Forrester: iPad will dominate the tablet market as the iPod does...
Forrester Research (http://www.forrester.com) has released a study of the tablet plans from various vendors, concluding (not surprisingly) that Apple will dominate this market as it does the MP3 player market with the iPod.
The reason, as noted by "PC World" (http://macte.ch/8b0ED): Android tablets, along with the coming HP WebOS and RIM BlackBerry tablets, are overpriced, sold in cell phone stores that customers dislike visiting. And they're not compelling products in their own right.
However, the Forrester study says that most would-be tablet buyers really want a Windows tablet. Now THAT I do find hard to believe.
-- Dennis Sellers
29% of apps in Mac App Store are games
The Mac App Store has 2,225 applications available in the store approximately two months post-launch, according to the Distimo research group (http://www.distimo.com). Comparatively, the Apple App Store for iPad had 8,099 applications two months post-launch.
Although on the Mac gaming has been less popular than on Windows, the Mac App Store promises a bright future for Mac gaming. There are already 646 games in this store (29%), and 39% of the most popular applications are games as well.
The proportion of free applications in the Mac App Store is lower than that of, say, the app store for iOS devices. Only 12% of the applications are free.
Macgamestore.com offers 'Mac Games For Japan Relief Bundle...
Macgamestore.com has announced the "Mac Games For Japan Relief Bundle." This time-limited bundle of 15 games is aimed at helping the victims of the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
Available now thru Monday, March 21, this exclusive collection combines hit games from some of the most popular names in independent Mac gaming today. Proceeds will be donated to the Japan Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami disaster relief fund through the American Red Cross.
The Mac Games For Japan Relief Bundle contains US$200 worth of games for just $19.95, a savings of nearly $185. The games are: Destination: Treasure Island; Escape The Museum 2; LUXOR 5th Passage; Diamond Detective; Jewel Quest 4: Heritage; The Stroke of Midnight Collector's Edition; Mishap 2: An Intentional Haunting Collector's Edition; Cake Mania 3; Sally's Salon; Brain App; Mondo Solitaire; Twisted Lands: Shadow Town; The Treasures of Montezuma 2; Fishdom H20: Hidden Odyssey; and 4 Elements.
iSuppli: Japanese earthquake poses potential supply problems for...
The aftermath of the Japanese earthquake may cause logistical disruptions and supply shortages for the iPad 2, which employs several components manufactured in the disaster-stricken country—including a hard-to-replace electronic compass, the battery and possibly the advanced technology glass in the display, IHS iSuppli (http://www.isuppli.com) research indicates.
The IHS iSuppli teardown analysis of the iPad 2 so far has been able to identify five parts sourced from Japanese suppliers: NAND flash from Toshiba Corp., dynamic random access memory (DRAM) made by Elpida Memory Inc., an electronic compass from AKM Semiconductor, the touch screen overlay glass likely from Asahi Glass Co. and the system battery from Apple Japan Inc. There potentially are other components from Japan in the iPad 2; however, the teardown analysis process cannot always identify all components’ countries of origin.
iSuppli says that, while some of these suppliers reported that their facilities were undamaged,...
PopCap discounts games, donates sales to Japan relief efforts
PopCap Games (http://www.popcap.com) is discounting the prices of the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad adaptations of all of its games including Bejeweled, Bookworm, Chuzzle, Peggle and Plants vs. Zombies for 48 hours to raise funds for earthquake-stricken Japan.
Partnering with the Red Cross, PopCap will donate all of its revenues from the sale, which begins Saturday, March 19, at 12:01 a.m. (Pacific) and ends at midnight on Sunday, March 20. The price of each iPhone and iPod touch title is reduced to US$0.99 cents during that time, while the iPad adaptations are reduced to 1.99. Consumers can purchase the games via the Apple App Store or by going to PopCap.com.
HDRFactory creates HDR images from series of photos
Akvis (http://www.Akvis.com) has released Akvis HDRFactory 1.0, which is compatible with Mac OS X 10.4 and higher. The software creates HDR-images from a series of photographs taken at different exposures or from a single photograph.
You can create stylized images with colors and unique effects. HDRFactory also includes a deghosting tool for removing ghost artifacts that sometimes appear when combining photos with moving objects. The app can also be used for photo correction. You can adjust color saturation and brightness, and bring out the detail in dark and bright areas.
Advanced types of licenses (Deluxe, Business) offer additional features. They include a tool that helps to repair the so-called "ghosts" that sometimes appear when creating an HDR image. These "unwelcome guests" (semi-transparent doubled passersby, cars, tree leaves, etc) are a result of combining a series of source photos that contain moving objects. HDRFactory will help you to remove these artifacts.
Regex is new Mac OS X app for testing regular expressions
MotionObj has released Regex (http://motionobj.com/regex/), a new app for testing regular expressions running on Mac OS X 10.6.6 or later. It's available for US$4.99 at the Mac App Store in the Developer Tools category.
Regex features an interface for testing and constructing regular expressions. It offers dynamic highlighting of matches while the regular expression or sample text is being modified. It also supports capture groups and matching options such as case-insensitive matches.
