DCBM updates Word Writer Pro for Mac OS X
DCBM has updated Word Writer Pro (http://dcbm.livejournal.com/) for Mac OS X to version 1.2.1. The app lets you to open Word and Microsoft Office documents.
The upgrade supports Retina displays. Plus, all documents can easily be viewed, modified and saved in "perfect layouts," says Han Qiang of the DCBM development team.
Word Writer Pro requires Mac OS X 10.7 or later. It costs US$9.99 and is available at the Mac App Store.
Peercisely is new cloud-based hiring service with a twist
Peercisely (www.peercisely.com) is a new cloud-based service that "fixes how companies recruit new talent by marrying the most effective method of recruiting - personal referrals - with the most powerful source of knowledge and insights, the social network." The service is starting with the San Francisco Bay Area, but expanding nationally and internationally soon.
"Peercisely allows anyone to become a recruiter," says Arek Sokol, CEO and founder. "Referrers make recommendations based on all the intangibles that make for a great hire: personality, temperament, flexibility, dedication. Qualities that don’t appear on a resume."
An employer posts jobs by buying Peercisely coins. One coin (which costs US$100) buys one posting and displays a thumbnail of the responses. For five coins ($500) the employer gains full access to the resumes, contact information and the referrals’ comments. Employers can also apply coins toward promotions such as tax-deductible charitable donations and referral...
Cisdem releases DocumentReader for Mac OS X
Cisdem has released DocumentReader for Mac (http://tinyurl.com/lta2skw). It's a Mac OS X document reader that allows users to view WPD, WPS, XPS, VISIO, PDF files on your Mac, and to print or save them into PDF for sharing.
Cisdem DocumentReader supports reading many files types such as WPD, WPS, XPS, VISIO, and PDF. It also provides different viewing styles with toolbar consisting view mode, searching pane, page navigation, zoom, rotate, save, copy, etc. What's more, users can design the toolbar in the way they prefer.
Printing services are integrated with DocumentReader. Documents can be converted into PDF format for sharing or storing.
DocumentReader requires Mac OS X 10.7 or higher. It's DocumentReader is available now through the Cisdem website (http://tinyurl.com/lta2skw). A demo version available for download.
A single license of DocumentReader is available for $29.99. A license for two Macs costs $49.99, while a license for five Macs costs $69.99.
Video Ambush 1.0 released for Mac OS X
Tosha Serbian has announced Video Ambush for Mac OS X, a rebranded update to his MPEG encoder and movie re-converter application MPEG2 Works.
The app lets you convert your media, video and audio files, DVD and Blu-Ray discs to iOS compatible movies, video for the web, H.264, MP4, DivX, MKV, x264, MPEG2, DVD, HD DVD and all available standard and pro Quick Time formats. You can encode to MPEG2, make DVDs with built-in menus, burn it on a blank DVD media, and more.
Video Ambush requires Mac OS X 10.6 or later. It costs US$25 and is availalbe here (http://www.videoambush.com).
FunPlus announces new mobile game publishing program
The FunPlus Group, a worldwide mobile social gaming company, has created PublishingPlus, a revolutionary new mobile game publishing program that will provide game developers with an alternative to traditional publishing. PublishingPlus is now open for all free-to-play developers to apply, regardless of team size or location.
Before joining FunPlus as Head of Business Development, Greg Essig managed the games section of the App Store at Apple, where he liaised with numerous game publishers and developers. Prior to Apple, Essig helped create the gaming division for Creative Artists Agency (CAA) where he led numerous development and publishing arrangements.
He says PublishingPlus will provide independent development partners with a wide range of financial and operational support in addition to expert guidance throughout all stages of their games' lifecycles. Through a structured tier-based system, the program will give developers clearly defined, pre-negotiated milestones and...
Apple's iOS maintains lead in mobile app activations
In its eleventh quarterly Mobility Index Report, Good Technology (www.good.com), which specializes in secure mobility, today announced key findings showing that organizations are mobilizing apps and content at a rapid and accelerating pace. And Apple's iOS maintains its lead.
Over the past year, total app activations grew 160% as companies enable their workforces with enhanced collaboration tools and corporate content across an increasing range of mobile devices, according to Good Technology. Insurance emerges as an early adopter of custom apps with over a third of all apps activated focused on mobilizing custom business processes, says Christy Wyatt, chairman and CEO at Good Technology.
Secure IM represented 27%of all apps activated. Business and professional services demonstrated a preference for apps that help mobilize content, with document editing, document access and secure browser making up 64% of all apps deployed by these firms. In manufacturing, almost half (47 percent) of...
Apple announces new environmental initiatives in China
Apple has announced an expansion of its renewable energy and environmental protection initiatives in China, including a new multi-year project with World Wildlife Fund to significantly increase responsibly managed forests across China.
The new forestland program aims to protect as much as one million acres of responsibly managed working forests which provide fiber for pulp, paper and wood products. Apple’s goal is to achieve a net-zero impact on the world’s supply of sustainable virgin fiber and power all its operations worldwide on 100% renewable energy.
"Forests, like energy, can be renewable resources," says Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of Environmental Initiatives. "We believe we can run on naturally renewable resources and ensure that we protect—and create—as much sustainable working forest as needed to produce the virgin paper in our product packaging. This is an important step toward that goal and our commitment to leave the world better than we found it."
DIRECTV’s latest TV adds support for Apple Watch
DIRECTV customers have a new way to control and engage with their favorite shows through the update of its new DIRECTV app for iPhone, which now includes support for the Apple Watch.
Available at the App Store for Apple Watch, the updated DIRECTV Everywhere App enables users to remotely control the following functions on their HD DVRs. You can play, pause, rewind, and fast forward recorded content on your TV on any connected receivers within the home.
You can view program title, channel and episode details of TV shows and movies, as well as set DVR recordings. And the DIRECTV app lets you navigate the on-screen guide, playlist and menu.
No separate DIRECTV app is needed for Apple Watch. All DIRECTV customers will have to do is to download the latest DIRECTV App from theApp Store on their iPhone 5 or later. Once Apple Watch is paired with your iPhone, the DIRECTV App will automatically appear on Apple Watch. The updated DIRECTV App requires a connected HD DVR (HR20, H21 and above).
Canalys: counting tablets, Apple is top PC manufacturer
The global personal computer [PC] market, including tablets, experienced an annual decline of 7% in the first quarter (Q1) 2015, reaching 115.7 million units worldwide. Apple held on to first place despite a 16% decline in its total shipments (almost all of the decline was in iPad sales), according to the Canalys research group (www.canalys.com)
It shipped 17.2 million units, taking a 15% share of the market. Lenovo and HP, second and third place respectively, both saw single-digit shipment growth in Q1 2015 and increases in market share. Samsung narrowly held on to fourth spot as its declining tablet sales led to Dell closing the gap in fifth place. Samsung and Dell took 8.2% shipment market share with 9.5 and 9.4 million units respectively.
"The growth drivers that previously helped the market through 2014 will have little effect this year. Vendors are struggling with exchange rate fluctuations which is making financial planning more difficult and forcing price increases," says Tim...
Apple is top smartphone manufacturer in March
comScore (www.comscore.com), which specializes in digital media analytics, has released data from comScore MobiLens and Mobile Metrix, reporting key trends in the U.S. smartphone industry for March. Apple ranked as the top smartphone manufacturer with 42.6% OEM (original equipment manufacturer) market share.
Google Android led as the number one smartphone platform with 52.4 % platform market share. Facebook ranked as the top individual smartphone app.
According to comScore, 187.5 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones (77 % mobile market penetration) during the three months ending in March, up 3% since December. As mentioned, Apple ranked as the top OEM with 42.6% of U.S. smartphone subscribers (up one percentage point from December). Samsung ranked second with 28.3% market share, followed by LG with 8.4% (up 0.4 percentage points), Motorola with 5% and HTC with 3.8% (up 0.1 percentage points).
Android ranked as the top smartphone platform in March with 52.4% market share,...
Ericsson sues Apple in Germany, the United Kingdom, the...
Ericsson (www.ericsson.com) has filed lawsuits against Apple in Germany, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands after failing to reach a global licensing agreement with the company over standard-essential and non-standardized patents.
The company claims that Apple doesn't currently have any license for Ericsson's technology, but continues to sell products such as the iPhone and iPad, for which its licenses have expired, "on a global scale."
Apple sued Ericsson in January, arguing the patents are not essential for LTE technology and that the price was excessive. Ericsson counter-sued two days later. The Swedish mobile telecom firm counter-sued the Cupertino, California-based company for infringing on its patents that are essential to 2G and 4G/LTE standards.
In a press release, Kasim Alfalahi, chief intellectual property officer at Ericsson, claims: "Apple continues to profit from Ericsson's technology without having a valid license in place. Our technology is used in many features...
Apple's TestFlight still inaccessible to developers
Apple's TestFlight beta-testing platform for iOS has been inaccessible to developers since late Wednesday, with no hint as to when the service might be restored, reports AppleInsider (http://tinyurl.com/prm3e8b).
Trying to install apps through the official TestFlight app, for instance, will trigger an error message saying the service is "currently unavailable." Apple hasn't updated its System Status page (http://tinyurl.com/a3swxz2) with any mention of the problem.
TestFlight lets you install and beta test apps on an iOS device. After a developer invites you to beta test their app, you can install new versions as they become available. TestFlight also allows you to provide feedback to developers on the features you are testing in the prerelease apps you’ve been invited to.
Apple, Samsung tie in tablet satisfaction study
Apple and Samsung tie for the highest rank in overall satisfaction with a score of 826 each in the J.D. Power 2015 U.S. Tablet Satisfaction Study—Volume 1 (www.jdpower.com). Both brands perform particularly well in features and styling and design. Amazon (818) and Microsoft (815) follow closely in the rankings and each performs well in the performance factor.
The study, now in its fourth year, measures customer satisfaction with tablets across five factors (in order of importance): performance (28%); ease of operation (22%); features (22%); styling and design (17%); and cost (11%). Satisfaction is calculated on a 1,000-point scale.
The market for tablets has grown during the past several years as the number of tablets purchased at retail stores has increased since the study was launched in 2012. In the 2015 Volume 1 study, 58% of tablet owners indicate purchasing their tablet in a retail store, compared with 54% in 2012, while 41% purchase online and just 1% purchase over the phone. ...
Yahoo Mobile Developer Suite now provides analytics for the...
Yahoo says the Yahoo Mobile Developer Suite (https://developer.yahoo.com) now includes analytics for the Apple Watch.
Just weeks after the debut of the Apple Watch, Flurry Analytics has made it possible for developers to better understand how users interact with their apps on the smallest screen, says Brad Jones, director, Product Management at Flurry from Yahoo. Like Flurry Analytics always has, Yahoo is making analytics for the Apple Watch available to developers for free.
With the latest Flurry iOS software development kit and a few minutes of implementation time, developers will be able to track new users, active users and the actions of their Watch users with custom events. They will also be able to understand how usage balances out between the Apple Watch app and its parent app on the user's smartphone.
Apps will be reimagined, more intuitive and simplified for the Apple Watch, says Jones. Watch analytics are now available for free within Flurry Analytics.
Apple's Jeff Williams to speak at Code Conference
Jeff Williams, Apple’s senior vice president of operations, will be a speaker at the second Code Conference (http://recode.net/events/code-conference/). The conference will be held May 26 to 28 in Rancho Palos Verdes, California.
Code Conference is where "top industry influencers in media and technology gather for in-depth conversations about the impact of digital technology on our lives and our businesses, today and in the future." Executive producers and conference creators Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher go head to head with the same caliber of industry luminaries who shared their stage at the D conference since 2003.
Apple releases Safari 8.0.6, 7.1.6 6.2.6
Apple has released Safari 8.0.6, Safari 7.1.6, and Safari 6.2.6 for, respectively, Mac OS X Mountain Lion, OS X Mavericks, and OS X Yosemite. The security update fixes the following problems:
° Multiple memory corruption issues existed in WebKit. These issues were addressed through improved memory handling.
° A state management issue existed in Safari that allowed unprivileged origins to access contents on the filesystem. This issue was addressed through improved state management.
° An issue existed in the handling of the rel attribute in anchor elements. Target objects could get unauthorized access to link objects. This issue was addressed through improved link type adherence.
The Safari updates can be downloaded via the Updates tab at the Mac App Store.
Apple a recipient of 2015 Helen Keller Achievement Award
The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) today announced the names of four honorees who will receive the prestigious Helen Keller Achievement Awards at a special gala in New York City on June 18.
Awardees include Apple for breakthroughs in accessible technology, actor Charlie Cox for his portrayal of a blind superhero, Ward Marston a musician/recording engineer with vision loss, and VandaPharmaceuticals Inc. for pioneering treatment of a circadian rhythm disorder, Non-24 Sleep-Wake Disorder, that can affect people who are totally blind.
"We are honoring accomplished individuals and companies for their success in improving quality of life for people with vision loss either through groundbreaking innovation or inspirational achievement that changes perceptions about what it means to be visually impaired," says AFB President and CEO Carl R. Augusto.
AFB is recognizing Apple for VoiceOver, a gesture-based screen reader that allows users to hear a description of everything happening on...
Olloclip introduces the olloCase for the iPhone 6, 6 Plus
olloclip (www.olloclip.com) has introduced the US$29.99 olloCase, a slim, protective case for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus that integrates with olloclip photo lenses.
"This new case is a significant improvement over our previous version. It improves speed and removes any unnecessary obstacles between a user and the photos or videos they want to shoot," says Patrick O'Neill, CEO and founder of olloclip.
Grip lines recessed into the olloCase's rubberized shock-resistant bumpers allow for control when taking photos or simply browsing the web. The case has a scratch-resistant back for added protection. A raised bezel keeps the screen from contacting flat surfaces.
The new olloCase works with all olloclip lenses for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. It's available in two colors -- matte clear with dark gray bumper and matte smoke with black bumper. It's available now for pre-order.
Android switchers drive iOS growth in Europe's 'big...
