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> Will The Iphone Replace The Zaurus?
speculatrix
post Jan 12 2007, 09:32 AM
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QUOTE(dhns @ Jan 12 2007, 06:21 PM)
And, for hitting a price point of 499-599$, the cost difference between a single and two processor architecture can't be the real argument... And, finally a single processor architecture would mean that Apple has developed a full GSM stack to run as a Mach device driver. This is much too complex to get through FCC smile.gif
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true, I think it unlikely that the GSM side doesn't run on a separate processor, but there might still be some level of trust, e.g. firmware upload into it, some shared memory.

however, I think it'll be mainly to ensure that the applications installed have to use only cingular services and itunes for music stores etc.
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Cresho
post Jan 12 2007, 09:50 AM
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QUOTE(kopsis @ Jan 12 2007, 04:41 AM)
QUOTE(Cresho @ Jan 12 2007, 03:13 AM)
so says steve jobs...NO 3rd party ALLOWED!


Well, I stand corrected. Personally, I think that's a significant blunder on Apple's part. I can see not letting joe-hacker toss just any old piece of Objective-C code on this thing. But a nice safe Widget sandbox would add huge potential to Apple's phone without the risk of compromising system integrity.

Oh well, my Cingular contract doesn't run out until year end, so that should be enough time for the clever engineers in Korea and Japan to start cranking out more flexible knock-offs smile.gif
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I'm debating about this item. I might still get it as a new phone for replacing my Siemens s56. If it has bluetooth, ill probably be fine. I will not use the idiotic services they provide though. It is totally ridiculous.

I am still waiting for qtopia's green phone.
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kopsis
post Jan 12 2007, 10:28 AM
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QUOTE(dhns @ Jan 12 2007, 08:32 AM)
What makes the real difference to toss just an old piece of Objective-C on a MacBook with Wireless connectivity? The risk of compromizing system integrity (especially the networks) is 100% the same... Or are the Mobile networks inherently less safe than let's say DSL?


The "network integrity" thing is a likely a red-herring meant to distract from the real issues at hand. Note that in the NYT article Jobs did say you will be able to add applications and those apps may be developed by 3rd parties, but the only way to get them will be to buy them from Apple.

The optimist in me says that Apple wants to be able to exert some control over software quality. If my "cool iPhone game" app crashes the phone's UI, user's aren't likely to figure out it's my app, they'll just say that the iPhone is flakey. This is already true for Windows Mobile based phones. A lot of the instability that Windows Mobile has been blamed for is really a result of poorly written applications.

Now, we could go into the huge philosophical debate about how a "good" OS should protect apps from harming the system or each other. But reality is that in an embedded device like this, OS software is usually forced to cut corners to get adequate performance. I can easily write a Zarus app that will render Qtopia unusable. Sure the OS keeps running, but what good does that do me if I can't switch out of the broken application? Most people don't want to telnet to their phone and "kill -9" the offending process smile.gif

The pesimist in me says this is a way for Apple to guarantee they get a cut of 3rd-party software revenues. Once everyone has an iPhone that wants one, how do you continue generating revenue? With computers, technology advances force upgrades. Not always true with things like phones. Getting a cut of app software purchases and upgrades would help fill the gap between initial purchase and replacement.

Reality is that both are probably true to some degree. We'll have to wait to see how this plays out, but I'm much less enthusiastic than I was a couple days ago.
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Da_Blitz
post Jan 14 2007, 03:12 AM
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most manufacterers mant to move to the radio and main proc in one (ie radio as a thread in a realtime OS and the user OS in another thread) because of the huge cost savings, it wouldnt suprise me if they did that with the iphone as it would then give them a significant price advantage, i belive motoralla just released a phone that did that only the real time OS was linux

anyway GSM has been cracked AND artificially weakened, and as for turning the phone into a high tech jammer, well lets just say there are cheaper ways smile.gif

i would say he has valid points about taking down the network but that says alot for how much he trusts this mobile OS in my opinion and what the techs working on the device know about gsm

i mean everyone knows tha petrol + mobilephone tower = cheap way to "crash" the network
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dhns
post Jan 14 2007, 11:19 AM
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QUOTE(Da_Blitz @ Jan 14 2007, 12:12 PM)
most manufacterers mant to move to the radio and main proc in one (ie radio as a thread in a realtime OS and the user OS in another thread) because of the huge cost savings,
Well, there are phonessold for less than 100EUR complete. These have definitively a single processor. And, you can get a complete GSM module for around 30 EUR. So, what is the huge cost saving? Probably 5-10 EUR.

