mophie announces juice pack outdoor edition
mophie (http://www.mophie.com) has announced the US$119.95 juice pack outdoor edition, a hardware and GPS app bundle that purportedly gives iPhone 4 and 4S users access to twice the battery power and more than 650,000 map images for on-the-go navigation.
The outdoor edition is the first solution from the company to merge its battery charging capabilities with enhanced function through a supporting application, according to mophie's Ross Howe, vice president of marketing. Available now in a orange and gray color combination, the mophie juice pack outdoor edition's 2,000 mAh battery capacity and GPS app effectively transforms the iPhone 4 and 4S into a connected, dedicated GPS device, he adds.
The mophie juice pack outdoor edition is available now for purchase. Current juice pack users who want to take advantage of the mophie outdoor app but don't want to purchase the outdoor juice pack plus case can download the app in the Apple App Sstore for free and purchase a one-year map...
ABBYY releases digital card holder with OCR for the iPhone
ABBYY (http://www.abbyy.com/cardholder_iphone) has released the ABBYY CardHolder for iPhone, an on-device digital "card case" for capture and archiving and using of business cards.
The application allows iPhone users to work with information on business cards without the need of transferring all contacts directly into the iPhone address book. Users can capture and save contact data they encounter on a daily basis.
With ABBYY’s Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology and extended language support, CardHolder also enables customers to instantly use contact data from a business card when browsing the captured image on the iPhone screen. They can make a call, send an SMS message or an e-mail right away, according to Katya Solntseva, director of Mobile Products Department at ABBYY.
ABBYY CardHolder transfers images of business cards taken with the iPhone camera to an archive with search, sorting and grouping capabilities. The application recognizes contact information on a card (...
FileMaker limited-time offer underway
FileMaker has announced a "Buy One FileMaker, Give One Free" holiday offer that allows those purchasing a downloadable copy of FileMaker Pro 11 from the online FileMaker Store to receive a second downloadable copy for free -- an US$299 value.
Participants can use the free copy within their organizations or give it to a friend, colleague, client or charity. The offer expires Dec. 15.
The offer applies only to FileMaker Pro and is limited to one gift request per person, per household, and per company. The promotion is valid only for the downloadable version of FileMaker Pro 11 and applies only to new versions of FileMaker Pro 11 -- not for software upgrades, updates, volume licenses and/or site licenses.
The free version is a fully working, not-for-resale version of FileMaker Pro 11 for Mac or Windows. The offer isn't valid in connection with any other rebates, discounts, or promotions. For more info go to http://info.filemaker.com/bogopromo2011.html .
Sassafras Software updates K2 to version 7.0
Sassafras Software has upgraded K2 -- KeyAuditor & KeyServer, to version 7.0, which adds purchase histories and product recognition to K2’s usage tracking, hardware and software auditing, and active license management.
Now software licensing administrators can track license entitlements, proofs of purchase, and current entitlement position, then reconcile them against active management policies. K2’s new purchase tracking feature includes detailed information about software license entitlements along with storage for contracts and proof-of-purchase documentation.
Elements include license term, license metric, product version upgrade rights, dependencies, entitlement allocations through the upgrade chain, support contracts, expiration dates, cost center reporting, and more. K2’s entitlement histories are automatically reconciled to provide a view of an organization’s current entitlement position, which is balanced against current license management policies.
K2 7.0 is now...
SecuritySpy for Mac OS X gets quick movie downloads, more
Ben Bird has updated SecuritySpy (http://www.bensoftware.com/ss/index.html), a multi-camera video surveillance application for Mac OS X, to version 2.1.1. The upgrade sports quick movie downloads for low-bandwidth internet connections, support for more network cameras, and bug fixes.
SecuritySpy's remote viewing feature lets you access your surveillance system over the Internet or over a local network using a web browser. Pricing starts at US$50 for one camera. A 30-day demo is available for download. SecuritySpy is a Universal Binary app, so runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel Macs
Sandvox for Mac OS X gets new Map object, more
Karelia Software has updated (http://www.karelia.com/sandvox), its web development tool, to version 2.2. The update sports a new Map object, powered by Google, a new Text Inspector for handling bulleted and numbered lists, and much more.
The new Map object makes adding a map as easy as selecting the object and entering the location address in the Object Inspector. A new Text Inspector lets you format a list either using numbers or bullets. Version 2.2 also introduces new Strikethrough formatting, plus the ability to customize the writing direction as "left to right" or as "right to left" for non-Roman languages.
Advanced users who work with Raw HTML objects can now use a built-in Tidy HTML function and access a Develop menu. Sandvox 2.2 offers improved SFTP and WebDAV publishing, enhanced media handling tools, and other refinements and fixes.
Sandvox lets you drag and drop content, add modern features in a few clicks, and see exactly what it looks like right on the screen before...
Canon announces mobile print solution for imageRunner systems
Canon U.S.A. (http://www.usa.canon.com) announced the availability of the EFI PrintMe mobile print solution for Canon imageRunner Advance multifunction office products (MFPs).
Developed by EFI utilizing Canon’s MEAP platform, EFI PrintMe provides a method for mobile device users to send documents through EFI’s PrintMe Service for output on Canon imageRunner Advance MFPs. It supports Apple iOS, RIM Blackberry OS, and Google Android mobile platforms and the phone, tablet, and mobile device technologies based on those platforms including the iPhone, iPad, Blackberry smartphones and Android smartphones.
The EFI PrintMe mobile print solution doesn't require a user to download drivers or install a mobile app to facilitate mobile print. This flexibility may be appealing for enterprise and small-to-medium sized businesses looking to enable print functionality for documents uploaded to the PrintMe Service, without significantly adding to the cost of the application, says Sam Yoshida, vice...
AMD tries unsuccessfully to halt S3 patent case against Apple
Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) failed to persuade a U.S. judge to halt a patent dispute S3 Graphics has against Apple at the U.S. International Trade Commission, according to a filing with the trade agency, as reported by "Bloomberg" (http://macte.ch/JDGuw).
AMD, a maker of chips for Apple computers, sued S3 last month, claiming it owned the patents that S3 has asserted against Apple. In an Oct. 28 filing with the ITC, S3 said the federal judge denied a request for an immediate halt to the ITC case. The commission is scheduled to release its final decision on Nov. 15.
Mac OS X violates patents held by S3 Graphics, while the platform for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad tablet doesn’t, the U.S. International Trade Commission said in a July 1 ruling. The operating system on the Mac infringes two S3 patents related to graphics chips, Judge James Gildea said.
S3 Graphics makes image compression technology. If Gildea’s decision is upheld in a review by the full six-member commission, the ITC...
GarageBand now available for iPhone, iPod touch users
Apple says GarageBand, its music creation app, is now available for iPhone and iPod touch users. It was introduced earlier this year on the iPad.
"GarageBand on iPad has been a big hit and we think customers will love using it on their iPhone or iPod touch," says Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing. "The innovative Multi-Touch interface combined with Smart Instruments makes it easy to create great sounding music, even if you’ve never studied music or played an instrument before."
GarageBand features a collection of Touch Instruments that let beginners or experienced musicians play and record keyboards, guitars, drums and basses in a variety of styles. Smart Instruments now allow you to choose from a library of custom chords so you can play and strum along with your favorite songs.
You can plug your electric guitar into iPad, iPhone or iPod touch to play and record through classic amps and stompbox effects, or record your voice or any acoustic...
MacTech Labs: Virtualization Benchmarks, Fall 2011
MacTech Labs: Virtualization Benchmarks
Head-to-Head: How do VMware Fusion 4 and Parallels Desktop 7 for Mac compare?
By Neil Ticktin, Editor-in-Chief/Publisher
In 2005, Apple announced the switch of the Mac platform from PowerPC to Intel processors (the first Intel-based models were available in early 2006). This introduced some interesting opportunities for the Mac, including the ability to run operating systems other than Mac OS X on a Mac. This includes not only your everyday Windows 7 or XP, but also other Windows OSes, including 64-bit versions and a wide variety of Linux and other OSes.
You may already understand your options for running Windows on a Mac, but in case you don't, your first choice is to decide between Apple's Boot Camp, and a virtualization product like VMware Fusion or Parallels Desktop for Mac. With Apple's Boot Camp, you can run Windows natively, but you have to reboot every time you want to switch between Mac OS and Windows. In...
NetMarketShare: Mac OS X, Safari, iOS hit highs in October
According to the latest market share survey from NetMarketShare (http://www.netmarketshare.com), the market share for Mac OS X, Safari and iOS all rose last month.
According to the report, among desktop operating systems, Mac OS X had 6.94% of the global market share in October compared to 6.45% in September (that's global market share; in the US it's almost 10%). This is the highest percentage ever for Mac OS X. Windows remains dominant with 91.86% as of October. That's down from 92.44% in September.
When it comes to browsers, Safari had 5.43% in October. Internet Explorer had 52.63%, Firefox had 22.51% and Chrome had 17.62%. That compares to, respectively, September percentages of 5.02%, 54.39%, 22.48% and 16.20%, respectively, for the browsers. October saw an all-time high for Safari.
The iOS's market share also rose in October, according to NetMarketShare. It had 62.17%, compared to 18.65% for Android, 13.12% for Opera Mini, 2.55% for Symbian and 2.04% for Blackberry. That...
Ron Johnson has left the (Apple) building
In June it was announced that Ron Johnson, Apple's senior vice president of Apple retail and the mastermind behind Apple's wildly successful retail strategy, had been named J.C. Penney's new chief executive officer, and would be leaving Apple. And he's gone.
Johnson has assumed assume the CEO position at J. C. Pennwill also join the J. C. Penney Board of Directors, effective Aug. 1. No replacement at Apple has been named.
Johnson, 52, has served for the past 11 years as senior vice president of retail at Apple., where he led its retail strategy, which from its start in 2001 now numbers over 300 stores in the U.S. and abroad. He joined Apple after 15 years at Target Corp., where he was a key merchandising executive.
"I've always dreamed of leading a major retail company as CEO, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to help J. C. Penney re-imagine what I believe to be the single greatest opportunity in American retailing today, the department store," Johnson said in June. "I have...
iPhone 4S coming to Hong Kong, South Korea on Nov. 11
Apple says the iPhone 4S will be available in Hong Kong, South Korea and 13 additional countries on Friday, Nov. 11. Customers will be able to pre-order iPhone 4S beginning on Friday, November 4.
Beginning Friday, Nov. 11, iPhone 4S will be available in Albania, Armenia, Bulgaria, El Salvador, Greece, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Malta, Montenegro, New Zealand, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Romania and South Korea. The Apple smartphone is available today in 29 countries around the world and will be available in more than 70 countries by the end of the year, according to Apple.
The iPhone 4S comes in either black or white for a suggested retail price of US$199) for the 16GB model, $299 for the 32GB model and $399 for the new 64GB model. It's sold through the Apple Online Store, Apple’s retail stores and select Apple Authorized Resellers. The iPhone 4 is available for $99, and the iPhone 3GS is available for free with a two-year contract from participating carriers.
Spy Lock released for Mac OS X
Empoc has introduced Spy Lock 1.0, a Mac app that allows customers to lock and unlock their Mac. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher, costs US$4.99 and is available worldwide through the Mac App Store in the Utilities category.
Utilizing the built-in iSight on most Mac computers, Spy Lock lets you know who's tried to access your computer and when by taking a snapshot or video of the suspect at the same time that the unlock password was typed incorrectly.
Spy Lock keeps a log that can be accessed so that you can see who all has been at your computer trying to log in while you were away. Among other features you can choose to take a snapshot when the wrong password is entered or choose to record video when the screen is locked.
Samsung wants to see the source code for iPhone 4S firmware
Samsung are demanding the source code for iPhone 4S firmware as well as Apple's agreements with all major Aussie telco’s as it looks to ban iPhone 4S in Australia, reports "SmartOffice" (http://macte.ch/rg7iz). Good luck with that, Samsung.
The demand comes as Apple has succeeded in gaining a temporary ban on the sale of Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the country. Samsung counsel Cynthia Cochrane said her client would need the source code for the iPhone 4S and agreements Apple had with major carriers Vodafone, Telstra and Optus in order to make a legal case for a ban before the court, notes "SmartOffice." The company is also looking to ascertain the subsidies the telcos pay to their rival Apple for selling the iPhones on plan, the article adds.
Graphic shipments up 16.7% over last quarter
Jon Peddie Research (JPR), a research and consulting firm for graphics and multimedia, has announced estimated graphics chip shipments and suppliers’ market share for the third quarter of 2011 (Q3’11).
Shipments during the third quarter of 2011 did (finally) behave according to past years with regard to seasonality, and was higher on a year-to-year comparison for the quarter, says JPR (http://www.jonpeddie.com). 2011 is still an unusual year for the computer and graphics suppliers as businesses take their own path to recovery, the research group adds.
The third quarter of the year is usually the growth quarter and was this yearm which is a positive sign looking forward. This quarter, Intel celebrated its seventh quarter of embedded processor graphics CPU (EPG, a multi-chip design that combined a graphics processor and CPU in the same package) shipments, and had a very strong double digit growth in desktops and notebooks.
AMD lost in overall market share Intel gained more compared to...
Jurassic Park to be unleashed on the Mac Nov. 15
Telltale Games has announced a Nov. 15 release date for Jurassic Park: The Game for the Mac. Based on the book and movie series, the five part episodic adventure title will drop players into the dangerous environs of Isla Nublar, where they will struggle to survive confrontations with dinosaurs as they seek a way to escape, notes "Inside Mac Games" (http://www.insidemacgames.com).
Here's how Jurassic Park is described: "Jurassic Park: The Game begins where the Barbasol can left off: The dinosaur embryos that Dennis Nedry attempted to smuggle from the park in the faux Barbasol can remain missing. A mysterious rival corporation brings in Nima, a professional smuggler with intimate knowledge of the park’s island setting, to retrieve the embryos.
"When InGen learns of staff stranded on the island after the park’s collapse, they hire a group of mercenaries to launch a rescue operation. The team arrives amidst the chaos of dinosaurs running rampant, and begins to round up survivors...
Lion gets a 'Missing Manual
O'Reilly has released "Mac OS X Lion: The Missing Manual" by David Pogue. The 928-page book is the "manual that should have been in the box."
The book is designed to show you how use key new features of Mac OS X 10.7 ("Lion") such as full-screen apps, Mission Control, the new Mac App Store, Launchpad, Resume, Auto Save, Versions, AirDrop, and more. Are you even more of a power user? You can earn to set up a network, make a Lion flash drive, and even learn the basics of Lion's underlying Unix. Pogue also looks at iCloud, Apple's wireless, free syncing service for Macs, PCs, iPhones, and iPads.
"Mac OS X Lion: The Missing Manual" costs US$38,9 for a print and ebook version, $34.99 for a print-only version and $27.99 for an ebook edition.
Pogue is the weekly personal-technology columnist for the "New York Times" and an Emmy award-winning tech correspondent for "CBS News." With three million books in print, he is also one of the world's bestselling how- to authors. In 1999, he launched...
Rebuild your family hotel empire with Jane's Hotel for the...
Jane's Hotel: Family Hero for the Mac is a sequel to a time management game Jane's Hotel. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher, costs US$6.99 and is available in the Mac App Store.
Here's how the sequel is described: "The second installment in the series begins where the first one leaves off. Jane has become a successful businesswoman and now runs her own hotels. Suddenly she gets a letter from her grandmother who says that Jane's success was just a matter of time because long time ago her family owned a whole chain of hotels all around the world. Jane decides to get her granny's heritage back and buy all the hotels one by one and restore the family business in its former glory.
"The action takes place in four hotels built in France, England, Japan and the Canaries. All the hotels, no matter if it is just a couple of bungalows or an old castle, have a distinct style and personality. With the money Jane gets from her guests she can gradually upgrade the lobby with furniture and new...
Amped Wireless debuts new routers
Amped Wireless (http://www.ampedwireless.com) has introduced the R10000 High Power Wireless-N 600mW Smart Router and the SR10000 High Power Wireless-N 600mW Smart Repeate The products -- which each have a retail price of US$129.99 -- purportedly deliver up to 10,000 square feet of Wi-Fi coverage.
The R10000 is a high-power router that shares an existing broadband Internet connection and provides four wired ports for connecting additional wired network devices. It includes "smart features" such as guest networks, adjustable Wi-Fi coverage controls, parental controls, website blocking and support for the latest Wi-Fi security.
The SR1000 repeats the signal from any wireless router, amplifies it and rebroadcasts the signal in a new "extended" location. It's equipped with high-power amplifiers and antennas, according to the folks at Amped.
Spore Galactic Adventures comes to the Macgamestore
Spore Galactic Adventures is now available at the Macgamestore (http://www.macgamestore.com). It's an $29.95 expansion pack that costs US$29.99.
Here's how the pack is described: "In Spore, you evolved your creature from tidepool blob to galactic traveler. For the first time ever, get out of your starship and turn your Spore creatures into legendary Space Captains. Beam down with your allies to take on action-packed, planetside adventures. Complete quests, collect rewards, and even create and share your own missions!"
Marked for Mac OS X revved to version 1.3.1
Brett Terpstra has released Marked 1.3.1 for Mac OS X (10.6 or higher), an update of his viewer for Markdown and MultiMarkdown files. It costs US$3.99 and is available worldwide through the Mac App Store in the Productivity category.
Version 1.3 allowed the use multiple custom styles for the preview, preview improvements (smooth scrolling, automatic Table of Contents, MathJax) and the ability to open and text file regardless of its extension. Version 1.3.1 handles larger files, provides more precise error messages, adds more keyboard shortcuts and preserves metadata when rendering the preview. As of version 1.3, Marked can also watch the active CSS file for changes in addition to the Markdown or HTML file and update the Preview when style changes are detected.
Marked turns any text editor into a Markdown editor, allowing you to edit when you like, where you like. It can track changes in the file and update the preview automatically on every save. Marked allows for HTML export,...
WriteRoom ready for Lion
Hog Bay Software has released WriteRoom 3.0 on the Mac App Store. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher and costs US$9.99.
WriteRoom is a full screen writing environment. It's designed to let you focus on writing. Version 3.0 has been revved for Mac OS X 10.7 ("Lion"). It also lets you create and share themes and track your writing progress.
For current customers who bought WriteRoom 2, the update is free if you bought it in the last year. Otherwise it’s $4.99 to upgrade.
SmartApps PitStop Pro plug-in announced for Acrobat
ONYX Graphics has introduced the SmartApps PitStop Pro plug-in for Adobe Acrobat software, which gives users the ability to optimize their productivity by eliminating the time-consuming steps typically taken when client PDF files contain color or font issues, says Danielle Mattiussi, director of product marketing.
"The new SmartApps PitStop Pro plug-in gives them the ability to move to a dependable PDF workflow, regardless of the file source," she adds. "SmartApps PitStop Pro plug-in is a wide format PDF preflighting solution that catches many specific trouble areas and problems and provides quick solutions, so print shops will no longer have to waste valuable prepress and production time managing this lack of predictability around issues such as transparencies, color or other print related issues."
The SmartApps PitStop Pro plug-in helps fix troublesome client PDF files without ever leaving Adobe Acrobat software. The plug-in checks all aspects of wide format PDF files to create...
MMQuery plug-in updated to version 1.2.1
Comm-Unity Networking Systems (http://mmquery.cnsplug-ins.com/) has updated MMQuery, a FileMake Pro plug-in, to version 1.2.1. It's a maintenance update with some bug fixes.
MMQuery allows you to perform SQL queries on your own database or use the helper functions in the plug-in to do the same types of queries without actually having to know SQL. Version 1.2.1 is a free upgrade for anyone with a 1.x license. All you need to do is download the latest version and install it. Your existing registration and settings will be imported into the new version.
