Rediscover Your iPhone: Seriously Useful Built-in Features You Probably Aren’t Using – Part II

In December 2009, I posted an article named: Rediscover Your iPhone: 10 Seriously Useful Built-in Features You Probably Aren’t Using. As a follow-up to that post, I’ve taken a fresh look after a recent iOS 4.2 free upgrade and here’s another Top 10 list for your enjoyment.

Editor’s note: Based on iPhone’s software Ver 4.2.1 for iPhone 4. To see what version you’re running on your iPhone 3G, 3GS or 4, select the Settings app > General > About and look down the list for Version number. To update connect your iPhone to your Mac or PC and follow the onscreen instructions in iTunes.

1. View Meeting Invitations:

When you receive an email meeting invitation, you can now click on the .ics file attachment at the bottom of the email to view meeting invitation details.

iPhone Meeting Invitations

In addition to viewing the Event Details, you can add the event to your calendar by tapping the “Add To Calendar” button.

EMail Meeting Invitation

2. Stock Price Range View:

In the Stocks App, you can swipe the lower portion of the screen to access the chart view. By turning the iPhone sideways, the chart view expands to full screen. Using any two fingers, tap and hold both simultaneously at different points along the timeline. Now, swipe either or both fingers to calculate the return on investment within two dates.

iPhone Stock Price: Custom Date Range View

3. View Photos by Location:

When you take photographs (and videos) with your iPhone, a location based longitude/latitude coordinate is stored. When you launch the Photo App, the “Places” view option (in the bottom navigation) displays thumbtacks on the map. By tapping on a thumbnail, you’ll see how many photos are associated with each location. Be sure to zoom in on the map to your local neighborhood to explore the power of this feature. You can zoom in by touching the screen with two fingers, then spreading your fingers apart.

View Location of Photos

4. Assign Unique Text Tones to Individual Contacts:

Would you like to know who’s texting you without having to look at your screen? You can now assign custom tones for people in your contact list. To do so, launch the Contacts app, Edit an existing record and set the “Text Tone” option as shown below:

Assigning Custom Text Tones

Choose from over 20 unique sounds:

Text Tone Sounds

5. Multitasking:

Multitasking offers the ability to quickly switch between apps. When you click the front facing home button while using an app, apps with background support will continue to run in the background. Double click the front facing home button twice to view your most recently used apps in a tray along the bottom of the screen. Scroll to the right within the tray to reveal apps and tap to re-open. The re-opened app picks up where you left off the last time used.

Apps running in the background can handle audio playback, GPS tracking, movie downloads, draft of a text or email message and more. Note: Be sure to have the latest version of your favorite apps. For example, if you don’t have Pandora’s 3.1 version or later, it won’t run in the background. To get the latest version of your apps, click on the App Store app and select the “Updates” icon in the lower navigation. Then select Update All option in the upper right (preferably when you’re on a WiFi connection).

I recently found multitasking to be particularly beneficial when toggling between the Email app and the Settings app. My Email app contained an email with info from a colleague who sent me instructions on how to configure my corporate email within the Settings app. Each app retained my prior location and the multitasking tray provided quick access to each app. I used the copy and paste function for a few iterations between the apps.

If you want to shut down an app running in the background, activate the multitask panel by double clicking the front facing home button. Press and hold the app icon until a red badge appears in the upper left of each icon as shown below. Tap on the red badge to close the app.

Multitasking Tray View and Close Option

6. Easy-Access Music Controls:

When you run third-party music apps in the background (ex. Pandora Radio and ooTunes Radio), quick access to turn down the volume or advance the song is often not at hand. Note: Be sure to have the latest version of your favorite music app. For example, if you don’t have Pandora’s 3.1 version or later, it won’t run in the background. To get the latest version of your apps, click on the App Store app and select the “Updates” icon in the lower navigation. Then select Update All option in the upper right (preferably when you’re on a WiFi connection).

Double click the front facing home button twice. You’ll see your most recently used apps in a tray along the bottom of the screen. Now, swipe to the left to reveal audio controls including play, back and next.

Audio Controls in the Multitasking Tray

Another swipe to the left reveals a slider to control audio volume as per the screen shot below.

Volume Controls in the Multitasking Tray

7. Lock Portrait Orientation

Within some apps, the screen orientation is programmed to change to and from portrait and landscape mode when the phone detects rotation slightly past 90 degrees. In many cases, this creates the desired user experience, however, there are times when you’d prefer to lock in portrait orientation.

