Maccast 2007.01.09 – Macworld Keynote Wrap-up

Written by: Adam Christianson

Categories: Podcast

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A podcast about all things Macintosh. For Mac geeks, by Mac geeks. Macworld 2007 Day 1. A summary of all the announcements from this years keynote along with my reactions following the event. we take a look at Apple’s transition to Intel, the successes of the iPod an iTunes, the lack of any Mac related announcements, Paramount pictures content added to iTunes, AppleTV and the revolutionary new iPhone.

Maccast’s Macworld coverage brought to you by Samson Technologies

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There are 21 comments on Maccast 2007.01.09 – Macworld Keynote Wrap-up:

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  1. Max | Jan 10 2007 - 07:37

    This is in response to the cingular situation. I, like many people, am left out on this one because cingular is inferior in my area, but I do have this: I don’t know if it was just a marketing device or not, but the way that Steve highlighted the mobile phone market as a whole with the talk about 957M units, makes me feel like this is just an initial step. On the other hand, he talked about a partnership whereby cingular made some of the features possible, so maybe they did that on the condition of exclusivity. Finally, somebody correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t Sim cards supposed to let you pick a network?

  2. Chris | Jan 10 2007 - 07:04

    GSM networks use sim cards. An unlocked GSM phone would allow you to pick your network (from any GSM network like TMobile or Cingular). In regards to how cingular made some features possible, i think they just helped with the development of them, but I don’t nkow the details of the nework thing.
    However the Supreme Court ruled it’s illegal for a carrier to not unlock a phone for a customer, and they would be sold in stores but didn’t get a price on them without contract.

  3. macFanDave | Jan 10 2007 - 09:35

    Adam, thanks for the show so quickly after the keynote. I agree with you about 97%, so I have to mention two points where I disagree with you.
    1) Widgets
    My theory is that Widgets were made for the iPhone in the first place. They’ve always seemed like a fish out of water on a computer. Safari opens up in less than one bounce, so why is the Dashboard necessary? On the much smaller iPhone screen, the Widget concept becomes a killer app! There would be no reason why current Dashboard Widgets wouldn’t be useful on the iPhone — Steve demonstrated, indirectly, that all of the underlying technologies behind Widgets (JavaScript, CSS, HTML) already work on the iPhone.
    2) Price
    I predict that as soon as the iPhone becomes available, you will not be able to get one. According to another Adam (Smith, that is), that would be a case of the price being TOO LOW. The law of supply and demand establishes when prices are too low, too high or just right. Apple and Cingular will respond quickly in case you are right, but I think that demand will meet or exceed supply at the current price for a very long time.

    Great show, the quality (sound and content)is very good and we understand why show notes are not feasible while you are at the show.

  4. Ben R | Jan 10 2007 - 11:37

    Well I for one am also a little disappointed about only Cingular carrying the phone. Living in Colorado, Verizon has the best coverage hands down to any other network. But a lot can change between now and June… Let’s hope.

    But the Keynote speech did get me fired up for the NEAR future and what innovative products Apple, Inc. will come out with.

  5. Jimmy CraicHead | Jan 10 2007 - 12:48

    Adam, just to play devils advocate; when you mention that it can sync up “all” your movies, music, etc, it seems that you will only be syncing up a fraction when it comes to 4g and 8g storage. Seems like a real waste for the widescreen ipod that we’ve all been waiting for. And everyone here on the East Coast knows that Verizon has the best coverage. I’m now waiting on a stand alone video ipod with more storage!

  6. Drew Deutsch | Jan 10 2007 - 01:55

    iPhone Multi-Touch. Check out this informative webpage about Jeff Han and his Multi-Touch invention which is being used on the iPhone.


  7. Henry Ferlauto | Jan 10 2007 - 04:03

    Re: Cingular vs. Verizon

    I have long said that Verizon’s best days could be behind them. The reason: GSM (and they don’t use it). Verizon (and similarly Sprint) is on the short end of the stick when it comes to getting the latest and greatest handsets.

    Consider this:
    Approx. 76% of the world’s cell phone users are GSM.

    CDMA (the underlying technology for Verizon and Sprint) is a fraction of the remaining quarter.

