Enable Panorama Mode in iOS5 Camera App Without Jailbreaking It

A few days ago, it was reported that the iOS5 built-in camera app has a hidden Panorama mode. Sadly, to enable the mode, users needed to jailbreak their iDevice, which many users might not be interested in doing.

Thankfully, iDevice owners can now enable the Panorama mode in the iOS5 camera app, without jailbreaking it. They just need to modify their iDevice backup, to enable the feature.

Here is how you can enable panorama mode in iOS5 without jailbreaking your iDevice -:

1) Backup your iDevice via iTunes. Then proceed to download and install iBackupBot from here.

2) Then launch the iBackupBot app on your PC or Mac. Users now need to point the app to their latest iDevice backup. The backup file is usually stored in ~/Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup in a Mac, and Windows users need to head over to  C:\Documents and Settings\USERNAME\Application Data\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup to find all the backups of their iDevice.

3) Select your latest iDevice backup, and then search for Library/Preferences/com.aaple.mobileslideshow.plist. Open the file, and then add the following line of code-:


Now, just save the file and then restore the same backup using iTunes.

You have now successfully enabled Panorama mode on your iOS5 iDevice camera app, without jailbreaking it!

Keep in mind that the Panorama mode will only work for iDevices with a gyroscope, which include the iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPad 2 and the latest gen iPod Touch.

South Korean iPhone 4S Sales Beat Samsung’s Galaxy S II

Last month, Apple  announced  a brand new version of its iPhone iPhone 4S. The iPhone 4S features the new A5 processor, a redesigned antenna, an 8-megapixel camera that can shoot 1080p high-definition video, and supports AirPlay mirroring. People were expecting it to be the iPhone 5″ and folks weren’t expecting it to sell well. A few days after launch,  Reuters  reported  that AT&T is seeing an  extraordinary demandfor the new iPhone 4S, which became available for preorder at 12:01 am Pacific time on Friday, October 7th. Then, Apple blew everyone’s mind away when they announced that they sold 4 million iPhone 4Ses in just three days! This amazing sale number was generated just in the US. Speaking of sale numbers, when was the last time an Android or Windows Phone 7 sold that many in three days?

iPhone 4S

Apple has been continuing the international iPhone 4S rollout, and recently they made the iPhone 4S available in South Korea with carriers KT and SK Telecom. Local news site  Chosunilbo  reports that combined sales of the new iPhone 4S from South Korean carriers KT and SK Telecom reached 200,000 units when pre-orders opened on Friday. Just like when pre-orders opened in the US, due to  unexpectedly high traffic the companies’ websites crashed at one point.

200,000 sounds amazing, eh? Not so fast! What’s even more amazing is that first day South Korean sales of the iPhone 4S  beat those of Samsung’s copycat Galaxy S II. Samsung’s Galaxy S II only raked in  120,000 over three days  in its native country despite accumulating 3 million pre-orders worldwide after being launched in April. Ironic, haha. The demand for the iPhone 4S in the region outpaced pre-orders for the previous generation iPhone 4 in the region, which totaled 130,000 in August 2010.

Unfortunately, the report also says that the company that isn’t copying Apple  is still considering whether to file an injunction that would ban Korean sales of Apple’s device as part of its worldwide patent battle against Apple. Honestly, it sounds like they are desperate since Apple is raking in 52% of mobile profits  while they are making a loss.


Surprise! Surprise! Google Chairman Eric Schmidt Tells US Senators Apple’s Siri Could Pose “Competitive Threat”

Google.com is something we use on a daily basis to find answers to our questions, but now thanks to Apple’s Siri this is quickly changing. Siri is a personal assistant in iOS and uses natural language processing to answer questions. Many “pundits” and consumers thought Siri was a gimmick, but in reality that opinion is quickly changing and the way we search for things is changing too. In fact, Eric Schmidt, Google’s chairman and former chief executive, admitted to the U.S. Senate antitrust subcommittee that Siri is a “significant development” in search and could pose a threat to Google and the company’s core business. Wait a minute, Eric thinks Google’s core business is search when in reality they are an ad company? Might have been the case nearly a decade ago, but no longer is. 97% of Google’s revenue is brought in via ads.

iPhone 4S Siri

When a “gimmicky” feature from Apple can get Eric Schmidt to say such words, you know the company is terrified. Neowin.net reports that Schmidt’s  comments came in the form of a statement to the subcommittee in response to questions from the senators after a hearing in September. He specifically called out Siri as a new development that might replace Google’s search engine. Might!? More like it will. Siri is making consumers quickly transition from search engines to answer engines.

Schmidt even went as far as to cite two publications for calling Siri a “Google killer” and Apple’s “entry point” into the search engine business. But wait! Siri is a joke, remember? In addition, Schmidt seems to be putting his foot in his mouth. He also  backpedaled from a previous statement in September 2010 where he had denied that Apple and Facebook were a “competitive threat.”

“My statement was clearly wrong,” he said. “Apple’s Siri is a significant development—a voice-activated means of accessing answers through iPhones that demonstrates the innovations in search.”

“Google has many strong competitors and we sometimes fail to anticipate the competitive threat posed by new methods of accessing information,” Schmidt added

Ironically, Android’s chief Andy Rubin dissed Siri last month saying that he doesn’t  believe that phones should be assistants and doubted whether people should communicate with their phones. That’s what we call hypocrisy at its best, folks!




Apple Confirms iOS 5 Update To Address Battery Life Issues

iPhone 4S battery specs

Last week, we reported that the  The Guardian had received word from a customer that Apple had contacted him regarding poor battery life. He was asked to install a monitoring program on his phone. Using the program, Apple engineers hoped to  be able to use the diagnostics to determine what was causing shorter battery life for some users.  A senior engineer at Apple contacted the person who wrote a post online, and indicated that  the company was contacting users to resolve the problem.

Today, Apple has confirmed that they had found issues in iOS 5 that  are causing some iPhone owners to experience poor battery life with their iPhone running its latest software. The Wall Street Journal‘s Ina Fried published a statement from Apple, which said:

A small number of customers have reported lower than expected battery life on iOS 5 devices. We have found a few bugs that are affecting battery life and we will release a software update to address those in a few weeks.”

In addition, Apple has released beta iOS 5.0.1 build 9a402 for developers to begin testing the new update on iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Apple says that the new build “contains improvements and other bug fixes including:

  • Fixes bugs affecting battery life
  • Adds Multitasking Gestures for original iPad
  • Resolves bugs with Documents in the Cloud
  • Improves voice recognition for Australian users using dictation
  • Contains security improvements
  • iOS 5.0.1 beta introduces a new way for developers to specify files that should remain on device, even in low storage situations.”
I myself have experienced battery life issues with the iPhone 4S, but now I’m glad that Apple’s working on a fix. See, this is another thing I love about Apple. They care about their customers and will do whatever it takes to make them happy.

Apple Engineers Working with iPhone 4S Users to Fix Battery Life Issues

I love my recently purchased iPhone 4S. However, I do have a complaint, and that’s battery life. Battery life of the iPhone 4S sucks. Period. In fact, it just isn’t me who’s complaining. Thankfully, Apple has responded to complaints of battery life issues with the iPhone 4S.

iPhone 4S battery specs

Today, a new report from The Guardian reveals that one user said that he was contacted by Apple regarding poor battery life, and  was asked to install a monitoring program on his phone. Using this program, Apple engineers hope to  be able to use the diagnostics to determine what is causing shorter battery life for some users. The report suggested that the problems are far “unexplained”.  The user noted a battery drain of 10% per hour even in standby mode. In addition, he was able to replicate the issue with all features such as Siri and location services turned off, and even on a relatively clean phone with no apps installed, suggesting that the battery drain was coming from a core functionality on the device.