If they are able to spend 512MB flash for OSX, they can also spend 5-10 EUR for a separate module (which also saves several Mio EUR of integrating a GSM stack into any kernel).

So, I am quite sure they have a separate, dedicated and protected processor for GSM.

BTW: I should mention that QuantumSTEP for a Zaurus needs only approx. 20 MByte of user space files. So, by removing Qt from a Zaurus, a QuantumSTEP ROM would not need any extra memory...

What I still do not have any idea about the processor they use. It seems not to be an Intel x86. Most likely an ARM (as most other phones). But: OSX is inherently very floating-point intensive for doing all the nice graphics. So, is there an ARM version with integrated FPU?

-- hns
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speculatrix
post Jan 14 2007, 01:15 PM
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QUOTE(Da_Blitz @ Jan 14 2007, 12:12 PM)
i mean everyone knows tha petrol + mobilephone tower = cheap way to "crash" the network
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indeed, a fire wiped out commercial broadcast radio for large areas round where I lived:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transmitter_Peterborough
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speculatrix
post Jan 14 2007, 01:23 PM
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QUOTE(dhns @ Jan 14 2007, 08:19 PM)
If they are able to spend 512MB flash for OSX, they can also spend 5-10 EUR for a separate module (which also saves several Mio EUR of integrating a GSM stack into any kernel).
*


I used to work in mobile radio and paging systems, where they would happily spend $10,000 on engineers time to save a few cents on the assembly cost each pager (making 100,000 PER WEEK), but "waste" 20 cents on higher performing components to increase battery life by 10%.

I think you misunderestimate how serious companies are at cost reduction. OK, just US$5 for a module. Multiple that by one million phones manufactured. Are you telling me that US$5M isn't a lot of money? Then, add on the costs of additional circuit board and testing, the module becomes perhaps US$15 by the time the iphone reaches the shelves, maybe pushing the iphone into a different price bracket, stopping the notoriously fickle consumer from buying it - even if it dents sales by a few percent, that's a lot of money... all for something that the average consumer won't understand!

So, you ask, how come they'll put in 512MB flash instead of 256 and miss a few things off? Because the marketing men look at the competition and say it needs a certain minimal specification to be "worth" the price point of X.
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Da_Blitz
post Jan 14 2007, 09:37 PM
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thanks for that link, it lead to some good info (i have been researching this topic alot lately

QUOTE
BTW: I should mention that QuantumSTEP for a Zaurus needs only approx. 20 MByte of user space files. So, by removing Qt from a Zaurus, a QuantumSTEP ROM would not need any extra memory...


BTW: I should mention that Ncurses for a Zaurus needs only approx. 200 KByte of user space files. So, by removing Qt from a Zaurus, a Ncurses ROM would not need any extra memory... smile.gif

i only say because thats what i use wink.gif give me "abook" (its an app) anyday

i thoght they said a samsung processor, most of the newer ARMs have an option and i know the zune has a fps, would kick arse to play quake on the zune (same chipset i am using at without the graghics accelerator)

by the sounds of its its a new graghical API, hence why they want people to do widgets instead, that way you get cross platform compatibility without doing somthing stupid like .net CF 2 on winCE (i mean could they make that update ANY larger) that way they can just reuse the web browser code instead of having 2 libries so less space used (not that they need to save space)

im still of the opinion that this isnt a top end phone like job makes out, but thats a bit OT

i have hated the flash +256MB = + $100 equation (or simmilar) because i know how much the chips cost and how much work it is, i really disagree with that practice. or the DVR large capacity drive thats 20GB larger yet costs more than a 400GB drive for the upgrade
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adf
post Jan 14 2007, 09:43 PM
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...so when is the penguin mock up coming?


I think btw that we ptretty much aren't expecting the i-phone to be the next Z.
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Da_Blitz
post Jan 14 2007, 10:48 PM
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true but knowing apple i was expecting some nice hardware that could be hacked, personally its a bit of a let down however it does seem to be in thier "keep it simple" ideas

mmm, mock up. i would love to see it. i would say about the time i get windows XP playing nice uner a VM, it just dosent like my system unless its virtual. hoping to work on it tonight but at the very least i expect about 10 pages of notes and diagrams tonight (mainly PCB layout)
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speculatrix
post Jan 15 2007, 02:04 AM
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here's a marketing video for what the iPhone can do
http://www.tuaw.com/2007/01/13/nbc-and-npr...e-iphone-humor/
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speculatrix
post Jan 15 2007, 02:25 AM
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QUOTE(Da_Blitz @ Jan 15 2007, 06:37 AM)
i have hated the flash +256MB = + $100 equation (or simmilar) because i know how much the chips cost and how much work it is, i really disagree with that practice. or the DVR large capacity drive thats 20GB larger yet costs more than a 400GB drive for the upgrade
*


read The Undercover Economist for some good explanations of why product pricing can be quite peculiar when you understand the production processes.
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Da_Blitz
post Jan 15 2007, 02:48 AM
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thanks for that

just relised why cinglar dosent like third party apps (after reading my ealier comments and linux user and developer, the british have the best mags)

remeber how i said that gsm encryption is weak, now imagine you have acsess to the baseband and can chose which band you want to listen to rather than the one you were allocated. insta phone tap without the hugely exspensive phone tap system and cheap enough that your average consumer can buy it smile.gif

ideally you would want the baseband to be on the same chip and the code but after reading a bit about it it wouldnt supprise me if it is a baseband issue, after doing a bit of research the "baseband issue" seems to be almost a religos thing with the telcos, they dont want it open sourced, which is a problem for a certin open source project i know sad.gif

i always had a laugh when i see nokia equipment advertised with "features easy wire tapping facilities for goverment complince" as a "feature"

then again i might be getting paranoid in my young age wink.gif

btw had a good laugh at the you tube thing
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desertrat
post Jan 15 2007, 03:16 AM
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QUOTE(kopsis @ Jan 12 2007, 06:28 PM)
But reality is that in an embedded device like this, OS software is usually forced to cut corners to get adequate performance.

Psion managed to create an ultra stable OS with their Epoc using far fewer resources, both in terms of manpower and R&D (they are a tiny company compared to the likes of M$, Apple, Sharp etc) and hardware (Epoc16 runs on an 8086 compatible with as little as 128KB ram/1MB rom). Its "secret" ingredient is that it had a hardware support for memory management which stopped misbehaving programs from trashing memory outside its allocated memory space.
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speculatrix
post Jan 15 2007, 03:27 AM
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QUOTE(Da_Blitz @ Jan 15 2007, 11:48 AM)
remeber how i said that gsm encryption is weak, now imagine you have acsess to the baseband and can chose which band you want to listen to rather than the one you were allocated. insta phone tap without the hugely exspensive phone tap system and cheap enough that your average consumer can buy it smile.gif

ideally you would want the baseband to be on the same chip and the code but after reading a bit about it it wouldnt supprise me if it is a baseband issue, after doing a bit of research the "baseband issue" seems to be almost a religos thing with the telcos, they dont want it open sourced, which is a problem for a certin open source project i know sad.gif
*


it's not *quite* that simple. AIUI, each gsm telephone link to the base station has its session own encryption key, the snag is that the negotiation of that session key is weakened because the primary key is weakened from 64 to 56 bits as gov'ts demanded that the 64 bits was too strong and told telcos to make eight bits zero, thus making it possible to brute force the key with the available computing power at the time.
outside the EU, they might even use smaller keys, you just don't know, not unless you had the telco's private key to unlock the SIM and get the network operator's key out of it!
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