Apple hires new general contractor for its 'spaceship...
Apple is bringing on a new general contractor to finish its multi-billion-dollar "spaceship" building at Apple Campus 2, "amid questions about whether the huge project remains on track for a late-2016 completion," reports the Silicon Valley Business Journal (http://tinyurl.com/oubp2ku).
Rudolph & Sletten Inc., a veteran Silicon Valley builder, will complete the ring-shaped structure’s interior build-out, the article says, quoting unnamed "multiple people with knowledge of the situation. Until now, a joint venture of DPR Construction Co. and Skanska USA, which is heading up the project, was expected by many in the construction industry to take it through to completion.
Apple releases Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 6.04
Apple has released Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 6.04. The update adds RAW image support to Mac OS X Yosemite for 18 new cameras from Canon, Fujifilm, Hasselblad, Leica, and Nikon.
The update is a 7.7MB download. You can upgrade via the Updates tab at the Mac App Store. Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 6.04 requires Mac OS X 10.10 or higher and iPhoto 9.6 or Aperture 3.6.
Analyst: folks aren't that interested in the Apple Watch (...
In a note to clients — as reported by Barron's (http://tinyurl.com/ob8bgmz) — UBS analyst Steve Milunovich says his research indicates that people aren't that interested in the Apple Watch. At least not yet.
"Search interest has deviated lower relative to an index of 30 consumer electronics introductions and the first iPad and iPhone releases—the week of launch, the Watch is about 20% of iPad and iPhone interest," says Milunovich. "We now think about 7% rather than 10% of the expected iPhone 5/6 average installed base of 430 million in F16E is likely to buy a Watch."
Still he says that UBS is "long-term bullish" on the Apple smartwatch. Milunovich’s evidence comes from an index of search requests:
"We created an index of search interest for 30 consumer electronics launches in the US as well as for the first iPhone and iPad (Figure 3). The initial value is based on search interest at the time the product was announced," he says. "The Apple Watch had been performing in line with the...
IHS: Apple Watch costs only about 24% of MSRP
The Apple Watch has the lowest hardware costs compared to retail price of any Apple product IHS Technology has researched, according to a preliminary estimate by IHS (www.ihs.com) and its Teardown Mobile Handsets Intelligence Service.
The teardown of the Apple Watch Sport by IHS Technology estimates that the actual hardware costs are only about 24%of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP). Estimated hardware cost to MSRP ratios for other Apple products reviewed by IHS are in the range of 29% to 98%.
The teardown of the Apple Watch Sport 38 mm by IHS Technology shows a bill of materials of US$81.20 with the cost of production rising to $83.70 when the $2.50 manufacturing expense is added. The retail price of the Apple Watch Sport 38 mm is $349. The IHS Technology analysis does not include logistics, amortized capital expenses, overhead, SG&A, R&D, software, IP licensing and other variables throughout the supply chain such as the EMS provider.
"It is fairly typical...
Apple, Japan Post, IBM help connect elderly to family and...
Japan Post Group, IBM and Apple have announced an initiative aimed at improving the quality of life for millions of Japanese senior citizens.
Built on the global partnership Apple and IBM announced last year, the new initiative will deliver iPads with IBM-developed apps and analytics to connect millions of seniors with services, healthcare, community and their families. After piloting iPads and apps custom developed for the elderly, Japan Post Group will expand the service in stages with the objective of including four million to million million customers in Japan by 2020. Today more than 33 million seniors make up about 25% of Japan’s population, projected to grow to 40 percent over the next 40 years.
"We are joining with two of the world’s most respected leaders in technology to bring our elderly generation into the connected world, expand our businesses by deepening relationships, and discover new ways to strengthen the fabric of our society and economy," says Taizo Nishimuro, CEO...
Global tablet market continues to contract
Worldwide tablet shipments recorded a year-over-year decline for the second consecutive quarter in the first quarter of 2015 (1Q15). Overall shipments for tablets and 2-in-1 devices fell to 47.1 million in 1Q15, a -5.9% decline from the same quarter a year ago, according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation (www.idc.com).
"The market slowdown that we witnessed last quarter is continuing to impact the tablet segment, but we see some growth areas that are starting to materialize," says Jean Philippe Boucharge, research director, Tablets, IDC. "Cellular-enabled tablets are outgrowing the rest of the market, providing an additional revenue stream for OEMs and mobile operators. In addition to driving higher usage than Wi-Fi-only tablets, cellular-enabled tablets also help position the segment as true mobile solutions rather than stay-at-home devices."
Apple still leads the overall market despite five consecutive quarters of negative annual shipment growth. Apple...
Default Folder for Mac OS X gets maintenance upgrade
St. Clair Software (http://tinyurl.com/2gm24v) has released Default Folder X 4.7.1, an update to their utility for Mac OS X.
Default Folder X enhances the file dialogs in all Mac OS X applications. Its custom keyboard shortcuts put your favorite and recent folders at your fingertips. It provides fast navigation to your files, convenient previews, integrated Spotlight tagging, and more. Version 4.7.1 fixes a bug in Mac OS 10.10.3, as well as offering a number of feature improvements.
Default Folder X 4.7.1 requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher. It's is a free update for existing version 4 users. It costs US$34.95 for new users.
Microsoft introduces the Edge web browser
Microsoft has announced the Edge web browser at this week's Microsoft Build conference, reports re/code (http://tinyurl.com/ktnutgr/). It's the replacement for the long-in-the-tooth Internet Explorer.
Edge will be the primary/default browser built into Windows 10. Details are still light on of what’s unique to Edge, but TechCrunch (http://tinyurl.com/keuu277) says here’s what is known:
° It has built-in Cortana support.
° It has built-in reader, note-taking and sharing features.
° The design focuses on simplicity and minimalism.
° The rendering engine is called EdgeHTML.
iPad app glitches delays some American Airlines flights
Some American Airlines flights were grounded as an app issue with the on-board iPads used by pilots made it impossible to take off, reports the Verge (http://tinyurl.com/pxsdkm2).
"Some flights are experiencing an issue with a software application on pilot iPads," American Airlines spokesperson Andrea Huguely told The Verge. "In some cases, the flight has had to return to the gate to access a Wi-Fi connection to fix the issue. We apologize for the inconvenience to our customers. We are working to have them on the way to their destination as soon as possible."
Another spokesperson said that the issue affected "a few dozen flights" across the airline. "We've identified the issue, we've identified the solution, and we are working on it right now," he told the publication.
In 2012 American Airlines became the first commercial carrier to receive FAA approval to use the Apple iPad in the cockpit during all phases of flight.
Brett Terpstra introduces StretchLink for Mac OS X
Developer Brett Terpstra has introduced StretchLink 1.0 (http://stretchlinkapp.com), his new URL utility for Mac OS X.
StretchLink was developed exclusively for expanding shortened URLs, removing redirects, and cleaning out referrer junk so that you can share URL without any baggage. Whether you're sending links to friends or publishing a blog, you want to protect your friends and readers from redirects and privacy issues that can be caused by unintentionally publishing a shortened link, says Terpstra.
StretchLink runs in the OS X menu bar. Click the icon to open the main panel from which it can expand and clean links on demand with a single click, or can be set to silently watch your clipboard.
StretchLink 1.0 costs US$1.99. An introductory sale of $0.99 (50% off) will take place through the month of May.
[Ed. Note: Expanding URLs can cause unintended issues as parameters, and even referrer information often is critical to displaying the right content on the page. Use with caution...
BBEdit 11.1 Introduces Git and EditorConfig Support
Bare Bones Software (www.barebones.com) has announced BBEdit 11.1, an update to its professional strength HTML and text editor.
The new version introduces built-in support for Git and for EditorConfig. In addition, the BBEdit 11.1 update also introduces a new CSS/SCSS language module, a new Arrange submenu and a new Save All in Window command, plus enhanced command-line tools and INI support, refined navigation, file management and preferences, and more.
BBEdit 11.1 requires Mac OS X 10.8.5 or later. This update is free of charge to all BBEdit 11 customers. For new uses the cost is US$49.99 for a single user license.
Strategy Analytics: Samsung overtakes Apple as world's...
According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics (www.strategyanalytics.com), global smartphone shipments grew 21% annually to reach 345 million units in the first quarter of 2015. Samsung overtook Apple to recapture first position as the world's largest smartphone vendor by volume, says the research group.
"Global smartphone shipments grew 21% annually from 285.0 million units in Q1 [the first quarter] 2014 to a 345.0 million in Q1 2015," says Linda Sui, director at Strategy Analytics. "Global smartphone growth on an annualized basis has slowed slightly from 33% to 21%t during the past year, due to increasing penetration maturity in major markets of the US, Europe and China."
Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics, adds: Samsung shipped 83.2 million smartphones worldwide and captured 24% marketshare in Q1 2015, dipping from 31% a year earlier. Samsung continued to face challenges in Asia and elsewhere, but its global performance has stabilized sufficiently...
Jive Releases real-time messaging app for Mac OS X, iOS
Jive Software (www.jivechime.com) has released Jive Chime, an app that connects coworkers in real time. It's available for Mac OS X, iOS, Windows and Android systems.
