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THE OFFICIAL COMMUNITY FOR DIGITAL MEDIA ACADEMY

How the iPad is Made

Countless hours go into the creation of an electronics device. There’s the planning…the engineering…and the marketing…but one of the most overlooked parts of the process is the actual manufacturing of it. Recently a video hit the Internet showing how the iPad is made and it’s amazing to see all the hard work that goes into assembling the world’s most popular tablet.


A picture that would make a Foxconn worker cry: the iPad disassembled. 

Machine and Man
Marketplace.org Shanghai’s Rob Schmitz recently visited the Shenzhen factory in China where the iPad is made. He was allowed exclusive access to the Foxconn factory and the workers for his story.

Not only was Schmitz allowed to interview the workers, he was also permitted to capture video of his experience. The video, which is seen below, shows the assembly line and almost every part of the production process – including workers testing each iPad. The manufacturing plant is incredibly clean and packed with both workers and electronics.

It’s an amazing look inside the plant that Apple has shrouded in secrecy during past years. Only recently has Apple allowed reporters in to see for themselves the working conditions. Take a look:

Creating the Future
Apple’s iPad is an incredible device. Besides microchips, the world’s greatest tablet is is powered by great apps. Learning app development for the iPhone and iPad is one of the quickest and easiest ways to get involved building the iPad’s growing marketplace – and you don’t have to move to China and work for Foxconn.

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posted by DMA Jordan in News Blog and have No Comments

iBooks Author: How to Make eBooks on iPad

Apple is reinventing textbooks thanks to the latest iBooks update. iBooks 2 which is available in the Apple App Store gives readers a new way to interact with the written word.


The new textbooks inside of iBooks. To sample the new textbooks, download  E.O. Wilson’s Life on Earth for free. Your iPad will need to be running 1OS 5 to view the new books.

The iBook update now allows textbooks to be sold through the popular ereader app that already offers bestselling novels and literary classics like”Dracula” and “The Count of Monte Cristo.” Textbooks were not available before. The price for the textbooks? $14.99.

Reading is Fun-damental
Apple made the announcement at a press event in New York at the Guggenheim Museum. Apple feels it’s time that books caught up with other types of media, ebooks offer interactive notetaking, and highlighting as well as interactive videos, photo galleries, 3D models and other illustrations. For authors it’s another way that they can make their content come to life – for students it’s a fun and interactive way to learn.


The Beatles “Yellow Submarine is another free interactive ebook that showcases video. 

Before has death, Steve Jobs told the author of his biography, “Steve Jobs,” that he believed Apple could significantly shake-up the textbook industry and do it, with the iPad. Jobs held meetings with book publishers such as Pearson Education to encourage them to partner with Apple.

To date, Apple says there are more than 1.5 million iPads currently being used in schools and there. “Now with iBooks 2 for iPad, students have a more dynamic, engaging and truly interactive way to read and learn, using the device they already love,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing.

Becoming an eBook Author
Apple aims to make it easier for educators and authors to create books using iBooks Author. The app provides plenty of templates and putting your content into a ebook is as simple as dragging and dropping it into the template. The app supports multi-touch interface, like pinch and zoom views and swiping gestures. Apple has even included iBook Author HTML5 and Javascript support for programmers who want to take their books beyond the app.


The iBooks Author app uses a template and drag and drop interface, much like Apple’s Keynote or Pages app.

Digital textbooks are the future of educational publishing. Using iBooks Author to create your own content is a major win for not only educators, but for those that want to self-publish too. It’s exciting to see Apple in education and learning app development for iPad’s and iPhones is another way to development content, it can be a great tool for book publishers, too. Either way, Apple is helping both educators and authors create the future of media.

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posted by DMA Jordan in Apple,News Blog and have No Comments

Must Have iPad Accessories for Your Camera, Making Music & Watching HD Video

Do you have or are you getting an iPad? Then you’ll want to have these essential iPad accessories we tested. All these accessories are Apple manufactured so they have the same quality as your Apple devices – even better, they work perfectly with your iPad.

Apple TV

Watch your favorite TV shows and movies using Apple TV.

For $99 you can wirelessly stream movies or TV shows from your iPad 2 to your HDTV with Apple’s AirPlay and Apple TV. TV, movies, games and iMovie’s you make on your iPad, all come alive on your TV. Streaming works almost flawlessly on the Apple iPad with Apple TV.

iPad Camera Connection Kit

Two adapters are included in Apple’s Camera Kit, they plug into the iPad’s 30-pin port. 

