New Playbook Details, Schiller's iPhone4 Tweet And iPad2 News - InformationWeek

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3/17/2011
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New Playbook Details, Schiller's iPhone4 Tweet And iPad2 News

BYTE Mobile Radio digs into the week's mobile news in third episode.

What a week in mobile. My co-host Craig Johnston and I, with the able help of regular guest and InformationWeek editorial director Fritz Nelson, are digging into mobile news every week in our regular 15-minute podcast.

Of course, it's not news that Apple's iPad2 is selling madly. Apple now is even having to tell retailers to stop freaking out. According to reports from around the web, Apple is urging retailers to wait a day after receiving the devices to put them on shelves. Racing inventory to shelves was causing messy records and all sorts of other unnecessary disorganization, excitement and confusion. Apple's advice: Take a breath. Good advice. I haven't seen retailers this manic since Windows 95, and that's saying a lot.

This week, Fritz got the chance to write about a teardown of the iPad2 with our colleagues at UBM Techinsights. Apple, mum about who actually manufactures its circuitry, used a Samsung-made A5 dual-processor, as well as Qualcomm and Broadcom circuitry. And yes, there's 512GB RAM in there. How does the iPad 2 perform in real life? We'll discuss the reviews, plus how it fares against the competition. That competition includes the upcoming RIM Blackberry Playbook, the Motorola Xoom and the Dell Streak.

Speaking of RIM and Motorola, the former held a webcast today, announcing a stronger vision for mobile cloud services, including a tighter partnership with Microsoft on its Office 365 product (the cloud-based "Office" suite that includes Sharepoint and Exchange Online). RIM also announced its new Blackberry Facebook app, which is in beta now. We'll talk about the what the cloud messaging means and its impact.

At this week's SxSW conference in Austin, RIM showed more of the Playbook than it has in the past, demo-ing it speedily moving between portrait and landscape mode. Neither the Motorola Xoom or the iPad 2 support Flash. Yet. The Xoom should have it shortly. Craig and Fritz will weigh in on the Xoom and their thoughts about its so-far sluggish sales. Will the cheaper wireless version due out next week make a difference? Listen to hear our take on this.

In other news, HP's new CEO Leo Apotheker came out of hiding this week to hold a big shindig for analysts this week. Fritz was there and our team was live blogging. There was a lot of talk about HP's recent acquisitions in the security space, but most interesting: HP announced it would offer an open cloud service for developers with an app store, likely for WebOS apps. HP is taking an admirably huge risk here with WebOS plans – having it run on phones, its upcoming tablets and PCs – internally, we hear HP is telling its employees that the only competitor to worry about is: Apple.

Apple's Phil Schiller tweeted this week that a white iPhone would be available this summer, leading many to believe that's the iPhone4. Look at Apple's product release cycles and it's easy to see that an iPhone5 should follow around late summer or fall, in time for the Christmas sales season. Does it make any sense to buy an iPhone4 and lock yourself into a major plan when the iPhone5 is coming out? Not for me.

And for the vast unwashed masses who don't carry iPhones, here's news: The HTC Thunderbolt, the long-awaited and much-rumored Verizon 4G phone, is out today. Look for a review soon here at BYTE Mobile Radio.

For BYTE Mobile Radio, the weekly podcast covering mobile for the mobile enthusiast, Informationweek and the new BYTE.com, I'm Gina Smith.

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