Click to listen to latest episode of the Today in iPhone Podcast

Links Mentioned in this Episode:
Podcasting News - The new Associated Press
24/7 Wall Street - For AT&T the iPhone is a bust
ZDNET - Analyst: Apple to offer iPhone on US carriers within a year
Businessweek - Apple Sept 9 event officially confirmed
PC World - Apples Sept 9 event 5 hot bets
Fast Company - 4 ways to make your iPhone Invincible
Apple - Message List iPhone 3GS screen freeze
AT&T - Forums on 3GS screen freeze
Cult of Mac - More evidence that snow leopard is a touchscreen OS
Surge for iPhone 3G and 3GS plus iPod touch
NJ.com - Rumor Mill makes cider out of Apple
9to5 Mac - iPhone 3.1 to ship next week
AT&T - Media kit - iPhone 3GS
Movie set to premiere on iPhone and iPod touch
RWW - Loopt launches first always on app
PC World - AT&T response to iPhone MMS irritation
Touch Arcade - C64 Emulator approved by Apple
Marco.org - iPod Touch predictions
IntoMobile - Spotify mobile now available in select countries
CNN / Fortune - Is the iPhone really the Paris Hilton of Mobile Phones?
9 to 5 Mac - iPod Touch with camera delayed?

Hardware Reviewed in this Episode:
Voyager 855 by Plantronics

Apps and Software Mentioned in this Episode:
Tii App
Loopt
Spotify
FWIX
Civilation Revolution
C64 Emulator - UPDATE now it is off the App store
NFL 2010 - Gameloft
Phone View


Tii Podcast App Bonus Tip:
How to change the broken glass on your iPhone 2G
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:57 AM
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When Apple made podcasting available on iTunes v4.9 back in the summer of 2005, Derek from Skepticality, myself and a few others tried to figure out Apple’s algorithm for ranking podcasts.  Thanks to an early bug in iTunes where you could unsubscribe and re-subscribe it allowed us to pick a few obscure podcasts and drive them up in the rankings and then see how long it took for them to drop and at what rate.  We were able to figure out that it was a seven day average with some weighted average put up front.  When Apple added Apps to iTunes and had a top 100 ranking I figured they probably were using the same or similar algorithm for rankings.  But to test my theory I needed an app in the app store and last month I was able to get the App for the Today in iPhone Podcast approved and in the App store.  The following is a graph charting the daily sales of the App vs the Peak ranking during that day in the Paid Productivity category.  



For a larger version click here

As expected the peak day for sales did not match up with the peak day for app ranking.  I tried plotting a weighted average with a few different formulas until I came to one that matched up pretty well and is a very simple algorithm. I am of the belief that simple answers are usually the correct ones – Some barber from the 14th century first figured that out.  The formula I found that matches up best to the movement of the Tii App in the rankings is:

(D1+D1+D1+D1+D2+D2+D2+D3+D3+D4+D5+D6+D7)/13

With D1 being the number of sales in the past 24 hours, D2 being the number of sales from 25 to 48 hours ago and so on.  

Granted you can’t prove this formula 100% as the actual rankings are also influenced by how well or not so well other apps around you are doing.  In other words you could hold your sales steady for two weeks straight and still see your App move up and down in the rankings as other apps around you have fluctuations.  That said when I plot the weighted average using the formula above vs. peak daily ranking you get the graph below:



For a larger version click here

As you can see it does match up pretty well.  So why do all this? Well one thing I am a geek and I love doing things like this.  But more importantly it tells you the importance of when you plan a PR / Marketing blitz for your app that you need to focus it almost all in a week’s period of time.  Don’t plan on doing one thing this weekend and another the weekend after and a third the weekend after that. Yes on going PR / Marketing is important as well, but you really need to do the majority of your PR / Marketing blitz in the first few days after you say go.  That is when you will get your best results for your efforts.  Don’t get me wrong I am not saying don’t bother doing PR and marketing after the first week - just that if you have a few “big things” planned make sure they happen at the same time.

Questions / Comments are welcome below - Spam is not.

