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iPod Hardware and Accessories All iPod hardware discussions.

OS X: False advertising?


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jerbils

 
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I have to call Apple's bluff on this one. There's simply no way the iPhone has OS X, not in the sense that it has the same OS my MacBook is running, anyway. I wouldn't be upset if Apple wasn't proudly proclaiming that it does in fact run the OS we all know and love; it's quite misleading. I don't think the iPhone has OS X, and here's why:

1. It needs at least a decent processor to run at any useful speed. If this thing broke 1 GHz, I'd be shocked. Even if it did, the battery life would be nonexistent.
2. It needs... at a BARE MINIMUM... 256 MB RAM to run properly. Even 512 is a stretch. I refuse to believe this device has 256 MB or more RAM, there's just no way.
3. Heat. If it runs OS X, it's gonna be more than a little hot (considering the size). Apple won't release a product that's dangerous to it's customers.
4. This article:http://www.tuaw.com/2007/01/09/iphon...-applications/
5. Apple has engineers, not magicians.

I could go on and on, but the fact of the matter is that the iPhone can not possibly have OS X. I wouldn't mind, but if Steve Jobs promises such a thing, he should be able to deliver.
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I think it's a bit premature for anyone to make any snap judgements about what this product is or isn't.

I agree that this phone isn't running the same version of "OS X" that your iMac is. But that doesn't mean that it's not running a version of OS X. It might well share the XNU (Darwin) kernel and some of the Cocoa libraries, and probably some of the graphics features, as well. Looking at the demos, the graphics and animation alone suggest that there's a much higher level of hardware (and software) in this thing than in your typical phone/iPod/handheld.

To put it another way...you can get a Samsung SCH-i730 that runs "Windows Mobile for PocketPCs" or a HP Integrity Superdome server that runs "Windows Server 2003." They're totally different operating systems, but they're both "Windows."
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It will be interesting to see the final product of the iPhone. Tech, I think you are probably right about how it will probably be. Just wish we didnt have to wait 6 months to find out! I will be happy to replace my Treo.

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jerbils

 
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Fair enough, but Jobs keeps saying that this is not a dumbed-down system with dumbed-down capabilities. The reality is that this phone will more than likely have such a system. There are many things I would want and need a Mac OS X machine to do, and this device cannot fulfill those wants and needs.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jerbils View Post
1. It needs at least a decent processor to run at any useful speed.
You can run Tiger happily on a 400MHz G4 if you have enough RAM. Strip down the UI and you can have the same base OS as on the desktop. Look at the various Linux ports to other hardware; they're the same OS as on the desktop with a different UI, just like Darwin and the OS X core could run on a portable machine. There's more to an operating system than the user interface.

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2. It needs... at a BARE MINIMUM... 256 MB RAM to run properly. Even 512 is a stretch. I refuse to believe this device has 256 MB or more RAM, there's just no way.
There are several PDAs available with 128 or 256MB of RAM. Flash RAM is getting cheaper all the time for storage. The asking price (at least $499 with a contract) mean that they can afford to put a little extra in this thing. Couple this with my first point about the stripped UI layer and there's no problem. It's not like you'll be running full desktop apps on this thing.

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3. Heat. If it runs OS X, it's gonna be more than a little hot (considering the size).
How does the software determine the temperature? If it uses the intel Xscale architecture then it'll get no hotter than a PocketPC device.

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5. Apple has engineers, not magicians.
Yes, but they're very good engineers who understand all this stuff and can work with it.

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I wouldn't mind, but if Steve Jobs promises such a thing, he should be able to deliver.
I think it unlikely that he would say such a thing without there being truth behind it at the most publicised Apple conference of the year.
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They said it runs OS X, not full blown Tiger with all the bells and whistles. A basic Darwin kernel running all of the basic Core technologies, with a custom UI engine could easily run on a 150 MHz processor with only 32 MB RAM.

Don't confuse a mobile slimmed down version, with the full blown OS that's on your Mac...

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jerbils View Post
Fair enough, but Jobs keeps saying that this is not a dumbed-down system with dumbed-down capabilities. The reality is that this phone will more than likely have such a system. There are many things I would want and need a Mac OS X machine to do, and this device cannot fulfill those wants and needs.
Well it might a "ligher" version but that doesn't mean it's "dumbed down". For example, I would imagine that the OSX version on the phone is much more powerful than say Windows Mobile compared to Windows Vista. Windows Mobile to me is a joke. It's buggy, crash prone, and looks like a reskined Windows 3.1.

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If you remember the screen Jobs had up at the time he was talking about this, it looked pretty full featured. Clearly it has the Darwin core, or a version of it. It also has Cocoa libraries, the Image Core stuff, of lots of other things I have forgotten now. I focused in particular on the two things I mention above because they imply some pretty heavy handed graphics ability.

This is VERY good, and promises great things for the iPhone. Per the posts above, you can run a very feature full OS in 256K to 512K of RAM. For example, I run a full and modern Linux distribution (VectorLinux in this case) on an old Dell 450 MHz Pentium III with 384K of memory. This includes full graphics (based on X11) and all of my favorite Linux apps. Works like a charm.