Employees can instantly start 1:1 or group conversations with coworkers, teams and departments, whether at their desks or on the go, says Elisa Steele, CEO and president, Jive Software. An employee can start a conversation from their phone while on the go and then easily pick up the conversation from their desktop later on. Any employee can connect with anyone inside their company without needing their email or phone number saved as a contact.
Employees can set notification preferences according to their individual needs to stay in the loop without getting bombarded by alerts. People can create and name Jive Chime groups, add and remove coworkers from conversations, see when messages are read and when team members are responding, and send team chimes as needed.
IT organizations can leverage new administration features...
Maintain serves up Cocktail 8.3.1 (Yosemite Edition)
Maintain has served Cocktail 8.3.1 (Yosemite Edition), the latest maintenance update for users running OS X Yosemite.
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets users clean, repair and optimize their Macs. Version 8.3.1 fixes compatibility issues with 1Password and Evernote browser extensions. It also contains improvements on the network optimization feature and updated Automator actions.
Cocktail 8.3.1 (Yosemite Edition) requires OS X Yosemite 10.10 to run. Cocktail (Mavericks Edition) for OS X 10.9, Cocktail (Mountain Lion Edition) for OS X 10.8 and Cocktail (Lion Edition) for OS X 10.7 are available for download from Maintain website.
Cocktail 8.3.1 (Yosemite Edition) costs US$19 for a single user license. It's available for purchase from the Maintain website (http://www.maintain.se/cocktail).
ConceptDraw Pro 10 has a new ATM UML Diagrams solution
CS Odessa (www.conceptdraw.com) has launched a new ATM UML Solution in ConceptDraw Solution Park. Developed exclusively for banking industry software specialists who design and build ATM solutions and systems.
The new solution is designed to turn ConceptDraw Pro into an effective UML diagram creator with image libraries enabling you to visually represent ATM processes, as well as any type of banking system. The UML solution for banking is comprised of 14 libraries which contain 182 objects.
ConceptDraw Pro is compatible with Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows and retails for US$199. It's also included in ConceptDraw Office 3, which retails for $499.
Cosentry Extends Managed Cloud Services to Microsoft Azure
Cosentry (www.cosentry.com), a provider of IT solutions in the Midwest, has extended its managed cloud services to Microsoft Azure.
The new service provides expertise in connecting to Microsoft Azure, with a focus on utilizing Azure for SQL Server testing and development, SQL Server backup and SQL Server disaster recovery environments. Cosentry has more than a decade of experience supporting SQL Server database environments, primarily those running on a private cloud; this new offering focuses on expanding support to hybrid cloud solutions, says CEO Brad Hokamp. Electrical Components International Inc. (ECI) has engaged with Cosentry to gain new efficiencies leveraging Azure as part of a hybrid cloud environment.
"Their expertise in SQL Server and managed cloud services will be leveraged to enhance our implementation while giving me the peace-of-mind that ECI has one of the best customer support teams in the industry," says Adrian Ostman, Global IT Director, ECI.
LastPass launches Apple Watch app
LastPass, a password manager, has launched an app for the Apple Watch.
The iOS app, which is part of LastPass’ Premium service, provides quick access to passwords and data stored in the Vault to ensure users always have their passwords no matter where they are or which device they are using.
"Consumers need access to passwords and secure information wherever they are and on whatever device they are using," says Joe Siegrist, CEO and co-founder of LastPass. "The launch of the Apple Watch is significant because it provides another channel for LastPass to provide our users with the important data they need every day. With just a few taps of the wrist, LastPass users can see their password information in a simplified format without ever having to take out their phones or computers."
The LastPass app for Apple Watch ensures users always have their passwords on hand with access to the data stored in their LastPass Vault. They can look up passwords on the go or find information written in...
Noteboom Tutorials introduces Tutor for Photos for OS X
Noteboom Tutorials has introduced Tutor for Photos for OS X, their latest video tutorial for the Mac. It consists of 43 video lessons designed to give users a better understanding of how to effectively use Apple's new photo management software, Photos.
Tutor for Photos for OS X covers various subjects including importing from iPhoto, syncing with iCloud Photo Library, managing multiple libraries, and showing the sidebar to make it more like iPhoto. The tutorial also looks at organizing photos into albums, smart albums, faces, folders, and how to hide your photos. The new Photos includes extensive editing tools and the tutorial shows you how to use them.
Demos include enhancing photos, adding filters, straightening photos, cropping photos, and making adjustments to photos. Tutor for Photos for OS X also includes tips when editing including how to compare edits to the original photo and creating versions. The tutorial also includes lessons on various sharing options including creating...
LinkOptimizer 4.9.41 for InDesign lets you remove alpha channels...
Zevrix Solutions (www.zevrix.com) has unveiled LinkOptimizer 4.9.41, a feature update to its workflow automation solution for Adobe InDesign.