Plug either of the match boxed sized adapters (you get the pair for $29.99) into the bottom of your iPad 2 and then insert your camera’s SD card or a USB cable to connect a camera (depending on the adapter you’re using and view photos or video. The iPad supports standard photo formats, like .jpeg’s and RAW, plus MPEG-4 and HD video. It’s quick and easy to use the adapter, and a great way to download photos to your iPad on the go.

Apple AV Adapter

Play apps, games, movies, slideshows, whatever you have playing on your iPad for everyone in the room.

For only $39.99, anything you see on your iPad can be displayed on your HDTV or other HDMI device using Apple’s Digital AV Adapter – apps, games, movies, think of Angry Birds or Garageband on the big screen.  A built-in 30-pin connector allows you to charge the iPad while it’s mirroring and the adapter provides digital audio to screens that support DA. No matter if it’s a movie or walk down memory lane, the .

Apogee JAM Guitar Input

Turn your iPad into an amplifier using Apogee’s JAM Guitar.

Apogee – a world-class manufacturer of digital audio recording accessories for musicians, beat producers and engineers has a killer device in the JAM Guitar input ($99). Plug your guitar into your iPad and JAM and with Garageband jam out using the guitar pedals and amps included in GarageBand to modify the guitar sounds. You can record or just rock out using JAM, the sound is great and it’s literally plug and play.

Beat Maker and Media Viewer

You can do practically anything on the iPad, from learning music and beat production to turning your living room into a movie theater – and these accessories can help you do it. What are you doing with your iPad?

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posted by DMA Jordan in News Blog and have No Comments

Should I Buy A Kindle Fire?

This holiday season tablets are dominating shopping lists – but which tablet should you buy? One tablet that has been getting a lot attention lately is Amazon’s Kindle Fire. But for $200, is it a worthy tablet? Well, we brought one and tested it, here’s our review:


Like the iPad and other tablets, you can watch movies, reads books – and play games on the Kindle Fire. 

Kindle Fire
Cost: $199.99
Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5

We ordered our tablet like you will – through Amazon. Shipping was free for the $10 Gift Card (we bought it to buy apps and not have to give Amazon a credit card, more on that later), and the standard free shipping took the five days Amazon promised. The Kindle Fire arrived in Amazon’s plain cardboard box, but the inner carton, containing the Amazon Kindle was equally bland.

Amazon is actually losing money on the Kindle Fire (industry insiders say it costs around $219 to make each Kindle Fire), so it shouldn’t be a surprise that they spent absolutely no money on packaging.

After opening the box, we removed the tiny tablet from the protective plastic sleeve and plugged the device in per the instructions (which were also almost non-existent) with the included charging cable. The cable, is longer than the iPad’s, but it’s still extremely short. There was also a flash card sized instruction card – which basically told us to plug the device in and where the power button was – beyond that, not much else was in the box.


Amazon’s package is simple and clean – but may disappoint those that want to wow the gift getter on Christmas morning.

With your purchase of the Kindle Fire, buyers also receive a free one-month trial for Amazon Prime (a $79 annual fee), Amazon’s streaming video service and free shipping on Amazon orders. If you’re already an Amazon customer or have considered becoming one, it’s a great way to test drive Prime.

The Hardware

For $200 the Kindle Fire stacks up pretty well against the iPad. Amazon’s 7.5 inch tablet full color tablet has full touch screen functionality – but there’s no camera or microphone. At 414 grams, it’s one of the lightest tablets out there, but still feels good in your hand. Pressing the power button on the end started the Kindle Fire up almost instantly.

The screen resolution is crisp and vibrant – that is when you’re reading books or viewing media in the HD format. The case has a black rubbery back (with the Kindle logo on it) and is both comfortable and easy to hold. The device has two speaker ports on the top for stereo sound, a micro USB port and a 3.5 mm audio jack too, but the device doesn’t come with headphones.

Overall it feels pretty substantial for such a small tablet – and that’s one of the problems. The Kindle Fire gets a bit heavy after using it for it while.

The OS & Web Browser
Amazon’s dual core processor makes accessing apps quick and easy. Even after loading it with apps the device was still responsive although doesn’t scroll as gracefully through the apps as Apple’s iPad. When the device changes screen orientation it just snaps to the new orientation, again without the animation or grace Apple’s iPad has. Web browsing is klunky – as other reviewers have also noted. When the Kindle Fire versus the iPad in these regards the Kindle Fire falls short.

In almost every case, games, books or movies, the display was better and more enjoyable when oriented vertically. Movies stream quickly from Amazon’s cloud and using Amazon’s proprietary Silk web browser – surfing the internet was ok, although the screen size makes web browsing incredibly difficult in the vertical orientation.


