Unless you have been living under a rock for the past few months then you undoubtedly have heard about the iPad, Apple’s new handheld device. Given the widespread media fascination with the iPad, I can’t think of any other way to have avoided hearing about it.
I also don’t know of any product that has been more widely rumored before its official release. Apple officially announced the iPad on January 27, 2010, but the rumors were flying months before that. Some of the rumors seemed unlikely (a three-dimensional user interface), some were bizarre (built-in solar panels), but some were fairly accurate (an accompanying ebook store).
I remain intrigued by the concept of iPhone program development. I think that the iPhone has the potential to make a real impact in the portable gaming market (Touch Arcade is a good source for information about iPhone gaming). Plus, I think that the iPhone is a neat little device and the only cell phone design that has ever appealed to me.
Apple has a page devoted to their iPhone Developer Program, but you still need to sign up before they will tell you any details. Some are complaining about the restrictions Apple has put on native programs written for the iPhone but they don’t sound that limiting to me. I imagine that the more severe ones, such as restrictions on private API’s and open source software, will be eased over time.
I had read before that Apple intended to ban emulators on the iPhone, but I can’t find any official confirmation of that. Apparently there’s no blanket ban, at least according to this: StyleTap officially bringing Palm emulator to the iPhone / iPod touch.
I stopped by the local Best Buy store yesterday, and was pleased to find that they are now selling Macintosh computers. This area has never had many options for Apple retailers; the nearest Apple store is a day’s drive away. Having a new retailer is welcome news, especially one with a good selection. The salesman I spoke to said that they had begun carrying the Macintosh just that morning and had already sold out of several models.
Much has been made of the recent purchase by Apple of semiconductor design company P.A. Semi. That move has puzzled many Apple observers and many theories have been spun to explain it.
P.A Semi is a fabless semiconductor company, meaning that they design chips but don’t manufacture them. They have recently been focused on developing the PWRficient family of processors. The processors are Power PC compatible, 64-bit, multicore, very fast, but very low-power. When you consider that Apple previously used Power PC processors in the Macintosh and switched to Intel largely because they needed faster, low power chips, then one potential explanation is obvious.
Most of the theories regarding the acquisition seems to concern one of these five ideas: