After the controversial removal of over 5,000 apps from the App Store, Apple looks like it's going to change course on the issue again. Initially, the company sought to purge any overtly sexual applications due to customer complaints and its own decency standards.
Apple has come under fire for hypocrisy as several apps such as Playboy, Victoria's Secret, Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2010, FHM, and Maxim remain in the App Store while some developers' businesses evaporated overnight. In the meantime, Cult of Mac reports that a new category labeled "Explicit" has appeared to developers interested in submitting apps for approval.
In a dramatic improvement since last spring, AT&T has defeated the three closest competitors in a PCWorld speed and reliability challenge. Carriers Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon were also tested for download and upload speeds in thirteen cities.
AT&T won download speed tests against all competitors everywhere except for Denver and Phoenix, where the carrier lost to T-Mobile by a slight margin. Reliability scores for AT&T were highest in Phoenix, Portland and Seattle, where they topped out at 100%.
Reports have surfaced that Skype and Verizon Wireless have cemented a 2-3 year exclusive deal to develop and run Skype applications on Verizon smartphones. iPhone owners have been waiting for a 3G-enabled version of the Skype app for some time.
Now that AT&T and Apple have lifted the Wi-Fi only restrictions on applications like SlingPlayer, Skype users naturally expected they would be the next to benefit from this change. In fact, Skype already has a 3G-ready app but the company has delayed its release due to concerns over AT&T's network.
A new utility has been developed by iH8Sn0w for users interested in figuring out whether they can jailbreak or unlock their iPhone or iPod Touch. F0recast will check your device using the USB connection and examine the baseband and bootloader versions.
Jailbreaking and downgrading have become more complex as different versions of hardware and software are constantly released by Apple. F0recast will tell you if your iPhone is unlockable, if you can downgrade your software, and if your specific model requires a tethered jailbreak.
Following a crackdown on "overtly sexual" content, Apple has had its censors remove 5,000 applications from the iPhone AppStore. The app purge began on Friday, with over 4,000 apps removed due to their "sexually arousing" or implied sexual language and images.
To date, the Apple cleansing is said to have removed almost three percent of the total number of iPhone applications previously available. In a strange twist, apps representing large media companies but still promoting sexual content remain on the AppStore.
Wireless carrier AT&T's new policy of allowing some bandwidth-heavy iPhone applications to run over its expanded 3G network is now being put to the test. SlingPlayer Mobile allows users to stream video content from their Slingbox to iPhones anywhere 3G or Wi-Fi is available.
The previous version of SlingPlayer Mobile, first released last year, restricted streaming video to Wi-Fi only at the request of AT&T. Video quality is still better over a Wi-Fi connection, as the stream has to be optimized for 3G speeds.
MobileMe subscribers can now navigate to an improved landing page at me.com from their iPhones. Apple has added more functionality to what once was just an instructional page.
Although the mobile browser version is improved, for complete features such as adjusting MobileMe account settings users will still have to access me.com from a computer web browser. iPhone apps such as MobileMe iDisk and MobileMe Gallery still provide more options than the iPhone version of me.com.
Could it be that Apple plans to reveal iPhone OS 4.0 as early as March 14th? Multiple sources have received anonymous tips pointing towards a demo of the new OS by Apple next month. This date roughly coincides with the first iPad ship date, and has led to speculation that iPhone OS 4.0 may ship on the new device.
Apple has typically announced updates to its iPhone hardware in June. This year should be no different and the company is expected to reveal its fourth-generation iPhone on schedule. What has thrown industry watchers off track is that the iPad was announced in January running iPhone OS 3.2. This operating system is not yet available Apple's heralded smartphone.
In a move said to be preparation for the iPad release, Apple has doubled the App Store size limit on 3G cellular network downloads to 20MB. Previously users were prompted to use a Wi-Fi connection or iTunes to download applications larger than 10MB.
The change could put more bandwidth pressure on the AT&T network, however the company has been frantically working to improve speeds and capacity nationwide ahead of the iPad and 4G iPhone releases later this year.
The Dev-Team could be working on an unlock for iPhone users who have already updated to official firmware 3.1.3 and find themselves stuck with no unlock options at the moment. Sherif Hashim has discovered an exploit that could be used to unlock the current iPhone baseband so the iPhone can be used with carriers other than AT&T.
This exploit was verified by Dev-Team's own MuscleNerd as a legitimate and working exploit. It's possible the Dev-Team would wait until the release of iPhone OS 4.0 on the next generation iPhone before revealing the exploit to Apple with a new unlock, however the new iPhone isn't expected to ship until later this summer.