Double click the front facing home button twice. You’ll see your most recently used apps in a tray along the bottom of the screen. Now, swipe to the left to reveal the portrait orientation lock icon. Tapping the icon toggles between portrait lock and unlock states.

Option to Lock Portrait Mode

8. Add Birthdays to Calendar:

A well populated Contacts App, complete with family, friends, co-workers and business contacts makes the iPhone an even more productive tool. When you choose to Edit or Create a new contact record, the “add field” option appears at the bottom of the screen as shown below.

Adding Birthdays to Calendar

Your contact’s birthday can be entered as per the screen below.

Birthday Option

After you enter and save the birthdate, the Calendar App displays that information on the corresponding day of the year as per the example below.

Calendar and Birthdays Shown

9. iPhone Capacity:

When you sync your iPhone to iTunes you can clearly see how much space remains on your iPhone. If you’re like me, you can go 2 months without a sync up. To get a quick view of your iPhone capacity that remains, open the Settings app, select General then About. Scan the list for the rows named Capacity and Available.

iPhone Capacity and Available Space

10. HD Video:

The iPhone 4 can record video in high-definition (HD) at 1280×720 (720p) and uses an aspect ratio of 16:9 with up to 30 frames per second including audio.

After opening the iPhone’s Camera app, controls include start/stop, optional LED flash (which can be enabled/disabled at any time during a recording) and front facing (VGA) vs. rear facing camera activation (HD). You can tap the screen [a blinking square will appear] to focus and set exposure on your subject.

iPhone 4 HD Recording Controls


Tim CascioTim Cascio is the author of the Mobile Marketing, Monetization and Methods blog, Co-Founder/Co-Chair of the Mobile Visionary Roundtable at the Illinois Technology Association and Sr. Digital Strategist at Bader Rutter & Associates, an award-winning integrated marketing services agency that specializes in advertising, public relations, brand asset management, relationship marketing and digital solutions. Tim is @timcascio on Twitter and can be reached in the United States at 262-938-5543.

Please reach out to me if there’s any way I can help you through my network or otherwise. Your comments below are welcome.

The Coming Global Wave of Mobile Widgets to be Explored at the Illinois Technology Association’s Mobile Visionary Roundtable on June 16, 2010, at 8:30am

On June 16, the Mobile Visionary Roundtable at the Illinois Technology Association (ITA) welcomes virtual guest speaker Mark Caron presenting, “The Coming Global Wave of Mobile Widgets.”  Mr. Caron, based in New York City, is the Founder and CEO of Snac, Inc. He has spent his career playing a leading role in bringing mobile services to the mass-market; starting with digital wireless services in the 1990s, text messaging in the early 2000s, and now the mobile internet with his latest start-up, Snac, Inc.

Take a look at these interesting statistics:

  • 80% of mobile consumers would increase content usage if faster and more reliable. (Equation Research survey of 1001 US mobile web users – 9/09)
  • iPhones only comprise only 6-7% of the US market/other smartphones only add another 16-17%. (Yankee Group – 9/09 extrapolated)
  • The average free iPhone app loses 90% of it users after the first 8-9 days. (Pinch Media)
  • The average US mobile site gets only 2 unique visits/month. (Crisp Wireless)
  • Consumer-facing companies in the US are spending more than $1 billion/year trying to engage mobile users. (eMarketer, Mobile Marketing Association, and company estimates)

In this roundtable, participants will:

  • Discover why widgets will be much bigger in mobile than the PC/web
  • Learn about the new, global mobile widget standard that has these “mini-apps” poised for rapid growth on the heels of mass compatibility
  • See fast, flexible and dynamic widgets in action to witness the next trend in mobile content delivery
  • Better understand the mobile widget market: opportunities, challenges, key players and more
  • Direct your live questions to a pioneer in the mobile widget space

Roundtable presenters will address major factors impacting the mobile industry and highlight success stories. Following the insightful mobile industry presentation, participants will benefit from networking opportunities to share best practices in mobile marketing, technology and application development.

This event takes place in downtown Chicago on Wednesday, June 16, 2010, 8:30am-10:30am.
Register for the event here.

ITA roundtables are a benefit of ITA membership. Members of the general Illinois technology community are always welcome to check out any ITA roundtables free-of-charge. Roundtable events are held in downtown Chicago, across from the Sears Tower (now named the Willis Tower) at 200 S Wacker Dr, 15th Floor, Chicago, IL 60606.