    Now if you’re in charge of a handset manufacturer, what protocol would design for first? The numbers (read: $$$) overwhelmingly speak in favor of GSM.

    This is why Verizon was the last carrier to get the RIM BlackBerry 7100 series and 8700 series. And they’ll probably be the last to get the 8100 (a.k.a. “Pearl”) and the upcoming 8800. (Another rumored Cingular / AT&T exclusive, but usually only for 3-6 months).

    Next, regarding unlocking. Cingular’s official policy is that if you’ve had the device registered with them for at least 90 days they’ll give you the unlock code. Whether that’s legal or not, I don’t know. I’ve never bought a device from them w/o activation and then asked for it to be unlocked on day one.

    Process for getting a device unlocked:

    Call Cingular technical support / customer care. Tell the rep that you want your whatever_device_you_have unlocked. They will ask you a few questions. (e.g. serial #, another phone to call you on, best time to reach you, etc.) Someone from their “unlock department” will call you back usually within 24-48 hours. Worthy of note: The unlock procedure is generic to each device. e.g. Every Apple iPhone will unlock the same way, every BlackBerry 8700 will unlock the same way. However each unlock code is unique to the device. The unlock code is derived from the IMEI # (serial number).

    Tip #1: Give them a phone # other than your cell to reach you. The SIM card has to be removed from the phone to be unlocked.

    Tip #2: Have a SIM from another carrier handy (in the case of the United States your only other major option is T-Mobile). This way after you go through the procedure you can test the results.

  8. Jack | Jan 10 2007 - 04:47

    Being a Mac fan I have one thing to say……..I am F@#king disappointed….

    People just go over to Microsoft and watch their CES video.

    Hey Steve Jobs mentioned a quote people that care about their software they make their own Hardware…haha funny…if that was really the case Steve we would see some many companies coming out with operating system, won’t we? Dumb ass

  9. Alex Santos | Jan 10 2007 - 04:50

    Well, we use GSM out here in Poland and am wondering if this device can be unlocked. Maybe I’ll 800 call Cingular when the day comes, get the iphone unlocked and wham bamb use it over here!

    Can’t wait to be listening to the podcast on the ipod side of the iphone.

    Love it – ok I’m off to hear the new Maccast.

    BTW who on earth is this Jack fellow – how rude.

  10. Alex Santos | Jan 10 2007 - 04:52

    Forgive me for not having heard the podcast yet as you may have mentioned this on the show but here goes incase, Cisco Files Lawsuit In U.S. For Northern District Of California Against Apple For IPhone Trademark Infringement

  11. Jack | Jan 10 2007 - 05:25

    Hi Alex,
    I am not rude Alex, I am realistic I don’t hold out on anything. You have to realize something Alex, you are spending that money and you should have something to say about it. Now just cause we love our Apple product so much doesn’t mean that Apple is God. “Oh Apple made the product must be good”…no no no. I bought my brand new BMW M3 it broke down on me but wait a minute it’s BMW, why would it break down…sad but true it broke down on me. Moral of the story is if a company is good it doesn’t need to bash other companies constantly to make themselves look good. Like Apple constantly does to Microsoft. I use Apple product, I love it but when I see Apple going that route it makes me sick. Let me give you example…Hyundai bashes other car companies in their commercial cause they need to in order for them to sell their car. Mercedes, BMW and etc, they don’t have to bash any companies cause you know why?…..I hope you do.

  12. Henry | Jan 10 2007 - 08:26

    On the note of service…

    I wonder if anyone realizes that Cingular, the LARGEST wireless carrier in the United States has the SHORTEST customer service hours.

    They close at 9:00 p.m. (in each time zone)

    And they don’t post that fact on their “Contact Us” page. You have call, hop through a few menus and THEN they tell you their closed.

    Being that Apple is pretty much a “premium” brand, I wonder if Apple will insist on some premium support.

    At last check Verizon is open until 11:00 p.m. and little itty-bitty T-Mobile has technical support 24/7.