Category:breaking news -- posted at: 2:56 PM
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Click to listen to latest episode of the Today in iPhone Podcast

Links Mentioned in this Episode:
The Register - Apple blogger legally unlocks iPhone
Awaiting Inspiration - Record iPhone Calls
InformationWeek - AT&T Mandates Data Plans for smartphones
WSJ - Jobs back at Apple focuses on new tablet
Techcrunch - Apple will approve Rhapsody's iPhone App
Poyner Online - AI's Morning Meeting
GigaOhm - How big is the Apple iPhone App Economy?
Mac Rumors - iPod Touch, Nano and Classic to get 3.2 MPix Camera
Reuters - French official to talk iPhone troubles with Apple
FreeAppAlert - Free iPhone apps that were paid iPhone Apps
Cheating the App Store - PR firm posts fake reviews
CNN - China Unicom to Launch 2 Versions of 3G iPhone in China
Business Insider - Apple's China iPhone deal not exclusive
Gizmodo - Apple may be working on XL Tablets running full Mac OS X
iLounge News - Apple Forcing removal of "free memory" app feature
London Bus Gives you a third eye
InformationWeek - Speech to Text coming to iPhone?
The iPhone FAQ - Apple Media Touch Tablet
GigaOhm - The iPhone App Market Size Debate
Gizmodo - Are iPhone really exploding all over the world?
CNET - Apple says its not to blame for "exploding" iPhones
CNET - Apple AT&T face yet another iPhone MMS lawsuit
Bjango - iStat Help
Victim uses GPS to track down robbers
Engadget - Maybe that iPod Touch with a camera is real after all


Apps and Software Mentioned in this Episode:
QuickVoice2Text
Navigon USA
GMAP US East
Tom Tom US and Canada
CoPilot
Motion X GPS
Yelp
London Bus


Tii Podcast App Bonus Tip:
How to easily move up to 4 apps at a time from screen to screen

Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:07 PM
Comments[0]


Click to listen to latest episode of the Today in iPhone Podcast

Links Mentioned in this Episode:
Wikipedia Launches Official iPhone App
Washington Post - Feds may be investigating Apples request for Palm
CNET - AT&T Steps up 850MHz roll out for enhanced 3G
iSmashphone - Everything you need to know about iPhone Video
iLounge - iPhone 3GS capable of 720p and 1080p hi-def playback?
USAToday - AT&T to take a fresh look at internet calling for iPhone
Apple Answers the FCC's Questions
The iPhone Blog - Apple iPhone is a restaurant not a super market
Dailymobile - DIY iPhone / iPod Dock
Groovin with the Grizas - An App for all iPhoners
4Wheelsnews - Mini Cooper iPhone App
Youtube - Evilgummyworm2 review of Tii App
Dealextreme - Phone Tools Page
Daves Lounge Podcast
Washingtonpost - Ultimate iPhone App organizer Hits the Web


Apps and Software Mentioned in this Episode:
WikiPedia The App
Wiki Tap
Wikipanion
Mini Cooper App
WarFare
MOVEMENT

Tii Podcast App Bonus Tip:
How to Get 12+ App Screens in OS 3.0
Category:general -- posted at: 1:46 PM
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Click to listen to latest episode of the Today in iPhone Podcast

Links Mentioned in this Episode:
Techree.com - 5 Million iPhones not shipping to China Unicom
CNET - Borders Survey presumes a futer iPad ereader
MobileCrunch - iPhone 3GS best selling cell phone in Japan in July
AllThingsD - Apple Keynote Sept 9 - No Tablet expected
Techtree.com - iPhone OS 3.0 does not delete emails
Wired.com - iPhone dethrones Rebel XTi as most popular camera on flickr
MacWorld - Play internet radio in the background
BusinessWeek - Can the Apple Touch sell the Tablet?
Youtube - How to turn your iPod Touch into an iPhone
iPhone icons all over the place in V 3.0
Apple Support - iPhone 3.0 Apps are wrong icons
Gethightech.com - iPhone 3G Touch panel


Apps and Software Mentioned in this Episode:
Tii App
Trip Cubby
Gas Cubby
Tripit and Travel Tracker Pro
ColorSplash
PhoneZap - Cydia
PhoneZap - iTunes

Tii Podcast App Bonus Tip:
Ten Hidden Features of OS 3.0
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:26 AM
Comments[0]


Click to listen to latest episode of the Today in iPhone Podcast

Thanks to Marta from Riverside CA for the artwork for this episode.