Additional forthcoming Mobile Visionary Roundtable mobile topics include:

• Mobile Marketing Plans
• Best Practices in Apps Development
• The Future of Mobile
• Business Enterprise Applications
• Mobile Monetization
• Global Considerations in Mobile
• Platform Comparisons (iPhone vs. Android vs. Pre, etc.)

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact the Chairs:

Tim Cascio (262) 938-5543
tcascio[at]bader-rutter.com

Raymond J. Reinhardt (312) 957-8579
Raymond@Cuddlephish.com

About the speaker, Mark Caron
Founder/CEO of Snac, Inc., New York, New York

Mark Caron has spent his career playing a leading role in bringing mobile services to the mass-market; starting with digital wireless services in the 1990s, text messaging in the early 2000s, and now the mobile internet with his latest start-up, Snac, Inc. Prior to founding Snac, Mark was Founder/CEO of MobileSpring/Ztango (now part of Real Networks). Under his leadership, the company developed and deployed in 2001, the first inter-carrier text messaging network, enabling messages to travel cross-network and kicking off the explosion in text messaging. After merging with Ztango, Mark as CEO led the company in offering a range of messaging and mobile content services to nearly all tier 1 and tier 2 US carriers. Before MobileSpring/Ztango, Mark was a co-founder and lead marketing executive at Omnipoint Communications, the first GSM carrier in the Northeast (now part of T-Mobile). Mark started his wireless career at Ericsson as a Product Manager, after working in information systems and telecommunications at GE. He has an AB in Computer Science from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

About The Mobile Visionary Roundtable
The Mobile Visionary Roundtable offers a forum for ITA members to engage in active networking and interactive, high-gain, topical discussions regarding mobile marketing and technology. The monthly Mobile Visionary Roundtables feature mobile expert guest speakers, including mobile strategists, marketers and developers from around the world.

About the Illinois Technology Association
The Illinois Technology Association (ITA) represents the interests of a diverse membership of more than 650 companies in Illinois that create, deploy and utilize information technology as a core part of their organization. By connecting members with industry peers and participants, providing the latest strategic information, market research and critical market insight and by promoting key thought leaders to raise visibility and gain a greater market awareness and presence, ITA is focused on building and developing the Illinois technology community through collaboration. Additional information is available at http://www.IllinoisTech.org


Tim CascioTim Cascio is the author of the Mobile Marketing, Monetization and Methods blog, Co-Founder/Co-Chair of the Mobile Visionary Roundtable at the Illinois Technology Association and Sr. Digital Strategist at Bader Rutter & Associates, an award-winning integrated marketing services agency that specializes in advertising, public relations, brand asset management, relationship marketing and digital solutions. Tim is @timcascio on Twitter and can be reached in the United States at 262-938-5543.

Please reach out to me if there’s any way I can help you through my network or otherwise. Your comments below are welcome.

How Touchless Interfaces Will Redefine Mobile

Using a standard mobile video camera with object recognition software, a whole new way to interact with mobile devices is in the works. Natural, intuitive body movements and gestures will soon activate and control software applications ranging from productivity tools to interactive games.

Here are a few examples of touchless gestures:

  • Wave your hand to scroll through a document
  • Point at an icon to activate an application
  • Shoot a gun in an action game

In essence, you can point, click, drag, scroll, zoom and rotate with simple hand movements that never touch the screen. Texas Instruments and XTR 3D have teamed to develop a set of software components to improve the way we interface and interact with mobile devices. Here’s a brief video that demonstrates the technology:

So, what can we expect the future to hold for mobile software that can detect our physical gestures and recognize objects with a great deal of accuracy? What will happen with the confluence of more capable smart phones, faster processing speed via cloud computing (where thousands of computers are available on-demand) and 4G LTE networks that could provide up to 10x current speeds?

Pranav Mistry may have the answer. Among many honors, Pranav was recently awarded  ‘Invention of the Year 2009’ by Popular Science for his work on SixthSense, a combination miniature projector, webcam and notebook computer. According to Pranav, we’ll soon have the ability to paint the physical world with digital information rather than confine pixels to the device. In a number of compelling examples, he demonstrates how we will be able to use any surface, any wall as an interface and our own gestures to interact. Check out Pranav’s demonstration at TEDIndia:

Part II

Pranav Mistry identifies himself as a “Designeer.” He’s a former UX Researcher with Microsoft. He received his Master in Media Arts and Sciences from MIT and Master of Design from IIT Bombay. Currently, Pranav is a Research Assistant and PhD candidate at the MIT Media Lab.