For new users, a single-user license for the client version is US$35. To use the Server Edition of MMQuery, you'll need to purchase at least a 10-user license for $172.
Alien Skin Software ships Blow Up 3 Photoshop plug-in
Alien Skin Software has released Blow Up 3, the new version of its photo enlargement plug-in for Adobe Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, and Photoshop Lightroom®.
Blow Up enlarges photos while keeping them clear, even at huge sizes, according to Terence Tay, designer of the software. Version 3 boast a new user interface and support for Lightroom, Blow Up is easy to use in any workflow.
Blow Up 3 is available through http://www.alienskin.com for US$199. That's a price drop of $50 from version 2. Owners of Blow Up 1 or 2 can upgrade for $99.
Canalys: HTC takes top spot in US smart phone market
Canalys (http://www.canalys.com) has released its Q3 2011 country-level smart phone shipment estimates to clients, revealing that HTC has taken the top spot in the US market, pushing Apple to third place.
At the same time, a particularly strong performance from Samsung saw it become the world’s number one smart phone vendor, according to the research group. Overall, the worldwide market grew 49% year-on-year to 120.4 million units. With year-on-year and sequential growth of 252% and 60% respectively, Samsung shipped 27.3 million smart phones under its own brand to capture a 23% share, becoming the number one vendor in APAC, Western Europe and Latin America, ahead of Nokia, Apple and RIM respectively
In the United States, the world’s largest smart phone market, HTC, shone in Q3 2011, edging out Apple and Samsung to become the leading vendor. HTC shipped 5.7 million smart phones in the US under its own brand, giving it almost a quarter of the market, as well as an estimated 70,000...
Intego reports DevilRobber malware
Intego (http://www.intego.com) says it's discovered a new malware called DevilRobber.A. This malware, which has been found in several applications distributed via BitTorrent trackers, steals data and Bitcoin virtual money, and uses CPU and GPU time on infected Macs to perform "Bitcoin mining."
This malware is complex, and performs many operations, according to Intego. The security software company says it's a combination of several types of malware: it is a Trojan horse, since it is hidden inside other applications; it is a backdoor, as it opens ports and can accept commands from command and control servers; it is a stealer, as it steals data and Bitcoin virtual money; and it is a spyware, as it sends personal data to remote servers.
DevilRobber has been found in a small number of Mac applications that are distributed via BitTorrent trackers, including a popular graphic program, according to Intego.
When the doctored application is launched, a preflight script looks for Little Snitch...
Apple excels in PC Mag's Readers' Choice survey
Apple did very well indeed in the 2011 Readers' Choice survey by "PC Mag" (http://www.pcmag.com).
In the Laptops & Netbooks category, Apple once again has incredibly high overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend ratings in every category it competed in. This is "despite a high number of units needing repairs," notes "PC Mag."
In the desktops category no other company's satisfaction ratings come close to Apple. Even its satisfaction with repair rating is unmatched, despite a big drop this year, notes "PC Mag."
In the Mobile Platforms Awards, Apple's iOS "paired with an unparalleled selection of apps, a great music player, gaming, and overall reliability is the favorite among PCMag readers." When it comes to mobile phones, the iPone was the top choice among Verizon users, but placed second (behind the Samsung Focus) for AT&T users.
Apple also topped the tablets category ("the Apple iPad 2 is the current pinnacle of tablet products") and network routers ("Apple customers...
Apple capital expenditures to increase by $3.4 billion in 2012
Apple's capital expenditures in its 2012 fiscal year are projected to increase by US$3.4 billion, as the company gears up for major projects like its new solar farm in North Carolina, and a new corporate campus in Cupertino, California, UBS analyst Maynard Um told clinets in a note -- as reported by "AppleInsider" (http://www.appleinsider.com).
Last week it was reported by "The Charlotte Observer" (http://macte.ch/B7hdu) that Apple has quietly begun work on a solar farm that apparently could help power its sprawling data center in southern Catawba County, North Carolina. Permits issued by Catawba County show that the company has been approved to reshape the slope of some of the 171 acres of vacant land it owns on Startown Road, opposite the data center, in preparation of building a solar farm, the article adds.
The engineering plans show how the company will keep soil that it moves around the site from washing into creeks and other areas, notes "The Observer." The permit has no...
Apple reportedly buys 3D mapping company
Apple has apparently acquired a company called C3 Technologies that has sophisticated processing technology that can build 3D maps, reports "9to5Mac" (http://www.9to5Mac.com).
Here's how the company is described: "C3 Technologies is the leading provider of 3D mapping solutions, offering photo-realistic models of the world for search, navigation and geographic information systems. Since 2007 when it was spun out of the aerospace and defense company Saab AB, venture-backed C3 has redefined mapping by applying previously classified image processing technology to the development of 3D maps as a platform for new social and commercial applications. The Sweden-based company’s automated software and advanced algorithms enable C3 to rapidly assemble extremely precise 3D models, and seamlessly integrate them with traditional 2D maps, satellite images, street level photography and user generated images, that together are forever changing how people use maps and explore the world."
iPads could outnumber computers in schools in next five years
A survey of technology directors in U.S. school districts found that all of them are testing or deploying the iPad and expect tablets to outnumber computers in the next five years, notes "AppleInsider" (http://www.appleinsider.com).
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray revealed the results of the survey of 25 educational technology directors at a conference on the integration of technology in the classroom. The poll found that all of them were utilizing the iPad in schools, while none were testing or deploying Android-based tablets.
"While this may be expected due to limited availability of Android tablets early in the tablet cycle, we also see it as evidence of Apple's first mover advantage," Munster told clients, as noted by "AppleInsider." "We also see a trend in education (which is mirrored in the enterprise) that familiarity with Apple devices among students (or employees) is causing a demand pull within institutions to also provide Apple devices."
IT directors who...
Apple retail stores may soon allow self-checkout
Apple is planning to update its retail store iOS app so consumers can utilize self-checkout for purchases of accessories and other shelf-stocked items at the company's retail stores, according to "MacRumors" (http://www.macrumors.com). The self-checkout purchases will be charged via the Apple Store app to the customer's iTunes Store account, the article notes.
It is not entirely clear what will happen once a user has checked out via the app, although store employees will of course be on the lookout for store visitors walking out with merchandise in hand, as they are already. Customers who have made a purchase through self-checkout will be able to show an emailed receipt to any employee, confirming their purchase.
Apple purportedly working on iPhone 4S battery problems
Apple engineers are purportedly contacting some iPhone 4S owners to try to solve problems with battery life on the new device, after some people have seen dramatic drops in longevity compared to previous models.
One owner has told "The Guardian" (http://macte.ch/3wvhN) that Apple contacted him directly and asked him to install a monitoring program on the phone to try to diagnose the problem, which is so far unexplained. In its data sheet for the iPhone 4S, which was released earlier this month, Apple quietly noted that the standby time for the new phone would only be 200 hours -- compared to 300 for the iPhone 4, and 250 hours even for the original 2007 iPhone.
The company did not offer any reason when asked why by "The Guardian." However, Apple did note that other lifespans such as 3G talktime were as long or longer than previous models.
Analysts: CDMA-based iPhone likely for China Telecom next year
Apple’s CDMA-based iPhone will most likely find a new home with China Telecom during the first half of 2012, UBS analysts Jinjin Wang and Maynard Um said in a note to clients -- as reported by "The Mac Observer" (http://www.macobserver.com). If so, China Telecom will get what they see as a "much needed" addition to its high-end phone lineup, the article adds.
“Jinjin Wang believes that China Telecom needs an improved handset portfolio and more support from third party distribution channels in order to drive further stand alone wireless service,” Um said. “The CDMA iPhone launch should be a positive driver as it will also help China Telecom penetrate the high-end segment.”
New ebook looks at 'Talking to Siri'
Written by two veterans of the Apple world, "Talking to Siri: Learning the Language of Apple's Intelligent Assistant" is a short, US$4.99 ebook that teaches readers how to use Siri.
Siri, introduced with the iPhone 4S, lets you use your voice to send messages, schedule meetings, place phone calls, and more. Apple says that you can ask Siri to do things just by talking the way you talk. I haven't tried it, but Apple says Siri understands what you say, knows what you mean, and even talks back. What differentiates Siri from competing technologies is its ability to not only recognize words spoken in a normal tone of voice, but its capacity to pick up on the contextual meaning of a phrase, according to Apple.
"Talking to Siri" offers practical, how-to advice mixed with examples. Tutorials show you how to set up Siri in your preferences, and how to manage the interactive conversations you have with your voice assistant.
Talking to Siri was written by two veterans of the Apple world, Erica...
Dynasty of Egypt comes to the Mac App Store
Selectsoft has introduced Dynasty of Egypt 1.0, a match-3 game for Mac OS X 10.6.6 or later. It costs US$4.99 and is available at the Mac App Store.
Here's how Dynasty of Egypt is described: "Enjoy explosive sphere shooter action during the Age of the Pyramids. Use your powerful stone shooter to destroy the Spheres of Divination before they disappear deep within the earth. Switch between shooters & rotate your angle of attack, as you blaze through over 1,000 levels of exciting action/puzzle fun, filled with magic power-ups, twisting paths & more.
"The fun gameplay combines match-3 strategy with arcade-style shooting as players try to blast the colorful spheres descending along a twisting path. Rotate your shooters to adjust your aim and switch between shooters to choose the best location to launch your attack. Capture amazing power-ups including lasers, bombs, ball-eater and more to help you clear the board before the spheres vanish beneath the ground. Test your skills as the...
TRENDnet shipping 450 Mbps HD Media Bridge
TRENDnet (http://www.trendnet.com) has released the 450Mbps Dual Band Wireless N HD Media Bridge (model TEW-680MB), which purportedly the highest wireless connection speeds available for up to four media center devices such as media players, gaming consoles, Internet televisions, and NVRs.
The US$169.99 device helps ensure that the wireless component of an overall network does not produce lag or jitter when wirelessly streaming HD movies and more to a media center, according to Zak Wood, director of Global Marketing for TRENDnet. Dual Band technology provides the option of connecting either over the common 2.4GHz wireless network or over the low interference 5GHz network.
A popular network configuration when connecting to a Dual Band router is to dedicate the router's 5GHz band to the TEW-680MB and the 2.4GHz band to laptops and mobile devices, according to Wood. The TEW-680MB needs to be connected to a 450Mbps router, such as TRENDnet's TEW-692GR, in order to maintain 450Mbps...
New Dolly Drive throttle lets users control bandwidth and upload...
Dolly Drive (http://www.dollydrive.com/), online backup for Apple's Time Machine, has added a bandwidth throttle in its version 1.5 upgrade, giving users greater control of Internet speed used during Time Machine backups to the cloud, while simultaneously letting users allocate more bandwidth for other programs during those backups.
The upgrades to overall control of backups include a new user interface designed to provide easier access to Dolly Drive 1.5 works with Mac OS X 10.6 and higher.
Dolly Drive is a subscription software and online storage service designed for Apple's Time Machine. In addition to providing Mac users offsite cloud storage directly through the Time Machine application, the application allows users to create a bootable clone of their Mac on an external hard drive for local disaster recovery.
ShredIt X updated to version 6.0.2
Mireth Technology (www.mireth.com/shredit.html) has released version 6.0.2 of ShredIt X, its file shredder and hard drive cleaner software for Mac OS X. The update is a maintenance release.
ShredIt is privacy software for Mac OS X that erases data so it can't be recovered. It can be used to erase files, folders, disk free space, previously deleted files, hard drives, external drives, network drives and CD-RWs. It comes with a range of features, including built-in safety features along with advanced shredding features such as, government standards compliance and a configurable overwrite pattern.
ShredIt X is available for immediate download, or on CD-ROM, starting at US$24.95. Registered users of previous versions of ShredIt X can upgrade for free. Educational pricing and volume discounts are available.
Calcline algebra solver for Mac OS X revved to version 3.0
Tension Software has updated Calcline, its algebra calculator for Mac OS X, to version 3.0. It sports a redesigned improved interface.
Version 3.0 now displays a variable and constant value also when in small size (strip) window. There's a scrollable variable and constant list when in small window and more.
Calcline requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher and costs US$5.99. It's available at the Mac App Store or directly from the developer (http://pomola.com/products_calcline/calcline.html).
Apple Lossless Codec goes open source
Apple’s Apple Lossless Codec, or ALAC, used to create lossless music files that are compatible, has gone open source, and is available under the Apache license. Details can be found at http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0 .
The Apple Lossless Audio Codec (ALAC) is an audio codec developed by Apple and supported on iPhone, iPad, most iPods, Mac and iTunes. ALAC is a data compression method which reduces the size of audio files with no loss of information. A decoded ALAC stream is bit-for-bit identical to the original uncompressed audio file.
The Apple Lossless Audio Codec project contains the sources for the ALAC encoder and decoder. Also included is an example command line utility, called alacconvert, to read and write audio data to/from Core Audio Format (CAF) and WAVE files. A description of a 'magic cookie' for use with files based on the ISO base media file format (e.g. MP4 and M4A) is included as well.
On his "Kirkville" blog (http://macte.ch/bJFaT), author and reviewer...
Taiwan Premiere worries about Apple's swipe-to-unlock...
The swipe-to-unlock feature is found on a multitude of different touchscreen smartphones today, but the idea officially belongs to Apple, according to the U.S. Patent Office.
Depending on how Apple wields its newly granted patent, it could mean trouble for makers of Android phones, many of which use slide-to-unlock features that sound very similar, notes "MacNewsWorld" (http://macte.ch/ldh6U). The swipe-to-unlock idea became the intellectual property of Apple this week when the U.S. Patent Office approved the company's patent for "unlocking a device by performing gestures on an unlock image." The original patent was filed in December 2005, more than a year before the first iPhone was released.
"Focus Taiwan" (http://macte.ch/Cky1k) says that Taiwan Premiere Wu Den-yih is concerned about the possible adverse effects of Apple's latest patent victory on Taiwanese companies, particularly those in the smartphone and tablet sectors. Wu has directed the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA)...
Apple number five among global phone vendors
Apple gained share and posted the third-highest growth rate of any top five mobile phone vendor but dropped to the number five position globally, according to a new IDC report (http://www.idc.com).
Global iPhone shipments declined sequentially during the same quarter that company founder Steve Jobs handed the CEO reins to Tim Cook, according to the research group. The decline, not coincidentally, happened as Apple readied itself for the 4S launch, which many waited for. Apple's ability to upgrade 3GS users to the 4S, for example, and make continued inroads into developing economies, where it has been less successful, will help dictate the company's smartphone fortunes in the future, according to IDC.