A senior engineer at Apple contacted the person who wrote a post online, and indicated that  the company was contacting users to resolve the problem. Unfortunately, the representative at Apple  also allegedly admitted that the company isn’t “close to finding a fix.” Even though the company isn’t close to finding a fix, I’m glad they are working on it. This shows they care about their customers unlike some other companies. (*cough*Google*cough*)

“I then got a call from a senior [Apple] engineer who said he had read my post and was ‘reaching out’ to users for data and admitted this was an issue (and that they aren’t close to finding a fix!) and asked lots of questions about my usage and then asked if he could install the file below and that he would call back the day after to retrieve the info. I extracted the file from my Mac after a sync and emailed it to him. He was incredibly helpful and apologetic in the typical Apple way!”

I guess, in a way, iPhone 4S owners shouldn’t be complaining because a fix is on the way. If this was an Android, such an issue would have never got fixed.

Apple Advertises Siri with First iPhone 4S TV Ad

You know the phone that was considered to be a flop the moment it was announced, but turned out to sell 4 million in just three days without a single advertisement? Well guess what, the company behind the doomed phone has finally released an awesome new ad for the phone. Television networks begun airing the first commercial for the iPhone 4S, with the primary focus being on Siri (Apple’s new personal assitant feature).  In the past, Apple has created ads to advertise a specific feature of a device in the past.

The ad begins with the Siri interface and then switches to closeups of many people submitting requests to Siri. Every request is something different and demonstrates the full potential of Siri. Some of the examples mentioned are, “We have a flat tire,” “I’m locked out” and “What does a weasel look like?”. Each Apple ad seems communicate emotion, and this one does it again from a personal element to the device.


Apple’s competitors have called the service useless. Earlier this week, Android’s boss Andy Rubin said that he doesn’t believe  that phones should serve as assistants (*chuckles*). In reality, we all know that he means it is only a matter of time until Google copies Apple’s Siri. In addition, Microsoft’s Windows Phone head Andy Lee said that Siri “isn’t super useful”. Both of these statements should be taken with a pinch of salt.

It should also be noted that Apple has successful demonstrated a feature that acts like a robot, but without a robot in the ad (*stares at Google*). Brilliant, just brilliant.

How Apple Captures A Majority of the Total Profits in the Smartphone Industry

iPhone 4S Components Cost $188, Same as iPhone 4

There’s a reason why Apple has more than 50% of the total profits of the smartphone industry, despite having a much smaller market share. It’s this:

After the Apple iPhone 4 was released last year, iSuppli reported that the total cost of its components was $188. Today, iSuppli revealed the cost of the components used in the iPhone 4S which was launched last week, and it’s the same as that of the iPhone 4 – $188.

Despite having much more powerful hardware, the total cost of components for the iPhone 4S is the same as that of the iPhone 4. This is not only a testament to the generalized form of Moore’s law, but also to the operational genius that is Tim Cook.

iPhone 4S Launch by Tim Cook

The iPhone 4S, like the iPhone 4 at launch, will have minimum gross hardware margins of more than 65%, with the total cost of components and manufacturing coming to $196 for the 16 GB iPhone 4S.

Here’s what its gross profit margins will be on each of these devices:

16 GB iPhone 4S: 67%
32 GB iPhone 4S: 69%
64 GB iPhone 4S: 68%

Apple makes more than $400 on each iPhone 4S unit it sells.

Such margins are unheard of in any industry as competitive as the smartphone industry. Apple is playing in a highly competitive market, yet it’s making profits as if it were a monopoly.

Choosing the same design and some of the same components as the iPhone 4 for the iPhone 4S has enabled Apple to reduce its overall cost of manufacturing the device.

Kudos to Tim Cook and Apple!