There is no reason that iPhone couldn't behave similarly. Realizing that MHz between processors aren't the same, nonetheless, a 450 MHz mobile processor is not a stetch at all these days. If a 450 MHz processor can capably run a full Linux distribution in only 384K of RAM, I can conclude that iPhone could run a pretty beefy version of OS X in a similar space.

Did we ever find out what processor lies at the heart of iPhone? Has this been disclosed?

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By the way, am I the only one who thinks that touting the fact that iPhone will run OS X is a brilliant marketing move? This will expose a whole new crop of people to what is arguably Mac software. After using iPhone for a while, and realizing they like it, they will be moved just that little bit more to considering a Mac as their next computer. I just marvel at the scope and stretch of Apple's strategy. Totally brilliant in my opinion.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jerbils View Post
I have to call Apple's bluff on this one. There's simply no way the iPhone has OS X, not in the sense that it has the same OS my MacBook is running, anyway. I wouldn't be upset if Apple wasn't proudly proclaiming that it does in fact run the OS we all know and love; it's quite misleading. I don't think the iPhone has OS X, and here's why:

1. It needs at least a decent processor to run at any useful speed. If this thing broke 1 GHz, I'd be shocked. Even if it did, the battery life would be nonexistent.
2. It needs... at a BARE MINIMUM... 256 MB RAM to run properly. Even 512 is a stretch. I refuse to believe this device has 256 MB or more RAM, there's just no way.
3. Heat. If it runs OS X, it's gonna be more than a little hot (considering the size). Apple won't release a product that's dangerous to it's customers.
4. This article:http://www.tuaw.com/2007/01/09/iphon...-applications/
5. Apple has engineers, not magicians.

I could go on and on, but the fact of the matter is that the iPhone can not possibly have OS X. I wouldn't mind, but if Steve Jobs promises such a thing, he should be able to deliver.
I think firstly you're defining what an Operating System is in a slightly unfair way. OS X as you know it is made of several things.

- The Kernel
- The I/O management software (I've simplyified this)
- APIs
- The GUI
- Other software

I suspect the phone only shares the Kernel and some of the I/O management with what's in your Mac as well as core animation, cocoa and a few other things that were on the Keynote. It doesn't mean iPhoto will be on it, or that it can run Photoshop at the same speed as a Core2Duo or that it can run OpenGL software etc.

In terms of what hardware is needed to run it, well one rumour I like is that it uses the AMD Geode processor and perhaps a small gfx accelerator from nVidia. However, considering Apple's new relationship with Intel, this might not be the case.

In any event, the Linux kernel has been shown to run on 1st generation iPODs and realistically, to get the OS X kernel running, a little UI, playback video, music and do core animation, doesn't require anywhere near the processing power you might think.

In terms of what Joe Average might interpret 'it has OS X' as meaning, you might have a point, but realistically no one should expect such a small and flexible device to behave in the same way as a desktop computer.

In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is stoned to death.
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jerbils

 
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Well guys, for once, I hope I'm wrong. I suppose it's a little unfair of me to expect this phone to have as many capabilities as a full-blown Mac. I got the idea of an "Apple UMPC" when they announced the OS, and that was really the main selling point for me. If Apple can deliver what is truly a tiny computer rather than a hopped-up PDA, I will gladly give them my money. I'm really going to have to take a wait-and-see approah to this, especially because I'm not even a year into my current Cingular contract. Invariably, Apple will make iPhones cheaper and cheaper, as well as give them more capabilites and storage (two things I think it's lacking). It doesn't make sense for me to be an early adopter for this product, but I will definitely keep my eye on the second generation.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schweb View Post
Well it might a "ligher" version but that doesn't mean it's "dumbed down". For example, I would imagine that the OSX version on the phone is much more powerful than say Windows Mobile compared to Windows Vista. Windows Mobile to me is a joke. It's buggy, crash prone, and looks like a reskined Windows 3.1.
I imagine the GUI is maintained at the least...
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Consider that this device is probably...

- Using a XScale processor, PXA27x running at 600mhz.
- Has 4GB or 8GB of user memory, which is used also as RAM.
- Has a video dedicated processor from Intel or ATI as some current PDAs have.

I think this is enough to run OSX or play Doom.

[is pointless to click here]
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rukind2 View Post
I imagine the GUI is maintained at the least...
From the pictures out so far it looks like a 'super' version of Dashboard coupled with a coreimage style full screen display in the style of FrontRow.
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They IMPLY that is runs OS X, but if you read carefully, it doesn't actually say the phone is running OS X...

"All the power and sophistication of the world’s most advanced operating system — OS X — is now available on a small, handheld device that gives you access to true desktop-class applications and software"

In that sentence, they call OS X "the world's most advanced operating system". Ok, fine.

In that sentence they say the power and sophistication of Os X is available in the phone. Ok fine.

A little misleading, but they're not actually saying OS X is on the phone.


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