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Inside iPhone 4: FaceTime video calling - Page 3

post #81 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

It has to be remembered that Apple do have a significant amount of power with most of the major networks right now. They all want a bit of the Apple 'magic' to rub off on them.

Any major pull you might have doesn't matter when you are restricting the feature to Wi-Fi only.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

Firstly: I'm not sure why you think the UX will be the same. UMTS VC is rubbish. FaceTime seems to run at a far higher bandwidth (higher res, frame rate and better colour). This UX cannot be delivered using traditional VC.

I'm not sure how you class it as "rubbish". On my phone (a 2007 model) you choose the person from your phone book and select "video call". That is the user experience, getting the thing running. Apple has the problem that they have to account for the person you are ringing to actaully have an iPhone 4, and currently be on Wi-Fi, do you ring them before to check these out before doing this FaceTime with the person?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

Secondly: the networks have stuck with a VC solution that was designed in the late 90s because there has been no reason to change. Devices haven't offered a new way of doing VC. Customer take up has been slow. In fact, anecdotally, I'd say there are fewer handsets with front facing cameras now than there were in 2004/5.

Actually the networks mandated that the phones had front facing camera, that is why so many (just about all) UTMS phones have this feature, this was a function that stopped when the iPhone came out. So unless you are saying there are fewer handsets around today than there were in 2004/5 you might be wrong in this case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

Thirdly: Apple devices sell sufficiently, to customers with a sufficiently high ARPU, for it to be possible to build a business case around the proposition. This will be particularly so if the networks can charge (either in terms of bundled minutes, or 'add ons' or even per second) for it. Then it becomes a convenience thing (you're not near a WiFi hotspot) and people are willing to pay for that. That's why I bought a 3G iPad (despite not having actually used the 3G aspect yet!). I know I can jailbreak my iPhone to create a wireless Hotspot, but it's less convenient.

You might be right, this might take off, but I can't see how unless they can convince the other phone manufactures that this is a good idea, and convince the networks to bring in some sensible pricing for the feature, and convince the networks to support it. Remember, regardless of how much money Apple is making from the iPhone, and no matter how much the ARPU is for these users, the iPhone only accounts for around 2% of all phones, so unless this feature is adopted by others it will be a limited feature with a limited use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

Now, I'm not saying any of this will happen. A lot of operators will think it not worth it (not every operator ranging the iPhone offers Visual Voicemail, for instance -- even though that's dead easy, you only need an IMAP email server and a bit of configuration of your SMSC). But Apple have a habit of making things happen with operators. Even ones as recalcitrant as AT&T!

I'm not sure what you think Apple has changed with the operators, maybe you have an extra feature on your network now that you didn't before, but nothing has changed in most of the world. Visual Voicemail existed on other networks in the US before the iPhone
post #82 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philotech View Post

Apparently, Facetime uses the ordinary phone line connection (2G or 3G) for voice and the internet only for video. That's a HUGE barrier to ever join iChat and Facetime.

I agree it would be if it's true. But I've seen nothing to back it up yet - can you provide anything more than "apparently"? (I've run into apparently a lot in trying to work that out!).

The standard does include AAC, which implies there IS audio on the connection.

Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeybrain View Post

I'm convinced, as some have mentioned here, that FaceTime will always be for phone to phone conversations. As Steve said, "no buddy lists"-- that has been the barrier to entry for lots of people. I set up my mother on Skype and she never uses it because she can't even remember that it is called "Skype", find and launch the app for it, her skype name and password, my skype name, etc etc.

It would be quite powerful if it required a phone number only. I think that in a very 'big picture' way, that's a method to really start moving people from the old to the new, especially if phone handset makers start building in the technology for just audio, or also video. (But Apple usually just throws away the old and only offers the new!)

* All you need to have is a phone number
* All you need to know is a phone number
* It uses the internet for cheap/free calls
* No logging on, etc.
* As reliable as the phone - since it'll just use the phone if necessary.
post #83 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Are we not reading the same article?

1) This isn't even out yet and you're complaining that it doesn't already exist on Macs, too. It was just demoed yesterday as the last feature and new killer feature for the iPhone 4.

But at the same time, Apple fans praise Apple for delivering well thought out products instead of rushing things out the door. By using the "they just announced it" defense, are you implying that FaceTime is incomplete and rushed out the door?

So the question is did Apple think about making FaceTime available on Macs and PCs? Possible answers include:

1) Apple did consider FaceTime on Macs and PCs, but decided to hold it back for some reason.

2) Apple totally forgot to consider the use of FaceTime on Macs and PCs.
post #84 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

But at the same time, Apple fans praise Apple for delivering well thought out products instead of rushing things out the door. By using the "they just announced it" defense, are you implying that FaceTime is incomplete and rushed out the door?

So the question is did Apple think about making FaceTime available on Macs and PCs? Possible answers include:

1) Apple did consider FaceTime on Macs and PCs, but decided to hold it back for some reason.

2) Apple totally forgot to consider the use of FaceTime on Macs and PCs.

