoria’s elevated train at night, flickering like a silent film. Downloading the app, we discovered an feed filled what appear to be members of the Gifture team: designer James McDonald bellyflopping onto a bed; business development brain Erik Stern doing a goofy dance outside an Apple store.
In a sign of technology’s growing pervasiveness in the cultural ether, Boing Boing pointed us to an upcoming show at the Pace Gallery on West 25th Street will feature art from David Bryne that’s inspired, almost entirely by the looks of it, by Apple’s App Store. The exhibit called “Social Media” (naturally) says will it will focus:
“Contemporary artists exploring public platforms for communication and social networks through an aesthetic and conceptual lens. In an era of increasingly omnipresent new technologies, Social Media examines the impact of these systems as they transform human expression, interaction, and perception.”
Wow, that was almost as obtuse as business jargon. Just throw in a few strats and pivots and this could be a company bio.
So what would the App Store look like if Mr. Byrne was a developer?
The internet has not been kind to traditional newspapers. But the NY Post’s decision to block access to their site through the iPad’s browser is myopic and damaging.
The Tao of Steve
New York Publisher John T. Colby filed a lawsuit against Apple in federal court in Manhattan today for trademark infringement over the use of “iBooks.” Colby’s suit alleges that in 2006 and 2007, he purchased assets owned by another New York publisher, Bryon Preiss, who had published more than 1,000 hardcover and paperback books under the “ibooks” name starting in September 1999.
Apple does have a trademark on “IBOOK,” but according to the suit, it only applies to computers. (Apple once sold a PC known as the “iBook). Colby alleges that Apple didn’t use the term to apply e-books or a means of delivering e-books until the iPad debuted last year. If Apple starts applying it to e-books and apps, the suit says it will render Colby’s trademark worthless. But that’s not the only trademark suit Apple got smacked with this week.
Thanks to the incredibly successful Instapaper, the Apple App Store has become Marco Arment’s bread and butter. But that means he’s at the mercy of Apple’s stringent guidelines and app review process, which have given thousands of developers including Mr. Arment and, more severely, his friends at Readbility, trouble in the past.
App of the Week
It took the team at Hype Machine 18 months to complete their new iPhone app, but just one day to become the #2 program among paid music apps.
“We were working on a lot of different things at once, and with a small team that really slows you down,” says Hype Machine Read More