As he sets out to make connections between the physical world and the digital world, Pranav hopes to make computing interfaces fluid and more intuitive for the masses. Furthermore, his aim is to allow us to get away from traditional computer settings and out interacting with the world.

Recent developments in mobile embedded video projection, video capture and cloud computing will likely consolidate concepts like SixthSense into one singular device.

I look forward to following Pranav‘s continued research and achievements. He’s truly a mobile visionary and one to watch.


Tim CascioTim Cascio is the author of the Mobile Marketing, Monetization and Methods blog, Co-Founder/Co-Chair of the Mobile Visionary Roundtable at the Illinois Technology Association and Sr. Digital Strategist at Bader Rutter & Associates, an award-winning integrated marketing services agency that specializes in advertising, public relations, brand asset management, relationship marketing and digital solutions. Tim is @timcascio on Twitter and can be reached in the United States at 262-938-5543.

Please reach out to me if there’s any way I can help you through my network or otherwise. Your comments below are welcome.

Mobile Visionary Roundtable Event to be Held in Chicago on February 17, 2010: Mobile Marketing and a Visionary Look Forward

On February 17, the Mobile Visionary Roundtable at the Illinois Technology Association (ITA) welcomes guest speaker Alex Campbell presenting on Mobile Marketing and a Visionary Look Forward.

Did you know mobile messaging revenues worldwide are expected to grow to $233 billion in 2014, up from about $150 billion in 2009, according to a new forecast issued by Portio Research? Additionally, according to Gartner, mobile app store revenues will reach $6.2 billion in 2010. Worldwide downloads are expected to surpass 21.6 billion by 2013.

Register in advance. Informal networking begins when doors open at 8:00am.

Known throughout the industry for his candor regarding the state of mobile technology, Alex is a sought after speaker within the technology and financing circuits. He has won a number of awards throughout his career including Red Herring’s Top 25 Tech Rebels and Crain’s Business Chicago Top 40 Professionals under 40.

Following the insightful educational portion of our roundtable, participants will split into themed mobile breakout sessions where they will enjoy networking opportunities and share best practices in mobile marketing, technology and application development.

This event takes place in downtown Chicago on Wednesday, February 17, 2010, 8:30am-11:00am.
Register for the event here.

ITA roundtables are a benefit of ITA membership. Members of the general Illinois technology community are always welcome to check out any ITA roundtables free-of-charge. Roundtable events are held in downtown Chicago, across from the Sears Tower (now named the Willis Tower) at 200 S Wacker Dr, 15th Floor, Chicago, IL 60606.

Additional forthcoming Mobile Visionary roundtable mobile topics include:

• Mobile Marketing Plans
• Best Practices in Apps Development
• The Future of Mobile
• Business Enterprise Applications
• Mobile Monetization
• Global Considerations in Mobile
• Platform Comparisons (iPhone vs. Android vs. Pre, etc.)

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact the Chairs:

Tim Cascio (262) 938-5543
tcascio[at]bader-rutter.com

Raymond J. Reinhardt (312) 924-1681
Raymond@Cuddlephish.com

About the speaker, Alex Campbell
Alex has dedicated the past decade to pioneering the mobile marketing discipline and educating clients on its value as a viable marketing solution. A leader and visionary, his expertise has led to Vibes’ double digit growth, every year since 2004.

About The Mobile Visionary Roundtable
The Mobile Visionary Roundtable offers a forum for ITA members to engage in active networking and interactive, high-gain, topical discussions regarding mobile marketing and technology. The monthly Mobile Visionary Roundtables feature mobile expert guest speakers, including mobile strategists, marketers and developers from around the world.

About the Illinois Technology Association
The Illinois Technology Association (ITA) represents the interests of a diverse membership of more than 650 companies in Illinois that create, deploy and utilize information technology as a core part of their organization. By connecting members with industry peers and participants, providing the latest strategic information, market research and critical market insight and by promoting key thought leaders to raise visibility and gain a greater market awareness and presence, ITA is focused on building and developing the Illinois technology community through collaboration. Additional information is available at http://www.IllinoisTech.org


Tim CascioTim Cascio is the author of the Mobile Marketing, Monetization and Methods blog, Co-Founder/Co-Chair of the Mobile Visionary Roundtable at the Illinois Technology Association and Sr. Digital Strategist at Bader Rutter & Associates, an award-winning integrated marketing services agency that specializes in advertising, public relations, brand asset management, relationship marketing and digital solutions. Tim is @timcascio on Twitter and can be reached in the United States at 262-938-5543.

