Tag Archives | technology

Expat Tech: iPhone 4 in Argentina

UPDATE (5.4.12): I should have updated this post earlier, but iPhones are no longer available in Argentina from the mobile carriers due to import restrictions put on them by the Argentine government. You can buy them from Mercadolibre and other sites, but they are 2-3 times the price that they would be in the States.

UPDATE (26.9.10): The iPhone 4 has been released in Argentina.

Apple has done it again.

Today they announced their newest iPhone – the iPhone 4. And it is cool. Super cool. And a whole slew of people now want the latest and greatest iPhone, myself included. The iPhone 3GS, just released last year, seems like an ancient relic.

What makes it so cool? Here’s just a few of the new features:

  • now even thinner
  • front and back made of glass for improved reception with a stainless steel border that also doubles as the antenna
  • 5mp camera with flash
  • HD video recording and iMovie for the iPhone
  • new iOS 4 includes multitasking, folders and more
  • it has a freakin’ gyroscope, which means better augmented reality and games
  • the best mobile screen ever seen
  • front facing video camera with noise canceling microphone
  • FaceTime – iPhone to iPhone video chat
  • and more…

Of course, one of the major drawbacks of living in Buenos Aires is being able to acquire new technology. As I’ve mentioned before, prices are about double what they are in the States and things arrive here later too.  The good news from today’s announcement was that Apple will be rolling out the iPhone to other countries faster than ever before. The iPhone 4 will be available on June 24, 2010 in the States but should be in Argentina by September 2010.

I’ll have to suffer through July and August, but I’m definitely not signing up for a mobile contract until September. And yes, I’ll pay the Argentine premium for the iPhone too. It’s worth it.


Speed Up Your Internet Browsing – Switch to Google DNS

Google Public DNS RocksYesterday, Google released yet another product that will disrupt an industry, Google Public DNS.  Most people are probably not familiar with what DNS even is, so Google offers this explanation:

Most of us aren’t familiar with DNS because it’s often handled automatically by our Internet Service Provider (ISP), but it provides an essential function for the web. You could think of it as the switchboard of the Internet, converting easy-to-remember domain names – e.g., www.google.com – into the unique Internet Protocol (IP) numbers – e.g., – that computers use to communicate with one another.

This service is usually handled by your Internet provider, but Google’s product aims to replace this with a faster and more secure version.  To start using it, follow the instructions on their web page to change either your router or computer settings.

I’ve been using it for the last day and it seems to be much quicker that either my ISP or OpenDNS was.  This blog post on the TechSutra site also notes that it seems to be much better for users outside of the US.

I’d definitely recommend making the switch to it today.

UPDATE: as further proof that Google is taking over the world, they released their own dictionary today.


Expat Tech: Foursquare Comes to Buenos Aires

FoursquareI guess it’s relatively fitting that my first new post to the blog in awhile covers something near and dear to my heart — technology.

Yesterday, Foursquare launched in 50 additional cities, and yes, Buenos Aires was one of them.

What is Foursquare you ask?  Well, in addition to being one of the most hyped new companies of the year, they also are a location based social network that incorporates social elements.  They have a free iPhone and Android app (Blackberry coming) that allows you to “check in” from places that you are at (bars, restaurants, etc).  When you check in, Foursquare will tell your friends where you are and also recommend nearby places.  You can leave tips on the place you’re at and also view tips from your friends.  You also earn points and badges for checking in which can allow you to become the “mayor” of a place and unlock additional freebies. You can read all the details here.

Buenos Aires is still pretty sparsely populated, so download it now and give it a try.  It’s pretty cool.


Expat Tech: Hulu Blocks Anonymous Proxies

Hulu Adds More RestrictionsI previously wrote about how to work around content restrictions on viewing television shows from outside of the US using anonymous proxies and VPN services. Unfortunately, those measures no longer work for Hulu, the largest free online site for viewing TV shows.

TechCrunch reported yesterday that Hulu is now blocking VPN services and anonymous proxies in addition to their other blocks on non-US based IP addresses. If you try to access the service using a VPN like Hotspot Shield, you now get the message:

Based on your IP address, we noticed you are trying to access Hulu through an anonymous proxy tool. Hulu is not currently available outside the U.S. If you’re in the U.S., you’ll need to disable your anonymizer to access videos on Hulu.

If you’e lucky enough to have a private or corporate VPN in the US, that should still work, but this move effectively shuts out most of the major public VPN providers.

In a bit of positive news, the Financial Times reports that Hulu has been signing international deals for content. This could lead to an global roll-out of its services, though there is no estimated time frame for this.  Looks like we’ll go back to using Miro and BitTorrent until someone realizes that content cannot really be controlled anymore.