Links Mentioned in this Episode:
TUAW - T-mobile stops offering prepaid sidekick data service to iPhone
MacRumors - Push Notification comes to eBay iPhone App
Walletpop - Top 10 iPhone Apps for Back to school
BetaNews - AT&T and Apple hit with class action over MMS
PHP Princess.net - How to display 11+ Pages of Apps
CNET - Apple Planning September Event?
YouTube - iPhone 3GS shot with 9 MM and then burned
i4U News - Palm Pre Sales Nosedive
Register - Pre Sales Plunge after iPhone 3GS arrival
Fortune.com - iPhone vs Pre - Satisfaction Bakeoff
iFones.com - Folder Buddy 50% discount
YouMail
Favicon.cc - Favicon.ico Generator


Apps and Software Mentions in this Episode:
YouMail
eBay
3G unrestrict - Cydia
iData Mobile
Search - Cydia
Match 2  Paid  Free
Folder Buddy
Tii App


Tii Podcast App Bonus Tip:
Opening Safari with a Blank Page

Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:54 PM
Comments[0]


Click to listen to latest episode of the Today in iPhone Podcast

Links Mentioned in this Episode:
Mac Rumors - Apple Enables Promo Codes for iPhone Apps Rated 17+
Gadgetvenue - iPhone Document Scanner
ABC News - New Application brings iPhone into the Bedroom
Apple - Jailbreaking is source of instability and disruptions of service
TextPlus powered by Gogil
Mac News - If Apple's Tablet is a train wreck we will never see it
PC World - iPhone 3.0.1 update Patches SMS Flaw
Washingtonpost.com - Apple AT&T questioned about Google Voice rejection
iPhone Club - How to make your iPhone look like a Palm Pre
Washintonpost.com - Why the FCC wants to smash open the iPhone
Fast Company - Seven more reasons to ditch your iPhone
Apple - About the security content of iPhone OS 3.0.1
USPTO - Apple Trademark of the name Tabletmac
DailyTech - Apple tries to silence owner of fiery iPod
Exploding iPod - Apple denies sending gagging order
Business Insisder - Why a Netflix streaming iPhone App could happen
Endgadget - Apple phasing out iPhone 3G
Boy Genius Report - Apple iTunes 9 details app organization
Crunchgear - Rogers confirms inexplicable 8GB iPhone 3GS - Not
Marco.org - Planet Calacanis
Youtube - App Management in iTunes Concept Video
Computerworld Blogs - Tablet is 10 inch iPhone
Podcasting News - Five Reasons the Apple Tablet will Rock
Wired.com - Dear Tablet Naysayers
Techtree.com - iPhone OS 3.1 update points to iProd
Fortune - Apples $1.2 Billion Tablet Computer
eweek - Apple Tablet could shake up netbook market
My App Store Frustation - Today in iPhone


Apps and Software Mentioned in this Episode:
Folderbuddy
Passion
TextPlus


Tii Podcast App Bonus Tip:
Playing Audio in the Background
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:15 AM
Comments[0]

Let me tell you about my troubles getting my iPhone App into the App Store.  Now I don't know if these issues are because I called out those in the App store a "few" times on my show for approving apps that promoted killing babies, killing your classmates or getting stoned.  Or the times I called them out for not approving one of many different apps they should have (Google Voice, SpoofApp, Podcaster).  Again I don't know that this was them being vengeful or just the normal path people have to take to get approved. But I know which way I am leaning right now.

