Pocket PC

The weather – an obsession?

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I am a self-confessed ‘follower’ of the weather. I love my weather apps and have been using them for years (well before the current app growth). Over the period I have used various programmes (as they were known before they became apps).

really?

My old favourite was Pocket Weather which I used for years on my pocket pc devices, it was able to draw down various weather feeds such as the BBC (always a good source?) and more importantly got the current weather via the METAR system, this provides hourly readings from weather stations (normally airfields, and is very accurate) .

When I moved to iPhone I lost pocket weather and had to find an alternative that was nice to use but also accurate. This was not as easy as it might sound as many of the weather apps (the apple one being an example) take their weather from US feeds which are unbelievable inaccurate on UK weather.

So after trying a number I settled upon Weatherpro which is accurate and easy to use – or has been to date!

Subsequently my old favourite Pocket Weather has come to iPhone and iPad so I use that as well (and I am involved with beta testing it again which is fun).

that's more like it!

However, when a weather app gives me an ‘unusual’ weather result I find it strangely un-settling, and this happened yesterday morning! It is currently very cold so when I looked at Weatherpro in the morning to see it say it was 2C was a surprise to say the least! I checked on Pocket Weather and it was much better minus 2C! And it is not just a matter of the minus being missed, it was 4C the evening before (but was actually below freezing)

My faith in Weatherpro has been shaken! This also has brought home to me what a sad person I must be when it comes to the weather (although I believe this is a ‘national trait’?) Is it normal to check the weather on your phone as soon as you wake up in the morning and before you draw the curtains?

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Apple iOS4, the start of something special?

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Well today Steve Jobs has introduced the new iPhone to the world – it is as expected (and leaked) a very ‘sexy’ looking thing which will without doubt sell like hot cakes. All previous versions on the iPhone have sold well, so why should this one be any different?

The answer is it won’t, but it now has a good reason to sell well apart from its looks and ‘trendiness’! The reason iOS4 (or iPhone operating system 4).

I am a long time user of PDA’s, starting with Psions, moving onto Pocket PC’s which have morphed over recent years into ‘smartphones’. If I am honest I hate that name, because a good ‘smartphone’ is so much more that a phone! In reality it is really a pocket computer which has a phone as part of its abilities! I tend to judge this type of machine by how it can fulfill a number of roles in organising and helping in my home and working life – a real PDA.

The first iPhone introduced in 2007 was really just a phone, it offered a lot but did not really deliver. It was not really up to business use, and was not adopted by that market – Blackberry and Pocket PC were still kings of that domain.

The second generation iPhone introduced in 2008 was the first to offer something to the business community – 3G connectivity and exchange sync (from Microsoft in reality). This was the first iPhone we used at work. It offered a lot but was not ‘complete’. It took a number of software upgrades before it finally delivered (OS3 being the big upgrade in 2009)  – both as a phone and as a PDA. We now had a tool that did not drop calls, had Apps that could be added to do tasks like minor word processing and spreadsheet work! It was now getting close to a Pocket PC.

The 3GS added speed and I was now sold. The user interface killed Pocket PC for me – the Apple OS is so much more user-friendly.

But, the new update to the newly named iOS4 is the final nail in the coffin for Microsoft’s Mobile 7 (likely to be still born?), and Blackberry (always a poor relative in my view). The other big competitor is Android, and I can see this surviving and prospering as it is an open format and very user-friendly.

iOS4 has been a long time coming – 3 years in reality. But it now offers a full suite of abilities to the iPhone. Most importantly it will work flawlessly out of the box, all Apple products do! Add to this that iPhone 4 is in reality the 3rd version of the iPhone – and we all know it is the third version of anything by Apple that really kicks!

I believe that today Steve Jobs has driven this market into a totally new sphere – and he knows it. His comments while demonstrating the new video call system summed it up;

” I grew up with the Jetsons and Star Trek communicators. I grew up dreaming about this stuff…”

 I am just not sure that the competition have realised it yet! I cannot wait to get my hands on iOS4 in two weeks time (and hopefully iPhone 4 shortly after). The mobile market is about to get the biggest shot in the arm it has had for a long time.

Its official I am now a true apple fanboy!

UPDATE 21.06.10

It’s here, it’s installed and it’s great.

Time to play with all the new features! And even better news we are getting iPhone 4’s at work  – hopefully in the next week or so!