iPhone “Hiking Mode”: cellular radio disabled

Turns out, there is a way to use GPS  while having the cellular radios disabled.

If you lock the SIM card with a PIN, it apparently disables the cellular radios. Locking is explained here (Apple technote HT1316), but there is a critical piece of info missing. The default PIN (at least on my AT&T iPhone) is 1111. Entering the wrong code three many times will require a call to AT&T support, so beware. Entering the wrong code ten times kills your SIM card.

You can enable, disable, or change your SIM PIN in the following locations:

  • iPhone: Settings > Phone > SIM PIN
  • iPad Wi-Fi + 3G: Settings > Cellular Data > SIM PIN

Set the slider to “on” and enter 1111 (for AT&T)

After the SIM is PIN locked, power the phone off and back on and DO NOT ‘unlock’ the SIM. The carrier will now read “locked SIM” and there will be no cellular data. Turn off WiFi and Bluetooth also, they use a lot of power as well. I haven’t tested this yet, but a poster the forum I found the hint from posted running the GPS in tracking mode for 15 hours with the battery still showing 89%

This is also a great tip for traveling abroad without getting hit with huge roaming charges. No SIM, no billing.

Going without Flash

There has been a lot of talk on the ‘webs lately about ditching Flash. In a nutshell, people are reporting as much as a 30% increase in battery life and less (or NO) beachballing in Safari and Firefox.

Good articles here:

It is important to install the Youtube5 safari extension for Youtube, Facebook and Vimeo to work correctly.

DVD Player Patch Allows Skipping of Trailers and Warnings

If your iMac or MacBook doubles as your portable DVD player, you’ll find the usually un-skip-able trailers, advertisements, and piracy warnings not just time wasting, but battery draining. Get ultimate control of your DVDs with this unofficial software patch.


AT&T Microcells now available in The Gorge

If you have poor cell reception on your iphone at home, you can now remedy this with an AT&T Microcell.

from AT&T;

AT&T 3G MicroCell acts like a mini cellular tower in your home or small business environment. It connects to AT&T’s network via your existing broadband Internet service (such as DSL or cable) and is designed to support up to four simultaneous users in a home or small business setting. With AT&T 3G MicroCell, you receive improved cellular signal performance for both voice calls and cellular data applications like picture messaging and surfing the Web.

This is a good solution for those of you in a hard to reach area.


3G now in Hood River!

As of this morning, AT&T has turned on 3G service for Hood River.

What this means most (besides faster data service) is that you can now use data services while on the phone. For example, you can use google maps to give someone live directions.

Spring Tune-up special

Normally $100, $75 through June 1st.

Periodic maintenance keeps things running smoothly and often finds problems before they become big problems. Usually takes around 45 minutes.

Valid only on systems that have had a tuneup within the last 6 months.