Apps are just 1 click away…Or are they?

Setting up the Kindle Fire 
Before you do anything, you’ll also have to set up a Amazon account, which is free. Remember, we bought a gift card so we could buy apps without giving Amazon a credit card. Unfortunately, Amazon REQUIRES you provide a credit card to access their digital content – even the free stuff. This is a huge fail for Amazon who are trying to go toe-to-toe with Apple. If you buy an iPad and an iTunes Gift Card you can use the gift card instantly – and without giving Apple a credit card.

Calls to Amazon’s customer service indicated that they’ve heard this complaint more than once, but the customer service experience was also laborious and time-consuming, not to mention just bad – and this issue was so annoying – we seriously considered returning the device. Equally frustrating and disappointing was that we couldn’t activate the gift card we bought (at the same time we purchased the Kindle Fire) through the device.

The Bottomline
For $200 the tablet is a great deal, especially when you factor in Amazon’s store, the incredible amount of content it offers and cloud support. We should also note, while Google Android Game Development has become more popular, there are very few HD Android apps, the regular Android apps work fine on the Kindle Fire, but even the best Kindle Fire apps like Monkey Preshool Lunchbox look blurry on the Kindle Fire screen.

It’s no iPad, not by a long shot, but it is a cheap, capable and study little tablet – if your gift getter hasn’t seen an iPad they won’t be disappointed.

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posted by DMA Jordan in App Development,News Blog and have No Comments

iPad 2: A Guide to the Must-Have Holiday Gift

There is a reason Apple sets the standard for product design. With intuitive design and lifestyle integration, getting your hands on their products for the first time makes you wonder how you ever lived life without one.


iPad 2 is THE must-have holiday gift of 2012. 

Maybe you already lead an Apple-filled life, or maybe you’re looking for a reason to start one? Either way, if you don’t own an iPad and are considering a tablet, the iPad 2 is a no-brainer.

The Give That Keeps On Giving
The iPad 2 comes with a dual-core A5 chip and 10-hour battery life – it’s thin, 0.34 inches and weighs less than 1 1/2 lbs. It’s literally ready to go anywhere. Plus, with App Store and iCloud support you can be sure anything you’re looking for can be found with it and anything you’re looking to hold onto will be kept safe in it.

Sure, there are plenty of tablets and mobile devices out there but the iPad 2 sets the standard; there’s more than one reason it sits atop of the Must-Have Holiday Gift list. All other tablets, app stores and apps are modeled after Apple’s innovations, so why settle for a cheap knock-off? This device is more than worth the money.

 Get Creative, Make Memories – with Apps!
The iPad 2′s dual-core A5 chip and graphic performance is 9x faster than the first iPad. This allows you to cruise through any app quickly and easily. Multi-Touch gestures are fluid and seamless – unlike other tablets that have clunky interfaces and delayed responses, on the iPad apps load faster than every, and multitasking is a breeze. Looking to get creative? Here are three iPad apps to make the most of your holiday memories:

iMovie
$14.99 / Apple

Apple and the iPad 2 have made it a reality for everyone to become an HD video director and at just $14.99 who can pass up that deal. This video editing app makes it easy to shoot, edit, and share HD video with all of your friends and family. Here are a few features that really set iMovie apart.


Capture those holiday moments and make memories using iMovie

Multi-Touch – Whether you are a seasoned video editor or someone learning for the first time, iPad’s Multi-Touch capabilities are incorporated into iMovie and allow you to tap, pinch, push, and drag your way through the video-editing process, allowing you to get hands on with your film using intuitive multi-touch gestures.

Themes – iMovie allow you to easily set the theme and tone of all your films with a fun-filled batch of pre-sets that give your production a top-end polish.

Photos, Music, and Sound Effects – iMovie also allows you to easily add media from your photo library or iTunes library to quickly create a multimedia project for the whole family to enjoy. And if you’re looking for ways to create your own music or more stunning graphic art, Sketchbook Pro and Garageband are two more apps to take your skills to the next level.

Sketchbook Pro
$4.99 / Autodesk

This professional-grade paint and drawing application is perfect for the professional artist on the go or the daydreaming doodler. Designed by Autodesk and developed exclusively for the iPad experience, you’ll be able to touch up photos from your library or conjure new ideas into brilliant images with this app.


With features found in products costing hundreds of dollars, Sketchbook Pro is Photoshop for iPad.

High Quality Brushes and Tools – With Sketchbook Pro you can pick from more than 60 preset brushes, pens, pencils and markers to make sure you have the right tool at your finger tips and the professional-grade paint engine built in ensures you get the smoothest and most precise brush strokes.

Multi-Touch Control – Sketchbook Pro takes advantage of iPad’s Multi-Touch capabilities to the max. A three-finger tap brings up a whole control panel and a two-finger zoom allows you to zoom 2500% and that’s not where it ends. Multi-Touch and Sketchbook let your creativity come out as quick as your fingers can move.

Layers – Layers in Sketchbook allow you to import images from your Photo Library or from your Camera to add a few touch ups or maybe make unique compositions. You can also export layers as a Photoshop document to share with a desktop or send to friends to add some touches.

Garageband
$4.99 / Apple

Want to become a music producer? Put a complete music studio in your hands with Apple’s Garageband. Using the built-in microphone you can record and produce a whole album right on your iPad.


Make real music – not just play along with colored buttons – using Apple’s amazing Garageband

Multi-Touch – Just like iMovie and Sketchbook Pro, Apple’s Garageband makes the most of the iPad 2′s Multi-Touch gesture capabilities while tapping out chords and melodies on the innovative Multi-Touch Keyboard.

Smart Instruments – Like having a group of studio musicians at your finger tips. Tap keyboard chords out with just one finger to find your groove or actually strum a rhythm out on an acoustic guitar. Looking to add some drums to that guitar riff? Use Smart Drums to just drag and drop until you find your beat.

Share It! – Once your mix is finished you can email it directly to your friends from Garageband or export directly to your iTunes.

Share Memories, Socially
Why wait to share your holiday memories? With the iPad 2 and a few powerful apps you can now share those magical moments instantly with friends and family that couldn’t make it to the party.


Bring your family closer together this holiday season using Facetime. 

Facetime for iPad - Have a brother that’s serving overseas or a sister studying in Australia? FaceTime allows you to stay connected with friends and family that couldn’t make it home this year. Facetime comes pre-loaded on the iPad, so all you have to do is click on the app to get started.

Two Cameras – Unlike some tablets, (like the Amazon Fire which has no camera) the iPad 2 features two cameras, one on the front and one on the back, to allow you to chat face to face or show people the world around you. Plus they’re HD so you can share every last detail.

Facebook for iPad and Twitter for iPad - The iPad 2 brings social sharing to a whole new level – with high-res photos, live status updates, games, chatting, and more when you combine your iPad 2 with Facebook or Twitter. Plus, Apple has made it even easier with built-in Twitter integration on Apple’s new iOS 5.

Save Memories with the iCloud
The iPad 2 has made it easier to than ever to make and share memories and now with iCloud it’s just as easy to make sure they are safe – wherever you go.

iTunes – With the iCloud you can have all of your digital media at your fingertips regardless of what device you originally downloaded it to. So if you bought Jingle Bells on your MacBook at home you can easily access it on your iPad while at grandmas and get everyone involved with a sing-a-long.

Photo Stream – With iCloud and the iPad 2 you can also use Photo Stream to access all of the pictures on any of your iDevices. Snap a photo on your iPad 2 after opening presents and know that it’ll show up on your MacBook at home. No more forgetting pictures.

No wonder the iPad 2 tops the list of every holiday shopping list. Is there nothing it can’t do? Thanks to app developers and a growing number of people who want to become an app developer.

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posted by DMA Jordan in App Development,News Blog and have No Comments

iPad 2 vs. Kindle Fire vs. Xoom & Others: A Tablet Buyers Guide

Entertaining the idea of getting (or giving) a tablet computer this holiday? Why not? Tablets like the iPad 2 will be the hottest hi-tech gift this holiday season. Tablets give you the world on a platter, compressing all the processing muscle of a laptop computer into a handy-dandy slate that you can hold in your hand — and which is light and portable enough to take anywhere.


Santa’s not the only one putting smiles on faces this Christmas; the iPad 2 will again light up the holiday.

The real question is which tablet computer is right for you? Apple’s iPad 2 is the market leader but other tablets have come along that solidly compete with it. It’s debatable if these contenders match the iPad’s grace and power. Still, these other devices may prove attractive to consumers since they are priced well below the iPad.

We’ve evaluated the leading tablets and have a side-by-side tablet-comparison chart below for your holiday shopping, but we’ve also listed our picks in order of preference:

1. iPad 2
 
Pros: Apple’s iPad 2 expands upon the original iPad in several ways. For starters, it has two cameras for FaceTime (video chat) and HD video recording. It’s powered by Apple’s dual-core A5 chip and features a 10-hour battery life. The latest iOS 5 adds more than 200 new software features. With the iPad 2 you also have access to Apple’s iCloud. Apple’s App Store showcases games and productivity. Apple has also added more apps (some 140,000 in all) to the store, making it the largest library of content for any tablet. It’s the market leader — and our top pick — for a reason. The interface is graceful, intuitive, easy to use and beautiful. If you’ve never owned an Apple product, this one will make you a lifelong fan.

Cons: The iPad 3 is scheduled for release next year.

Overall Dimensions: 9.50 inches (height) x 7.31 inches (width) x 0.34 inches (depth)
Weight: 1.33 pounds
Display: 9.7-inch diagonal LED-backlit glossy widescreen
Screen Resolution: 1024 x 768 pixels; 132 pixels per inch
Screen Display: Multi-Touch display with In-Plane Switching (IPS) technology. Screen treated with fingerprint-resistant oleophobic coating
Manufacturer: Apple, Inc.
MSRP: $499—$829

2. Kindle Fire

Pros: Incredibly compact (small enough to slip in a purse), the Kindle Fire is as small as its price. Enhanced with Amazon Silk, a “split browser” that divides the tablet’s web-browsing chores between the tablet and the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), the Kindle Fire boasts its own dual-core processor. And since it’s made by Amazon, it’s backed with an incredible amount of content,  including 18 million movies, TV shows, apps, games, songs, books, newspapers, magazines and more (with comics provided by DC Comics). The Kindle Fire offers 8 GB of internal storage; Amazon figures that’s enough for some 80 apps plus 10 movies or 800 songs or 6,000 books.

Cons: No camera for video chat or taking pictures.

Overall Dimensions: 7.50 inches (h) x 4.7 inches (w) x 0.45 inches (d)
Weight: 14.6 ounces
Display: 7-inch diagonal
Display Resolution: 1024 x 600 pixels; 169 pixels per inch
Display Screen: Multi-Touch display with IPS technology and anti-reflective treatment
Manufacturer: Amazon
MSRP: $199

3. Nook

Pros: When you’re the world’s largest bookstore, it’s assumed that content won’t be in short supply and Barnes & Noble estimates its book holdings at more than 2.5 million titles. And at 16 GB of internal memory, the Nook Tablet has twice as much storage as its closest competitor, the Kindle Fire. (We still like Kindle Fire’s resemblence to the iPad.) The Nook Tablet also contains a microSD card slot that offers extra storage, which is noticeably lacking in other tablets, like the iPad 2. Interested in the Nook Tablet for reading purposes? You’ll be happy to know the adjustable fonts customize your reading experience (eight text sizes and six font styles). In addition to what B&N calls the largest digital collection of newspapers and magazines, the Nook Tablet is the tablet home of Marvel Comics.

Cons: No camera for video chat or taking pictures. Interface is sometimes clunky.

Overall Dimensions: 8.1 inches (h) x 5.0 inches (w) x 0.48 inches (d)
Weight: 14.1 ounces
Display: 7-inch diagonal
Screen Resolution: 1024 x 600 pixels; 169 pixels per inch
Screen Display: VividView Touchscreen, fully laminated for remarkable clarity and reduced reflection and glare-read indoors or outside
Manufacturer: Barnes & Noble
MSRP: $249

4. TIE: Xoom / Galaxy Tab
Xoom

Pros: Sporting a hefty 10.1-inch display, the Xoom is able to take advantage of hundreds of thousands of apps from the Android Market. Through Google eBooks, the Xoom is able to draw upon a library that ups the ante at more than 3 million titles. To enable video-chat capabilities, the Xoom has front and rear-facing cameras. It’s powered by Google’s Android and has plenty of horsepower. A MicroSD card slot allows for addition storage or moving your media, and it performs more than adequately.

Cons: At 1.6 pounds it’s one of the heaviest tablets out there. Google’s operating system has stability issues and it has other issues like images displaying properly in the Gallery viewer. An added insult, almost all of the Android games in the Android app store aren’t optimized to run on the tablet. (FAIL!)

Overall Dimensions: 9.81 inches (h) x 6.61 inches (w) x 0.51 inches (d)
Weight: 1.6 pounds
Display: 10.1-inch diagonal
Screen Resolution: 1280 x 800 pixels; 150 pixels per inch
Manufacturer: Motorola
MSRP: $499

Galaxy Tab

Pros: Like the Xoom, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 also boasts a 10.1-inch diagonal screen. Samsung claims faster and more stable online connection thanks to the Galaxy Tab 10.1 having both HSPA+ and Wi-Fi access. Also on-board: front- and rear-facing cameras that support video chat functions. Also powered by the Android 3.1 (Honeycomb) platform, which Samsung claims allows quicker processing times because the platform excels at multi-tasking. And speaking of multi-tasking, the Mini Apps used with the Galaxy Tab 10.1 let you perform multiple key functions while working with other applications. It is one of the thinnest Honeycomb tablets available and it comes packaged with earbuds(!).