Please reach out to me if there’s any way I can help you through my network or otherwise. Your comments below are welcome.

The 10 Legal Mistakes That Can Destroy A Mobile Marketing Campaign and How to Avoid Them

Countless case studies point to convincingly high success rates for well-executed mobile marketing campaigns. Results are measured by the size and quality of opt-in subscribers, offer redemptions and depth of customer engagement. This is all very exciting, however, lack of compliance with privacy laws and codes of conduct can invite trouble.

I’d like to introduce you to Tammi Franke, an accomplished attorney and Adjunct Professor at DePaul University’s Graduate Program in Public Relations and Advertising. I met her through the Illinois Technology Association where we chair separate monthly roundtable events. Tammi’s guest article below is a tremendous resource for marketers and technologists with mobile marketing responsibility.

The 10 Legal Mistakes That Can Destroy A Mobile Marketing Campaign and How to Avoid Them

by Tammi Franke

New technologies are available to marketers almost everyday. The toolkit of today’s savvy marketer would seem like magic to the “Mad Men” of the 1960’s.  Unfortunately, the law does not change at the same rapid pace as technology.  This creates some uncertainty and no one wants to end up as a test case in court over a mobile campaign.  Avoiding the following 10 legal landmines will help keep your mobile marketing campaign out of hot water and in the minds of consumers where it belongs.

1. Ignoring Generally Accepted Privacy Principles (GAPP).

Why this is a problem: In the U.S., Privacy laws are spread across several different pieces of federal and state legislation making compliance confusing and difficult. GAPP and its framework make compliance much easier.

How you can avoid this problem: Familiarize yourself with each of the GAPP principles.  Make sure your mobile marketing campaign complies with the GAPP framework.

2. Ignoring the MMA Code of Conduct

Why this is a problem: The MMA Code of Conduct is the leading example of industry self-regulation and mirrors many of the GAPP principles.  Ignoring the MMA Code of Conduct puts not only your campaign at risk but also puts the entire industry at risk of increased federal regulation.

How you can avoid this problem: Familiarize yourself with the MMA Code of Conduct Make sure your mobile marketing campaign complies with it.

3. Not getting approval of your mobile campaign from wireless carriers

Why this is a problem: Some messages to wireless devices are covered under CAN-SPAM and others, according to a recent California case, under the TCPA. For these reasons and customer service concerns, wireless carriers review and approve every broadcast mobile campaign over its network. If your campaign isn’t approved, the carriers may block it.

How you can avoid this problem: Using a leading aggregator or a short code from the Common Short Code Administration website, will simplify and expedite carrier approvals.

4. Short cutting your legal review/clearance process because “it’s only a text”.

Why this is a problem: FTC regulations apply to ads no matter how they are delivered.  In fact, mobile campaigns are under a microscope now because of heightened privacy concerns and because additional charges apply for many consumers when they receive mobile ads.

How you can avoid this problem: Treat your mobile campaigns just like any other ad or marketing campaign and use the same clearance process prior to launch.  Factor in the additional requirement for approval/clearance by wireless carriers.

5. Cutting out ad disclaimers because you don’t have room for them

Why this is a problem: Unfortunately, “I didn’t have enough room” is not a valid defense in a lawsuit.  If your ad requires an ad disclaimer, you’re obligated to provide it.  Just ask the pharmaceutical companies who received FDA warning letters for making claims in Google Adwords without the required disclaimers.

How you can avoid this problem: Revise the content in the mobile ad/text message so that it does not require a disclaimer or use mobile messaging as a tool for gathering opt-ins and information and not for pushing ad content.

6. Thinking you won’t get sued if you send an ad via text to a cell phone without permission.  You will.

Why this is a problem: Several litigation firms who specialize in representing consumers with claims under the TCPA are now focusing on class action law suits for the receipt of unauthorized text messages.  Many of these same firms previously brought class action “junk fax” suits under the TCPA.

How you can avoid this problem: Develop your own opt-in list with opt-in documentation for every mobile marketing message you send.  Don’t rely on third parties to do your homework.