It's not a defense it's common sense. What world do you live it that a demo of a feature on a future device has to be somehow instantly and immediately available to every product they have ever made and to every product everyone else has ever made or it's incomplete and rushed?

Apple have designed this to work with the iPhone OS 4.0 as the flagship device to promote the feature and have made it open sourced so that others adopt it. That concept shouldn't be difficult for anyone to understand.

They may have no plans to offer it to offer it to Mac OS X and fully expect developers, like Adium, to add it to their apps or they may offer an iChat update. Video conferencing has always been an issue for Adium, perhaps now we'll have a unified system that works well and easily, but go ahead denounce it before you've even had a change to try it.
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post #85 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Video conferencing has always been an issue for Adium, perhaps now we'll have a unified system that works well and easily, but go ahead denounce it before you've even had a change to try it.

In case you hadn't noticed, I listed some possible reasons for Apple not making FaceTime available on Macs and PCs. And one of those reasons gave Apple the benefit of the doubt. So take your pick. But you seem intent on vilifying anyone who questions Apple for any reason.
post #86 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

In case you hadn't noticed, I listed some possible reasons for Apple not making FaceTime available on Macs and PCs. So take your pick. But you seem intent on vilifying anyone who disagrees with you.

Your "reasons", based on your initial comment, paint Apple as either: 1) "rushing things out the door", or 2) being complete idiots. That's not exactly being objective there.
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post #87 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Your "reasons", based on your initial comment, paint Apple as either: 1) "rushing things out the door", or 2) being complete idiots. That's not exactly being objective there.

"1) Apple did consider FaceTime on Macs and PCs, but decided to hold it back for some reason."

"Some reason" could have meant any number of things, technical or business related, but you decided to read your own negative connotations into it. That's your problem, not anyone else's.
post #88 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

"1) Apple did consider FaceTime on Macs and PCs, but decided to hold it back for some reason."

"Some reason" could have meant any number of things, technical or business related, but you decided to read your own negative connotations into it. That's your problem, not anyone else's.

Perhaps that's not how you meant it but based on your first paragraph and your posting history I'm sure you can see how someone would take it as an unfounded pejorative slant.
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post #89 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

But at the same time, Apple fans praise Apple for delivering well thought out products instead of rushing things out the door. By using the "they just announced it" defense, are you implying that FaceTime is incomplete and rushed out the door?

So the question is did Apple think about making FaceTime available on Macs and PCs? Possible answers include:

1) Apple did consider FaceTime on Macs and PCs, but decided to hold it back for some reason.

2) Apple totally forgot to consider the use of FaceTime on Macs and PCs.

What are you guys talking about?? FaceTime needs a phone number. Macs don't have one... helloooo
post #90 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by jfanning View Post

Any major pull you might have doesn't matter when you are restricting the feature to Wi-Fi only.

Jobs stated that for now it's WiFi only, but that Apple needed to talk to the networks about making available via WWAN (UMTS, HSPA, LTE, whatever).

Quote:
I'm not sure how you class it as "rubbish". On my phone (a 2007 model) you choose the person from your phone book and select "video call". That is the user experience, getting the thing running. Apple has the problem that they have to account for the person you are ringing to actaully have an iPhone 4, and currently be on Wi-Fi, do you ring them before to check these out before doing this FaceTime with the person?

User experience means more than just the user interface. On some phones setting up a call is easy, on others more difficult (I've had both). Regardless, the actual quality of the video call is generally very poor (choppy low res video, freezing, audio cutting in and out, etc.). I think you also misunderstand Apple's UX. Apple takes a lot of the guesswork out of the equation, and will only offer the FaceTime option if the phone on the other end is capable of supporting it. I think that's quite a big deal.

Quote:
Actually the networks mandated that the phones had front facing camera, that is why so many (just about all) UTMS phones have this feature, this was a function that stopped when the iPhone came out. So unless you are saying there are fewer handsets around today than there were in 2004/5 you might be wrong in this case.

In the early days of 3G, this was true. Hasn't been for a very long time. Back in the early 2000s, almost every phone had a front facing camera, now most do. The notable exception is smartphones where actually very few do (not counting Nokia's Symbian running jumped up feature-phones here). I meant fewer in terms of phone models; not total phones around. If the latter, then I'm almost certainly right as the biggest growth area for mobile is in the 3rd world, where the very very cheap phones certainly don't have cameras. Either way, I'm pretty sure I'm right!


Quote:
You might be right, this might take off, but I can't see how unless they can convince the other phone manufactures that this is a good idea, and convince the networks to bring in some sensible pricing for the feature, and convince the networks to support it. Remember, regardless of how much money Apple is making from the iPhone, and no matter how much the ARPU is for these users, the iPhone only accounts for around 2% of all phones, so unless this feature is adopted by others it will be a limited feature with a limited use.

2% of all phones, but a much higher percentage of revenue; I'd wager. In the UK, post pay ARPU hangs around the £25 area, PAYG ARPU nearer £15. The cheapest iPhone contracts are in the region of £35. You do the math, as they say in the States...


Quote:
I'm not sure what you think Apple has changed with the operators, maybe you have an extra feature on your network now that you didn't before, but nothing has changed in most of the world. Visual Voicemail existed on other networks in the US before the iPhone

Having worked with Operators (in the UK) on iPhone projects, I can assure you they will do plenty to keep Apple happy. You may not be able to see all this as 'features', but a lot goes on. Trust me. As I said, Operators still need to build a business case around this (it's very hard to get a proposition through unless it can 'wash its face'), but the risk to the operator is much lower with Apple than if someone like LG or Samsung pushed for the development. Operators now know that they'll flog a sh!t load of iPhones, and can plan accordingly. The latest Samsung or LG Whatever has no such track record.
post #91 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

Jobs stated that for now it's WiFi only, but that Apple needed to talk to the networks about making available via WWAN (UMTS, HSPA, LTE, whatever).

Yes, but how many are going to change things unless they can get a large return for it? Remember you are only talking about 2% of their customers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

User experience means more than just the user interface. On some phones setting up a call is easy, on others more difficult (I've had both). Regardless, the actual quality of the video call is generally very poor (choppy low res video, freezing, audio cutting in and out, etc.). I think you also misunderstand Apple's UX. Apple takes a lot of the guesswork out of the equation, and will only offer the FaceTime option if the phone on the other end is capable of supporting it. I think that's quite a big deal.

I understand Apple user experience perfectly fine thank you, I own multiple apple devices, I just think you under estimate everyone elses, and I think you really under estimate the need for interoperability between handsets of different manufactures,


Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

In the early days of 3G, this was true. Hasn't been for a very long time. Back in the early 2000s, almost every phone had a front facing camera, now most do. The notable exception is smartphones where actually very few do (not counting Nokia's Symbian running jumped up feature-phones here). I meant fewer in terms of phone models; not total phones around. If the latter, then I'm almost certainly right as the biggest growth area for mobile is in the 3rd world, where the very very cheap phones certainly don't have cameras. Either way, I'm pretty sure I'm right!

What do you mean by fewer models, I would say the number of models of phones has certainly increased since 2004/5

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

2% of all phones, but a much higher percentage of revenue; I'd wager. In the UK, post pay ARPU hangs around the £25 area, PAYG ARPU nearer £15. The cheapest iPhone contracts are in the region of £35. You do the math, as they say in the States...

I would, a couple of issues though, Apple doesn't report sales numbers by country, and they have the hard job of trying to price this in the market, just because the device supports a feature, doesn't mean people are going to use it, or all the operators are going to support it. Visual Voicemail is a prime example of this, how many of the networks that Apple is on actually have implemented this?


Quote:
Originally Posted by RichyS View Post

Having worked with Operators (in the UK) on iPhone projects, I can assure you they will do plenty to keep Apple happy. You may not be able to see all this as 'features', but a lot goes on. Trust me. As I said, Operators still need to build a business case around this (it's very hard to get a proposition through unless it can 'wash its face'), but the risk to the operator is much lower with Apple than if someone like LG or Samsung pushed for the development. Operators now know that they'll flog a sh!t load of iPhones, and can plan accordingly. The latest Samsung or LG Whatever has no such track record.

Can you please give some examples of these changes the networks are making to keep Apple happy
post #92 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander View Post

I agree it would be if it's true. But I've seen nothing to back it up yet - can you provide anything more than "apparently"? (I've run into apparently a lot in trying to work that out!).

The standard does include AAC, which implies there IS audio on the connection.
...

No, sorry, I can't give any evidence that the voice call will continue to be routed over 2G / 3G and not IP. But I strongly doubt that handover to WiFi and even more so from WiFi back to 2G/3G (for example due to leaving the covered area) would work as seamlessly as required to provide for a good user experience.
post #93 of 95
"Apple isn't blocking Skype on iPhone 4 or the iOS. Skype isn't a direct competitor pushing its own hardware; Skype provides a product that addresses issues that FaceTime does not (support for earlier phones and 3G calls); and Skype is both already finished and functional and entrenched as a player in the mobile market"

Skype also supports voice calls to real telephones around the world.

This for a fee of course, but as we Skype fans know, it is a fraction of what carriers charge for the same international call.
post #94 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by mr O View Post

It makes me wonder: it'd be great if you could iChat/facetime directly from your iMac to an iPhone 4? That would dramatically expand the use of Facetime, wouldn't it?

I may be looking into this too deeply, but....

During the keynote, after facetime was announced, Jobs did say "over 10 million facetime devices will be shipped this year".. Notice how he said devices? not specifically iphones?

I think he's alluding to include macs also and whatever else will support facetime before the end of the year

or maybe just my wishful thinking
post #95 of 95
Well, that was totally wrong:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/macworld/201...rtimeminutes_1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Philotech View Post

No, sorry, I can't give any evidence that the voice call will continue to be routed over 2G / 3G and not IP. But I strongly doubt that handover to WiFi and even more so from WiFi back to 2G/3G (for example due to leaving the covered area) would work as seamlessly as required to provide for a good user experience.
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