LinkOptimizer allows users to reduce the size of InDesign links and speed up processing by eliminating excess image data, performing essential image adjustments and converting file formats. Version 4.9.41 adds an option to automatically remove all alpha channels from images during Photoshop processing.
LinkOptimizer can be purchased from the Zevrix website for US$259.95 (a "lite" version is available for $179.95). A demo is available for download. Version 4.9.41 is a free update for LinkOptimizer 4.x users and a $130 upgrade from previous versions. LinkOptimizer requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher and Adobe InDesign and Photoshop CS3-CC 2014.
TaskInsight 3.7 for Mac OS X enhances actions and speech control...
Imaja (www.imaja.com) has launched TaskInsight 3.7, an update to its productivity and business app for Mac OS X.
TaskInsight features task list and timeline management with iCloud support on Mac OS X. Import and export functions support TSV and XML files for sharing with other applications. Version 3.7 enhances the speech controls and provides new actions for task list and timeline management.
TaskInsight requires Mac OS X 10.7. It costs US$19.99 and is available at the Mac App Store in the Productivity and Business categories.
Disk Drill data recovery app for Mac gets an update
CleverFiles (www.cleverfiles.com) has released Disk Drill 2.4.417, an update of its Mac OS X data recovery solution.
The app sports a set of file recovery tools that can undelete files from almost any device: internal and external hard drives, memory cards, USB flash drives, mountable cameras, iPods and more. Version 2.4.417 adds a number of new file signatures to the database, including LWS (LightWave 3D Scene File), LWO (LightWave 3D Object File), ALS (Ableton Live Set File), SKETCH (Sketch vector drawing) and others. It also improves recovery of update file formats for Apple Numbers, Pages and Keynote.
Disk Drill is available in basic, pro, and enterprise versions. The first is free; the latter two cost US$89 and $399, respectively.
Patriot developing Type-C USB flash drive for MacBook users
Patriot (http://www.patriotmemory.com/) is developing a Type-C USB Flash Drive for the new MacBook, Google Chromebook Pixel and other Type-C equipped notebooks and systems available on the market.
With the recent release of the latest MacBook, which has been upgraded with the new Type-C port, consumers will now be able to use the Type-C USB Flash Drive to transfer data from any other form factor using a single, small solution. Outfitted with a polished metal exterior, the dual-sided Type-C/Type A USB Flash Drive will feature both a small Type-C at one end and a standard USB 3.0 connector at the other end allowing data transfer from traditional devices to the new Type C based device.
The new Type-C USB Flash Drive will be available to consumers starting in June. It will be offered in both 32GB and 64GB capacities.
QuarkXPress 2015 now available
Quark Software has released QuarkXPress 2015 (www.quark.com/2015), an update of the graphic design and page layout software. It adds 64-bit architecture, industry-verified PDF/X-4 output, fixed layout interactive (app-like) eBook production, as well as an array of user-requested features.
QuarkXPress is sold as a perpetual license, which means users make a single purchase and aren’t locked into an ongoing subscription. With its 64-bit architecture, QuarkXPress 2015 can now use all the RAM available on a user’s computer to deliver performance improvements across the board from file handling and layout rendering to PDF export. Quark has also added multi-threading to the QuarkXPress text engine to further increase performance.
By using PDF/X-4 output, designers can maintain transparency to enable smaller files, faster output and higher quality print output. The exported PDF/X-4 files are certified by the same technology used inside Adobe Acrobat.
QuarkXPress 2015 builds on its automation...
TripIt Arrives on the Apple Watch
TripIt (www.tripit.com) from Concur has launched its Apple Watch app. It gives flight, hotel and rental car information, as well as real-time flight alerts for TripIt Pro users, all without having to slow down and pull out their phones.
"Our mission is to help travelers get one step closer to experiencing the perfect trip. One of the ways we do that is by taking advantage of new technologies, like the Apple Watch, that have the ability to drastically change the way we travel from now on," says Jen Moyse, head of product for TripIt from Concur.
Now TripIt users can see their travel plans throughout the day, pull up their flight details before they head to the airport, and even confirm their hoteląs check-in time when they land‹right from their Apple Watch. TripIt Pro users will also receive real-time flight alerts, including: connecting flight information, gate changes, flight delays, and more.
Thanks to TripIt's direct connection with Concur, business travelers that book their...
Apple expands capital returns program to $200 billion
Apple says its Board of Directors has authorized an increase of more than 50% to the company’s program to return capital to shareholders. Under the expanded program, Apple plans to utilize a cumulative total of US$200 billion of cash by the end of March 2017.
As part of the revised program, the Board has increased its share repurchase authorization to $140 billion from the $90 billion level announced last year. In addition, the company expects to continue to net-share-settle vesting restricted stock units.