7. Sneaking in a mobile opt-in on another registration.

Why this is a problem: The TCPA requires the express consent of a consumer before a mobile marketing message is sent.  The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals held in a recent case that an opt-in to receive messages from a company’s “affiliates and brands” did not constitute express written consent to receive a message from someone who purchased the opt-in list.

How you can avoid this problem: Develop your own opt-in list with opt-in documentation for every mobile marketing message you send.  Don’t rely on consents given to third parties.

8. Ignoring consumer complaints.

Why this is a problem:  73% of FCC complaints in the first quarter of 2009 regarding wireless services were related to unsolicited marketing calls or messages. FCC complaints are easy for consumers to file.  If you don’t resolve a consumer complaint quickly, often the next step is a complaint to the FCC.  This can lead to increased industry regulation or inquiries into your specific marketing practices.

How you can avoid this problem: Assign a specific person or group to address consumer complaints regarding your campaign quickly.

9. Violating GAPP using Bluetooth proximity marketing.

Why this is a problem:  Even if a consumer isn’t charged for receiving a message via Bluetooth, pushing unsolicited content onto a mobile device via Bluetooth can seem as invasive to a consumer as receiving an unwanted text message.

How you can avoid this problem: Familiarize yourself with each of the GAPP principles.  Make sure your Bluetooth proximity campaign complies with the GAPP framework.

10. Ignoring contest and promotion rules because it is easy to conduct a contest via a mobile device.

Why this is a problem: State and Federal laws and regulations regarding contests, sweepstakes and lotteries apply to no matter how the promotion is delivered.

How you can avoid this problem: Treat your mobile promotions just like any other promotion.  Use the same legal review and clearance process prior to launch.

This article was prepared for informational purposes and is not legal advice.  You should not act upon this information without seeking advice from a lawyer licensed in your own state or country.

Tammi Franke
Fitzgerald & Hewes LLP
550 West Van Buren Street, Suite 1450
Chicago, Illinois 60607
office: 312.447.2900 ext. 2903
email: tfranke (at) fitzhewlaw.com
blog: http://tammifranke.blogspot.com

Tammi Franke is an experienced business executive and lawyer. She advises software, leasing, consulting, and other emerging and established marketing, communication and technology companies. Her specialties include licensing, business organization, corporate finance, and commercial matters.

She has experience in entertainment law, software licensing, and consulting services, a wide range of debt and equity financings, including venture capital and other private placements, and commercial lending.

She is formerly the Executive Director of Lawyers for the Creative Arts in Chicago and is currently an Adjunct Professor at DePaul University in the Graduate Program in Public Relations and Advertising.


Tim CascioTim Cascio is the author of the Mobile Marketing, Monetization and Methods blog, Co-Founder/Co-Chair of the Mobile Visionary Roundtable at the Illinois Technology Association and Sr. Digital Strategist at Bader Rutter & Associates, an award-winning integrated marketing services agency that specializes in advertising, public relations, brand asset management, relationship marketing and digital solutions. Tim is @timcascio on Twitter and can be reached in the United States at 262-938-5543.

Please reach out to me if there’s any way I can help you through my network or otherwise. Your comments below are welcome.

Apple iSlate Roadmap: Game-Changing Features for Version 1.0 and Beyond

Mobile industry experts tend to agree on the purported iSlate features such as multi-touch, WiFi wireless networking and a long-life battery. But, what would make the iSlate a truly revolutionary device? I explore some possibilities below.

Apple’s new product announcement is scheduled for Wednesday, January 27, 2010, at 10am PST. Click here for live coverage at the time of the event.

