NTT DoCoMo, Fujitsu, NEC and Panasonic are discussing a joint venture with Samsung that could be created as early as next year, Reuters reported recently. The companies will develop new smartphone baseband chips in an attempt to compete directly with Qualcomm, which currently has an 80% grip on the baseband chip industry. NTT DoCoMo will be the majority owner in the Japan-based joint venture and the total investment is expected to be about $390 million. The joint venture will help each firm cut down procurement costs. Samsung has considered using the new chips in its future family of GALAXY-branded handsets, but the group will also sell the new chips to other smartphone manufacturers. NTT DoCoMo, Fujitsu, NEC, Panasonic and Samsung have not yet announced formal plans for the venture. More →
Images of what could be a next generation iPhone headed to China Mobile have been re-published by Sohu.com. Is it the real deal? It might be. For one, it runs an unannounced baseband software (version 06.10.01), which could hint that Apple’s prepping support for China Mobile’s 3G TD-SCDMA network. Also, in June, a China Mobile employee said that the iPhone 5 would be arriving in September, and there have been reports of Apple’s COO Tim Cook sitting in meetings with China Mobile execs, which suggests that there’s definitely some relationship building going on. More →
Apple’s next-generation iPhone may launch even later than September this year, as has previously been rumored on numerous occasions. Apple has stuck to a summer launch for each new iPhone model released thus far, but the February introduction of Verizon Wireless’ iPhone 4 and the imminent release of the white iPhone 4 do suggest Apple may deviate from its previous schedule. Concord Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo cited supply chain checks in a note to investors on Monday, in which he suggests Apple’s iPhone 5 won’t enter mass production until September. This would make a September release highly unlikely, and would instead mean the new smartphone might launch in October or later. Ming-Chi also reiterates earlier rumors that the iPhone 5 will be an incremental update, and will feature Apple’s new A5 processor, an 8-megapixel camera and a Qualcomm radio like the one found in Verizon Wireless’ iPhone 4. Industry watcher DigiTimes recently issued a report calling any iPhone 5 manufacturing timelines to this point “baseless,” claiming Apple has not yet discussed the device or any production timing with its manufacturing partners.
If you have an iPhone 4, and are itching to use it on another network, the Dev-Team has got you covered. Early this morning, MuscleNerd announced that ultrasn0w unlocking software — version 1.0-1 — has been updated to work with the iPhone 4. The newer, more inclusive version of ultrasn0w will work with iPhone 4 baseband 01.59 and iPhone 3GS/3G basebands 04.26.04, 05.11.07, 05.12.01, and 05.13.04. If you’re itching to port your number (and your iPhone 4) to another network, jailbreak your iPhone, add the repo666.ultrasn0w.com repository to Cydia, install ultrasn0w and enjoy! More →
Dev-team member MuscleNerd gave an update — via Twitter — on the carrier unlock progress of the iPhone 4…and so far, things are looking up. The baseband-unlocking code used by the dev-team on the first, second, and third generation iPhones (ultrasn0w) needs to be completely rewritten for the fourth generation model — thanks to a new baseband employed by Apple. MuscleNerd quips:
Next step is to keep the task backgrounded like we did for 3G/3GS http://is.gd/dh7Jh. Backgrounded task is the unlock.
Things are looking up for those iPhone 4 owners who want an unlock. Those of you who use Twitter — and would like to stay up to date on the latest dev-team happenings — go ahead and give @MuscleNerd a follow.
No doubt Apple is leery of having its iPhone OS so easily and frequently hacked (its notoriously weak security being one of the many reasons the iPhone has yet to really take off in the corporate world), but Cupertino’s latest security precaution isn’t likely to win any favor. Just days after a scrappy young iPhone hacked discovered an unlock exploit for OS 3.1.3 baseband 05.12.01, Sherif Hashim received an ominous message on his iPhone after attempting to log into iTunes: “This Apple ID has been disabled for security reasons.” Proving that this is not an isolated incident, fellow hacker iH8sn0w responded to Hashim to let him know the very same thing happened to him after he released an exploit known as XEMN. Perhaps most puzzlingly, however, is the fact that Hasim’s exploit was never publicly released having only been given to the iPhone Dev-Team who plan to incorporate it into their next release. Obviously Apple could claim that its actions were in response to the violation of their intellectual property as well as a breach of the iPhone’s end-user license agreement, but one has to wonder just how far a notoriously heavy-handed company like Apple might go in the future if it is unable to gain the upper hand over hackers like Hashim.
So far there are no indications that Apple has shut down the accounts of your Everyman jailbreaker and unlocker. More →
About a week ago, geohot released an update to his iPhone jailbreaking software dubbed Blackra1n RC2, and while that was all well and good for all you AT&T guys, it did leave those of us who need a baseband unlock on our iPieces wanting more. Enter blacksn0w. Demoed on YouTube, the blacksn0w exploit will provide a baseband unlock of the 3.1.x firmware allowing your iPhone to run on your preferred GSM carrier. Blacksn0w will be released to the jailbreaking baseband unlocking masses on November 4th and can be loaded onto your device directly from Blackra1n. Boo ya. We’re curious, how many of you iPhone fanatics rely on a baseband unlock to have a functional iPhone? We’ve got the video all queued up for you after the bounce.