The latest smartphone sales data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech (http://www.kantarworldpanel.com/) for the first quarter of 2015 (1Q15) shows that the popularity of Apple iOS continued to grow in Europe's five largest countries, reaching a 20.3% share – 1.8 percentage points higher than in 2014. Europe's big five markets are Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy, and Spain.
"In the first quarter of 2015, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus continued to attract consumers across Europe, including users who previously owned an Android smartphone," says Carolina Milanesi, chief of research at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. "On average, across Europe's big five countries during the first quarter, 32.4% of Apple’s new customers switched to iOS from Android.
In urban China, Apple consolidated its leadership in smartphones, growing its share to 26.1%, up from 17.9% for the same period in 2014, according to Tamsin Timpson, strategic insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Asia. China is now driving more...
Apple confirms the existence of the Applebot
Apple has confirmed the existence of its Applebot web crawler. In a support document (http://apple.co/1H0Mp37) the company had this to say:
"Applebot is the web crawler for Apple, used by products including Siri and Spotlight Suggestions. It respects customary robots.txt rules and robots meta tags. It originates in the 220.127.116.11 net block.
"User-agent strings will contain 'Applebot' together with additional agent information. For example:
"Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10_10_1) "AppleWebKit/600.2.5 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/8.0.2 Safari/600.2.5 (Applebot/0.1)
"If robots instructions don't mention Applebot but do mention Googlebot, the Apple robot will follow Googlebot instructions."
Twenty-four more institutions implement Apple Pay support
Apple has added 24 more institutions to the list (https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT6288) of those that support Apple Pay. So far Apple Pay has support from over 2,500 banks and 700,000-plus retailers.
Apple announced Apple Pay in September 2014, describing it as “a new category of service designed to transform mobile payments with an easy, secure and private way to pay.” It works with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus through a NFC antenna design, a dedicated chip called the Secure Element, and Touch ID.
Apple TV gets CBS Sports, USA Now channels
Apple continues to add new channels to the Apple TV set-top box. The latest are CBS Sports and USA Now.
CBS Sports lets users watch free clips from a variety of sports, including the NFL, MLB, NBA, college sports, and more. USA Now features content from the USA network. CBS Sports don't require a cable or satellite provider to access it; USA Now does.
Mophie introduces waterproof battery case
Mophie has announced the juice pack H2PRO for the iPhone 6. It's the company's first waterproof battery case and provides more than 100% extra battery life, says Daniel Huang, company co-founder and CEO.
In addition to waterproof protection, the juice pack H2PRO exceeds industry standards with top protection ratings, he adds. It's equipped with a 2,750mAh rechargeable lithium-ion polymer battery that reportedly allows users to enjoy up to 14 additional hours of talk time, 10 additional hours of web browsing, 11 additional hours of video playback, and 50 additional hours of music playback.
Featuring mophie's Priority+ charge and sync, the juice pack H2PRO allows the iPhone 6 to charge before the juice pack itself, and enables pass-through charge and sync while connected to a Mac or PC. It'sesigned with pass-through volume and power buttons, as well as mophie's proprietary mute switch. The mophie juice pack H2PRO made for iPhone 6 is currently available for pre-order at mophie.com for...
ShowStoppers, MacTech Partner: Showcase Devs to Journalists
ShowStoppers is partnering with MacTech to create a new event that enables developers, accessory vendors and device makers to showcase, demonstrate and announce new software, services, hardware and devices for work, home and play to key journalists traveling to San Francisco to learn about the future of iOS and OS X.
ShowStoppers/MacTech DevFocus is scheduled for Sunday, June 7, in San Francisco from 5-7 pm.
"This new event is focused on helping journalists discover some of the most creative technologists on the planet -- the engineers, developers and programmers who create, design, build and market new technologies and products for use with iOS and OS X," says Neil Ticktin, editor-in-chief and publisher of MacTech Magazine, the journal of Apple technology, the oldest publication in the Apple market. "This event enables developers and journalists alike to cut through the torrent of announcements that always take place this time of year, as Apple maps its own way forward to new...
Redpark shipping an Ethernet cable for the iPhone, iPad
Redpark Product Development says it's shipping the industry’s first Ethernet cable for the iPad and iPhone.
The Redpark Ethernet Cable (http://tinyurl.com/mn8c2nk) is a specialty version of USB to Ethernet adapter. It provides a general purpose ethernet connection — however, throughput is limited to 5 Mbps and only apps which use Redpark’s RedSocket SDK are able to communicate with the cable.
"We’ve designed the Ethernet Cable for use in field service applications," says Redpark President Mike Ridenhour. "It enables field technicians to use Ethernet to connect an iPad or iPhone to equipment in the field in order to configure or troubleshoot the equipment."
The Ethernet Cable has a manufacturer's suggested retail price of US $89 and is available today.
Apple hires new general contractor for its 'spaceship...
