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The Hardware Upgrade Cycle

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Hey! It’s Boxcar Pete! You know, the lovable hobo that talks like a pirate? Little known fact about Pete, there’s no eyeball behind his monocle. Some say he isn’t a man at all, but a horde of ravenous rats stacked 6 feet high. Those people are stupid. He’s obviously a stab-happy hobo. Josh must be meeting him in a dark alley way to make arrangements for BCP (yeah, you know me) to wait in line for him on iPhone 3GS launch day.

I bought the original iPhone (2G? I guess that’s what we’re calling it.) a little over a year ago. I got one for my wife for her birthday and another one for myself for her birthday. We’ve really enjoyed the “internet in your hand at all times” aspects of the iPhone but have always been frustrated by the slow speed. I resisted the urge to upgrade to the iPhone 3G since it would raise our bill a bit and we had only had our phones for 6 months when it came out. Now that the iPhone 3GS is coming, the “upgrade bug” is irrisistable. There are a few contributing factors: A) It’s fucking sweet. Have you seen it? Sweet. B) My wife’s iPhone has screen issues that are a giant pain in the ass C) I can actually sell my iPhone and her wonky-screen iPhone on eBay for nearly (if not entirely) enough to buy 2 of the 32Gb iPhones 3GS.

It turned out in our favor that we never upgraded before now because AT&T isn’t extending the promotional pricing to existing 3G owners. They really can’t complain, though. They already got to break an existing contract and get ANOTHER subsidized iPhone. Bitch all you want but there isn’t really an argument to justify, “BUT I REALLY WANT ANOTHER NEW iPHONE AT A PRICE DRASTICALLY BELOW RETAIL!!! WAHHHH!!

So I ordered the new iPhones from the Apple store yesterday after a bit of confusion regarding how to keep my familytalk plan, and I’ll post our original iPhones for sale on eBay this coming Monday. Hopefully I’ll walk away breaking even and getting a far superior handheld. You guys know I’m super broke-sauce, so I’m REALLY hoping this works out. My desire for a new iPhone and my lack of funds don’t see eye to eye.

I have learned one thing in the last couple of days. NO ONE at Apple has any idea what’s going on right now. I called Apple customer support to find out if I could keep my familytalk plan and I was on hold for an hour and a half. Eventually I got a guy that told me I had to go into an Apple retail store to do what needed to be done. I loaded up the family and went to our local Apple goodsery and I was greeted almost instantly buy 3 or 4 dudes talking over each other, “We don’t know anything about reserving iPhone 3GS’s, they haven’t told us anything, please go away, WE’RE FREAKING THE SHIT OUT!!!

Dismayed I went home and took my problems to the fine folks of the internet. I got a lot of helpful ideas and suggestions. One of the FB’s even works at Apple Tech Support and emailed to let me know that everyone there is “FREAKING THE SHIT OUT!!!” My buddy Bill, told me I was a stupid asshead for creating this problem as that it was a non-issue. Turns out he was right (and bald! Did I mention he’s horribly bald?). If you just go through the online upgrade process, it eventually tells you that your voice plan is “unchanged.”

I first put two black iPhones 3GS in the cart and it told me I couldn’t have two black ones. So, reluctantly, I removed one and added a white model to the cart. I went through the rest of the checkout and eventually got a notice that said something like “Why are you buying two iPhones at all? What’s  your deal? Are you some kind of asshole? Are you a terrorist? Are you bald?” So I closed the door to my office making sure my wife couldn’t hear me removing “her” phone from the cart and checked out. Then I started over and bought another black one. Simple as that. You absolutely can’t ever never never ever buy two iPhones at once unless you order them about 45 seconds apart. Then you can do whatever you want.

iPhone owning FB’s: Are you upgrading to the 3GS? Why?

Non-iphoning FB’s: Is the new $100 price point on the original 3G going to bring you into the fold?

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I Am iRon Man

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HOLY CRAP, STEVE JOBS HAD A HEART ATTACK (except not at all)!

Turns out it may have been an attempt to sabotage Apple’s stock (AAPL) prices. The perpetrator is potentially facing prison time. So if CNN picks up this comic and thinks it’s real, am I going to Federal Pound You In The Ass Prison (FPYITAP)?

In other Apple news, there’s been a rumor of a new Apple product called “The Brick” netting around the trons for a few weeks. Now it looks like “brick” may refer to a brick of solid billet aluminum, out of which the new Macbooks and Macbooks Pro will be machined out of using water jets and lasers. Sounds cool and all, but nothing earth shattering.

Assuming Eli and Steve did get to work on an iRon Man suit, I imagine it would have no visible seems, be incredibly light, have sub par battery life, radiate at about 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit and provide absolutely no protection against machine guns or tank shells. I can also assure you it would be beautiful and Eli would be fired about 3 months into the process for “not getting the vision!”

I suppose I should also mention that Iron Man is the best selling Blu Ray of all time. So many people bought it, in fact, that they shut down Sony’s BD-Live servers. I’ve decided I’m never going to buy a Blu Ray. I’m going to wait until the players are incredibly cheap, then Netflix them until they are completely replaced by digital content distribution.

Eli is going to Chicago this week (all week). If you know of anything he should make sure to visit, experience or a great place to take photos, feel free to post it in the comments. I’m sure he’ll appreciate it. Maybe some Chicago FB’s want to buy him a beer?

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The Hobo Code of Honor

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If the man yer dealin’ with asks for an activated iPhone, he’s gettin’ an ACTIVATED iPhone. A hobo’s word is his bond. So is his switchblade. Wait, that’s a crappy code. I think it’s, “A hobo is only as good as his word, and his word is only as good as his stabbing ability.” No, it’s definitely, “A hobo stabs first and stabs questions later.”

Looks like Apple had some trouble activating all those new iPhone 3G’s and ended up sending people home with iBricks. “Thanks for 7 hours in line, $200 and a 2 year commitment! Here’s a thing that doesn’t work!”

You old school Fancy Bastards may remember “Apple Store Guy” from the EXTREMELY short lived Mac-themed comic I did for Apple Insider.

On a related note, THIS is my favorite comic about Hoboes who are also cats.

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OMFGGG

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That’s right. Boxcar M-F’ing Pete. I need to see about getting him on the Podcast.

I toyed with the idea of unlocking my current iPhone and eBaying it to some far away land where they aren’t actually available so I could afford an iPhone 3G. Then I started seeing reviews and articles saying, “The 3G data is pretty cool, but what you really want is the 2.0 firmware! It’s like a robot with laser tits!” Since my iPhone can have said tit-bot firmware for free, I’ve opted to postpone any possible upgrade scenario for now.

I updated iTunes and downloaded the 2.0 firmware (a day early since I’m such a cheeky monkey), and got my App Store on. I grabbed some of the free apps that looked useful (Twitterific, AIM, a flashlight thing, and Remote). Remote is an app from Apple that let’s you control your iTunes through your phone. I don’t want to go into a long review, but it’s freaking awesome. You can browse your entire lib(r)ary, view album art, etc from your phone. The communication was almost instant. I have bluetooth turned off, so I assume it uses WiFi or dark wizardry.

My advice: hold on to your original iPhone for now (or, if you never bought one in the first place, pick one up used from a jumpy upgrader sans contract). Wait for a significant update, like 32 or 64 gb’s. The apps really do make this a new device with a lot more potential. I want to buy Band, but I’m waiting for Josh to be my guinea pig.

UPDATE: They’ve already cracked the new firmware.