Cons: The App selection is subpar. During our tests, even with a full Wi-Fi signal the online video playback had issues.

Overall Dimensions: 7.48 inches (h) x 4.74 inches (w) x 0.47 inches (d)
Weight: 13.6 ounces
Display: 10.1-inch diagonal
Screen Resolution: 1024 x 600 pixels
Manufacturer: Samsung
MSRP: $499—$629

5. Kobo Vox

Pros: Love to read? The Kobo Vox has a library that exceeds 2.2 million books.The Kobo Vox is focused on the reading experience and Kobo claims a total library of more than 2.2 million books, as well as more than a million free titles. Magazine content is supplied via thousands of popular magazines from Zinio and newspapers from around the world. Kobo is marketing the Vox as a “free reader,” meaning that once you purchase a Kobo Books title, the user/owner can then enjoy it on any opened reading device. Should you need more external stimulation, the Vox offers unlimited web browsing and open access to Android 2.3, including more than 15,000 apps. It’s a new entry to the tablet world.

Cons: It’s a cheap alternative to the big boys by a relatively unknown tablet maker, which could make for technical-support nightmares. Kobo’s books are more expensive than Amazon’s.

Overall Dimensions: 7.57 inches (h) x 5.06 inches (w) x 0.53 inches (d)
Weight: 14.2 ounces
Display: 7-inch diagonal
Screen Resolution: 1024 x 600 pixels; 150 pixels per inch
Screen Display: Multi-touch screen optimized for reading outdoors. Features extra-wide viewing that its makers say is ideal for shared reading.
Manufacturer: Kobo, Inc.
MSRP: $199

Side-by-Side Comparison

Apps Make the Tablets
In the end, it comes down to two things: a good operating system and (just as important, if not more so) apps. Making apps for the iPad isn’t easy but it is fun. Creative app developers are really driving tablets. Ultimately, buyers should decide which applications or what they intend to do on the device first, then find the tablet that fits their needs.

Bottom line: If you already own Apple products, like the iPhone 4S, you will probably want to get the iPad, mainly because of the App Store, iTunes and iCloud support. If you prefer the Android operating system then the Xoom might be best for you. If you want a much cheaper tablet that kind of feels like an iPad,  then Amazon’s Kindle Fire is your best bet. Whatever you choose, one thing is for certain: you’ll most likely be giving or getting a tablet this holiday season.

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posted by DMA Jordan in App Development,News Blog and have No Comments

Facebook App for iPad

Facebook has long teased iPad owners/Facebook users with rumors of a Facebook app. Finally, after months of anticipation, the iPad Facebook app is now available.


The new Facebook offers many of the features you get from the online version; it’s just optimized for the iPad. 

The long-awaited app was released on Monday with little fanfare. Much more noise was made behind the scenes as Facebook and Apple worked out the details on the release.

Like That
The Facebook iPad app is available for free from iTunes and offers Facebook a laundry list of great features:

  • Bigger, better photos: Photos take on new life with Facebook’s photo album. Images are big and high-res.
  • Cleaner user interface: Facebook fiends can navigate their content – such as updates, photos and stories – quicker. Navigation is also easier, using a gentle tap, slide or pinch.
  • Simplified navigation: Send a message or see a notification. Also browse bookmarks without switching screens.
  • Games: You can also play your favorite Facebook games through the app, and on a bigger screen.
  • Send & review messages with a tap: A simple drop-down menu makes it easy to scan your messages and send them without visiting your inbox.

Overall, the Facebook iPad app gives users a sleeker interface, allowing you to stay up to date with your friends, their activities and more. For iPad users on the go, it’s a no-brainer.


The app even provides a way to easily find your friends in the real world. 

iOS Connection 
Apple insiders had assured techies that the Facebook iPad app would be revealed when Apple announced the iPhone 5 last week – and we all know how that turned out. Apple instead revealed the iPhone 4S. Nonetheless, a Facebook app is still a win for Apple considering no other tablets running Google’s Android OS have a tailor-made Facebook app – and that’s definitely something that would make Steve Jobs happy.  App development is a huge business. In fact, mobile apps already eclipse stand-alone software sales for consoles and PCs.

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iPad, iCloud & App Cards

At the “Let’s Talk iPhone” event on Tuesday, Apple unveiled its next generation iPhone, the iPhone4S, but Apple was also talking about iPads, iCloud and apps, too.


Apple’s iPad pilot program for schools has put iPads in classrooms, in every state in the U.S. new schools are being equipped with iPads according to a recent article in the NYTimes. Photo via NYTimes. 

Apple has been pushing innovation not only in the technology space, but innovating schools and business. Apple’s latest phone features voice recognition and while it’s an incredible technological step, the company is full steam ahead on all fronts.

Tim Cook, Apple’s new CEO, got a laugh for saying airplane pilots use of iPads makes airplanes more efficient. But it’s true; the FAA approved the use of the device and apps like ForeFlight. Hospitals are testing iPads, too. In fact, 92 percent of Fortune 500 companies are supposedly “testing or deploying” the iPad in their workplaces. And the amount of schools and summer camps using iPads has dramatically increased.

In addition to the new iPhone 4S, the Apple event was a chance for Apple to toot its own horn and talk about these innovations and outreach. And Apple continues to surprise us with its unique train of thought.


Instead of iPhone 5, Apple introduced…Apple Cards???

Digital Goes Analog 
Apple has surpassed 250 million sales of iOS devices. That’s iPads, iPod touches and iPhones. Apps make these devices truly shine. The App Store features some 140,000 for the iPad alone, with more than 500,000 total apps. More than a billion of them are downloaded every month. Leave it to Apple to introduce one that helps you send a greeting or holiday card. The Apple Cards app lets you create paper printed cards – right from your iPhone or iPad.


Cards are sent with a special postal mark barcode – when they’re scanned at the destination, you get a text message the card has arrived.

If no one else was excited about the Apple Cards announcement, we’re sure the Postmaster General is since traditional postal mail use is significantly down. People still prefer to send cards the old fashioned way, however.

High Above the iCloud 
In the future we’ll all be storing docs in the Cloud. Think of anything you save – a document, picture or song. It all goes in the Cloud. Google Docs has done this for some time, so it’s no surprise to see Apple follow suit by promoting iCloud.

Apple’s iCloud allows the storage of any file type, and serves up all your media on all your iDevices – MacBook, iPhone and tablet. When you sign up, you get 5GB for your mail and docs, and pay an additional $20/$50/$100 more a year for added storage. Users get unlimited storage for photos and music. Using iCloud allows Apple to see all the music you own, and maybe even if you paid for it or not.

But iCloud does allow you to share your media across your many devices, which could come in handy for work or home.

The Core of Apple 
Apple’s doing what it has always done; revolutionizing technology to make your life easier and more productive. Siri, the voice recognition software for your iPhone 4S, is billed as a personal assistant. The iCloud makes moving your media easier. Apple Cards let you send a mailed greeting card right from your phone. Apple is revolutionizing the way we live our lives. And owning an iPhone or iPad isn’t the only to get involved with the Apple revolution. Learning app development for iDevices is a great way to get started with the Apple iOS, too. You don’t have to work for Apple to change the world.

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posted by DMA Jordan in App Development,Apple,News Blog and have No Comments

Amazon’s New Tablet: Kindle Fire Versus iPad 2

Amazon’s Kindle Fire is set to ship on November 15th. The Wi-Fi-enabled tablet device will offer a 7 1/2-inch full color screen, and be available at the extremely competitive price of $199. The tablet, which was publicly unveiled today in New York City by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, will use a version of Google’s Android operating system that was created specifically for the Kindle Fire. However, the Kindle Fire’s OS will sport a distinctive look with a special emphasis on media and apps – copying in a way what Apple has already done on the iPad.


The Kindle Fire will take extreme advantage of Amazon’s enormous libraries of content, which contain approximately 18 million movies, songs, TV shows, magazines and books.

The iPad Killer
Is Amazon’s Kindle Fire an iPad killer? The Kindle Fire runs on a dual-core processor and is equipped with eight gigabytes of data storage. Amazon offers free storage for all Amazon digital content on the Amazon Cloud. Books, movies, music and apps are available instantly to stream or download. These are great options for media savvy users, but the tablet lacks a camera and any 3G support. Furthermore, the touchscreen on the Kindle only accommodates two points of touch at a time. (The iPad, in comparison, can manage as many as ten.) So is it an iPad Killer? In a word, no, but that shouldn’t stop you from considering buying it.


Amazon now offers several versions of the Kindle, ranging in price from $199 for the new Kindle Fire, to the original Kindle model, which can now be picked up for $79.

The tech industry has been anxiously waiting to see what kind of tablet Amazon would create. The Kindle Fire signifies Amazon’s entry into the tablet computer business. It’s a full frontal assault on Apple, as a complete digital media content provider – from hardware to software. Amazon is the world’s largest online retailer, and Amazon – like market-leader Apple, already has a rich supply of content.

