Even better text shortcuts

The built in iOS/OS X keyboard shortcuts are pretty useful, allowing you to type something like “omw” and the system will turn it into “On my way!” By accident, I learned a great way to make this feature even more useful  using alternate characters.

If I wanted to create a shortcut for the name of my death metal band, Never-Never Land, I can create a shortcut that turns “ñn” into “Never-Never Land” (To type an alternate letter, you just have to press and hold a letter. This can turn your “n” into and “ñ” and so on).

The real beauty comes from the predictive keyboard features. If I just type “nn” the system will autocorrect the first “n” into an “ñ” and then instantly engage the shortcut and “Never-Never Land” will appear.

How were my predictions?

I only scored 2 points this time. Here is the recap:

  • I said that Zach and Rene had most things pegged. They did. +1
  • No NFC +1
  • No iPad Mini +1
  • iPod touch +1
  • Old Model touch <$200 -1 (They just kept the $200 model at the same price and the new one becomes a premium choice.)
  • No “pipeline” comment -1
  • I got the “spirit” of the camera right, but it didn’t get 10 MP. +0
  • And the Front facing camera did get 720p. (Hooray!) +1
  • No iPhone 5 specific software feature. -1

This last point is the only thing that disappoints me about the iPhone 5. Don’t get me wrong, I am not disappointed by the phone. I am disappointed that I didn’t get a surprise at the announcement. Petty, I know. I am quite happy that my wife and friends on the 4S get to have all of the software features that iPhone 5 users will get.

Also, no luck on my bonus prediction. I thought AirPlay direct might be one of the ways they helped calm users disgruntled by the new port. Hopefully someday.

How were my predictions?

Tim Cook did MC +1 point
More video clips +1
More SVP time -1
Incredible numbers +1
The “one video” was the Grand Central Apple store +1
No talk of iBooks -1
iPad 3 it was not -1
Theme was “Post PC Revolution, not “high definition,” even though it did come up a lot -1
Retina, DPI +2
Front facing 720 Camera -1
Visual software from Apple (iPhoto) and Autodesk (Sketchbook) +1
I said

It will have the A6 chip “to power the amazing graphics” which will not be quad core.

So I was wrong about the name, right about the marketing message, and half right about the architecture. The processor itself is not quad-core, but the graphics processor is quad-core. So 0 Points.
Better back camera +1
No Accessory -1
1080p Apple TV +1
iCloud improvements like movies in iCloud +1

Rachael’s prediction, which I said was wrong actually came in the form of photo “beaming” between iOS devices in iPhoto, so +1 for Rachael, -1 for me.

So I get a total of 5 points. Unless you count the that I omitted mentioning 4G LTE. I should have guessed that. Not sure how good of a score it is, but I am glad to be in positive territory.

iPad 3 Predictions

Tim Cook will MC the event, and we will see more video clips and SVP stage time than Tim time. He will begin by rattling off some “incredible” numbers and stats from iPhone, Mac and Apple retail. At least 1 video will play. Then he will turn the attention to the iPad and talk about how it is revolutionizing the way we do stuff. He will recount the success of the iBooks platform and the recent adoption of text books and course publishing, and may even have some publishers there to talk about the awesome stuff they are doing. Then he will unveil the new iPad 3.

  • It will be called iPad 3.
  • The “theme” of the event will be high definition.
  • It will have a retina display. There will be a DPI number on a slide.
  • The body will be very similar if not identical. iPad 2 cases will fit it.
  • Expect a front facing HD video camera (720p) for HD FaceTime.
  • Some software that is visual in nature. I am thinking something like an image editor or painting app to show off the “just gorgeous” display.
  • It will have the A6 chip “to power the amazing graphics” which will not be quad core.
  • They will probably improve the camera on the back too.
  • There will be some accessory akin to the bumper and the smart cover, if not just a “Smart Cover 2” type product.
  • The bonus: A new HD-ier Apple TV with 1080p for displaying your beautiful iPad creations. There will also be some iCloud improvement in for the Apple TV, like movies on all your iOS devices or something.
  • Rachael’s prediction: some sort of real time file transfer procedure between iOS devices. Something like WebOS’s touch-to-share thing. (For the record, I think she is wrong.)
  • Post-Steve Prediction Follow Up

    I talked to Dane today and he gave me a lot of points for my predictions; probably more than I deserve. It has now been 6 months, and before I make another batch of iPad 3 predictions, I want to follow up on my last set.

  • Prediction1: “Tomorrow, the stock will take a hit.” Correct. Shares were down three dollars the following day, but the stock ended the week up $10 from the dip.
  • Prediction 2: The press event. Fail. Apple didn’t get to their holiday lineup announcement until October 4, the day before Steve Jobs actually passed away.
  • Prediction 3: “The stock will climb for the rest of the year.” Correct. There were some pretty crazy swings and Apple’s highest price wasn’t at the end of the year. However, it ended 2011 with an impressive price of $405, up 7.6% from the day of Steve’s resignation.
  • Prediction 4: iPhone 5 timing. Fail. Timing was wrong. The iPhone 5 was actually called the 4S and didn’t get released until October 14.
  • Prediction 5: “3 million during opening weekend.” Correct. They did sell 3 million. Then they sold 1 million more.
  • Prediction 6: Best Holiday quarter ever. Right in the ways that matter. The record were broken, in all categories except iPod. But the huge EPS beat makes up for it.
  • Prediction 7: New iPad. Almost nailed it. I was close enough to the 6 month mark to be satisfied. Now the question is, how stupid will it make it look competing tablets. Stay tuned for the answer to that.
  • Bonus Prediction 8: AAPL at $550 in Aug 2012. Undershot. We will have to wait and see what happens, but as of this writing, Apple is at $533 and has been on a relentless rise. I doubt it will be lower than $550 by August. But They have made it to most valuable company.
  • Thinking about buying an iPhone?

    DON’T BUY AN IPHONE!!!

    Yet.

    Apple is almost sure to release a new iPhone (or two) within the next 60 days. There are some excellent rumors floating around right now that could mean some great choices for consumers:

    1. It is widely expected that the iPhone 5 is coming to town. We don’t know what it will looks like, or what new features it will have, but there are two theories. One is that it will be a marginal update similar to the update from 3G to 3GS (call it 4S) where all they do is up the processor and improve the camera. The other theory calls for a redesigned body shape and other goodies.
    2. The Wall Street Journal – who tends to have solid sources – reported today that the iPhone 5 is coming to Sprint. This is cool because not only does it give consumers another choice, but Sprint has had a tendency to be more generous with their data plans than what AT&T and Verizon are currently offering.
    3. Reuters – who can be hit or miss – is saying that Apple may offer a cheaper iPhone 4 model, with only 8 GBs of storage. To me, this is a fascinating move, and could be evidence of Apple living up to Tim Cooks promise that the iPhone would not be “just for the rich“. This could be a fabulous phone at a very reasonable price.
    The moral of the story is, now is a terrible time to buy a new iPhone. Even if it’s free.

    Copying Features

    John Gruber, quoting Paul Thurrott

    On iOS 5:

    Best features were literally copied from other mobile platforms.

    True!…

    One could argue that these are purposefully antagonistic ways of saying these things. Or, perhaps better said, purposefully belittling.

    I can see why, from a tech pundit’s point of view, that “literally copied” is meant to have a punitive sting. However, these “copied” features are a big win for Apple. The iPhone has been in the lead in so many competitive areas (app store, ease of use, ecosystem integration, best “under finger” experience etc). However, some consumers have been hesitant to choose iPhone because of a specific advantage of a competitor.

    For example, some people consider BBM the key feature of a BlackBerry. As of iOS 5, the “iOS doesn’t have it” argument is gone. The only thing left is what iPhone does better. Same with notifications and Android, which Jonathan Geller thinks Apple did better than Android.

    Buyers now have all the reasons to choose the iPhone that they had before – AND they have no reason to buy any competitor.

    About the only gripe left is Flash, but mostly from Mossberg.