by Charles Ying

The LOST iPad Icon

February 2nd, 2010

The iPhone was introduced at Macworld 2007 without one mystery app. Apple later revealed that mystery app only 9 days before the iPhone launch to be YouTube which propelled iPhone hype into orbit.

With 52 days to go, and the iPad rumor mill kicking into gear, the question of the day is, “what is the iPad’s mystery icon?”

So, if you think it’s crazy for Apple to be hiding mystery iPad software and hardware, remember that history tends to iRepeat itself.

Personally, I’m looking forward to iChat and Dashboard widgets on iPad.

Update: Felipe makes a good point in the comments. On June 18, 2007, 11 days before the iPhone launch, Apple also upgraded the display hardware from plastic to glass. Glass display parts are $16 today, while camera parts are roughly $10.

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The Tablet Specs

January 26th, 2010

Revisiting my predictions from December 2008, here’s what I think we’ll see tomorrow. Guesses, instead of insider intel.

  • 1440 x 960 10″ multi-touch display – Even multiples of iPhone OS resolution for easy app scaling up
  • ARM Cortex A9 CPU – Fast with long battery life
  • PowerVR SGX 545 GPUOpenCL, baby!
  • iPhone OS 4.0 – With tablet frameworks and multitasking
  • $599 / $699 – Quoting Steve Jobs, “We don’t know how to make a sub-$500 computer that’s not a piece of junk”.
  • Names: iBook, Canvas… or iDroid XP 2010 Tablet Edition

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Can I get a JooJoo with a GPU?

December 8th, 2009

From watching videos of JooJoo, UI latency and scrolling performance look awful.

It seems that all rendering is done on the CPU, when it should’ve been on a GPU accelerated compositor or tiled surface manager.

That would save significant battery life (which we haven’t heard anything about) and really kick ass at performance.

Offloading rendering to the GPU also frees you up to, oh, say, reliably detect touch input events.

System on Chip GPU + CPU combos are fairly inexpensive parts these days. Even with a GPU as simple as the first gen iPhone PowerVR MBX lite would’ve had reasonable performance.

UI latency and scrolling performance make all the difference in multi-touch form factor devices. A true multi-touch contender needs to get this right.


I just realized that JooJoo plays video smoothly at 1080p. So they definitely have a GPU or DSP in there. They’re so close, they just need to get the software up to snuff, maybe with Clutter?

More Reading: On Mobile Phone OS Design and GPUs

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