The Board has also approved an increase of 11% to the company’s quarterly dividend, and has declared a dividend of $.52 per share, payable on May 14, 2015 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on May 11, 2015.
From the inception of its capital return program in August 2012 through March 2015, Apple has returned over $112 billion to shareholders, including $80 billion in share repurchases.
To assist in funding the program, the company plans to continue to access the...
Apple reports record second quarter results
Apple has announced the financial results for its fiscal 2015 second quarter that ended March 28. The company posted quarterly revenue of US$58 billion and quarterly net profit of $13.6 billion, or $2.33 per diluted share.
These results compare to revenue of $45.6 billion and net profit of $10.2 billion, or $1.66 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 40.8 percent compared to 39.3 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 69 percent of the quarter’s revenue. The growth was fueled by record second quarter sales of iPhones and Macs and all-time record performance of the App Store.
“"We are thrilled by the continued strength of iPhone, Mac and the App Store, which drove our best March quarter results ever," Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a press release. "We’re seeing a higher rate of people switching to iPhone than we’ve experienced in previous cycles, and we’re off to an exciting start to the June quarter with the launch of Apple Watch."
Anawiki launches Avalon Legends Solitaire 2 for Mac OS X
Anawiki Games (http://www.anawiki.com) has announced Avalon Legends Solitaire 2 for Mac OS X (10.6.5 or higher). It costs US$9.97.
Here's how the game is described: "The sequel's story begins shortly after the events of the original game. Having saved King Arthur's life, the Druids of Avalon have formed a close alliance with Camelot and maintain a permanent presence in Arthur's court in the form of the Royal Druid, Mallard. A time of peace follows, only to be interrupted by a goblin invasion. With Camelot lying in ruins and Arthur away at war, the player takes on the role of Mallard as he seeks to gather resources and rebuild the kingdom.
"Although the solitaire mechanics stick close to the model established by the first game, Avalon Legends Solitaire 2 introduces a great deal more gameplay in between the levels. By beating solitaire levels, the player earns the three resources needed to rebuild Camelot: Gold, Food and Materials. The player must then choose carefully how to prioritize...
Cindori AB releases Disk Sensei for Mac OS X
Cindori AB (http://tinyurl.com/obyclqf) has released Disk Sensei, a disk performance tool for Mac OS X.
It can monitor, maintain and enhance storage performance and utilization. Disk Sensei lets you: monitor drive usage and statistics; analyze drive health; visualize drive content to help understand and maintain your file system; clean out space-hogging caches, logs and other large files; optimize drive performance and free up space through advanced OS X tweaks; enable Trim for Solid State Drives; and benchmark drives and compare their performance.
Disk Sensei works with hard drives, solid state drives, internal drives and external drives. It requires OS X 10.9 or later and costs US$19.99. Customers who have purchased Trim Enabler from Cindori AB can obtain Disk Sensei for $9.99.
Griffin WatchStand now available
Griffin Technology has released the US$29.99 WatchStand (store.griffintechnology.com/watchstand), a dock that provides a place to charge and display the Apple Watch.
The WatchStand displays the Apple smartwatch on a sleek pedestal, and can be placed on any nightstand, tabletop or desktop for daily charging. It houses the Apple-provided magnetic charging cable in an angled cradle that keeps it ready to charge at all times.
For initial assembly, the user simply feeds the magnetic charging cable through the center of the post. To charge each day, you lay the Apple Watch against the cradle. The magnetic connector snaps itself onto the back of the watch and begins charging.
The WatchStand is compatible with all versions of the Apple Watch and holds it at an easy viewing angle as it charges. Accommodating both semi-flexible and fully flexible bands, the WatchStand displays and charges Apple Watch vertically or horizontally.
Since the Apple Watch and iPhone go hand in hand, the WatchStand’s...
Discover to bring Apple Pay to cardmembers
Discover has announced an agreement with Apple that will allow Discover cardmembers in the U.S. to make contactless payments in participating stores through Apple Pay, the way to pay, using iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and Apple Watch.
"As the mobile payments landscape matures, Discover remains committed to giving cardmembers secure options for using their cards and mobile devices," says Diane Offereins, Discover’s president of payment services. "Discover’s focus on simplicity and value for our cardmembers aligns well with the way Apple Pay makes purchases easy and convenient."
When cardmembers add their credit or debit card to Apple Pay, the actual card numbers aren't stored on the device or on Apple servers. Instead, a unique Device Account Number is assigned, encrypted and securely stored in the Secure Element on a device. Each card transaction is authorized with a one-time unique dynamic security code, instead of using the security code from the back of the credit or debit card....
Apple to announce latest quarterly finances today
Apple will announce the financial results for its fiscal second quarter today. A conference call with analysts and the press will be held at 2 p.m. (Pacific) time.
KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo, one of the most reliable analysts, has his Apple numbers ready, as noted by "9to5Mac" (http://tinyurl.com/nbcub2l). The analyst projects iPhone, iPad, and Mac shipments to be 58.2 million, 10.1 million, and 4.5 million respectively. He also estimates that Apple Watch shipments are currently at 631,000 units.
Alchemist Guild releases iCloudStatus for OS X Yosemite
The Alchemist Guild has released iCloudStatus for Mac OS X Yosemite. It shows a status icon for iCloud Drive in your menu bar so there's no more digging around in the Finder to see when your files have been uploaded.
When you add files to iCloud Drive from the Finder or other apps iCloudStatus detects the changes and show you how much progress has been made, then notify you when the transfer is finished. Additionally a history log of all transfers and the date is recorded so you can verify previous activity.
iCloudStatus costs US$1.99. It's available here: http://tinyurl.com/osv59pk .
Poll: 4% likely to purchase the Apple Watch
A poll by SurveyMonkey of 505 people conducted since April 8 found that just over 4% said they were "extremely likely" or "very likely" to buy Apple Watch, reports CNBC(http://www.cnbc.com/id/102617561).
About 74% said they were "not at all likely" to buy the smartwatch. Three percent said they planned to buy the watch on the first day of sales (which is today).
"Look, it's early. I think that's what the poll results say. People didn't have a lot of great reasons" to buy it, SurveyMonkey CEO Dave Goldberg told CNBC's "Squawk Box."
Nearly one-third of respondents said they would most often use Apple Watch to tell the time. That's the top use mentioned for the product.
Jumsoft announces update of Toolbox for MS Office
Jumsoft (www.jumsoft.com) has introducedToolbox for MS Office 2.0.4, an update of its popular graphics and design application for Mac OS X.
Toolbox for MS Office provides templates and illustrations for creating content ranging from invoices and greeting cards to presentations and portfolios. Version 2.0.4 includes around 400 previously unreleased templates for Word, as well as hundreds of maps, diagrams, clipart images, icons, and other types of illustrations.
Toolbox for MS Office requires Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 or later and Mac OS X 10.10 or later. Toolbox for MS Office 2.0.4 is currently free and available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Graphics & Design category.
Apple updates TestFight to version 1.1.1
Apple has updated its TestFlight app to version 1.1.1, adding support for Apple WatchKit apps embedded inside beta iOS apps.
TestFlight lets you install and beta test apps on an iOS device. After a developer invites you to beta test their app, you can install new versions as they become available. TestFlight also allows you to provide feedback to developers on the features you are testing in the prerelease apps you’ve been invited to.
With TestFlight 1.1.1, developers can deploy beta versions of their iOS apps without removing the Watch extensions. It's a free download at the Apple App Store.
Comcast Plans to Drop Takeover of Time Warner
AppleInsider just reported that according to an article by Bloomberg today, Comcast plans to walk away from its proposed $45 billion takeover of Time Warner Cable. Reportedly, the FCC is "leaning toward concluding the merger doesn’t help consumer consumers."
Bloomberg's article continued "If the deal had gone through, the Comcast-Time Warner partnership would have created by far the largest cable operator in the U.S." If the deal had gone through, Time Warner customers would have eventually become Comcast customers. According to a BGR article in December, "TWC and Comcast are the two most hated companies in America"
Sonnet Announces Avid-qualified DX Thunderbolt Adapter
Sonnet Technologies (www.sonnettech.com) has released the US$250 Sonnet DX Thunderbolt Adapter for Avid Media Composer Mojo DX and Avid Nitris DX.
Formerly built by Sonnet and offered by Avid, the DX Thunderbolt Adapter is now marketed exclusively by Sonnet to users of Avid's Mojo DX digital video capture, editing, monitoring, and output system and Nitris DX high-performance SD and HD broadcast news editing system. With the DX Thunderbolt Adapter, media professionals can leverage these Avid solutions with Avid editing software on any Avid-qualified, Thunderbolt-equipped computer, says Greg LaPorte, vice president of sales and marketing, Sonnet Technologies.
The DX Thunderbolt Adapter delivers performance for two streams of uncompressed 10-bit HD video with eight audio streams. With ultralow latency and high sync accuracy, the adapter enables editing workflows that are faster and more efficient than ever, he adds.
DayMap for Mac OS X revved to version 2.1
Whetstone Apps (http://whetstoneapps.com/) has announced DayMap 2.1 an update to their productivity app for Mac OS X.