  13. rose matthews | Jan 10 2007 - 08:06

    Steve Jobs is the cruelest person in the world. He offers me the most amazing phone in the world, spends and hour or so getting me totally hooked THEN tells me it won’t be available til June !!! But, as I live in a little town on the edge of the known universe (Hobart Tasmania), it will be 2008 before I can even touch one! Guess I’ve got a year of dreamin’ an’ savin’.

  14. Jimmy CraicHead | Jan 11 2007 - 06:17

    Hey Adam, might you possibly take some of Henrys points and break them down to one of your less tech savy listeners. CDMA, GSN is over my head. Verizon works for me but I do know something about it wont work in Europe like T Mobile has the ability.

  15. Henry | Jan 11 2007 - 03:23


    This is sort of like the VHS vs. Beta wars or in more modern times the Blu-Ray vs. HD-DVD war.

    GSM, CDMA, TDMA, etc.

    Think of them as protocols not unlike the network protocols your computer uses to communicate with other computers.

    Think back about 15 years or so ago and you had competing statards as well. TCP/IP won but it had to first “kill” Netware’s IPX/SPX protocol, Apple’s Apple Talk protocol etc.

    Back to cell phones now…

    The “format wars” in the cell phone world are sort of still being fought. Each carrier for one reason or another choses a particular way the handset on their network will communicate with the cell sites that are tied into the telephone grid.

    There are different standards: GSM, CDMA, TDMA, etc. For the real nitty-gritty specifics on each, I would direct you to Wikipedia.

    What you need to know: You can’t mix handsets and cell sites. Meaning a GSM handset is only going to to talk to a GSM cell site. A CDMA handset is going to only to a CDMA cell site. And so on…

    As mentioned in @7, approx. 3/4 of the planet uses the GSM standard. In the United States, Cingular and T-Mobile are the two large GSM carriers. There are a few others, but they essentially resell Cingular and T-Mobile lines under private label.

    Verizon uses CDMA – Only used but about 1/5 of the planet. As I made the case in @7, if you’re in charge of selling handsets it does not take a MBA to realize that GSM is where the money is.

    Hence Verizon tends to get handsets a year or so after they’ve been released to other (GSM) carriers, or never at all.

    So a GSM based phone like the Apple iPhone cannot ever run on a CDMA network like Verizon’s. Apple would have to make another version of the phone to run on Verizon’s CDMA network. They’ll look identical and as far as making a phone call is concerned, they’ll act identical, but under the covers, the way the phone communicates to the cell site is completely different. Since Apple and Cingular have an 18 month contract I doubt you’ll ever see the 1st generation iPhone on Verizon. In 18 months at a minimum you would see greater capacity, and I’m sure some other new things will have come along as well.

    As far as the user experience is concerned, there is one big difference between GSM and CDMA; and this one of things that makes GSM so wonderful: SIM cards.

    With a CDMA telephone your telephone number is programmed into one of the (non-removable) chips inside the phone. If you want to switch phones you need to go to a store and have them program a new phone with your phone number. The cellular network actually calls the serial number of the phone, not your phone number. The phone number is for us silly humans.

    On GSM your telephone is “burned” into a little tiny chip called SIM chip. (Subscriber Identifier Module.) Think of it like a smaller version of the SD cards you use in a digital camera.

    Now… You drop your phone and break it beyond repair. All you need to do is get a new GSM phone, remove the SIM from your old phone, put it in the new phone and you’re in business. No programming required.

    Additionally, if you frequently “hop across the pond” you might have a SIM for a local number in another country, say Italy for example. Now you avoid long distance charges, etc. because you have a local (in this case Italian phone number). Of course this means your U.S. number is going to reach voice mail because the phone will no longer recognise your U.S. number until you put the SIM back in.

    Also, if you do keep your native country’s SIM in the phone, GSM will simply find you. Let’s say I have 212 (New York City) cell phone number and I go to France. You don’t need to know where I am, country codes or anything else. Just dial my local U.S. number and the system will find me. Works like a champ.

    Lastly, SIM cards can also store telephone numbers (e.g. your “address book”) This way if you swap phone you don’t have to program the new phone’s address book. There is one downside – SIM cards can only handle a 1:1 relationship. Meaning only 1 phone number per person. So you if you wanted to store Adam’s home, work and cell phone numbers on the SIM, you would have three separate entries. (e.g. Adam (h), Adam (w), Adam (m). This is why GSM cell phones give you the option of saving numbers to the SIM or to the phone itself.

    I hope this helps everyone. I know it’s quite a bit of information to digest.

  16. Henry | Jan 11 2007 - 03:35

    Adam – A request if you’re still at MacWorld Expo.

    re: iPhone

    This question is NOT answered in the specifications.

    We all know the iPhone will come with Bluetooth 2.0, but they only say for the headset. (Bluetooth Audio)

    Even though the spec says Bluetooth 2.0 with EDR (Enhanced Data Rate) – This question needs to be asked: Will the iPhone support Bluetooth wireless data?

    Why would you want this? This would mean you could use the iPhone as a wireless modem for your laptop. In the case of a slotless laptop like a MacBook, this is the only way you can have wireless data w/o the presence of WiFi. With a laptop like the MacBook Pro that has a slot, one can purchase what is commonly called an “aircard.” (That term I believe is a trademark of Sierra wireless, spelled AirCard.)

  17. Jimmy CraicHead | Jan 11 2007 - 03:41

    Thanks Henry for the great breakdown. Since I get to Europe about once a year, I now have a reason to switch to Cingular. Now I just gotta get my friends to switch.

  18. Stephen Hambleton | Jan 11 2007 - 04:31

    Ironic use of the word pasteli colours because the band is known as the fratellis here in the UK. A nice song. I am very impressed with the iPhone apple tv and the new wireless router, other than the release date of the iHone in the Uk and the price it is expensive on a two year contract in the US and producs are always more expensive in the UK so ill wait and see if its worth my purchasing one. I really liked the new technology in the phone with all the sensors and all that stuff. All looks very cool i just hope that the mac doesnt stop being produced since they are moving away from being an entirely computer company. Becoming apple inc working with other companies seems different but good. 2007 should be a good year- enjoymac fans and other a-like enjoy your year!
    thanks steve

  19. Marcus | Jan 12 2007 - 12:11

    Hi Adam,

    great summary of the show! I watched it myself and on the night of the show I followed the news tickes and there was even an event in SecondLife organized by a big Germany Apple reseller!

    You mentioned that there have been some ’emotional’ moments during the keynote. I think there was even one more: At the end of the presentation Steve had some trouble with the remote and could not turn the page of his presentation. He tried an other remote but it didn’t work either. He then told a story that back in his days on the highschool he and Woz (!) created a “remote jammer” to make fun of TV remote controllers in other peoples houses and he added that it was more Woz than him who did this.

    Nice seeing him mention Woz, isn’t it?

    kind regards from Germany, hoping to get my hands on one of those phones in late 07 :-)


  20. BruceG | Jan 12 2007 - 11:05

    Hey, Adam and fellow listeners,

    Adam, you are doing a first rate job in covering this year’s MacWorld Expo.

    Your pacing and enthusiasm, and efforts in giving your audience detailed and interesting content comes through. Even the miking seems more resonant and fuller than your ‘at home’ podcasts. (Am I to understand you are using different recording equipment from Samsung in San Francisco?)

    And thanks to Henry for his detailed explanation of the GSM and CDMA cellular systems!

    One other comment: by now all of us have heard of Cisco’s lawsuit against Apple for its use of the “iPhone” name, apparently already trademark-owned by that company.

    As the two corporations were near to some sort of accomodation almost up to Steve’s keynote, what would have possessed Jobs to go ahead with the iPhone debut and presentation?

    This, along with the company’s difficulties over stock issues, seems as if Apple is going into a legalistic tailspin.

    Finally, if the best way to resolve this is for Apple to change the name of its new wonder phone, how about the “triPod?”

    You can say the phone is three items in one, as was indicated in the keynote: an iPod, a mobile phone, and an Internet connector!

  21. Henry | Jan 12 2007 - 10:54

    @17 & @20

    Most welcome!

    A thought on the whole iPhone lawsuit mess…

    Why don’t they just call it the Apple Phone? They obviously went that direction with the TV box.

    Well one thing is for sure, Donald Rosenberg is getting his first big test.