With Regex, you can paste in a regular expression and a piece of sample text to work against and the tool allows you to tweak the regular expression, as well as the sample text and the matches will be highlighted dynamically. It supports capture groups and more.
Beat Tagger for Mac OS X lets you tag Beatport WAV music files
Silicon Studios has introduced Beat Tagger 1.0 for Mac OS X (http://www.beattaggerapp.com), a drag and drop app that automatically tags WAV files purchased from Beatport. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6, costs US$2.99, and is available in the Mac App Store.
Unlike MP3 tracks downloaded from Beatport, uncompressed WAV files don't include ID3 metadata. Beat Tagger automatically adds these tags to WAV files so that when they're played back on players like iTunes, Serato, or Traktor the following info appears: Track Title, Album Name, Artist Name, Remixer Name, Genre, Label, Year of Release, and Album Artwork.
Beat Tagger also identifies corrupted WAV files, so that users may re-download within the limited time allowed by Beatport. The app is designed as an integrated solution for music lovers and DJs who purchase Beatport WAV files, and want their music labeled and organized without having to do it manually, says Silicon Studio's founder, Nuno Pereira.
Ohanaware donating funds to the Red Cross
Ohanaware (http://www.ohanaware.com) has announced plans to help the people of Japan. From Mar 18 until Mar 25, the will be selling their software, including the new HDRtist Pro and Funtastic Photos, at half price.
All the profit that Ohanaware generates this week will then be donated to the Red Cross (http://www.redcross.org), to be used to provide medical care, shelter, food and water for those that need it after last weeks earth quake and tsunami. The death toll from the recent tsunami and earthquake is expected to exceed 15,000, and over half a million people are without homes, heat, food and water. "
HDRtist Pro is a Mac App thats been designed to create and edit HDR or Exposure Blended images. Funtastic Photos is a "non-permanent and easily reversible: photo editor, with over 60 one-click styles, an advanced effects engine, direct sharing via Fun Cards, smartphones (including the iPhone) and photo sharing sites (flickr, Facebook, Picasa and MobileMe).
Color It By Numbers -- Animals prowls onto the Mac
ColorItByNumbers has released Color It By Numbers -- Animals (http://macte.ch/QbWpc), the first product in the company´s line of colorful infotainment products for children. This game features three coloring modes and a soundtrack that accompanies children as they paint animal-themed templates in different colors.
This edition of the software is dedicated to animals and features several species, including a dotted Alpine cow, a parrot, an ever-changing chameleon, a funny octopus, a crab, a pelican, a cute puppy, a huge elephant and an African lion. Each animal is represented by a multi-piece coloring template with numbers inscribed into each piece.
Children can pick a brush on the left-hand side and paint regions of the template with corresponding numbers. The other two coloring modes offered by the program include "Color to make it visible" and "Color it in your favorite colors." In the first case, the user has to color each piece to make it visible on the screen. In the "Color it...
'Cult of Mac' looks at the iPhone 5/NFC/MobileMe...
With all the rumors about NFC (near field communications) being -- or not appearing, depending on what you read -- in the next iPhone "Cult of Mac" (http://macte.ch/nBmaz) says they have a few more details about Apple’s remote computing plans that revolve around the technology.
NFC is a short-range wireless connection technology that would turn the iPhone into an electronic wallet or security passkey, the article says. NFC is already in use in Asia and is expected to explode here in the next three to five years, especially if Apple adopts the technology.
"Cult of Mac," quoting "a source close to the company," says Apple is busy testing several prototype iPhones with NFC. Unfortunately, the source has no knowledge of when Apple will actually introduce the technology in the iPhone, the article adds. It could be the next model, due this summer (the iPhone 5), or next year’s version (the iPhone 6).
However, "Cult of Apple" says Apple is working on a system that allows users to log into...
PADACS readies iPad 2 keyboard cases for April
PADACS readies iPad 2 keyboard cases for April
PADACS (http://www.padacs.com) says its first products for Apple’s new iPad 2 -- the improved Toccata and Rubata Bluetooth keyboard cases -- are planned for an April launch in the US and Canada.
The PADACS Toccata Bluetooth Keyboard Case (shown) contains a compact QWERTY keyboard that's purportedly large enough to type on comfortably without adding to the iPad 2 case size. Charged by an included USB cable, the Lithium battery-powered keyboard runs for as long as 45 hours. The PADACS Rubata iPad 2 keyboard case provides a cover with a built-in hard plastic shell Bluetooth keyboard with special iPad keys.
The Toccata 2 Bluetooth Keyboard Case has been redesigned to hold the 33% slimmer iPad 2, making the entire Toccata 2 case thinner and sleeker. Other enhancements include: keyboard controls to adjust the iPad screen brightness; addition of new keys including a right shift key and a Photo Frame button for the iPad; removal of the keyboard’...
ExactScan Pro gets new Imprinter module
ExactCode has updated its ExactScan Pro (http://www.exactcode.de/site/products/exactscan/) scanning software for Mac OS X (10.4 and higher) to version 2.14. The upgrade features a new Imprinter module which makes it possible to print flexible text onto the scan result (e.g. scanned date) or watermarks.