DayMap is a visual app for planning projects and associated tasks. It's now available in Chinese, French and German. In version 2.1, the user interface has also been updated to offer a way of organizing and scheduling projects and tasks in a visually intuitive Project Outliner and Weekly or Monthly Scheduler.
DayMap 2.1 is regularly priced at US$14.99, but is being offered for $9.99 for a limited time. It's available from the Mac App Store under the Productivity category and requires Mac OS X Yosemite.
Maintain serves up Cocktail 7.8.1 (Mavericks Edition)
Maintain has served up Cocktail 7.8.1 (http://cocktail.maintain.se) Mavericks Edition, a new version of its Mac OS X utility. This version adds ability to clear Dictation & Speech and Help caches. It also contains miscellaneous bug fixes and improvements as well as updated Automator actions and Help files.
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets you clean, repair and optimize your Mac. Its features are arranged into five categories that help you manage various aspects of your computer.
Cocktail 7.8.1 Mavericks Edition requires OS X Mavericks to run. When unregistered, Cocktail runs in demo mode and will expire after the tenth launch. Registration is US$19 for a single user license or $39 for a family license that covers up to five computers.
CS Odessa updates AWS Architecture Diagrams Solution
CS Odessa (www.conceptdraw.com) has announced the AWS Architecture Diagrams solution, the latest addition to ConceptDraw Solution Park.
It's a collection of library objects, templates, and example drawings for ConceptDraw Pro and is available at no charge to users of ConceptDraw Pro 10 and ConceptDraw Office 3 (available for Mac OS X and Windows), via the ConceptDraw Solution Park.
ConceptDraw Office retails for US$499 (USD) and can be purchased directly from CS Odessa or their resellers. The suite is designed for knowledge workers, managers, project managers and academics.
Ooppa Software releases PDF Studio 10 for the Mac
Qoppa Software (http://www.qoppa.com/) has released PDF Studio 10, an all-in-one PDF editing software for Mac OS X. The new version adds PDF Optimization, Overlay Comparison and Conversion to HTML5.
The Optimizer function provides options for users to reduce the file size of PDF documents before sharing or publishing them. Images can be downsized and compressed, unused and duplicate objects removed, and data streams compressed.
PDF Overlay Comparison view allows visual comparison of drawings and blue prints by overlaying two documents and highlighting the differences using complementary colors.
PDF Studio costs US$129. A demo is available for download.
KeyCue for Mac OS X revved to version 7.5
Ergonis Software has introduced KeyCue 7.5, an update to the cheat sheet for learning and remembering keyboard shortcuts.
The upgrade allows you to omit keyboard shortcuts from the shortcut table. This is useful for shortcuts that you know already. The new version also improves the convenience of getting informed about and installing new versions.
With KeyCue, whenever the command key is kept pressed for a while, the software displays a table with all keyboard shortcuts available in the currently active application, systemwide hotkeys, as well as key combinations for triggering macros in Keyboard Maestro, QuicKeys and iKeys.
KeyCue requires Mac OS X 10.6 or newer. The upgrade to version 7.5 is free for anyone who owns a valid license for KeyCue 7. Upgrade paths are available for owners of older licenses. For information about purchases, including enterprise licenses, volume discounts, and upgrade pricing offers, g
Adobe updates its Creative Cloud Photography apps
Adobe has announced an update to its Creative Cloud Photography plan (https://www.adobe.com/creativecloud/photography.html) with the release of an all-new Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC that's faster and sports new tools to edit, enhance, organize and showcase photos.
Creative Cloud Photography also includes mobile capabilities: automatically syncing photos with Lightroom CC on the desktop, Lightroom on mobile devices lets users access and edit their entire catalog of photos on iPad, iPhone as well as Android smartphones and tablets. A $US9.99 per month, Adobe’s photography plan is targeted to photographers of every level.
According to Winston Hendrickson, vice president of Digital Imaging Products, Adobe, new features in this release include:
° HDR Merge, which lets you create natural-looking or surreal images from extremely high-contrast scenes by combining multiple shots taken with different exposure settings into a single raw high dynamic range image;
° Panorama merge, which lets...
Quark Software introduces procedure management solution for...
Quark Software has introduced Quark Procedure Management, a new knowledge management solution that enables large enterprises to streamline the creation, management and publishing of policies and procedures.
With Quark Procedure Management, corporate writers and subject matter experts create reusable content that's easy to save, search and update, which is critical when content is susceptible to risk and compliance issues, according to said Gavin Drake, vice president of Marketing for Quark. Examples of policies and procedures include employee manuals, field instructions, medical responses, banking processes, call center training manuals and other standard operating procedures.
Quark Procedure Management moves authors from creating static documents to creating reusable content components – XML Smart Content – that can be reviewed, approved and updated independently. This enables standard operating procedures to be dynamically assembled for different channels and audiences and...