Downloads & Web
Amazon is in the business of selling all types of media—not just apps, but music downloads, movies, TV programs, eBooks and more. And the Kindle Fire gives users a great way to do that. The Kindle Fire is designed to be smoothly integrated into Amazon’s content. Plus, Amazon’s Cloud gives users a free and easy way to store the content.

The Kindle Fire also serves up Amazon’s redesigned cloud web browser with Silk.

Amazon is currently taking pre-orders for the Kindle Fire, buyers will also receive a free one-month trial of Amazon Prime, the online retailer’s yearly service that gives users free streaming video as well as free shipping for Amazon.com purchases (for a $79 annual fee). Amazon Prime members also receive unlimited, instant streaming of over 10,000 popular movies and TV shows.

Movies and Books
Amazon just entered into an agreement with several movie studios for content, which includes 18 million movies, TV shows, songs, magazines, and books. Ahhhh yes, books. The foundation of Amazon’s business. The company started as an online bookseller and smartly turned the business into an internet retailing giant. Amazon is bringing a full court press with the Kindle Fire. Visitors to Amazon.com were greeted with a personal letter from Jeff Bezos about the Kindle Fire, on the company’s website.


Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos introduces the world to the new Kindle Fire. And another salvo is fired in the tablet-computer wars…

As the tablet-computer wars continue to escalate, the question still remains: Can anyone top Apple’s iPad? For the time being, no. For those that don’t own an iPad, Amazon’s Kindle Fire offers some great incentives and looks like a solid piece of hardware. But for now, the iPad remains the king of the tablet throne. The iPad has charted spectacular sales, both the original iPad and the iPad 2. Thanks to Apple, learning app development and being able to understand programming for Google Android devices are now a game developer’s career requirements.

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posted by DMA Jordan in News Blog and have No Comments

Learn with the Apple iPad

Heading back to school is easy and more enjoyable when you have the right tools for the job. Gone are the days when we shopped for a Trapper Keeper at the K-Mart…but we’re still taking notebooks and tablets to school!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5i1Dyj5k1A

Today we’re learning with the Apple iPad, thanks to app development for iDevices. Apps that teach astronomy, biology, science and math are great for students. Why? Many of these apps feature interactive, animated 3D graphics – making learning even more entertaining and fun.

On an Evening in Roma
Take, for example, the Rome Virtual History app. Students can take a fantastic voyage to ancient Rome and tour the Colosseum and other famous landmarks in Italy – all without leaving a classroom. Or, if you do decide to take a field trip to Roma, the app also provides a virtual guide. The app is highly recommended by educators.


The Colosseum was originally built on marshy ground. Explore it, Circus Maximus and other famous locations in ROMA, Virtual History

A Star is Born
Want to explore the deep reaches of space? Check out Solar Walk ($9.99 Apple App Store), the first app in the AppStore with real 3D TV support. Solar Walk, like it’s cousin, Star Walk ($4.99, Apple App Store) – the interactive astrology guide – was the winner of the Apple Design Award 2010! And it’s been featured by Apple as a “Best App ” in 2009 and 2010 and even appears in the iPad TV commercials.


A view of Earth, the third rock from the Sun, from outer space. 

Take A Note
If you need to take notes in class, you can use Penultimate (.99 cents, Apple App Store). You can quickly take and manage separate notes and notebooks (as many as you can create), all with infinite pages. View your list by scrolling through your notebooks in grid view. Browse your pages, plus insert, delete, duplicate, and reorder pages however you want. Check out Apple’s best apps for learning.


We tested Penultimate using a Wacom stylus with  - both the app and accessory worked great for note taking! 

If you prefer a more traditional (i.e., old school) method of taking and keeping notes, try the Trapper Keeper…

What is a Trapper Keeper?
Before notebook computers, believe it or not, people actually used notebooks. I know paper may be a foreign concept to younger readers, but before iPads, packs of three-ring binder paper were what you stuffed into your book bag. The Trapper Keeper is a loose-leaf notebook binder system made by Mead, and it became famous for its various storage pockets (hence the title). It was popular with students during the mid-1970s and well into the 1990s. In fact, the Trapper Keeper is still selling. And there’s a whole store-load of accessories for it, too.

For today’s educators and students, tablet computers offer an amazing platform for delivering education and content. On a classroom desk or in a lecture hall, devices like the iPad are compact and easy to use. Videos and other visual media work better than traditional textbooks because they can demonstrate firsthand an experience or even an experiment.

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posted by DMA Jordan in Apple,News Blog and have No Comments