ExactScan includes built-in drivers for over 230 document scanners, including devices from Avision, Kodak, Oki, Visioneer and Xerox. Together with the Spotlight indexing services built into Mac OS X since 10.5 ("Leopard") this features form a document management solution suitable for small-office and home-office (SOHO) environments. What's more it has image enhancement algorithms that can recognize automatically how the images and documents have to be cropped and de-skewed.
ExactScan comes with support for many languages (English, Dutch, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Spanish, Simplified-Chinese, Traditional-Chinese) and works with Mac OS X 10.4 and higher.
ExactScan 2 is...
Pittsburg Apple store vandalized for third time
The Shadyside Apple store in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, burglarized at least twice in the past four months, was hit again on Thursday, reports the "Pittsburg Post-Gazette" (http://macte.ch/k1hHH). Police told the newspaper that thieves who stole thousands of dollars worth of laptops and iPods.
The same store was burglarized in November and January. Each case was similar in that bandits broke the glass and made off with merchandise in the early morning hours, says the "Post-Gazette."
Chrome updated to address Flash player issue
Google (http://macte.ch/vlqmD) has updated its Chrome 10 browser for the third time this month with the release of Chrome 10.0.648.134 for Mac, Windows and Linux and Chrome Frame, reports "eSecurity Planet" (http://macte.ch/sYgkn).
Chrome 10.0.648.134 is being issued to fix a single issue. It provides an updated Adobe Flash player that fixes a zero day vulnerability that is already being exploited in the wild.
Google's Chrome browser includes an integrated Flash player, which is something that no other browser vendor provides. Additionally Chrome is getting the Adobe Flash fix before even Adobe issues a public fix for all users, says "eSecurity Planet." Adobe issued a security advisory earlier this week, warning of a critical vulnerability in Flash Player 10.2.152.33 and earlier versions.
Class On Demand adds new Avid training
Class on Demand (http://www.classondemand.com) will exhibit at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) convention, held in Las Vegas from April 11-14. Stationed at booth SL11217, Class on Demand plans to display its full range of training titles, spanning recent software releases from Apple, Adobe and more, including the just-announced "Complete Training for Avid Studio" training course.
Class on Demand instructors and experts will be on site to discuss the benefits that post-production and broadcast professionals receive from staying up to speed on the latest industry trends and techniques with Class on Demand's affordable, self-paced products, says says Paul Holtz, CEO and founder, Class on Demand. The Class on Demand team will also demonstrate the pioneering Class on Demand Learning Platform, which includes a secure streaming video server employing Microsoft's Silverlight DRM technology for a convenient and accessible on-demand training experience from the Class on Demand...
DiscLabel 6.3.1 adds support for Microboards disc printers
SmileOnMyMac (http://www.smileonmymac.com) has updated DiscLabel, its CD/DVD label design software, to version 6.3.1. The update adds support for Microboards' PF Pro, PF 3 and G3 disc printers.
DiscLabel costs US$35.95 for new users. The DiscLabel Family Pack, for up to five computers in one household, is $44.95 and an office pack is $99.95. DiscLabel 6.3.1 requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later. A fully-functional demo version is available at the SmileOnMyMac web site.
DevonTechnologies updates products
DevonTechnologies says all editions of its information manager, DevonThink, and the note-taking application, DevonNote, are now available in version 2.0.9. DevonNote, EasyFind 4.7.1, and XMenu 1.9.2 are now also available on the Mac App Store, and DevonThinkTo Go 1.1 has been submitted to the iOS App Store for review.
Version 2.0.9 of all editions of DevonThinkand DevonNote brings, first of all, an updated conduit for DevonThinkTo Go, fixing a number of bugs. The older conduit e.g. transferred, accidentally, only the first 1KB of data of indexed text so that larger documents were not completely searchable, and could crash when sending very large files.
In addition DevonThinkPro Office 2.0.9 allows to properly archive mailboxes from any supported email client skipping messages archived earlier. This makes it possible to regularly "sync" a mailbox with the archive in DevonThink to keep the archive up-to-date.
DevonThinkPro and up can rebuild the global inbox database, too, and allow...
Apple says Blaze's Android/iPhone speed test comparison is...
Blaze Software, released a report Thursday in which it said the Android was 52% faster than the iPhone loading Web pages. The company purportedlly did 45,000 tests with the mobile operating systems to get their results.
“Their testing is flawed because they didn’t actually test the Safari web browser on the iPhone,” Apple spokesperson, Natalie Kerris, told "The Loop" (http://macte.ch/1zZR4). “Instead they only tested their own proprietary app which uses an embedded web viewer that doesn’t take advantage of Safari’s web performance optimizations. Despite this fundamental testing flaw, they still only found an average of a second difference in loading web pages.”
Private Contact 2.4 for Mac OS X adds simplified interface, more
Tension Software (http://pomola.com/products_privatecontact/privatecontact.html) has updated Private Contact, a native Cocoa software to manage an address book in an encrypted form in Mac OS X (10.4 and higher), to version 2.4. The upgrade boasts an improved main window layout, a simplified interface, improved category dialog, embedded PDF user guide and more.
With Private Contact informations inside documents, relative to various persons, can be read only by the Mac owner. In case of unauthorized access or theft of the Mac, the data inside Private Contact documents can’t be read without the proper master password.
Private Contact uses the powerful Blowfish algorithm to encrypt data. It's Universal Binary so runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel Macs.
Private Contact can be purchased for US$25. Version 2.4 is a free update to registered users of version 2.x.
Switzerland is the country with the most Mac market share
Pingdom (http://www.royal.pingdom.com) -- a site that covers Internet and online technology -- has examined operating system market share from across the globe using StatCounter web metrics data to find out where Macs are the most popular. And the winner is .... Switzerland with 17.61%.
Pingdom says the top 10 countries in terms of Mac market share: Switzerland, Luxembourg (15.79%), the United States (15.36%), Iceland (15.18%), Canada (14.03%), Australia (13.94%), New Zealand (12.84%), Norway (12.14%), Denmark (11.71%) and Singapore (10.69%). Just outside the top 10 you find countries like Sweden, Japan, the United Kingdom, France, Belgium and Finland.
When it comes to market share in different world regions, North America comes in at number one (14.09%), closely followed by Oceania/Australia (13.71%), then Europe (6.23%) as a distant third. The Mac has less than 2% market share in Asia, Africa and South America. Hey, just at those regions as potential areas for some serious Mac...
Real Software to donate 5% of sales to Japan relief efforts
Real Software will be donating 5% of the company’s total sales for the week of March 20-26 to the American Red Cross’ earthquake and tsunami relief fund for Japan. All of Real Software’s products including new licenses on its Desktop and Web Editions, renewals, upgrades and support plans will be applicable.
“Allocating a portion of sales for our neighbors in Japan after this devastating disaster is one small way we can help,” says Geoff Perlman, founder and CEO of Real Software.
Real Studio is a cross-platform software development tool suited to creating a wide range of applications, from utilities to enterprise-class applications. Real Studio Personal Edition for Mac, Windows or Linux is priced at US$99 and is geared for hobbyists and students. Real Studio Professional Edition, required for cross-platform (Mac OS X, Windows and Linux) compilation, is $299. Real Studio Web Edition is now available and priced at $599.
Real Studio Enterprise Edition, made for full-time developers...
Mac App Store now home to over 4,200 apps
In just ten weeks, the Mac App Store has seen its inventory of apps rise from around 1,000 to over 4,200, reports "InformationWeek" (http://macte.ch/GKjZc). It launched on Jan. 7.
The Mac App Store offers apps in Education, Games, Graphics & Design, Lifestyle, Productivity, Utilities and other categories. Users can browse new and noteworthy apps, find out what’s hot, see staff favorites, search categories and look up top charts for paid and free apps, as well as user ratings and reviews. The Mac App Store is available for Snow Leopard users through the Software Update as part of Mac OS X 10.6.6.
Mac developers set the price for their apps, keep 70% of the sales revenue, are not charged for free apps and don't have to pay hosting, marketing or credit card fees. To find out more about developing for the Mac App Store visit developer.apple.com/programs/mac .
iPhone tops J.D. Power rankings in customer satisfaction
Overall satisfaction with smartphones and traditional mobile phones is considerably higher among owners who use their devices for social media activity, compared with satisfaction among owners who do not access social media platforms on their phones, according to new studies by J.D. Power and Associates (http://www.JDPower.com). And the iPhone is tops in customer satisfaction.
For a fifth consecutive time, Apple ranks highest among manufacturers of smartphones in customer satisfaction with a score of 795 and performs particularly well in ease of operation, operating system, features and physical design. Motorola (763) and HTC (762) follow Apple in the smartphone rankings.
Sanyo ranks highest in overall wireless customer satisfaction with traditional handsets with a score of 715. Sanyo performs well in three factors: physical design, battery functionality and operation. LG (711) and Samsung (703) follow Sanyo in the traditional handset rankings.
In order of importance, the key factors...
Credit Suisse sets Apple price target of $500 a share
Credit Suisse on Thursday launched analyst coverage of Apple with an outperform rating and a price target of US$500 a share, reports "MarketWatch" (http://macte.ch/9XqCp).
"We conclude that Apple should be able to deliver outsized revenue/earnings growth of 50%/46% over the next two years, which is significantly ahead of consensus expectations, given a sustained competitive advantage in software, hardware and services/apps ecosystem," analyst Kulbinder Garcha said in a note to clients.
Some 2011 MacBook Pros not playing nice with iTunes Home Sharing
Some owners of Apple's 2011 MacBook Pros say they can't connect devices or maintain connections through iTunes Home Sharing.
A support thread (http://macte.ch/UGCse) in Apple's Discussion forums has received over 200 posts from owners of Apple's latest MacBook Pros reporting issues with iTunes Home Sharing. Several readers have also contacted "AppleInsider" (http://www.appleinsider.com) regarding the issue. According to forum user 'themacbear,' the new MacBook Pro was able to stream to a second-generation Apple TV at first, but then the Apple TV reported being unable to connect or would display the error message "There are no movies in this library."
Home Sharing in iTunes is designed to let you stream and transfer music, videos, and more with up to five other computers on your local network. Home Sharing is linked to a single iTune Store account.
Study: Android faster than the iPhone in loading web pages
The latest Android smartphone loaded Web pages 52% faster than iPhone 4 running iOS 4.3, according to thousands of independent field tests by Blaze Software -- as reported by "Computerworld" (http://macte.ch/OMA7d).
The web page load times were about a second apart for the two devices in a study that amassed 45,000 load tests in all. For Android 2.3 on the Google Nexus S smartphone using a version of Chrome, the median load time was 2.144 seconds, compared to 3.254 seconds for iPhone 4 on iOS 4.3 running a version of Safari, according to the study.
Blaze used Fortune 1,000 web sites for the tests, running the web page loading tests repeatedly over Wi-Fi and 3G wireless connections with nothing else running on the phones at the time, says "Computerworld." The Android phone was faster than the iPhone in loading 84% of the tested Web sites. "Android wasn't just faster overall, but rather provided a faster browsing experience four times out of five," the study said.
Steve Jobs emails Apple staff in Japan
Apple CEO Steve Jobs is reported to have sent a message to Apple staff regarding the recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The contents of the email were posted to Chihouban.com (via Macotakara), and "MacRumors" (http://www.macrumors.com) also received a copy of it independently. The email was said to have been sent to all Apple employees and reads:
"To Our Team in Japan,
"We have all been following the unfolding disaster in Japan. Our hearts go out to you and your families, as well as all of your countrymen who have been touched by this tragedy.
"If you need time or resources to visit or care for your families, please see HR and we will help you. If you are aware of any supplies that are needed, please also tell HR and we will do what we can to arrange delivery.
"Again, our hearts go out to you during this unimaginable crisis.
"Please stay safe.
"Steve and the entire Executive Team"
In related news, the March 11 tsunami that has devastated Japan is expected to create...
Western Digital introduces 6TB storage system
Western Digital has introduced its My Book Studio Edition II dual-drive storage system with 6TB of storage. The new capacity provides users 33% more storage than the previous capacity, while maintaining the same footprint.
Combining its extended 6TB storage capacity and compatibility with Apple's Time Machine, the new My Book Studio Edition II drive becomes an instant storage solution for a variety of professions including art and design, photography, legal and medical, and a host of other small businesses, according to the folks at WD. The system offers a quad interface: eSATA, FireWire 800, FireWire 400 and USB 2.0.
The My Studio Edition II sports WD GreenPower Technology that consumes approximately one-third less power than standard dual-drive external storage systems and convection cooling architecture and power-saving mode and designed without a fan to run quietly. It's user serviceability, enabling you to open the enclosure and replace the drive inside.
My Book Studio Edition II...
'New York Times' launches digital subscriptions
"The New York Times" is launching digital subscriptions, which will affect some users of its award-winning website, NYTimes.com, and its applications for smartphones and tablets.
The subscription plan allows for free access to a set amount of content across digital platforms. When the monthly reading limit is reached, users who aren't already home delivery subscribers will be asked to become digital subscribers.
Digital subscriptions will be available in the United States and globally on March 28. "The Times" is launching digital subscriptions in the Canadian market beginning today in order to fine-tune the customer experience prior to the global launch.
For non-home delivery subscribers, the basic package -- NYTimes.com plus Smartphone App -- will start at $15 every four weeks. The NYTimes.com plus Smartphone App package is currently available for purchase by users in Canada. On March 28, the global launch, "The Times" will offer three digital subscription packages, all of which...
Divine Wind expansion pack blows onto the Mac
Virtual Programming (http://www.vpltd.com) has released Divine Wind for Mac OS X 10.6 or higher. It's the fourth expansion pack for the strategy game Europa Unversalis III and costs US$14.95.
Here's how Divine Wind is described: "Players travel to medieval Japan and assume the role of one of four major daimyos vying for influence with the Emperor and control over the Shogunate. A new graphical style brings the action to life on a detailed map packed with many new provinces, including internal Chinese factions that must be managed to keep the Mandate of Heaven.
"Divine Wind also features dozens of new culture-specific building types, giving players greater control over province development, along with enhanced diplomacy functions offering more options for alliances and peace negotiations. In addition, trade development is more realistic and allows players to control strategic resources that grant bonuses. As players build their Japanese kingdom, they can unlock over 50 achievements."
AssistiveWare, LVI join forces on Mac OS X
AssistiveWare (http://www.assistiveware.com) has partnered with LVI Low Vision International to deliver enhanced access to Mac OS X for people with vision impairments.
The result of this collaboration is MagniLink iMax, a magnification and screen reader for Mac OS X, which serves as a companion to LVI's MagniLink Student portable video magnifier. The software provides magnification, image enhancement and pointer settings as well as screen reading with high-quality speech output.
With the inclusion of the Infovox iVox Text-To-Speech voices by Acapela Group, MagniLink iMax comes with automatic language identification in the screen reader mode and also includes ConvenienceWare GhostReader, an application for reading selected text and documents, which extends the built-in text-to-speech features of Mac OS X.
GhostReader contains shortcut keys for access to the text, and the user can listen to documents including file types such as Text, Word, HTML, PDF, ODT and RTF. What's more, you...
Power Utility for Mac OS X updated to version 1.0.1
Tension Software has updated Power Utility (http://macte.ch/n7oLK) for Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher to version 1.0.1. It's a maintenance update of the US$5.99 app that's only available at the Mac App Store.
Power Utility is an application that lets your Mac, when unattended, to restart, shut down, sleep or log out. It bases all functions on specific conditions or on time schedules you establish.
For example, you can start a download of a big file via Safari in the evening, and Power Utility will watch the download and will shutdown your Mac in the night when the download via Safari (or other browsers) is finished. Or you could have your Mac shutdown an Friday at 10 p.m.
If it's running in the background, Power Utility jumps in the Mac OS X dock to alert you of the upcoming action. After a fast setup, the window shows you the action to be performed, when and how much time remaining to the event, updated live.
Date Time Calc is date calculating utility for Mac OS X
Date Time Calc (http://www.pomola.com/products_datetimecalc/datetimecalc.html) is a new Mac OS X utility for calculating future and past dates using a given time interval from an assigned date. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6, costs US$2.99 and is only available at the Mac App Store.
This app is intended for users needing to calculate expected dates after a specific number of days as in a typical business use. An example of periods often used in business: 15, 30, 60, 90, 120 or 150 days.
The dates can be selected using standard calendar controls. The time interval is expressed in days or in a more precise way also using hours, minutes and seconds. A PDf user guide is embedded in the app.
Apple stock down after JMP Securities downgrade
Apple's stock is off by US$10, or 3%, thanks in part to this morning's downgrade from JMP. That's more than twice what the NASDAQ is off.
Apple was downgraded by JMP Securities this morning from "market outperform to market perform." The research group says, "a notable deceleration in its primary manufacturing partner Hon Hai." Hon Hai sales growth is decelerating, suggesting Apple's business could follow.
(Hon Hai is the parent of Foxconn, Apple's notorious manufacturer.)
What's more, JMP thinks iPhone sales could just be in line with expectations this year. It also sees iPad sales eating into Mac sales (though I've seen no evidence that this is happening.).
In fact, as noted by "Business Insider" (http://macte.ch/zkC2E), most analysts on Wall Street think Apple is buy. Also, the theory that slow growth at manufacturer Foxconn could be a bad sign for Apple has been called out by Oppenheimer & Company analyst Yair Reiner, which instead asserts that the connection between the two...
Mariner Introduces StoryMill 4 writing software
Mariner Software has released StoryMill 4 for Mac OS X, an update of the software for writing a story or novel. Mariner President Michael Wray says there are several new features in StoryMill 4 that every writer will appreciate, including:
° Snapshots -- the writer can capture a snapshot of any scene or chapter in order to make changes and refer back to that snapshot at any time, comparing new and old versions;
° Novel View -- a story can be viewed and printed in its entirety;
° Redesigned Timeline View -- supporting timelines ranging from minutes to centuries, the new timeline view also offers navigation tools for developing the flow of your story.
StoryMill 4 also now offers a trash feature just like the Mac OS X Finder. The software requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher.
StoryMill costs US$49.95 and is available for trial as a download only from the Mariner Software website (http://www.marinersoftware.com). Current registered StoryMill users can purchase the upgrade version for $24.95.
Zediva introduces Mac compatible online movie rental service
Zediva (http://www.zediva.com/splash/) is providing a new way for people to watch the latest popular movies online. And it's Mac compatible.
For about the price of a cup of coffee, Zediva users have the ability to instantly watch movies as soon as they become available on DVD. Now movie aficionados can watch many movies as much as 90-180 days (or more) before they could with some other movie rental services, and at prices as much as 60-80% lower than many satellite and cable providers, Venky Srinivasan, founder and CEO of Zediva.
As a special promotion, Zediva is offering all new users two free movies just for signing up before March 31(one offer per household, restrictions apply). Using technology two years in the making, Zediva enables customers to remotely rent a DVD and a DVD player located at Zediva's Silicon Valley data center.
The rental DVD can be watched instantly on a wide range of Internet-connected devices, including TVs, laptops and smart phones with high-speed...
FileMaker updates entire Bento product line
FileMaker Inc. (http://www.filemaker.com), a wholly owned subsidiary of Apple, has shipped Bento 4 for Mac, now available on the Mac App Store, and Bento 1.1 for iPhone, and Bento 1.1 for iPad.
New features include the ability to print labels, export libraries with data, automatically add geographical locations to records and lock down forms, says Ryan Rosenberg, vice president of marketing and services for FileMaker, Inc. For the first time with version 4, you can export Bento libraries populated with data and share these with other users.
Sending a complete library to another Bento user is as easy as emailing a file. You can also share your ideas with the world by sending your custom Bento templates directly to the Bento Template Exchange from within Bento 4. The Bento Template Exchange features over 800 free downloadable templates.