  • Live TV Programming.
    Play live TV broadcasts that include local, national and international programming. The initial offering could have a select number of high profile choices. Broadcast networks and their advertisers would love the eventual demographic and local targeting. Built-in analytics would drive further interest and participation.
  • Voiceprint Technology.
    Biometric voice authentication could be required to unlock the device, conduct monetary transactions or access sensitive data. Industries such as health care and banking are key verticals where Apple would like to get a foothold for their tablet device. Authentication would allow for admin-defined sensitivity settings where access to extremely sensitive applications may require more voice samples to verify identity.
  • Touch-back Screen.
    A keyboard would display on-screen similar to the iPhone, however, when your fingertips make contact, you’d receive touch-back feedback, providing unmistakable confirmation by sensors and actuators. The intensity level could be set by the user. Context-appropriate haptic (vibration) effects would make game playing more engaging, intuitive and natural. Furthermore, industrial and commercial applications would benefit from safer and more accurate control in distractive environments.
  • Ultra-Thin OLED Flexible Displays and Batteries.
    If Apple employs OLED flexible display technology, the display depth could be paper-thin and the tablet could potentially be even thinner than the iPhone. Complementary thin, flexible battery technology could create some interesting form factors. While I don’t expect Apple’s first generation tablet to leverage a flexible display, it’s a strong possibility in future versions.
  • Writing and Sketch-Pad Reinvented.
    The multi-touch screen would also work with a provided writing device. Creative professionals such as game developers, graphic designers, architects, animators, fashion designers and photographers would love the natural feel and accuracy that the writing device provides. Furthermore, students and business professionals could have their hand-written notes transcribed on-the-fly to typed text. Using the tablet as a sketch-pad would be a popular feature and the reverse end of the writing device could be used as an eraser.
  • Publishing Rejuvenated. The timing is very good for publishers to find new revenue sources and Apple may be in the right place at the right time to help. Apple has the scale, payment and distribution platform to execute well. Apple’s Quattro Wireless acquisition and their advertising platform allows publishers to leverage their adverting base for ad serving on the iSlate and iPhone. Taking this one step further, Apple could eventually integrate location-aware pre-roll, post-roll and mid-roll advertising within their movie, TV and podcast content.
    • Free Past Editions of Magazines and Newspapers.
      To instill new behaviors for how people browse their favorite publications, Apple’s tablet device could offer access to free past editions of a select number of high profile magazines and newspapers. I expect a reading-friendly form factor with features that include Apple-elegant page turning, zoom, rotating display, “mark-as-read” feature and bookmarking.
    • Purchase, Annotate and Share Magazine and Newspaper Articles.
      The tablet could allow for annotations, highlighting or comments to be added as a removable layer. With a few strokes of your finger, you could share the document via email, Facebook, Twitter or other social network with or without your annotations. Similar to how Apple offered individual songs for sale at an affordable price, articles could be offered for sale individually, too. May the best written articles win. Actually, it’s probably more accurate to say, “May the articles with the best headline, abstract, teaser photography and reviewer ratings win.” Purchases of articles, full editions and subscriptions would be made using iTunes.
    • Text-to-Speech Playback.
      Articles and/or books could be read to you. iPhone already has a similar feature found by accessing: Settings > General > Accessibility > VoiceOver.  Select from a number of available male and female voices.
    • Embedded Interactive Videos.
      Magazines and newspapers could begin to include embedded videos for feature stories and advertising content.
    • eBook Teaser Content and Instant Downloads.
      Similar to Amazon’s “Look Inside” feature, best sellers, new releases and text books could offer previews of their table of contents, prologue, introductory chapters and the index. Apple has the potential to ultimately become the low cost provider of e-textbooks that serve students from grade school to graduate school. eBook purchases would be made using iTunes.
  • iPhone Internet Tethering.
    Besides having built-in Wi-Fi wireless networking, the tablet could allow for iPhone Internet tethering. This would enable tablet users to connect to the Internet via their iPhone AT&T service plan.
  • Credit/Debit Card Swiping.
    Would we use the Apple tablet more often if it were easier to make online purchases or to accept payments? Perhaps a built-in card swipe feature is in the works? Square is getting a lot of press with their mobile payment solution.
  • iPhone Apps Compatibility, Synching and Multi-tasking.
    iPhone apps would wirelessly synchronize to the tablet and fully function in each of the following ways.

    • Run any app full-screen. Perfect for interactive games and entertainment apps.
    • Run apps in background. Ideal for music streaming Apps like Pandora.
    • Run several apps at one time. Great for tracking real-time sports statistics while chatting with friends in Facebook and monitoring your Ebay bids.

What features do you envision for the Apple tablet roadmap? Please leave your comments below.


Tim CascioTim Cascio is the author of the Mobile Marketing, Monetization and Methods blog, Co-Founder/Co-Chair of the Mobile Visionary Roundtable at the Illinois Technology Association and Sr. Digital Strategist at Bader Rutter & Associates, an award-winning integrated marketing services agency that specializes in advertising, public relations, brand asset management, relationship marketing and digital solutions. Tim is @timcascio on Twitter and can be reached in the United States at 262-938-5543. Please reach out to me if there’s any way I can help you through my network or otherwise. Your comments below are welcome.