The research group says Apple has 4.3% market share globally; that's up 21.3% year-over-year. Ahead of it are Nokia (27.1%), Samsung (22.3%), LG Electronics (5.4%) and ZTE (5.4%).
The worldwide mobile phone market grew 12.8% year over year in the third quarter of 2011 (3Q11), as...
Apple updates Aperture, HP Printer software
Apple has updated Aperture, its tool for pro photographers, and its HP printer drivers.
Aperture 3.2.1 resolves an issue that could cause the software to quit unexpectedly at launch on Macs with Core Duo processors. It also addresses problems that could cause the Crop tool to switch to the incorrect orientation or resize incorrectly and resolves rendering issues when cropping images with Onscreen Proofing enabled
Finally, location menus are now displayed correctly on the map in the Places view when "Photos" is selected in the Library Inspector.
Apple has also released HP Printer Software Update 2.8 for Mac OS X 10.6 or higher. You can obtain the updates via the Software Updates component of Mac OS X's Systems Preferences app.
Decorate your Mac desktop with uDesktop 1.0
Aperio Lux has released uDesktop 1.0 for Mac OS X, an app that lets you access thousands of widescreen wallpapers for the desktop of your Mac. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher, costs US$1.99 and is available at the Mac App Store in the Lifestyle category.
All images are grouped by category and resolution. You can browse the images by date acquired or popularity. uDesktop lets you not only download wallpapers for your desktop but also to access all previously downloaded ones from the Downloads section.
uDesktop lets you set the selected image not only on the main and secondary monitors but also on both of them at once. You can also set it up so the image installs automatically at downloading or so that the image changes automatically on a timer.
Adobe spins a Carousel for OS X, iOS devices
Adobe has released Adobe Carousel in the Apple App Store and Mac App Store. It's a photography solution that gives consumers access to their entire photo library from their iPad, iPhone, iPod touch and Mac.
Carousel lets you browse, adjust and share photos without worrying about manual syncing. It's powered by the same photo-processing engine used in Lightroom, Adobe's software for pro photographers.
Adobe Carousel comprises a set of client apps for iPad, iPhone, iPod touch and Mac OS desktops; support for Windows and Android is expected in the first half of 2012. Photo libraries imported into Adobe Carousel are automatically accessible on any supported device through Carousel's cloud-based smart mesh technology.
Once photos are imported, any edits, deletions or additions made to the library on one device automatically update across all devices linked to the account. Subscribers can import an unlimited number of JPEG files and install Adobe Carousel on as many of their compatible...
NortonLive Ultimate Help Desk now supports Macs
Norton by Symantec has announced expansion of its NortonLive Ultimate Help Desk service to include support for Macs and Mac OS X applications.
This personal IT help desk service for consumers and small businesses with up to 10 computers now offers multi-platform support for Mac systems and applications, as well as Windows-based systems and many digital devices. With Norton market research finding that U.S. households have an average of 4.5 devices between desktop computers, laptops tablets, mobile phones and more, Ultimate Help Desk provides one-stop remote help.
According to a recent Norton research study, 11% of U.S. households use a combination of Mac and PC-based computer systems at home. Both Mac and PC users cited performance degradation and Internet connection problems as the most common issues encountered. One in four PC owners and one in three Mac owners expressed interest in a third-party technical support plan that would provide year-round technical service coverage for...
iHome releases AirPlay rechargeable speaker system
iHome has released the iW1 Wireless Rechargeable Speaker System with AirPlay. The iW1 is a portable speaker system that is set-up via the free iHome Connect app to stream audio within Wi-Fi network range from your iTunes library or iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.
AirPlay is Apple technology for wireless music streaming. It gives music lovers complete access, control, and playback of their entire iTunes music library. It requires iTunes 10.1 or later.
Powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery and controllable by the capacitive touch panel, iOS device or included remote control, the iW1 enables a wireless listening experience that employs Bongiovi Acoustics Digital Power Station (DPS) technology and four active speakers.
Using AirPlay, owners can wirelessly stream music over Wi-Fi to the unit from iTunes on their Mac, PC, iPhone, iPad or iPod touch and enjoy music in any room of the house. The iW1 is currently available for purchase at the Apple Store, Best Buy and Crutchfield for US$...
SEIntelligence is new search engine optimization tool for Mac OS...
RAGE Software has released SEIntelligence (http://www.ragesw.com/products/seintelligence.html) native, professional Search Engine Optimization software for Mac OS X. It costs US$199.95, and there are no subscription or monthly fees.
SEIntelligence tracks a website's top competitors with the current high ranking websites in all major search engines. It then uses statistical analysis to compare a user's website with their competition, outlining what aspects of a website need to be optimized in order to achieve higher search engine rankings, according to the folks at RAGE Software.
SEIntelligence also provides "Off Page Optimizations" reports, which includes analyzing incoming links from third party websites and social media marketing strategies. The app can purportedly discover the link strategies used by a website's competitors.
SEIntelligence is built for popular Mac web building applications including iWeb, RapidWeaver, Sandvox, Dreamweaver and more. In addition, SEIntelligence can...