Rosenberg says Bento 4 is faster and easier to use. With faster launch times, the new version allows you to lock forms to prevent unwanted changes to...
FrameLoader released on the Mac App Store
Nova media has released FrameLoader for Mac OS X 10.6.6 (or higher) in the Mac App Store. The US$11.99 app synchronizes photos, music and movie files on a Mac with digital picture frames, SD cards and USB memory sticks.
FrameLoader will convert pictures, music and videos automatically into a format that can be displayed by the selected digital picture frame. To display media files on a TV or other devices, the app can synchronize media files with an SD card and USB memory stick.
To select the media contents, FrameLoader displays a list of iPhoto albums and iTunes playlists. They can be checked or unchecked to be synced. Custom media files can be dragged and dropped into FrameLoader and selected accordingly.
A click of the sync button starts the synchronization process and an activity monitor displays the details of the process. A demo version of FrameLoader is available at nova media's website (http://www.novamedia.de).
Analyst raises Apple target to $450
In a note to clients, as reported by "Barron's" (http://macte.ch/Rch6o), BTIG Research analyst Walter Piecyk has raised his price target on Apple shares from US$375 to $450 from $375, saying the iPad will probably generate US$24 billion in revenue this calendar year.
That's $4 billion more than he’d originally expected. Piecyk writes that the introduction of the iPhone 4 at Verizon in February had “tempered” his expectations, as "the CDMA iPhone 4 initially generated a disappointing response which not only surprised us but apparently also surprised Apple."
However, the iPad 2 "appears to be putting our doubts to rest." The analyst predicts that 40 million iPads will be sold this year, up from 33 million in his previous estimate.
Vidyo platform enables HD multi-party video conferencing on an...
Vidyo (http://www.vidyo.com) says its Vidyo platform now supports Apple’s iPad 2, Motorola’s XOOM tablet and the Atrix 4G smart phone utilizing the VidyoTechnology Software Development Kit (SDK) that's available to partners to create applications.
Vidyo’s communication and collaboration platform provides a 720p High- Definition (HD) multipoint video conferencing solution on the Apple tablet. Using Vidyo’s platform, customers can join video conferences from anywhere using the device of their choice: smart phones, tablets, desktops, room systems or telepresence endpoints -- on client applications built by Vidyo or partners with the Vidyo SDK.
“The faster CPU of the Apple iPad 2 and its front and rear-facing cameras, make it an exciting platform that begs for HD multipoint video communication and collaboration,” says Ofer Shapiro, Vidyo’s CEO and co-founder. “Vidyo was able to use its SDK to enable the Apple iPad 2 to participate in high-definition 720p multipoint video conferencing...
Tablet sales booming alongside 3G, 4G network subscriber growth
Parks Associates (http://www.parkassociates.com) says 3G subscribers will double over next five years, with global 3G+ tablet sales to exceed 68 million by 2015.
The research group forecasts more than 68 million of the 126 million tablets sold worldwide in 2015 will have 3G or greater technology. The research firm's latest report shows 29% of the 16.5 million tablets sold in 2010 featured embedded 3G technology, while tablets with 3G/4G technology will account for over one-half of all tablets sold in 2015.
"We are seeing strong consumer engagement in data-intensive services and activities, such as social networking, uploading photos to the Internet, and watching online video, on mobile phones," says Jennifer Kent, a Parks Associates' mobile research analyst. "By offering the same mobile Internet capabilities as a smartphone, but with better visual and computing experiences, tablets will also benefit from these consumer behaviors."
Consumer demand for mobile data will increase further...
Harman releases new gaming headset
Harman has launched the US$79.95 AKG GHS-1 portable gaming headset (http://macte.ch/ZwhnX). It's designed specifically for the gamer and features "innovative audio engineering built into a distinctive, long-lasting and intuitive design for the ideal gaming experience," says David Slump, president, Harman Consumer Division.
Lightweight and designed for long-wearing comfort, the headset features a boom microphone that filters out background noise. Passive noise reduction effectively seals out most ambient sounds, according to Slump. The headset also features a cardioid (directional) boom microphone that filters out background noises.
The in-line microphone is designed so that the volume can be adjusted right on the cable, which reduces the need for players to interact with the game console or other source throughout the game. The AKG GHS-1 portable headset is available in three color combinations: black and orange; white and green; and camouflage and blue.
Deliver Express updated to version 2.1.1
Zevrix Solutions (http://www.zevrix.com) has updated Deliver Express, an automated solution to send and share files across the Internet and local networks, to version 2.1.1. The new version improves the reliability of file transfer to certain FTP sites, and addresses some issues related to email communication on international systems.
Deliver Express processes files automatically from watched hot folders and offers variable e-mail notifications, delivery to multiple destinations, encryption and more. It supports FTP, Amazon S3, MobileMe and other major services. Deliver Express can run unattended and is suitable as a company-wide server solution as well as for single users.
As a company-wide server solution, Deliver Express can be installed on a dedicated station and run unattended. Users only need to copy files to network based hot folders, and the files will be sent automatically with customizable email confirmation issued upon delivery. Recipients can download the file using a...