Samsung Galaxy Nexus vs Apple iPhone 4S

Apple launched the new iPhone 4S earlier this month, while Samsung and Google launched their new flagship smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, today. The iPhone 4S had a slow start, but it has been showing some great sales numbers, with over 4 million sold in the launch weekend.

While the iPhone 4S is a significant improvement over the iPhone 4 internally, I have a few gripes with the display size, the low amount of RAM and the lack of a new design.

Google’s new Galaxy Nexus comes with the new Android Ice Cream Sandwich, which is supposed to unify Android on tablets and smartphones.

Samsung Galaxy Nexus vs Apple iPhone 4S

In this post, I will try to compare the Samsung Galaxy Nexus with the Apple iPhone 4S based on the information we have available right now. It may not be a very accurate guide, but it should give you a good idea about which phone you should buy.


The Samsung Galaxy Nexus sports a new design and is slimmer than most new smartphones, including the iPhone 4S. It has dimensions of 135.5 x 67.9 x 8.9 mm and weighs 135 gms. In comparison, the iPhone 4S has dimensions of 115.2 x 58.6 x 9.3 mm. It weighs 140 gms. Despite being much bigger than the iPhone 4S, it is a tad slimmer.

I, for one, prefer the Samsung Galaxy Nexus to the Apple iPhone 4S, at least when it comes to design. Judging from the initial reviews, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus seems to have great build quality as well.

When it comes to design, I would definitely go with the Galaxy Nexus.


The display is one of the strongest features in favor of the Galaxy Nexus. It comes with a 4.65 inch Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels. This is one of the highest resolution displays seen in smartphones.

On the other hand, the Apple iPhone 4S comes with a 3.5 inch IPS LCD retina display with a resolution of 960 x 640 pixels, the same as the iPhone 4.

When it comes to the display, the Galaxy Nexus beats the iPhone 4S in terms of every parameter – size, resolution and display quality.

The Galaxy Nexus is the clear winner here.


The Apple iPhone 4S runs the latest version of iOS – iOS 5. The Samsung Galaxy Nexus runs the latest version of Android – Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.

Both are excellent operating systems and come with tons of new features. There isn’t much you would miss with either one. This one is completely subjective. Just for the record, I prefer Android.

Additionally, Apple has a much better selection of apps and games, but I have been able to find whatever apps I most need in Android as well.

The iPhone 4S may have a slight edge here.


It’s a bit complicated when it comes to the hardware. The iPhone 4S comes with the new Apple A5 processor clocked at 800 MHz (same as the iPad 2) and a PowerVR SGX543MP2 GPU. The Galaxy Nexus comes with a 1.2 GHz TI OMAP 4460 processor and a PowerVR SGX540. The iPhone 4S has only 512 MB of RAM, while the Galaxy Nexus comes with 1 GB of RAM.

Going by the specs, it may seem that the Galaxy Nexus has a slight edge here. The iPhone 4S has better graphics, while the Galaxy Nexus seems to have a faster processor and more RAM. However, the overall processor-graphics-RAM combo in the iPhone 4S is more powerful than in the Galaxy Nexus.

Apple has completely optimized the iPhone 4S to run iOS 5, and it will presumably be much faster and responsive than the Galaxy Nexus running Android, despite it having more RAM and a bulkier processor.

The jury is still out on this one, but I would go with the iPhone 4S on this one.


Samsung Galaxy Nexus – 5 MP camera with autofocus and flash.

Apple iPhone 4S – 8 MP camera with autofocus and flash.

I don’t know why Google and Samsung skimped on this one. This is one area where the iPhone 4S clearly beats the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. The iPhone 4S has possibly the best smartphone camera right now. All camera samples of the iPhone 4S suggest so. Meanwhile, the Galaxy Nexus can hardly compete with the Galaxy S II, let alone the iPhone 4S.

The iPhone 4S wins this round!

Other Stuff

The Galaxy Nexus will come with LTE connectivity. The iPhone 4S tops out at HSPA. I wouldn’t lend much weight to this point though.

The battery life in the iPhone 4S will presumably be much better than the battery life in the Galaxy Nexus, thanks to the more optimized software, lack of LTE, smaller display and other factors.


Both the iPhone 4S and the Galaxy Nexus are excellent phones. They are the best smartphones on the planet right now. This is not the most accurate comparison of the two, but it should give you a pretty good idea of which one you want to buy.

I would go with a Samsung Galaxy Nexus mainly due to the excellent display (I watch a lot of movies and read a lot on my device). If you want a better camera, more apps and a better gaming experience, go with the iPhone 4S.

Again, it’s subjective. You can’t go wrong with either one.

Apple Says Its Retail Stores Now Require Reservation for iPhone 4S Buyers

Two weeks ago, Apple  announced  a brand new version of its iPhone iPhone 4S.    The iPhone 4S features the new A5 processor, a redesigned antenna, an 8-megapixel camera that can shoot 1080p high-definition video, and supports AirPlay mirroring. People were expecting it to be the iPhone 5″ and folks weren’t expecting it to sell well. Just days after,  Reuters  reported  that AT&T is seeing an  extraordinary demandfor the new iPhone 4S, which became available for preorder at 12:01 am Pacific time on Friday, October 7th. AT&T revealed that  they have seen over 200,000 preorders for the iPhone 4S in the first 12 hours of sale.  Apple  announced  that the iPhone 4S sold one million preorders in its first 24 hours of availability, setting a new record for the company.

iPhone 4S reserveIt took 74 days for the iPhone to hit a million sales. The iPhone 4S took just one.  Today, Apple announced that the company had sold more than 4 million units of the iPhone 4S. In addition, now Apple says that customers looking  to purchase a new iPhone 4S from its US or Canadian based retail outlets will first be asked to make a reservation online. This suggests that there’s a huge demand  for a phone that was considered doomed the moment it was announced.

Apple’s “how-to-buy” webpage for iPhone now says that customers can check back online after 9 p.m. where they can attempt to make a reservation for pick up the following day. Customers can also check stock availability at each store before they make a reservation, and must select which carrier, color, and capacity they require.

In addition,  Apple is putting the restrictions in other countries as well, noting that only on-contract phones are available to walk-in customers, while both on-contract and SIM-free models can be purchased by reserving the night before.

The iPhone 4S is  currently available  in the U.S., Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan and the U.K., with availability coming to 22 more countries by Oct. 28, and more than 70 countries by the end of the year.

Samsung Galaxy S II vs. iPhone 4S Drop Test; The Former Survives Again!

Even before the iPhone 5 err…iPhone 4S was announced, it was being compared to the hottest Android phone on the planet the Samsung Galaxy S II. Interested readers can find our spec comparison of both the phones here.

Now, some people were not content with just the spec comparison, and decided to do a drop test of both the phones. While the Samsung Galaxy S II is mainly made of plastic and gorilla glass, the iPhone 4S like its predecessor (iPhone4) is made up primarily of glass.

Below is the drop-test video (Faint hearted readers or die-hard Apple lovers are recommended not to watch this video):

In the drop test, both the phones were dropped from waist height and shoulder height. In all the cases, the Samsung Galaxy S II survived the fall with just minor scratches. Sadly, in all the cases the iPhone 4S glass gave away way too easily. iPhone 4S owners, I will strongly recommend you to use a bumper case with your handset, if are not already doing so.

If the above drop test is not enough for you, around a month back I did an unintentional drop test on my Galaxy S II, where the phone fell 15foot down straight onto a cemented floor. Thankfully, the phone survived the drop with just a minor scratches. Absolutely, no dents or broken glass like the iPhone 4S.

It does not matter how much one remains careful with his or her phone, it will fall down once from your hand, intentionally or unintentionally. While the Samsung Galaxy S II will easily survive such a drop, iPhone 4S owners better get ready to buy a new phone.