Apple is bringing on a new general contractor to finish its multi-billion-dollar "spaceship" building at Apple Campus 2, "amid questions about whether the huge project remains on track for a late-2016 completion," reports the Silicon Valley Business Journal (http://tinyurl.com/oubp2ku).
Rudolph & Sletten Inc., a veteran Silicon Valley builder, will complete the ring-shaped structure’s interior build-out, the article says, quoting unnamed "multiple people with knowledge of the situation. Until now, a joint venture of DPR Construction Co. and Skanska USA, which is heading up the project, was expected by many in the construction industry to take it through to completion.
Apple releases Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 6.04
Apple has released Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 6.04. The update adds RAW image support to Mac OS X Yosemite for 18 new cameras from Canon, Fujifilm, Hasselblad, Leica, and Nikon.
The update is a 7.7MB download. You can upgrade via the Updates tab at the Mac App Store. Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 6.04 requires Mac OS X 10.10 or higher and iPhoto 9.6 or Aperture 3.6.
Analyst: folks aren't that interested in the Apple Watch (...
In a note to clients — as reported by Barron's (http://tinyurl.com/ob8bgmz) — UBS analyst Steve Milunovich says his research indicates that people aren't that interested in the Apple Watch. At least not yet.
"Search interest has deviated lower relative to an index of 30 consumer electronics introductions and the first iPad and iPhone releases—the week of launch, the Watch is about 20% of iPad and iPhone interest," says Milunovich. "We now think about 7% rather than 10% of the expected iPhone 5/6 average installed base of 430 million in F16E is likely to buy a Watch."
Still he says that UBS is "long-term bullish" on the Apple smartwatch. Milunovich’s evidence comes from an index of search requests:
"We created an index of search interest for 30 consumer electronics launches in the US as well as for the first iPhone and iPad (Figure 3). The initial value is based on search interest at the time the product was announced," he says. "The Apple Watch had been performing in line with the...
IHS: Apple Watch costs only about 24% of MSRP
The Apple Watch has the lowest hardware costs compared to retail price of any Apple product IHS Technology has researched, according to a preliminary estimate by IHS (www.ihs.com) and its Teardown Mobile Handsets Intelligence Service.
The teardown of the Apple Watch Sport by IHS Technology estimates that the actual hardware costs are only about 24%of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP). Estimated hardware cost to MSRP ratios for other Apple products reviewed by IHS are in the range of 29% to 98%.
The teardown of the Apple Watch Sport 38 mm by IHS Technology shows a bill of materials of US$81.20 with the cost of production rising to $83.70 when the $2.50 manufacturing expense is added. The retail price of the Apple Watch Sport 38 mm is $349. The IHS Technology analysis does not include logistics, amortized capital expenses, overhead, SG&A, R&D, software, IP licensing and other variables throughout the supply chain such as the EMS provider.
"It is fairly typical...
Apple, Japan Post, IBM help connect elderly to family and...
Japan Post Group, IBM and Apple have announced an initiative aimed at improving the quality of life for millions of Japanese senior citizens.
Built on the global partnership Apple and IBM announced last year, the new initiative will deliver iPads with IBM-developed apps and analytics to connect millions of seniors with services, healthcare, community and their families. After piloting iPads and apps custom developed for the elderly, Japan Post Group will expand the service in stages with the objective of including four million to million million customers in Japan by 2020. Today more than 33 million seniors make up about 25% of Japan’s population, projected to grow to 40 percent over the next 40 years.
"We are joining with two of the world’s most respected leaders in technology to bring our elderly generation into the connected world, expand our businesses by deepening relationships, and discover new ways to strengthen the fabric of our society and economy," says Taizo Nishimuro, CEO...
Global tablet market continues to contract
Worldwide tablet shipments recorded a year-over-year decline for the second consecutive quarter in the first quarter of 2015 (1Q15). Overall shipments for tablets and 2-in-1 devices fell to 47.1 million in 1Q15, a -5.9% decline from the same quarter a year ago, according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation (www.idc.com).
"The market slowdown that we witnessed last quarter is continuing to impact the tablet segment, but we see some growth areas that are starting to materialize," says Jean Philippe Boucharge, research director, Tablets, IDC. "Cellular-enabled tablets are outgrowing the rest of the market, providing an additional revenue stream for OEMs and mobile operators. In addition to driving higher usage than Wi-Fi-only tablets, cellular-enabled tablets also help position the segment as true mobile solutions rather than stay-at-home devices."
Apple still leads the overall market despite five consecutive quarters of negative annual shipment growth. Apple...
Default Folder for Mac OS X gets maintenance upgrade
St. Clair Software (http://tinyurl.com/2gm24v) has released Default Folder X 4.7.1, an update to their utility for Mac OS X.
Default Folder X enhances the file dialogs in all Mac OS X applications. Its custom keyboard shortcuts put your favorite and recent folders at your fingertips. It provides fast navigation to your files, convenient previews, integrated Spotlight tagging, and more. Version 4.7.1 fixes a bug in Mac OS 10.10.3, as well as offering a number of feature improvements.
Default Folder X 4.7.1 requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher. It's is a free update for existing version 4 users. It costs US$34.95 for new users.
Microsoft introduces the Edge web browser
Microsoft has announced the Edge web browser at this week's Microsoft Build conference, reports re/code (http://tinyurl.com/ktnutgr/). It's the replacement for the long-in-the-tooth Internet Explorer.
Edge will be the primary/default browser built into Windows 10. Details are still light on of what’s unique to Edge, but TechCrunch (http://tinyurl.com/keuu277) says here’s what is known:
° It has built-in Cortana support.
° It has built-in reader, note-taking and sharing features.
° The design focuses on simplicity and minimalism.
° The rendering engine is called EdgeHTML.
iPad app glitches delays some American Airlines flights
Some American Airlines flights were grounded as an app issue with the on-board iPads used by pilots made it impossible to take off, reports the Verge (http://tinyurl.com/pxsdkm2).
"Some flights are experiencing an issue with a software application on pilot iPads," American Airlines spokesperson Andrea Huguely told The Verge. "In some cases, the flight has had to return to the gate to access a Wi-Fi connection to fix the issue. We apologize for the inconvenience to our customers. We are working to have them on the way to their destination as soon as possible."
Another spokesperson said that the issue affected "a few dozen flights" across the airline. "We've identified the issue, we've identified the solution, and we are working on it right now," he told the publication.
In 2012 American Airlines became the first commercial carrier to receive FAA approval to use the Apple iPad in the cockpit during all phases of flight.
Brett Terpstra introduces StretchLink for Mac OS X
Developer Brett Terpstra has introduced StretchLink 1.0 (http://stretchlinkapp.com), his new URL utility for Mac OS X.
StretchLink was developed exclusively for expanding shortened URLs, removing redirects, and cleaning out referrer junk so that you can share URL without any baggage. Whether you're sending links to friends or publishing a blog, you want to protect your friends and readers from redirects and privacy issues that can be caused by unintentionally publishing a shortened link, says Terpstra.
StretchLink runs in the OS X menu bar. Click the icon to open the main panel from which it can expand and clean links on demand with a single click, or can be set to silently watch your clipboard.
StretchLink 1.0 costs US$1.99. An introductory sale of $0.99 (50% off) will take place through the month of May.
[Ed. Note: Expanding URLs can cause unintended issues as parameters, and even referrer information often is critical to displaying the right content on the page. Use with caution...
BBEdit 11.1 Introduces Git and EditorConfig Support
Bare Bones Software (www.barebones.com) has announced BBEdit 11.1, an update to its professional strength HTML and text editor.
The new version introduces built-in support for Git and for EditorConfig. In addition, the BBEdit 11.1 update also introduces a new CSS/SCSS language module, a new Arrange submenu and a new Save All in Window command, plus enhanced command-line tools and INI support, refined navigation, file management and preferences, and more.
BBEdit 11.1 requires Mac OS X 10.8.5 or later. This update is free of charge to all BBEdit 11 customers. For new uses the cost is US$49.99 for a single user license.
Strategy Analytics: Samsung overtakes Apple as world's...
According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics (www.strategyanalytics.com), global smartphone shipments grew 21% annually to reach 345 million units in the first quarter of 2015. Samsung overtook Apple to recapture first position as the world's largest smartphone vendor by volume, says the research group.
"Global smartphone shipments grew 21% annually from 285.0 million units in Q1 [the first quarter] 2014 to a 345.0 million in Q1 2015," says Linda Sui, director at Strategy Analytics. "Global smartphone growth on an annualized basis has slowed slightly from 33% to 21%t during the past year, due to increasing penetration maturity in major markets of the US, Europe and China."
Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics, adds: Samsung shipped 83.2 million smartphones worldwide and captured 24% marketshare in Q1 2015, dipping from 31% a year earlier. Samsung continued to face challenges in Asia and elsewhere, but its global performance has stabilized sufficiently...
Jive Releases real-time messaging app for Mac OS X, iOS
Jive Software (www.jivechime.com) has released Jive Chime, an app that connects coworkers in real time. It's available for Mac OS X, iOS, Windows and Android systems.
Employees can instantly start 1:1 or group conversations with coworkers, teams and departments, whether at their desks or on the go, says Elisa Steele, CEO and president, Jive Software. An employee can start a conversation from their phone while on the go and then easily pick up the conversation from their desktop later on. Any employee can connect with anyone inside their company without needing their email or phone number saved as a contact.
Employees can set notification preferences according to their individual needs to stay in the loop without getting bombarded by alerts. People can create and name Jive Chime groups, add and remove coworkers from conversations, see when messages are read and when team members are responding, and send team chimes as needed.
IT organizations can leverage new administration features...
Maintain serves up Cocktail 8.3.1 (Yosemite Edition)
Maintain has served Cocktail 8.3.1 (Yosemite Edition), the latest maintenance update for users running OS X Yosemite.
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets users clean, repair and optimize their Macs. Version 8.3.1 fixes compatibility issues with 1Password and Evernote browser extensions. It also contains improvements on the network optimization feature and updated Automator actions.
Cocktail 8.3.1 (Yosemite Edition) requires OS X Yosemite 10.10 to run. Cocktail (Mavericks Edition) for OS X 10.9, Cocktail (Mountain Lion Edition) for OS X 10.8 and Cocktail (Lion Edition) for OS X 10.7 are available for download from Maintain website.
Cocktail 8.3.1 (Yosemite Edition) costs US$19 for a single user license. It's available for purchase from the Maintain website (http://www.maintain.se/cocktail).
ConceptDraw Pro 10 has a new ATM UML Diagrams solution
CS Odessa (www.conceptdraw.com) has launched a new ATM UML Solution in ConceptDraw Solution Park. Developed exclusively for banking industry software specialists who design and build ATM solutions and systems.
The new solution is designed to turn ConceptDraw Pro into an effective UML diagram creator with image libraries enabling you to visually represent ATM processes, as well as any type of banking system. The UML solution for banking is comprised of 14 libraries which contain 182 objects.
ConceptDraw Pro is compatible with Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows and retails for US$199. It's also included in ConceptDraw Office 3, which retails for $499.
Cosentry Extends Managed Cloud Services to Microsoft Azure
Cosentry (www.cosentry.com), a provider of IT solutions in the Midwest, has extended its managed cloud services to Microsoft Azure.
The new service provides expertise in connecting to Microsoft Azure, with a focus on utilizing Azure for SQL Server testing and development, SQL Server backup and SQL Server disaster recovery environments. Cosentry has more than a decade of experience supporting SQL Server database environments, primarily those running on a private cloud; this new offering focuses on expanding support to hybrid cloud solutions, says CEO Brad Hokamp. Electrical Components International Inc. (ECI) has engaged with Cosentry to gain new efficiencies leveraging Azure as part of a hybrid cloud environment.
"Their expertise in SQL Server and managed cloud services will be leveraged to enhance our implementation while giving me the peace-of-mind that ECI has one of the best customer support teams in the industry," says Adrian Ostman, Global IT Director, ECI.
LastPass launches Apple Watch app
LastPass, a password manager, has launched an app for the Apple Watch.
The iOS app, which is part of LastPass’ Premium service, provides quick access to passwords and data stored in the Vault to ensure users always have their passwords no matter where they are or which device they are using.
"Consumers need access to passwords and secure information wherever they are and on whatever device they are using," says Joe Siegrist, CEO and co-founder of LastPass. "The launch of the Apple Watch is significant because it provides another channel for LastPass to provide our users with the important data they need every day. With just a few taps of the wrist, LastPass users can see their password information in a simplified format without ever having to take out their phones or computers."
The LastPass app for Apple Watch ensures users always have their passwords on hand with access to the data stored in their LastPass Vault. They can look up passwords on the go or find information written in...
Noteboom Tutorials introduces Tutor for Photos for OS X
Noteboom Tutorials has introduced Tutor for Photos for OS X, their latest video tutorial for the Mac. It consists of 43 video lessons designed to give users a better understanding of how to effectively use Apple's new photo management software, Photos.
Tutor for Photos for OS X covers various subjects including importing from iPhoto, syncing with iCloud Photo Library, managing multiple libraries, and showing the sidebar to make it more like iPhoto. The tutorial also looks at organizing photos into albums, smart albums, faces, folders, and how to hide your photos. The new Photos includes extensive editing tools and the tutorial shows you how to use them.
Demos include enhancing photos, adding filters, straightening photos, cropping photos, and making adjustments to photos. Tutor for Photos for OS X also includes tips when editing including how to compare edits to the original photo and creating versions. The tutorial also includes lessons on various sharing options including creating...
LinkOptimizer 4.9.41 for InDesign lets you remove alpha channels...
Zevrix Solutions (www.zevrix.com) has unveiled LinkOptimizer 4.9.41, a feature update to its workflow automation solution for Adobe InDesign.
LinkOptimizer allows users to reduce the size of InDesign links and speed up processing by eliminating excess image data, performing essential image adjustments and converting file formats. Version 4.9.41 adds an option to automatically remove all alpha channels from images during Photoshop processing.