LightWorks Author provides rendering enhancements in TurboCAD...
Lightworks (http://www.lightworkdesign.com) says the latest release of TurboCAD Pro software features "significant enhancements" based on the Lightworks Author product.
Lightworks Author -- the company’s integrated rendering source -- provides customers with a product suite to enable the creation of a range of rendering solutions for all types of market and application. TurboCAD Pro 18 is the latest release of software from IMSI/Design. IMSI/Design (http://www.imdidesign.com) has long integrated Lightworks technology as the rendering engine within its TurboCAD software.
This new release incorporates Lightworks enhancements offering TurboCAD users greater rendering performance within their application. Lightworks Multi-threading support takes advantage of multi-core processors to speed up renderings, and updates to the integrated Lightworks Author rendering engine include progressive, ray-traced rendering which improves the user’s workflow while also enabling a faster generation of...
D-Link shipping new Wi-Fi adapters
D-Link has announced the availability of the latest additions to its DWA USB adapter product line, the Wireless N 150 Pico Adapter (DWA-121) and the Wireless N Nano USB Adapter (DWA-131).
Equipped with Wireless N technology, both the Pico and Nano connect a laptop or desktop computer to a Wi-Fi network at up to six times the speed and three times the coverage of a wireless G connection, enabling users to transfer files, download media and browse the Internet faster and more efficiently, says Daniel Kelley, associate vice president of consumer marketing, D-Link North America. With small, compact form-factors, both adapters easily fit into a computer’s USB port, making them ideal for use when traveling or in a crowded workspace, he adds.
The DWA-121 connects to a desktop or notebook, creating an instant 802.11n wireless network. The included Quick Setup Wizard guides users through the setup, while the Wireless Manager tracks recently accessed networks. Featuring Wi-Fi Protected Setup (...
Verizon now accounts for 12% of iPhone web usage
Verizon is up to more than 12% of all iPhone web usage, based on data from the Chitika ad network (http://www.chitika.com).
"The data is based on a 24-hour rolling period, so it’s a good snapshot of what iPhones are in use right now," says Chitika. "For Verizon to pick up that big of a share of iPhone users in about a month is impressive, and doesn’t bode particularly well for AT&T."
One day after the Verizon iPhone launched to the general public, it accounted for 3% of the U.S. iPhone base. Data is based on iPhones across the Chitika advertising network. Only traffic on cellular connections is recorded. Percentages are a 24-hour rolling average, updated hourly.
Apple delays iPad 2 launch in Japan; company aids in relief...
Apple will delay the launch of the iPad 2 in Japan, in the wake of last week's earthquake and tsunami, reports "Reuters" (http://macte.ch/t6itQ). The company had planned to start selling the device in Japan on March 25.
The company didn't provide a rescheduled launch date. "We are delaying the launch of the iPad 2 in Japan while the country and our teams focus on recovering from the recent disaster," said Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris.
"Computerworld" (http://macte.ch/T5KIL) reports that "it's a a credit to Apple, Google and others that when disaster struck they immediately moved to do what they could." Google launched a people-finding service via its Crisis Response pages, while Apple launched an American Red Cross appeal via iTunes.
Apple also made its own relief effort for its staff in Japan (http://macte.ch/2eScK). It supplied food, water and blankets for its retail and corporate staff, allowed them to stay overnight in its shops (with their families if they were in the area)...
ChatTime offers free calls to Japan
SmartRoam (http://smartroam.net), developers of theiPhone app ChatTime is giving new and existing customers, from 48 countries, free calls to Japan until the end of March.
The company says it wants to make it easy and painless for ChatTime users around the world to reach out to their friends and family in Japan. ChatTime provides a low-cost international calling service.
The free call announcement means that all ChatTime users can call mobile phones and landline numbers in Japan through the end of March with no charges and no fees. ChatTime is also retroactively offering customers who have already made calls to Japan since March 11 a credit and waiving any costs associated with calling the country. Anyone that is not currently using ChatTime can download the app for free from the Apple App Store and also take advantage of free calling to Japan.
The countries eligible to call Japan for free are; the United States, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium Brazil, Bulgaria,...
Study: iPads to dominate tablet market through at least 2012
Sixty million tablets will be sold in 2011, and most of them will be iPads, according to a new study by the DisplaySearch research group (http://www.displaysearch.com).
Apple will likely continue to account for the majority of tablet touch screens in 2011 and 2012, yet other brands could catch up in 2012 and beyond, the study says. DisplaySearch forecasts total touch panels for tablets to reach 260 million units in 2016, up 333% from 2011.
“Tablet PCs are the fastest growing application for touch screens,” says Jennifer Colegrove, vice president of Emerging Display Technologies for DisplaySearch. “Most tablet PC products will leverage multi-touch projected capacitive technology, following Apple’s lead. At the same time, a small amount of tablet PCs are using resistive touch, since it is less expense and enables handwriting recognition. There are also some tablet PCs that use digitizers for handwriting recognition and drawing.”
The touch screen supply chain is evolving differently in...