WebLauncher 1.0 is a $7 utility for opening/launching download URLs directly from the dock. It also offers support for launching URLs in IE 5.1 (with support for other browsers coming in future versions).
MacNN readers continue to provide notes on upcoming openings of new retail Apple Stores, which have yet to be announced on Apple\'s Retail Website. [Anonymous] \"Another Apple Store will be opening up in late March/Early April in the Phoenix Arizona area. This store is located in the Biltmore Fashion Park, which is in the center of Phoenix\'s upper class retail district. [Dave Sawyer] \"Apple is also hiring for a second Apple Store in Denver (Colorado). The new store will be in the Cherry Creek Mall area, either the mall itself (most likely) or the nearby retail area - the job listings aren\'t specific. The Cherry Creek mall and associated retail area are the most \"upscale\" retail area in the Denver Metro area, with stores like Saks Fifth Avenue, Neimann Marcus, Bang and Olufsen, Bose, and other shops aimed at affluent consumers. The Cherry Creek Mall is also Denver\'s No. 1 tourist destination. All in all, a good location for Apple.\"
@Last Software announced it would deliver an OS X version of SketchUp 2.0 this summer. The application offers tools for creating, viewing, modifying, and communicating 3D ideas and can be used to develop design ideas from initial concepts all the way through detailing and documentation as well as generate dynamic 3D presentations. Version 2.0, now available for the PC, includes better integration, 2D Hidden-Line Vector output for input into 2D CAD or illustration software, new printing options, and new development tools, including interactive scale tools and linear and radial array functions.
Apple has released an AirPort Graphite Basestation 3.84 firmware update, which addresses a DHCP lease issue on graphite Airport base stations begin used on the Comcast and Rogers cable networks: \"[it] resolves a problem that prevented the Airport from obtaining an IP address from DHCP servers on Comcast and Rogers cable networks after the @Home conversion. After personally installing the firmware update my Airport has been able to lease an IP address from the DHCP server on the Rogers network, before the update it would not work.\"
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE