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Apps: Dropzone, Snagit, TextExpander

1 hour ago | Posted in apps


    Dropzone 3.2 ($10)

    Dropzone is a tool for quickly sending files to different locations. Files dragged to the dock icon can instantly be uploaded to Flickr, saved to an FTP server, compressed into a ZIP archive, and more. Version 3.2 introduces preliminary support for OS X Yosemite, and will now set http_proxy and https_proxy when running tasks so command line tools such as curl will use proxy if required. A number of bugs have also been resolved, including a crash that could occur when copying an action and having an empty name, creator URL or description.


    Snagit 3.1 ($50)

    Snagit on Mac is a screen capture utility with tools for capturing, annotating, and sharing both images and video. The latest release now features Dropbox sharing, as well as the ability to record system audio and to flatten all objects at once. Users can also now quickly enter the exact height and width during a capture.


    TextExpander 4.3.2 ($35)

    TextExpander lets users define abbreviations for frequently used text strings and images, allowing them to save time by quickly typing full words and phrases with a few letters. The v4.3.2 update fixes a range of problems with editing snippets, including a frequent failure to save changes made to fill-in fields. A problem with the Bubble sound preference on non-English systems has also been resolved, and search mode is now completely cleared when creating new snippers to performing certain actions.


    Bookends 12.2.1 ($60)

    Bookends is a tool that can help users organize reference information and create bibliographies. In v12.2.1 users can show highlighted PDF text in notecards, as well as display any PDF note modifications dates in the note stream. The Google Scholar parsing has also been updated to deal with the recent changes to the service made by Google.


    PhotoDesk 2.3.8 ($5)

    PhotoDesk is an desktop client for the Instagram social networking site. The software allows users to browse through friends images, as well as view a social graph and find new people to follow. Version 2.3.8 implements the new Instagram security guidelines in order to keep the amount of allowed likes and comments per hour as good as possible. The “Icon Font Size” setting has also been modified to now change the font in both the feed list view and the detail view.


Apple at work on fuel cells for mobile devices, rumor claims

1 hour ago | Posted in: computers, Apple, iPad

Apple is working with a company called Intelligent Energy in the hopes of integrating fuel cells into its mobile devices, claims UK publication the Daily Mail. The paper cites "senior sources in the US," and says that the technology could come to MacBooks and/or iPads "within a few years." Intelligent Energy is noted to have bought a collection of related patents in cooperation with a major "international electronics company," which one source says is Apple.



iCloud Mail down for small percentage of users

2 hours ago | Posted in: troubleshooting

iCloud Mail is currently down for a handful of users, according to Apple's system status tracker. Issues appear to have started after 4PM Eastern on Sunday, and are still ongoing, but are only affecting 0.1 percent of the userbase. So far, there is no ETA from Apple for when the glitch might be fixed.



5.5-inch iPhone production hits trouble with touch, color technology

2 hours ago | Posted in: iPhone

Apple's 5.5-inch iPhone is running into production obstacles involving its new in-cell touchscreen panel, along with uneven color distribution on its metal casing, claims KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. He suggests that while the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 should still debut this fall, the 5.5-inch phone could be pushed later, possibly into 2015. Even the 4.7-inch model is said to be suffering from the same problems, but to a lesser degree.



Briefly: Wunderlist 3 preview, Getty Images' redesigned iOS app

6 hours ago | Posted in: digital imaging, iPhone apps, iPad apps

Task management app Wunderlist has announced the upcoming release of its third version release, due in the coming weeks. Featuring a new design, Wunderlist 3 includes 60 new improvements, which centre around improving the app's versatility in curating and sharing lists. Those interested in being one of the first users of Wunderlist 3 can sign up, and news updates can be found on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Google+.



Hands on: Pocket Informant 4.0 for iOS

7 hours ago | Posted in: iPhone apps, iPad apps

Some users need a lot more than just what Apple's built-in Calendar, Notes and Reminders can offer in terms of organizing their life, and for them the term PIM (Personal Information Manager) becomes a familiar one. We've had a chance to work with the recent 4.0 major update of long-time PIM Pocket Informant, and have really appreciated the changes and the versatility of the app. Users looking for a one-stop app that syncs with popular calendar and related services, this just might be your Nirvana.



Hands on: Space Run (OS X, Windows)

16 hours ago | Posted in: gaming

It's hard to imagine what commerce and shipping might look like once humans expand into the far reaches of the universe. One take is that humans in the future could evolve an existing model, like truck driving, to deliver goods to the corners of space. Space Run by Passtech Games and Focus Interactive gives gamers a look into how such a business might unfold, through the use of strategy and resource management to fend off the dangers lurking in the darkness. But is Space Run enough to entice players into high-speed shipping lanes full of pirates and asteroids, or are they better off sitting this one out?



Briefly: Harmony Ultimate's Nest compatibility, QNAP's TS-x51 NAS

20 hours ago | Posted in: peripherals, gadgets

Logitech has announced that its smart remote control, the Harmony Ultimate, is now compatible with the Nest Learning Thermostat. The Harmony Ultimate allows users to control home theatre devices behind closed cabinets and walls, as well as access IR devices as well as Bluetooth game consoles. Its new Nest compatibility means that when the remote is paired with the thermostat, the Harmony Ultimate can facilitate setting temperatures. Additionally, the remote sensor can detect the user's near-by presence, and so can switch off nest's Auto-Away mode. The Harmony Ultimate is priced at $350.



FCC's Tom Wheeler says 647,000 comments filed on net neutrality

20 hours ago | Posted in: industry

Those looking to speak up about the potential changes to net neutrality still have some time to speak up before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) closes the commenting period on July 15. Those adding their voices on the direction of the Internet won't be alone, as FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler recently said on Twitter that 647,000 comments were received so far.



QuickerTek now shipping mCard for Wi-Fi speed updates in older Macs

22 hours ago | Posted in: networking, Apple

After the release of the qCard 2, QuickerTek saw a need in other older Apple devices to be updated to the most recent Wi-Fi speeds. Issuing a card to update wireless in some "slightly older" MacBook Pros and Intel-based iMacs, the mCard aims to give a little more life to machines in future operating systems before consumers are forced to replace them.



Fourth Switzerland Apple Store opens to large crowds

Sun July 13, 2014 | Posted in: Apple

Despite the country's relatively small population, support for Apple in Switzerland seems to be very healthy: the company just opened its fourth outlet, this time in the town of Basel, earlier this weekend. The new store adheres to the standard new layout, but because of the shopping district it is located in, the store sports somewhat unusual operating hours. The next Apple Store unveiling will again be outside the US -- this time in Edinburgh, Scotland, and is thought to be opening on August 2.



Briefly: Akvis SmartMask 5.0, ClickInstall 4.0

Sat July 12, 2014 | Posted in: software, digital imaging, Apple

Akvis has announced the release of its newest version of SmartMask, an image selection tool for photo editing. The software handles a selection of objects, and processes both soft and sharp edges. Available as a standalone program as well as a plug-in for photo editors. SmartMask v5.0 includes a new Share option for publishing images on desired social networks, with background color options availble prior to uploading. The maximum size of the Eraser and History Brush tools has been increased, and the Magic Brush has been improved.



Popcorn Time derivative project GitHub repositories shuttered by MPAA

Sat July 12, 2014 | Posted in: computers, security, software

The US Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has issued Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown requests for code repositories for BitTorrent-based video streaming projects based on the Popcorn Time core. The MPAA requested that the code for "popcorn-official" and "time4popcorn" projects be removed from GitHub, but the original Popcorn Time repository remains intact and undeleted.



Apple responds to China media report of iOS 'national security issue'

Sat July 12, 2014 | Posted in: iPhone, security, Apple, iPad

Apple has responded to Chinese government media allegations of the iPhone and iPad being a national security threat. A Chinese-language statement titled "Your Location Privacy" has been posted by the Cupertino manufacturer, with the company guaranteeing that it won't track users, or share information location with outsiders. Additionally, it claims that the frequent locations feature touted for iOS8 will just "quickly and reliably determine their current locations for specific activities such as shopping, travel, finding the nearest restaurant or calculating the amount of time it takes them to get to work" and not leak any personal data.



Fake motions filed in Apple, Facebook employee 'no poach' suit

Sat July 12, 2014 | Posted in: industry, security, Apple

Silicon Valley's "no poach" lawsuit involving Apple, Adobe, Google, and Intel may be slowly grinding to a conclusion, but not without some peculiar behavior. An investigation has been launched by the US District Court for the Northern District of California and the California State Bar after a court filing was made under an attorney's name without her knowledge, and with a fake lawfirm's name. The incident, and a similar filing made shortly after motion dismissal, is being investigated as a possible identity theft.



Lyft, NY attorney general jousting over reasons for postponed launch

Sat July 12, 2014 | Posted in: iPhone apps, mobile phones

Ride sharing service Lyft has halted its New York City launch for the time being. While the delay was originally portrayed as amicable, with the delay blessed by the Taxi and Limousine Commission as well as the courts, a battle has erupted in the press, with both sides pointing fingers at each other for the delay, with accusations of misdeeds and lies erupting.



Briefly: MobileOffice S601 Scanner, PureGear's folio, phone case

Sat July 12, 2014 | Posted in: iPhone

Plustek Technology has announced the launch of its new Plustek MobileOffice S601, a portable A6-sized identification card and license scanner. The device is a comparable size to a smartphone, and is capable of scanning a card in under five seconds. Intended for scanning licenses, identification cards, business cards, receipts, checks and deposit slips, the scanner includes two one-touch, programmable buttons that can create searchable PDFs or images by pressing a button.


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Previous News

Apple wins against Emblaze in live video streaming patent dispute

Sat July 12, 2014 | Posted in: software, developer, iPhone apps, Apple, iPad apps

Apple has scored another legal victory, this time against Israeli firm Emblaze and its charge that Apple induced app developers to infringe Emblaze's US patent on live video streaming. A federal jury found in Friday that Apple was not guilty of requiring any of the seven example apps used in the trial to use Apple's own HLS (HTTP live streaming) protocol, and thus did not foster infringement of the patent. Emblaze, a struggling audio company that had tried to sell the technology many times, is also suing Microsoft in a similar case.


Proposed Senate bill would remove regulatory stamps from hardware

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: industry

A new proposal introduced in the US Senate called the "E-Label Act" would allow electronics manufacturers the option of using "digital" stamps of regulatory approval on devices rather than the physical emblems now required to show that the device has passed required safety and federal inspections. The bill is a bipartisan effort, with a goal of lowering costs for manufacturers as well as allowing further design freedom. It would not remove all such markings, due to the international nature of some of them.


Briefly: Photoshop Express, Google Maps for iOS both updated

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: iPhone apps, iPad apps

Adobe has followed up on its recent spate of new iPad apps with an update to the older Photoshop Express, now at version 3.4. The new version offers four specific new features: two new tools, the ability to import photos in RAW format, and a new ability to increase or decrease filter strength as desired. The two new tools are a "defog" tool to remove haziness, and a "blemish removal" tool. Photoshop Express is available free from the App Store. The app is also compatible with the iPhone.


Sharp offers Apple $293 million to claim equipment in Kameyama plant

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: iPhone, industry, Apple

Sharp is offering Apple 30 billion yen, or about $293 million, to buy the equipment in the former's Kameyama Plant No. 1, says Nikkei. In 2012, Apple contributed about half of the 100 billion yen ($986.7 million) that was necessary to switch the factory from producing TV panels to iPhone displays. As a part of the deal, Apple claimed ownership of the plant's hardware.


Apple launches official Swift blog for developers

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: developer, Apple

Via its developer portal, Apple has launched an official blog for Swift, the programming language it unveiled at WWDC 2014. The blog promises a "behind-the-scenes look into the design of the Swift language by the engineers who created it," and "the latest news and hints to turn you into a productive Swift programmer." The first post discusses several compatibility issues.


Review: Samsung SmartCam HD Pro

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: security, digital imaging

Keeping an eye on the home while out and about these days is common practice. Internet cameras became popular in recent history due to the ease of scanning for intruders or checking on the welfare of a child. Selecting the right model can be challenging based on the number of cameras on the market. Brands like Dropcam and Foscam are generally trusted, but larger companies like Samsung offer alternative solutions. Attempting to bring a Dropcam competitor to consumers, Samsung released the SmartCam HD Pro. But does it offer the features a user needs without hiccups? Find out in our review.


Beats files suit against Chinese counterfeiters with fake storefronts

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: industry, audio, Apple

Speaker and headphone maker Beats -- currently undergoing an acquisition by Apple -- has filed a lawsuit against a collection of Chinese counterfeiters, asking for billions of dollars in damages. "This action has been filed by Beats to combat online counterfeiters who trade upon Beats' reputation and goodwill by selling and/or offering for sale unlicensed and counterfeit products featuring Beats' trademarks," the complaint reads. "The Defendants create [fake Internet storefronts] by the hundreds or even thousands and design them to appear to be selling genuine Beats products, while actually selling low-quality Counterfeit Beats Products to unknowing consumers."


Friday Deals: PlayStation 4 bundle, mSATA SSD, iPad Mini Nuud

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: gaming, peripherals, gadgets, software, accessories, audio, iPhone apps, iPad apps

Another week, another episode of "Friday Deals!" Every Friday, we're going to take a look at sales, and bring you what we think are some of the best bargains on prime apps, gadgets, and peripherals for you, the discriminating MacNN and Electronista reader. All prices are verified at the time of publication, but any sales may not be valid if you're reading a few days down the line. Check pricing before you click buy!


Briefly: Bronson Watermarker PDF 2.0, CrossOver 13.2.0

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: Apple

Bronson Watermarker PDF has received a complete revamp, featuring a new single-window interface and additional features to help keep documents in the right place. A Mac utility for creating watermarked PDFs, the app allows users to generate any number of personally watermarked documents. Five watermark styles are available to select from, and other layout attributes are also customizable.


Google Maps iOS app gets on-map displays of search, Gmail content

Fri July 11, 2014 | Posted in: iPod, iPhone, iPhone apps, iPad, iPad apps

Google has released an update of its Google Maps client for iOS, adding several significant features. When searching for places, for instance, results will now appear directly on a map. Users can switch between this view and a more standard list.


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