LinkOptimizer can be purchased from the Zevrix website for US$259.95 (a "lite" version is available for $179.95). A demo is available for download. Version 4.9.41 is a free update for LinkOptimizer 4.x users and a $130 upgrade from previous versions. LinkOptimizer requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher and Adobe InDesign and Photoshop CS3-CC 2014.
TaskInsight 3.7 for Mac OS X enhances actions and speech control...
Imaja (www.imaja.com) has launched TaskInsight 3.7, an update to its productivity and business app for Mac OS X.
TaskInsight features task list and timeline management with iCloud support on Mac OS X. Import and export functions support TSV and XML files for sharing with other applications. Version 3.7 enhances the speech controls and provides new actions for task list and timeline management.
TaskInsight requires Mac OS X 10.7. It costs US$19.99 and is available at the Mac App Store in the Productivity and Business categories.
Disk Drill data recovery app for Mac gets an update
CleverFiles (www.cleverfiles.com) has released Disk Drill 2.4.417, an update of its Mac OS X data recovery solution.
The app sports a set of file recovery tools that can undelete files from almost any device: internal and external hard drives, memory cards, USB flash drives, mountable cameras, iPods and more. Version 2.4.417 adds a number of new file signatures to the database, including LWS (LightWave 3D Scene File), LWO (LightWave 3D Object File), ALS (Ableton Live Set File), SKETCH (Sketch vector drawing) and others. It also improves recovery of update file formats for Apple Numbers, Pages and Keynote.
Disk Drill is available in basic, pro, and enterprise versions. The first is free; the latter two cost US$89 and $399, respectively.
Patriot developing Type-C USB flash drive for MacBook users
Patriot (http://www.patriotmemory.com/) is developing a Type-C USB Flash Drive for the new MacBook, Google Chromebook Pixel and other Type-C equipped notebooks and systems available on the market.
With the recent release of the latest MacBook, which has been upgraded with the new Type-C port, consumers will now be able to use the Type-C USB Flash Drive to transfer data from any other form factor using a single, small solution. Outfitted with a polished metal exterior, the dual-sided Type-C/Type A USB Flash Drive will feature both a small Type-C at one end and a standard USB 3.0 connector at the other end allowing data transfer from traditional devices to the new Type C based device.
The new Type-C USB Flash Drive will be available to consumers starting in June. It will be offered in both 32GB and 64GB capacities.
QuarkXPress 2015 now available
Quark Software has released QuarkXPress 2015 (www.quark.com/2015), an update of the graphic design and page layout software. It adds 64-bit architecture, industry-verified PDF/X-4 output, fixed layout interactive (app-like) eBook production, as well as an array of user-requested features.
QuarkXPress is sold as a perpetual license, which means users make a single purchase and aren’t locked into an ongoing subscription. With its 64-bit architecture, QuarkXPress 2015 can now use all the RAM available on a user’s computer to deliver performance improvements across the board from file handling and layout rendering to PDF export. Quark has also added multi-threading to the QuarkXPress text engine to further increase performance.
By using PDF/X-4 output, designers can maintain transparency to enable smaller files, faster output and higher quality print output. The exported PDF/X-4 files are certified by the same technology used inside Adobe Acrobat.
QuarkXPress 2015 builds on its automation...
TripIt Arrives on the Apple Watch
TripIt (www.tripit.com) from Concur has launched its Apple Watch app. It gives flight, hotel and rental car information, as well as real-time flight alerts for TripIt Pro users, all without having to slow down and pull out their phones.
"Our mission is to help travelers get one step closer to experiencing the perfect trip. One of the ways we do that is by taking advantage of new technologies, like the Apple Watch, that have the ability to drastically change the way we travel from now on," says Jen Moyse, head of product for TripIt from Concur.
Now TripIt users can see their travel plans throughout the day, pull up their flight details before they head to the airport, and even confirm their hoteląs check-in time when they land‹right from their Apple Watch. TripIt Pro users will also receive real-time flight alerts, including: connecting flight information, gate changes, flight delays, and more.
Thanks to TripIt's direct connection with Concur, business travelers that book their...
Apple expands capital returns program to $200 billion
Apple says its Board of Directors has authorized an increase of more than 50% to the company’s program to return capital to shareholders. Under the expanded program, Apple plans to utilize a cumulative total of US$200 billion of cash by the end of March 2017.
As part of the revised program, the Board has increased its share repurchase authorization to $140 billion from the $90 billion level announced last year. In addition, the company expects to continue to net-share-settle vesting restricted stock units.
The Board has also approved an increase of 11% to the company’s quarterly dividend, and has declared a dividend of $.52 per share, payable on May 14, 2015 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on May 11, 2015.
From the inception of its capital return program in August 2012 through March 2015, Apple has returned over $112 billion to shareholders, including $80 billion in share repurchases.
To assist in funding the program, the company plans to continue to access the...