Apple Support Communities support forum goes live
Apple has gone live with the Apple Support Communities support forum upgrade it announced last year, adding social network features and replacing the Apple Discussions board, reports "AppleInsider."
Apple announced the new Support Communities upgrade to its online forums last August on the Apple Discussions board (https://discussions.apple.com/thread/2540747?threadID=2540747). At the time this is how Apple described the upgrade: "Apple Support Communities brings together thousands of Macintosh, iPod, iPhone, and iPad users from around the world to discuss Apple products and topics. Apple Support Communities provides a wealth of information about your favorite Apple hardware and software products to help you get the most out of your purchase. And, in the spirit of community, you can also help other Apple Support Communities’ users by answering their questions."
Samurai II: Vengeance available at Macgamestore
Madfinger Games' Samurai II: Vengeance is now available at Macgamestore.com (http://www.macgamestore.com). It requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher and costs US$9.95.
Here's how the game is described: "Samurai II sends Daisuke on a quest for revenge across the war-scorched countryside. From a seafaring village to a flying fortress to the legendary Isle of the Dead, the samurai will stop at nothing to hunt down his arch-enemy Orochi. Will he get his Vengeance?"
Enolsoft releases YouTube Converter HD for the Mac
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Swoop Solitaire swoops onto the Mac
Swoop Software, creators of original Mac-first and Mac-only games, has released Swoop Solitaire. A demo is available for download (http://www.swoopsoftware.com/downloads/SwoopSolitaire.dmg.zip); registration is US$19.95.
Here's how the game is described: "Swoop Solitaire features 46 great games, including hugely popular games like Klondike, Spider, Freecell, Gaps, Canfield, Golf, Pyramid, Penguin, Beleaguered Castle, and many more.
"Swoop Solitaire automatically remembers the progress and statistics for any number of players. Information gathered includes scores, the number of games won and lost, the amount of time played, and much, much more. Players can develop some healthy competition with family and friends by comparing results. Swoop Solitaire also comes with a visual, comprehensive guide that helps players learn each solitaire variant with ease."
NIWO Slumber is new tool/timer for Mac OS X
NIWO Software has introduced NIWO Slumber, a tool/timer for Mac OS X. It's available at the Mac App Store for US$1.99 until April 19; after that it's $4.99. A demo is available at the NIWO Software website (http://www.niwosoft.com).
NIWO Slumber can shutdown, restart, sleep or logout your computer at any given time. It can be used to turn off your Mac at night or when you want to make a break at a given time. NIWO Slumber comes with integrated presets and the ability to create and manage your own templates.
The app reminds the user that there's a timer running. You can set up the Time (5, 10, 15, 20 , 25, 30 minutes before) and type of notification (only Notification, or a Notification with Sound). NIWO Slumber supports Growl as well.
The Zoo HD comes to Mac OS X, iOS
Breek has introduces The Zoo HD 1.0, their new educational app developed for iOS devices and Mac OS X. It's available in the Apple App Store and the Mac App Store.
Toddlers can use The Zoo HD as a classic picture book. It's designed to allow children to learn a second or third language while playing and having fun.
The Zoo boasts: 20 original drawings, real animals sounds, visual effects and more. The Zoo HD 1.0 for the iPad costs $3.99, and The Zoo for iPhone 1.0 is $1.99.
QuickWho for Mac OS X gets native UI tools
Code by Kevin has released version 3.2 of QuickWho (http://www.codebykevin.com/quickwho.html), a Mac OS X (10.6 and higher) application to help users look up Internet domain registrations. The new version sports native user interface tools, improves stability and fixes some bugs.
QuickWho provides an array of information about specific Internet domains. Curious about who owns a particular domain name? Do you want to contact them, or gather more information about them? QuickWho can help you with these tasks.
QuickWho is shareware. The download is a 30-day demo; you can purchase a license for US$24.99 to use the program past the trial period. The program is also available in the Mac App Store. QuickWho is Universal binary so runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel Macs.
Jumsoft releases templates for the iPad
Jumsoft (http://www.jumsoft.com) has introduced the Inspiration Set for iPad 1.0, the iPad version of its Inspiration Set application.
Previously known as Pages Templates, Inspiration Set includes 50 templates from greeting cards and invitations to flyers and brochures. Some templates contain up to four different sections. The package supplies nearly 80 layouts.
Most objects in Inspiration Set for iPad can be recolored, moved, or removed. Users can type or paste in their own text, add and remove text boxes, and change the font. Stock images can be replaced with their own photos or pictures. All 50 templates included are available in both paper size A4 and U.S. Letter.
Inspiration Set requires iOS 4.3 or later. It costs US$1.99 and is available at the Apple App Store.
SMEStorage brings cloud storage directly to the Mac desktop
SMEStorage (http://www.smestorage.com), a multi-cloud data access company, has released the first version of its Mac Cloud Tools.
The Cloud Tools encompass a virtual Cloud Drive that is integrated into the Mac Desktop, a desktop to Cloud synchronization tool, and Cloud Files indexed and integrated into Spotlight. Unlike other silo'd storage provider SMEStorage works as an abstraction layer above over 15 storage clouds and enables users to access and manage files from all the major storage vendors, says SMEStorage CEO Ian Osborne.
"The Cloud Tools really bring the Cloud into the Mac desktop enabling users to switch storage cloud providers by simply changing directory, and editing files becomes as easy as double clicking on the file in question from within the Cloud Drive and saving when done," he says. "We've also integrated file actions into the Mac Finder on right click so that, among other things, you can easily get a URL of a file to share, or generate an email with a file link...
Omegabundle 2011 for LiveCode released
The Omegabundle Group, a group of professional development tool vendors, have released OmegaBundle 2011 for LiveCode.
This limited time package contains over $4100 worth of tools but available in this set for US$499 -- over 85% savings. This is a limited time offer in order provide cross platform, iOS and Android developers with the best original and third party tools available, according to the folks at the Omegabundle Group. Omega Bundle 2011 for LiveCode brings together 12 plug-ins, add-ons
and more, including:
° Animation Engine 4, a LiveCode library for rendering animation through Livecode apps built for the desktop and for the iPhone;
° SQL Yoga, for developing data-driven solutions by transforming database complexities into common LiveCode processes;
° Flexible Learning ChartMaker, a cross-platform library solution designed to create professional charts in your own work;
° ASG DataGrid Helper., a set of tools for creating professional business layouts and data grids for the...
Norton Internet Security, AntiVirus 2012 betas available
Norton by Symantec has released the 2012 beta versions of the Norton AntiVirus and Norton Internet Security, which are now available for free download from the Norton beta website.
The Norton 2012 betas improve on performance and protection, says Jens Meggers, vice president of engineering for Norton products. They include key security enhancements, including the ability to assess the safety and stability of an application before installation.
The betas feature Insight 3.0, the latest version of Norton's exclusive reputation-based security technology, which leverages the anonymous software adoption patterns of Symantec users to automatically identify and block new malicious software. Download Insight, which checks every downloaded file for safety before it's allowed to run, has been updated this year to include information that lets users know if a downloaded application is likely to cause stability issues when they install it on their computer.
Now Download Insight provides users...
Adobe adding HTTP Live Streaming support to Flash Media Server
Adobe is instead adding HTTP Live Streaming support to Flash Media Server, reports "ArsTechnica" (http://macte.ch/xXr5g).
HTTP Live Streaming is a protocol that Apple developed to stream live and recorded video using standard HTTP connections instead of RTSP. It uses H.264-encoded video and AAC or MP3 audio packaged into chunks of an MPEG-2 transport stream, along with a .m3u playlist to catalog the files that make up the individual chunks of the stream. QuickTime on both Mac OS X and iOS can play back this format, and it is the only streaming format compatible with the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, notes "ArsTechnica."
Adobe says it's "committed to developing technologies that simplify broadcast workflows to make it simpler to reach a fragmented lineup of devices," according to senior product manager for Flash Media Server Kevin Towes. Towes noted in a blog post -- as noted by "Ars Technica" -- that Adobe is adding HTTP Live Streaming support to Flash Media Server and Flash Media...
OrderBorder.com is new Apple-focused buying website
Oten -- the company behind several Apple accessory brands such as Sena and DomeSkin -- has launched a new group-buying website targeted directly to Apple enthusiasts and owners of any Apple products.
The new website, OrderBorder.com, will feature accessories, software, and peripherals for iPhones, iPods, iPads, Macs, and Macbooks. Murat Yesildal, vice president of Order Border, says the site differentiates itself from other group-buying websites with its unique focus on Apple gear, and also the “Borderline Price” concept. He says the borderline price is the absolute lowest price limit that:
° Either the group can reach with its growing size, as users join the deal;
° Or an individual can reach with a new social-media based point system.
The unique point system provides users the power to accumulate points, not only with every purchase, but also by inviting their FaceBook friends and others to join in on the savings, says Yesildal. This empowers users to earn extra points when their...
Apple captures video game market share in 2010
Last year, Flurry (http://www.flurry.com) -- which offers a mobile application analytics and recommendation-engine driven advertising platform -- reported that iPhone and iPod touch game sales surged from 2008 to 2009. From a standing start, and in just one year, iPhone games captured 5% of the mature U.S. video game market.
A year later, Flurry revisited how the increasing popularity of iOS (iPhone, iPod touch and iPad) and Android games continue to increase their U.S. video game market share. With an additional year of trend data, the magnitude of disruption is increasing, in particular within the portable gaming category.
For this year’s report, Flurry once again leveraged publicly available market data in the news, released by companies such as the NPD Group (e.g., Gamasutra’s Behind the Numbers series). Flurry combined this data with their own estimates of game category revenues from iOS and Android devices. Flurry Analytics, the company’s mobile application analytics service...
FileMaker being positioned as a tool for iOS development
When you think of FileMaker you probably think of a databases, not development. But FileMaker is being positioned as a tool for iOS development. Ryan Rosenberg, vice president of marketing and services at FileMaker Inc. (http://www.filemaker.com) says FileMaker offers the fastest way to create custom iOS solutions.
"We see a huge opportunity here," he says. "When businesses first encountered the iPhone and iPad, they were for personal productivity. The iOS devices are increasingly gaining traction in the business world, and companies are moving towards custom solutions, especially with the iPad. iPads are being increasingly accepted as personal productivity tools."
Rosenberg says that as a developer platform for iOS devices, FileMaker provides an innovative customer experience, remote access to information in business systems, and the capability of automating paper processes. He adds that these attributes make it perfect for common development needs today: small fast projects or...
J.P. Morgan raises projections on Apple product sales
Apple will report its latest financial results on Apr. 20, and investment bank J.P. Morgan has raised its projections of Apple's earnings through 2012 in expectation of continued growth from the iPhone, iPad and the Mac.
In a note to clients -- as reported by "AppleInsider" (http://www.appleinsider.com) -- J.P. Morgan analyst Mark Moskowitz reiterated the firm's Dec. 2011 price target of US$450 and Overweight rating of Apple. Moskowitz also:
° Raised his projections for Apple's earnings per share for the second quarter of fiscal 2011 to $5.39, up from $5.21 and increased his revenue estimate for the March quarter from $23.83 billion to $24.42 billion;
° Expects Apple to sell 18.4 million iPhones in the second quarter of fiscal 2011;
° Expects Apple to sell 31.3 million iPads in fiscal 2011;
° Projects 32% Mac year-over-year growth over year growth for a total of 3.89 million Macs sold in the second quarter of fiscal 2011.
Analyst: Apple to sell 45-60 million iPads this year
Carolina Milanesi, a Gartner research vice-president for mobile devices, told PCMag.com (http://macte.ch/jvDiV) that Asian components makers think Apple will ship between 45 million and 60 million iPads this year.
Gartner's own forecast for global unit sales of the iPad in 2011 is 47.9 million. For the full tablet media market, which also includes non-iOS tablets running the Android, MeeGo, WebOS and BlackBerry Tablet OS operating systems, the research firm projects 69.8 million units sold worldwide for this year.
Meanwhile, the IDC research group is predicting total worldwide media tablet shipments of 50.4 million for 2011 including more than 30 million unit shipments of the iPad. IDC forecasts global media tablet shipments of 70.8 million units in 2012.
Apple sued over in-app purchases
Another day, another lawsuit. Garen Meguerian of Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, has filed a class-action lawsuit takes issue with free iPhone games that feature in-app purchases, alleging that Apple's App Store makes it easy for children to rack up credit card charges without realizing they are spending real-world money, reports "AppleInsider" (http://www.appleinsider.com).
He purportedly filed the suit this week on behalf of himself and other parents and guardians who incurred unauthorized charges for game-related content. Those transactions came from children playing games on iOS devices like the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, and making in-app transactions to purchase virtual goods, notes "AppleInsider."
The lawsuit doesn't note that Apple has addressed the issue by requiring a password for in-app purchases. Before, once users entered their password to download an application, iOS offered a 15-minute window during which additional purchases could be made without entering the password....
MainMenu 3 adds custom tasks, archiving feature
Incredible Bee has released MainMenu 3, an update to its maintenance utility for Mac OS X 10.6 or later.
MainMenu lets you free up disk space, clean your home folder and optimize your Mac. Accessible via a configurable global hot key, the overlay menu offers access to maintenance tasks. With custom tasks you can group maintenance tasks to run them in one go. For users whose Desktops clutter up quickly, the new MainMenu offers a task to archive the entire Desktop in a single click.
MainMenu costs US$15. There's also a $19 MainMenu Pro. Both are available as free downloads from the MainMenu website (http://mainmenuapp.com) and run in a 14-day trial mode with all features active.
iWeb Themes Park rolls out new themes
iWeb Themes Park (http://www.iwebthemespark.com) has announced new iWeb themes for Apple's web design application. They include Diagonal, Frame, Green House, Quad Sport and Synergy.
All the themes from iWeb Themes Park consist of separate elements, each of which can be modified, replaced or removed. Diagonal is a bright theme with ornaments, while the Frame theme has photo frames with shadows and other elements. Quad Sport is a theme for quad or motor sport lovers. The Green House theme is recommended for presenting your house or green technologies. The Synergy theme is for a small or home business website.
The themes require iWeb from iLife '08 or later. The iWeb Themes Box of 115 themes and is priced at US$29.99. Each template is available for $11.99 or $12.99. Four iWeb Themes are free for everyone.
Free iPhone app source code available at CodeStore
UK based independent developer Chris Mayer has announced two new Xcode projects available for free from the CodeStore website (http://www.codestore.co.uk/index.html).
CodeStore offers Xcode template projects to anyone looking to create an app for the iPhone or iPad. The projects have a range of uses, and can be freely modified. No knowledge of the Objective-C programming language is required to create an app using the templates, as the code is already complete. All that's required is the replacement of the example content (JPEG images, MP3 audio, HTML text, etc.).
The two new projects which are available for download are simplified versions of the Advanced Book App, and Story Book App, which have been used by a number of authors to publish their books on the App Store. The paid projects currently offered include:
° Comic Book Project for creation of an iPad digital comic book;
° Story Book Project, for creation of children's books; it includes a narration feature;
° Advanced Book App...
CleanMyMac revved to version 1.9.5
MacPaw has updated CleanMyMac (http://macpaw.com/cleanmymac/fullfeatures), its Mac disk maintenance utility, to version 1.9.5, which addresses various bugs and other issues.
The upgrade provides an updated application uninstaller feature that provides faster operation. In addition, CleanMyMac 1.9.5 boasts an enhanced knowledge base that the app relies upon to identify and manage a myriad of applications and filetypes.
CleanMyMac is a tool that maintains caches, log files, language files, and more. It doesn't just clean unnecessary, unwanted, damaged, and corrupt files from a user's Mac, but restores large amounts of hard drive space in the process.
CleanMyMac requires an Intel or PowerPC-based Mac running, Mac OS X 10.4.11. It costs US$29.95.
Native Instruments announces Maschine expansions
Native Instruments (http://www.native-instruments.com) has introduced its new series of Maschine Expansions, download libraries for its groove production system.
All expansions provide new drum kits and instruments as well as pre-programmed patterns created by sound designers and producers, and feature a distinctive take on a contemporary sound aesthetic or musical style. The series debuts with Vintage Heat and Transistor Punch, created by Goldbaby and Surround SFX.
Vintage Heat was created by sampling artist Goldbaby, and specializes on warm, saturated sounds The library includes 50 kits with analog, digital and acoustic origins, complemented through 50 matching synthesizer sounds ranging from bass and leads to brass, pads and strings.
Transistor Punch takes its inspiration from contemporary European club music, and provides sounds for a wide range of electronic styles. Created by renowned sound designer Denis Gögdak of Surround SFX, the library contains 30 c drum kits as well as...
TransGaming announces Kula Blox game
TransGaming (http://www.transgaming.com) says its Studio Division is currently in production on Kula Blox, a multi-platform game targeted to a family audience.
Leveraging TransGaming’s cross-platform game enablement technologies, Kula Blox will be simultaneously released on the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Mac, PC and the GameTree TV Smart TV Gaming Platform in the summer of 2011.
Kula Blox will be an animal-themed arcade-style game that allows a broader audience of non-traditional gamers to have immersive, but still "snack" gaming experiences, according to the folks at Studio Division. The Kula Blox property is designed to become a franchise that spans across multiple future titles.
BurnAgain FS gets more intuitive workflow
Freeridecoding has released BurnAgain FS 1.6 (http://freeridecoding.com/burnagainfs), an update of the CD/DVD multisession burning application for Mac OS X. The upgrade brings a more intuitive workflow, as well as a number of bug fixes and improvements.
Disks burned with BurnAgain FS are readable without additional software on all platforms. The software automatically preserves special Mac file attributes (resource forks) as well.
BurnAgain FS works with Mac OS X 10.5 and higher. It costs approximately US$12; version 1.6 is a free update for registered users. A demo is available at the Freeridecoding web site.
TaskTimer update enhances syncing capabilities
BKeeney Software has released Task Timer 5.0.5, an update to their time management software for Mac OS X, Windows, and iOS platforms. This release enhances the synchronization capabilities between the desktop and iOS version, as well as fixes a number of minor bugs.
Task Timer tracks time spent on an unlimited number of projects and tasks down to the minute. It even allows multiple users to synchronize to a centralized database server.
Task Timer generates reports using a specified data range. Users can view weekly, monthly and yearly totals in chart settings. Task Timer synchronizes data on each user's computer with a database server, so it even tracks time when users are away from the office.
Task Timer for Mac OS X may be purchased online for US$29.99 in the Mac App Store or via the BKeeney Software website (http://www.bkeeney.com). A free 14-day trial is available at the latter. Task Timer for iOS and Task Timer + for iOS are available via the Apple App Store. Task Timer iOS is...
Chess Crusades coming to the Mac
Appache Mobile (http://www.appachemobile.com) says its iPad game, Chess Crusades, has been submitted to the App Store for the Mac platform for approval.
Appache Mobile previously licensed the game for the iPad platform, but has extended this license to cover the Mac, as well. The game was converted from the iPad to the Apple Mac using Slam Productions' proprietary Rapid Application Development platform.
"Chess Crusades is the perfect app for the Apple Mac -- it's fun, looks even better on the larger screen of the Apple Mac and delivers an experience that you would expect from a big budget console videogame," says Ed Blincoe, CEO of Appache Mobile. "By moving into the Apple Mac AppStore so quickly we're positioning Appache Mobile to be a key player in the AppStore for Mac."
TimeCache update for Mac OS X updated to version 8.0.13
The PandaWare Company (http://www.pandaware.com) has updated TimeCache -- its time and expense billing app for Mac OS X 10.3.9 and higher -- to version 8.0.13. The update squishes some bugs.
TimeCache offers support for timed or manual entries, retainer billing, customizable invoices and reports, printing options, and flexible data entry options. It also offers tracking of all a user's computer activity, the ability to save fine-grained details with time and expense entries, can use Apple Address Book entries for client contact information, can produce charts of billable time and expenses, and can import from and export to iCal calendars.
Licenses for TimeCache are US$70 per user. Version 8.0.13 is a free update for registered users of version 8.x. Registered TimeCache 7 users can purchase an upgrade to version 8 for $40. A demo is available for download.
Apple releases Xcode 4.0.2
Apple has released Xcode 4.0.2 (http://macte.ch/14CEo), an update of the developer tool for creating apps for the Mac, iPhone and iPad. Xcode 4 is available to members of the Mac and iOS Developer Programs from the Apple Developer website.
Version 4.0.2 offers improved Assistant editor logic when switching among different file types and fixes some bugs. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or later and is a 4.25GB download.
Apple hires data center guru from Microsoft
Kevin Timmons, who helped build the data centers that power Microsoft’s global cloud computing operation, has left the company and is expected to take a leadership position at Apple, reports "Data Center Knowledge" (http://macte.ch/TvKmz). The move "strongly hints that Apple is stepping up its plans for an expansion of its data center infrastructure beyond its huge new facility in North Carolina," the article adds.
Timmons went to work for Microsoft in mid-2009. He helped oversee the completion of data centers in Northlake, Illinois, and Dublin, Ireland. He then moved to streamline the company’s data center design and cost structure.
Apple doesn’t talk about its data centers. But if it is looking for an executive to “think different” about data centers, Apple may have found its man in Timmons, says "Data Center Knowledge."
“Challenge everything you know about a traditional data center,” Timmons said in a March 2010 presentation at DataCenterDynamics New York. “From the walls to the...
Apple updates Safari, iOS 4.3.2
Apple has released Safari 5.0.5, Security Update for 2011-002 for Snow Leopard and iOS 4.3.2.
The first two can be obtained via the Software Updates component of Mac OS X's Systems Preferences app. Safari 5.0.5 is recommended for all Safari users and includes the latest security updates. It requires Mac OS X 10.5.8 or higher and is a 52.59MB download.
Snow Leopard’s Security Update 2011-002 is recommended for all users and improves the security of Mac OS X, according to Apple. Previous security updates have been incorporated into this security update. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.7 or higher and is a 4.43MB download.
iOS 4.3.2 -- for the iPhone 4 and 3GS, iPad and iPad 2, and iPod touch (generations three and four) -- fixes a FaceTime issue and a glitch that prevented some international users from connecting to 3G networks using the iPad Wi-Fi + 3G. To download and install the update connect your device to your Mac or PC and click Check for Updates in iTunes.
Apple dominates as physician mobile use grows 45%
Android devices may have a market-share edge among consumers, but among physicians and other healthcare providers, Apple’s iPhone and iPad still hold a commanding lead over all competing platforms, including Android, RIM and Palm, according to a new analysis by Bulletin Healthcare (http://www.BulletinHealthcare.com).
The analysis, based on the reading habits of more than 550,000 healthcare providers, including more than 400,000 physicians who subscribe to Bulletin Healthcare’s daily email briefings, focused on mobile device usage between June 1, 2010 and Feb. 28, 2011. Reaching the members of two-dozen leading medical associations each day, Bulletin Healthcare has a combined audience of roughly half of the practicing physicians in the U.S.,
Examining the proportion of briefings accessed on mobile devices, the analysis indicates that mobile consumption of medical news climbed by 45% between June and February. The result is that almost 3-in-10 healthcare professionals now access the...
Mac continues to gain US market share
Once again, the Mac has increased its US market share, according to the latest results from both the Gartner (http://www.gartner.com) IDC (http://www.idc.com) research group. The former has Apple will 9.3% of the US computer market share; the latter says Apple has 8.5%.
Remember: these stats don't include iPad sales. Neither research group counts the tablet in their personal computer sales even though the iPad is obviously a tablet computer.
According to Gartner, Mac shipments totaled approximately 1.5 million units in the first quarter of 2011, up from 1.3 million in the first quarter of 2010. That's year-over-year growth of 18.9%.
This places Apple fifth on the list of Gartner's US computer vendors. It trails HP (26.2% market share with -3.5% year-over-year growth), Dell (22.3%, -12.1% year-over-year growth), Acer (11.3%, -24.9% year-over-year growth) and Toshiba (10.4%, 10.9% year-over-year growth).
Gartner says Apple maintained strong shipment growth, even after the holiday...
Intel's Ivy Bridge chips to directly support USB 3.0
Intel says its silicon will support USB 3.0 in 2012 and urged developers to target both USB and its new "Thunderbolt" technology, reports "CNET" (http://macte.ch/af0vy).
"Intel is going to support USB 3.0 in the 2012 client platform. We're going to support Thunderbolt capability. We believe they're complementary," said Kirk Skaugen, a vice president at the Intel Architecture Group, speaking at Intel's developer conference in Beijing.
Currently, Intel has support for USB 3.0 only in select desktop motherboards. And those boards don't use an Intel chip but a separate part from NEC to implement USB 3.0, notes "CNET."
However, Intel's 2012 Ivy Bridge technology will put USB 3.0 directly into the Intel chips that will accompany the main Ivy Bridge processor, making USB 3.0 available universally across all types of computing devices.
So will future Macs sport USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt? Probably. Although further down the line I think it's a safe bet to see Thunderbolt replacing USB 3.0 and...
Verizon iPhone spurs month-over-month iOS growth
In the March "Mobile Mix Report" (http://macte.ch/UreTp) from Millennial Media, the Verizon iPhone helped spur an 11% month-over-month growth for iOS, and the influx of new tablet devices contributed to a 21% month-over-month growth for connected devices as a category.
"With the recent release of the iPad 2 and the upcoming release of the BlackBerry Playbook -- we anticipate connected devices will continue to grow," says Mack McKelvey, senior vice president of marketing for Millennial Media, a mobile advertising platform.
Android remained the leading smartphone OS on the platform's network for the fourth consecutive month with a 48% impression share. However, iOS apps represented a 47% share in the Application Platform Mix of the March "Mobile Mix Report."
-- Dennis Sellers
DropSync is new syncing tool for the Mac
Mudflat Software has released DropSync (http://www.mudflatsoftware.com/dropsync.html), a syncing tool for Mac OS X 10.5 or higher. It's available on the Mac App Store in the Utilities section for US$10 until the end of August.
Dropsync is designed to make it easy to keep folders in sync between computers, hard drives and remote servers. It's targeted to web development, offsite back-ups, and keeping files in sync between work and home.
DropSync is based around pairs of folder trees rather than a flat list of folder pairs. While this alternate mental model takes some getting used to, the payoff is that managing folders for syncing becomes much more dynamic, according to the folks at Mudflat Software. DropSync can always infer the partner for any folder, so adding new folders to sync is just a click, or dropped folder away.
DropSync is also one of the few syncing applications that makes accessing remote computers via ssh a first class citizen, says Mudflat Software. Users can enter...
Equinux announces Mac Designer for the Mac
Equinux has announced Mail Designer. This new Mac App allows users to create individual mail designs for newsletters, offers, invitations or personal emails that can be sent to customers, colleagues or any larger group of recipients.
Each Mail Design can be saved as a template and sent through Apple Mail. To keep things simple, a variety of predefined layout blocks including headlines, text objects and multicolumn layouts can be dragged, dropped and rearranged, says equinux CEO Till Schadde. Numerous textures and background patterns are also included.
Artists, agents and businesses can integrate their own cooperate designs into Mail templates and integrate dynamic content. Mail Designer includes graphics, text-objects and dynamic and customizable text and image placeholders. With tools, rulers and guides, users can create customer newsletters, and each mail design can be saved as a template that can be used repeatedly.
Mac users who already use Stationery Pack, Stationery Pack 2 or...
Smasher 2 offers automated font preventive maintenance
Insider Software has announces Smasher 2, offering Mac users automatic preventive font maintenance, previewing and font integrity verification. It requires Mac OS X 10.4 or higher.
The app works unattended to eliminate corruption of font caches and temporary files, so fonts always appear and print correctly. Smasher 2's new interface and functionality includes an all-new font validation and verification engine, font previewing, a one-step, drag and drop importer and more.
Smasher's set-it-and-forget-it functionality eliminates cache-related problems on an automatic, ongoing basis, according to the folks at Insider Software. Like a virus checker, it runs regularly to clean and maintain the integrity of your Mac and ensure that you start with pristine font, print and preference caches every time you use your computer.
Smasher offers support for OpenType, Mac TrueType, Windows TrueType and Mac Type1 Postscript fonts. Font archiving creates a backup copy of your fonts to a zip file or...
Robokill clamors onto the Mac App Store
Malicious robots have nowhere to hide, as Wandake launches Robokill -- Rescue Titan Prime (http://www.wandake.com/robokill/) on the Mac App Store. It requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher and costs US$4.99.
Here's how the game is described: "The new version keeps the incredibly popular Survival mode featured in the iOS version of the game, and builds in new mouse and keyboard controls to deliver a level of precision never before seen. This may well be the definitive edition of the game hardcore fans have been waiting for.
"We're very pleased to be able to offer Robokill to Mac users," said Bruce Brodie, Director of Games at Wandake. "This game is just too much fun to be confined to mobile devices, so now we're unleashing it on the Mac as well. We apologize to bosses and significant others as their employees and loved ones are completely sucked into the experience."
"Robokill is an action-packed shooter which tasks players with carefully navigating room after room filled with baddies,...
TextSoap 7 adds Universal Menu, more
Unmarked Software celebrates 13 years of Mac software development this week with the release of TextSoap 7, an upgrade to their Mac OS X productivity tool designed to help people who work with other people's text. The new system-wide menu -- the Universal Menu -- provides TextSoap features to virtually any application that supports copy and paste, greatly expanding integration options.
TextSoap 7 -- now a 64-bit application -- also brings interface changes designed to streamline efforts of people who process other people's documents, emails, web pages and more. The new release also adds more control in matching and changing both text and a variety of text attributes.
The TextSoap upgrade expands on its existing batch file support via Automator and adds a new Batch File Cleaning option within the application. The new feature enables users to quickly batch process a whole collection of files in a few quick steps within the application, according to the folks at Unmarked Software....
White iPhone due in the next few weeks?
Apple will begin selling a white model of the iPhone 4 in the next few weeks after a 10- month delay, according to "Bloomberg" (http://macte.ch/eXKny), quoting "three people familiar with the plans."
The new version will be available from AT&T. and Verizon Wireless by the end of April, said one of the people. The release was stalled as Apple resolved manufacturing challenges, including paint that peeled under heat, one person told "Bloomberg."
ComboApp expands into the Mac App Store
ComboApp (http://comboapp.com) is releasing Mac compatible versions of their most popular business and finance learning systems at the Mac App Store.
ComboApp business apps now available at the store are: Business Essentials Guide, Legal Environments of Business, Marketing Process Guide, Real Estate: Investing, Small Business Guide, Smart Investment Training, Business Education Pro, Sales Management Training, Profiting from Financial Statements and Modern Supervision. Each are available for US$39.99.
Flash Decompiler Trillix available in the Mac App Store
Eltima Software says Flash Decompiler Trillix 4.2 (http://mac.eltima.com/swftofla-converter.html) is now available in the Mac App Store. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or later.
The Flash decompilation tool helps when decompiling Flash movies and converting them back to their source FLA format or Flex project files. It also allows exporting SWF elements to various formats. Over 50 options are available to extract sounds, images, videos, shapes, frames, morphs, fonts, texts, buttons, sprites and ActionScripts.
The first two days after Flash Decompiler Trillix becomes available in the Mac App Store, all Mac App Store users can purchase it for US$19.99. The regular price for Flash Decompiler Trillix in the Mac App Store is $79.99.
LightSpeed releases mobile hardware kit upgrade
Xsilva Systems, makers of unified retail point of sale tools sold under the LightSpeed brand, has announced upgrades to the hardware kit for its mobile point of sale platform, LightSpeed Mobile. LightSpeed Mobile Hardware Kits will now ship with Linēa-pro 4 for the four generation iPod touch or Linēa-pro 4 for the iPhone 4 from Infinite Peripherals.
LightSpeed Mobile is the mobile retail extension to the LightSpeed Point of Sale system for Mac that transforms the way retailers sell to their customers. The application, when paired with a hardware kit that consists of a supported iOS mobile device and a sled that adds a 1D barcode scanner and magnetic stripe reader, offers retailers an alternative to traditional retail systems.
Retailers using LightSpeed Mobile can now use either the fourth-generation iPod touch or the iPhone 4 as their hardware of choice. The first generation of the Linēa-pro sled, the same hardware used in Apple’s retail stores, was compatible only with the second and...
Mac a Montreal offers on-site Apple solutions for home, office...
Mac a Montreal (http://www.macamontreal.com/en/), a member of the Apple Consultants Network headquartered in Montreal, Quebec, is expanding its services to include a wide range of on-site and remote services to business and home users looking to install, configure, and make better use of their Apple equipment.
The company says Mac a Montreal consultants will set you up from beginning to end, including the transfer of your existing data from your older machines and will identify opportunities for improving your business and work flow through technology. In addition to managing their growing client base, Mac a Montreal is approved by Apple in Cupertino to work hand in hand with all official Apple retail stores in the Montreal area (Carrefour Laval, Sainte-Catherine, and Fairview) to provide a range of expertise in the design and implementation of Apple solutions.
Tablets vital; laptops to remain largest segment of mobile market
Mobile computer shipment momentum is slowing, from 30% year-over-year growth in 2010, to 27% in 2011, when the market will reach 277.7 million units, according to the DisplaySearch Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report" (http://www.displaysearch.com).
Decline in mini-note shipments and emerging regions is slowing growth, but notebook and tablet growth in mature markets is buoying the overall market, according to the research group. Shipment growth is expected to slow in the short term as compared to previous forecasts but pick up longer term, as emerging markets return to contributing at the high rates they have seen over the last several years.
Shipments into mature markets are expected to rise in the short to medium term with increasing demand from tablet computer shipments and a commercial market computer refresh cycle, says DisplaySearch. Shipments into North American are expected to reach 91 million units in 2011 and 108.6 million units in 2012.
“Two of the main...
Apple looking for cloud systems software engineer
A new Apple job posting (http://macte.ch/SgsQZ) shows the company is looking for a cloud systems software engineer.
Candidates must have a BS or MS in Computer Science or equivalent industry experience. Apple also wants someone with experience in Java, NoSQL databases such as MongoDB or Cassandra, Linux and Hadoop.
Here's Apple's take on the position: "Consider joining a small team writing the software which forms the foundation for some of our most exciting new products and services. We are looking for an extremely capable engineer who has a strong background in web services development, and who has built high-performance, scalable and extensible systems. In this highly visible position, the successful candidate will collaborate with cross-functional engineering teams to define and implement some of the core backend
In EquiTrend study, Apple ranks fifth in Mobile Phones category
Verizon was named the Mobile Networks Brand of the Year among consumers according to the 2011 Harris Poll EquiTrend study. That's not surprisingly, but, amazingly, Apple only ranks fifth in the Mobile Phones category.
In the Mobile Networks category, Verizon is highest ranked for the second-year running over archrival AT&T. Harris Interactive announced their Technology Brands of the Year in four other major categories: Mobile Phones (Motorola), Consumer Electronics (Sony), Computer Hardware (HP), and Gaming (Nintendo). Overall, awards are given in each of 46 different categories.
"Since the change in the portability of phone numbers, switching mobile phones and mobile networks is significantly easier," says Jeni Lee Chapman, executive vice president of Brand and Communications Consulting with Harris Interactive. "Verizon's strong brand equity can have a large impact when consumers have a choice."
Motorola, buoyed by strong familiarity and a significant improvement over last year,...
Apple debuts Final Cut Pro 7
Sadly, it didn't even warrant a press release, but Apple has debuted Final Cut Pro 7 this week at the Final Cut Pro User Group Supermeet at the NAB 2011 show in Las Vegas. It will ship in June for US$299 at the Mac App Store.
That's a drastic price reduction from $999 for previous versions. The new version of the professional video editing application will include 64-bit support, OpenCL support, a revamped interface and more.
New versions of the Apple ProRes codec in Final Cut Pro 7 let you edit faster and at higher quality across a wide variety of workflows, according to Apple. The family now includes ProRes 422 (Proxy), ProRes 422 (LT) and ProRes 4444, in addition to the original ProRes 422 and ProRes 422 (HQ).
Choose ProRes 422 (Proxy) for offline editing or use ProRes 422 (LT) for projects that require reduced file sizes at broadcast quality, such as news, sports, and events. At the other end of the scale, ProRes 4444 is designed for compositing and digital workflows that...
Intel to release Thunderbolt developer kits
Intel says developer kits for Thunderbolt will be available this quarter, which could lead to the quick availability of a wider range of products based on the interconnect technology, says "IDG" (http://macte.ch/sO9Bs).
Thunderbolt was first announced on Feb. 24 and is currently being offered only by Apple in its new MacBook Pro laptops, which were launched on the same day. Thunderbolt is a new high-speed computer connection technology that brings together high-speed data transfer and high-definition (HD) display on to a single cable.
Running at 10Gbps, Thunderbolt technology can transfer a full-length HD movie in less than 30 seconds, according to Mooly Eden, general manager, PC Client Group, Intel. This Intel-developed technology is coming to market through a technical collaboration with Apple.
The vision for Thunderbolt technology (formerly codenamed “Light Peak”) is to move media faster, simplify connections between devices, and foster new and exciting ways to build and use...