FileMaker Go for iOS: over 1.5 million downloads and counting
FileMaker Inc. (www.filemaker.com) says its FileMaker Go for iPad and iPhone app has surpassed 1.5 million downloads from the Apple App Store.
The FileMaker Go for iPad and iPhone app is part of FileMakers lineup of desktop, server and iOS software for creating custom business solutions that run on iPad, iPhone, Windows, Mac and web browsers. The FileMaker Go for iPad and iPhone app is downloadable for free from the Apple App Store.
FileMaker, Inc., an Apple subsidiary, delivers software to create custom business solutions for iPad, iPhone, Windows, Mac and the web. Millions of people, from individuals to some of the worlds largest organizations, use the FileMaker Platform to streamline their business processes, manage information and boost overall productivity.
Output Factory for Adobe InDesign Introduces PDF Security...
Zevrix Solutions has introduced Output Factory 1.5.21, a feature update to its output automation solution for Adobe InDesign.
Output Factory automates printing, exporting and preflighting from InDesign, and offers batch processing, export as single pages, variable file names, layer versioning, PDF preflight, file delivery, output history and more. The new version lets users automate creation of secure PDF documents with password protection, encryption, copy and print restriction, and other options.
Output Factory can be purchased from the Zevrix website (www.zevrix.com) for US$169.95 (there's a "lite" version for $120, and a server version for $700). A demo is available for download. BatchOutput users can upgrade to Output Factory for $85. Output Factory requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher and Adobe InDesign CS3-CC 2014.
iBarcoder upgrade for Mac OS X features added codes, other...
Cristallight Software has launched iBarcoder 3.7.4, an update to their barcode generator for Mac OS X (10.7 and higher).
With the app, users can create any number of customized, colorful barcode labels in their own style, in any size, or shape. The app can create Datamatrix and QR Codes. Version 3.7.4 features added codes and other enhancements.
iBarcoder 3.7.4 costs US$49.95 and is available directly from the Cristallight website (www.cristallight.com) or through the Mac App Store in the Business category. Full versions include a lifetime license with complimentary upgrades and tech support. A demo is available from Cristallight Software
Boot Runner 2 for Mac OS X adds more customization support
Twocanoes Software (www.twocanoes.com) has trotted out Boot Runner 2, an update to the OS startup manager for Macs.
It provides complete start up control and management of dual-boot Macs. Boot Runner 2 adds support for native and virtual operating systems in any combination of OS X, Windows, Chrome OS, Linux and more. Version 2.0 includes new and improved customization features to make it easier for users to find and start the OS environment that they need.
Boot Runner 2 requires Mac OS X 10.8 or higher and a Boot Camp partition, virtual machine operating system with a supported OS installed, such as Windows 7, Windows 8, Chrome OS, and Linux
Version 2 is free to customers who purchased Boot Runner after Jan. 1, 2015, or with active Support and Maintenance agreements. Volume and educational pricing is available for any number of Macs. Boot Runner 2 lab and site licenses now include free the first year of premium support and maintenance. For new users pricing starts at US$9.99 for a...
AKVIS NatureArt gets new Transform tool, more
AKVIS (www.akvis.com) has released AKVIS NatureArt 7.0, an update of its collection of nature effects for images. The software can be used as a standalone application and/or Photoshop plugin, on Mac OS X and Windows.
Version 7.0 adds a Transform tool that allows the transforming of selections and direction lines. It improves the Sun effect with a new algorithm. The upgrade also adds: the Reverse Colors option to the Rainbow effect; the Line Sets (ready-to-use lightning layouts) to the Lightning effect; the ability to import/export user presets; and a History States parameter to the program's Preferences.
A demo of AKVIS NatureArt 7.0 is available for download. Registration for the Home license costs US$72.
Maintain releases Cocktail 8.3 (Yosemite Edition)
Maintain has served Cocktail 8.3 (Yosemite Edition), the latest maintenance update for users running OS X Yosemite.
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets users clean, repair and optimize their Macs. Version 8.3 adds the ability to clear clear Dictation & Speech, Help, Spotlight and VoiceOver caches. It also resolves some minor compatibility issues with OS X Yosemite 10.10.3.
Cocktail 8.3 (Yosemite Edition) requires OS X Yosemite 10.10 to run. Cocktail (Mavericks Edition) for OS X 10.9, Cocktail (Mountain Lion Edition) for OS X 10.8 and Cocktail (Lion Edition) for OS X 10.7 are available for download from Maintain website.
Cocktail 8.3 (Yosemite Edition) costs US$19 for a single user license. It's available for purchase from the Maintain website (http://www.maintain.se/cocktail).