June 3rd 2009:
It all started back with the submission on June 3rd of the Today in iPhone App.  Which offers up instant access to all the back episodes of the Today in iPhone Podcast - plus bonus content to those with the app. Plus a bunch of other things which are meaningless to mention until the app gets approved. 

June 20th 2009:
The first rejection came on June 20th.  Reason for the rejection was:

Your application, Today in iPhone App, cannot be posted to the iTunes App Store because of iPhone usage in your product name.  We want to remind you of the importance of following Apple's posted Guidelines for Using Apple's Trademarks and Copyrights: http://www.apple.com/legal/trademark/guidelinesfor3rdparties.html

Of course at the time - Apple themselves had just had their iPhone Trademark Rejected again by the USPTO.  See this blog post link for more info on that -  Update on Apple's Futile attempt at trademarking the name - iPhone

We changed the name to the Tii App and resubmitted.  After all they said it was an issue with the name and per their instructions we changed the name to remove "iPhone" - you know that name they had no legal right to - but hey it is their store and we will play by their rules.  Which they said are:

For example, the following are acceptable:
GreatApp - with tagline "for iPhone"
GreatApp - with tagline "iPhone edition"
GreatApp - with tagline "iPhone version"

The following are not acceptable:
iPhone GreatApp
iPhoneGreatApp
GreatiPhoneApp

So I guess the big issue was I used the word "in" instead of "for"  but splitting hairs here so lets move on.

July 2nd 2009:
Then on July 2nd we got our second rejection of the App.  

Your application, Tii Podcast App, cannot be posted to the iTunes App Store because of iPhone usage in your product name.  We want to remind you of the importance of following Apple's posted Guidelines for Using Apple's Trademarks and Copyrights:

Same as before - WTF we thought.  They included a screen shoot





Now we had changed the icon image to remove the word iPhone - but we had not changed the loader image - which still said Today in iPhone.  After all their original rejection said it was an issue with the App Name - not anything to do with loader images.  Again forget the fact they don't have legal rights to the name iPhone.  So we changed the loader image and again resubmitted.  

July 13th 2009:
Then comes the July 13th rejection.  

Your application, Tii Podcast App, cannot be posted to the App Store at this time because it does not achieve the core functionality described in your marketing materials, or release notes.  Applications must adhere to the iPhone Human Interface Guidelines as outlined in the iPhone Developer Program License Agreement section 3.3.5.

When the device has a cellular network connection via Edge or 3G, the application displays a message stating that internet access is required, as seen in the attached screenshot. This behavior may lead to user confusion. Note that the application works properly with a Wi-Fi connection. This review was conducted on iPhone 3G running iPhone OS 3.0.

This was a big WTF moment - until we realized this time Apple just screwed up in their testing and did not actually have a good cell connection.  Blame AT&T on this one also, as the App works great over 3G and edge if you have a 3G and Edge data connection - which clearly they did not have when they tested the app.  But you know they are under a lot of pressure to get lots of apps approved and don't have time to see if the issue is on their end or ours.  So we just re-submitted the app with no changes. A common thing to do with the App store I have been told by other developers, when you feel the issue is on Apples side.  Also there was no longer any issues with the Trademark BS - so that was a positive.  

July 17th 2009:
Then on July 17th (Quick Turnaround) we get the following:

Your application, Tii Podcast App, cannot be posted to the iTunes App Store because of iPhone usage in your product name.  We want to remind you of the importance of following Apple's posted Guidelines for Using Apple's Trademarks and Copyrights:

This time they were pinging us for the use of the phrase "Today in iPhone" that is in the title of the episode in the RSS feed.





At this point I was really feeling like they were just Fraking with me.  But they are the eight thousand pound gorilla and we sucked it up and created a new feed just for the App - where we removed "Today in iPhone" from all the episodes and the title in the feed.  Even in the descriptions for the episodes.  And once again we resubmitted.  

August 4th 2009:
Then on August 4th came this reply:

Thank you for submitting Tii Podcast App to the App Store. We've reviewed Tii Podcast App and determined that we cannot post this version of your iPhone application to the App Store at this time because it is not appropriately rated. Our review indicates that the application content is not consistent with the current rating. Tii Podcast App allows unfiltered access to the internet, where content with mature or suggestive themes can be accessed. Applications must be rated accordingly for the highest level of content that the user is able to access.

See one of the features in the App is a self enclosed browser for visiting my website. And I put in an App Age rating of 4+.  Actually have had 5 year olds call into the show.  I keep my show and website as clean as possible (This is true back to my Podcast411 days).  I beep out every word your Pastor would not use and a few he / she does.  I am as conservative as it comes with the language - sans the borrowing of the word Frak from BSG - But that is usually reserved to talk about Apple or AT&T.  But the reasoning for the rejection is that my App accesses outside content - Yes My outside content.  Which I make sure is clean - There is no way to type in a URL on the browser in the App. 

Apple has pushed others into changing their App to a 17+ rating and I don't want to make this a 17+ app.  So we just resubmitted the App with a 9+ rating.  Next will be 12+ - Which is the same rating as a certain tech Podcast App where they have heavy Alcohol  consumption.  Not going to name names here - we could do a whole post on the inconsistencies of the App store approvals - and many others have.  But if that App is approved at 12+ and you watch / listen to that podcast.  There is no way our App should not be approved at 4+ or now 9+.

In closing this has been a long and very frustrating process and when I talk to developers (which I do a lot of) I hear similar stories of frustration.   I have said it many times on the show - Apple needs to get better control of their App store approval process.  And now having walked the mile+ in the shoes of those developers that vent to me I am even more convinced of that.

I will update this post with all the future reasons for rejection that Apple can think of for my App.
Category:breaking news -- posted at: 6:02 PM
Comments[1]

Update 1: You can still use Redsn0w 0.8 as per the tutorial from July 2nd post below.  This according to the folks over at the iphone dev team.

Apple released iPhone OS 3.0.1 as expected and it patches the Text Hack Vulnerability highlighted this week at Black Hat.  If you are not jailbreaking your phone - then you should go now and update to 3.0.1 - It is available by checking for an update in iTunes with you iPhone connected.   And yes the Tethering Hack from help.benm.at - still works just fine.  Multiple confirmations on that. 

For those that are jailbroken - read this over on QuickPwn

More info to come on the jailbreak side of things. 


Category:breaking news -- posted at: 5:08 AM
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Click to listen to latest episode of the Today in iPhone Podcast

Thanks to Kate in PA for the Artwork for todays episode

Links Mentioned in this Episode:
CNET - Apple releases iPhone OS 3.1 beta 3
Daring Fireball - AT&T to blame for Google Voice
PC World - iPhone SMS Attack to be unleashed at Black Hat
Wired.com - iPhone Jailbreaking could crash cellphone towers
NYTimes - Texting raises crash Risk 23 times study finds
Technology News - Google has no Voice at the App Store
Sean Kovacs - Google Voice Mobile is getting pulled from App Store
Apple blocks google voice app
Daily Tech - Google Voice App rejected by Apple, AT&T
Mac Rumors - Apple seeds iphone OS 3.1 Beta 3
My Digital Life - How to update and upgrade iPod touch for free
Gizmodo - Apple Tablet reportedly priced between iPhone and macbook
Forbes - Apple Tablet could hurt iPhone developers
PC World - AT&T CEO say exclusive iPhone deal won't last forever
AP News - Palm Pre reconnects with iTunes
Apple Investigated Foxconn Complaints Before iPhone Suicide Case
Mac Rumors - Next-Generation iPod Touch & iPod Nano Cases Surface
Fortune - Where in the world are those 18.6 mil ipod touches
TG Daily - iPhones growth STUNTED by AT&T deal
CNET - Jailbreak causes AIM to misfire
New iPod Touch with Camera / Mic already in Production


Apps and Software Mentioned in this Episode:
Stitcher
Trapster
Swine Flute
AT&T Navigator
Splojit
Must Eat Birds
TextFree
TextFree - Lite

Tii Podcast App Bonus Tip:
Emailing more than one Photo from a single email.
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:33 AM
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