Smith Micro has announced its QuickLink Mobile data connectivity product for Mac OS X. QuickLink Mobile allows users to utilize their built-in USB port to instantly connect to the Internet via their cell phone. The installer automatically detects the mobile phone, carrier and sets up your account and the $60 package includes USB data cable (for select Audiovox, Ericson, LG, and Motoroala phones). It features a "digital dashboard" to connect, check cell phone battery and signal strength.
GameHouse today announced Super Collapse! II, the sequel to its award-winning online puzzle game. Super Collapse! II offers three completely new ways to play, in addition to the traditional mode. "We've stuck to the basic, simple concept of the original Super Collapse!, but now it offers a greater variety of challenges and rewards," says Garr Godfrey, president of GameHouse." Super Collapse! is priced at $25; an online trial is available.
Jasmine 1.5.4 is a professional multi-track audio editing and mixing application now available for Mac OS X. The $30 application features a moving "tape" display and graphical fader indicator, the ability to play/record/overdub multitrack audio, sophisticated dynamics processing (AGC), and import of multiple audio file types as well as the ability to record from various input devices (including CD audio). [Classic, OSX] SmoothPrint 1.0 is an application that allows you to arrange digital photos on any size paper via drag and drop. Users can also add text, boxes, lines, arrows, and custom color borders as well as rotate and print the photos. The $13 shareware is available for Mac OS 8/9/X. Version 1.1 with variable print resolution (for Mac OS 8/9) requires QuickTime 6. [Classic, OSX] Bruno Blondeau's iOrganize 4.4 is an update to his $20 application to store and organize notes, ideas, text extracts and web links. It features a new preference dialog, much improved export and import commands, and a new function to print an entire notepad category. It is for Mac OS X only. [1.7MB] LAJ Design today updated its cross-platform application that creates online web-based stores that use shopping cart technology. eOrdering Complete 1.7 adds a new process fee option, billing and shipping captions, form verification, improved templates, and other bug fixes. A demo of the $65 application is available online. [Classic, OSX]
Apple has extended its 100 Free Kodak prints promotion -- which was originally scheduled to end today -- to the 28th of February, according to an Apple representative (although the online Webpage has not been updated). The offer gives 100 free 4x6 Kodak prints to new subscribers using the iPhoto print service.
Larry Blasko of the Associated Press has awarded Apple with the 'Designed Like A Picasso And Priced Accordingly' honor, for the design of its iMac computer. Meanwhile, Mr. Blasko gives the 'Anything, So Long As It Sells' "award" to PC and video console game developers, for drenching "each adventure in gore, rape and mayhem." Blasko also hands out a number of other awards, including the less-than-flattering "Work In Progress" award for Windows XP.
Jason Suitts has released a preview version of Playalong, a companion to iTunes that displays album cover art and rating information in a floating window. This free tool matches ID3 tags with Amazon's Popular Music catalog. [84KB] GeekTool 1.0 is a Preference module for Mac OS X 10.2: "Once installed, you can then show log files or even unix commands output on your desktop with a nice transparent background." [223KB] GTK+OSX has released a native Mac Aqua port of the Linux-based GTK+ open source graphical user interface library. GTK+ 0.1, an alpha release fo developers, (GIMP Toolkit), is a popular widget library supporting graphical applications for Linux: "It is based on the abandoned mac-gtk project, a Mac OS 9 effort that has laid dormant since 2000. Unlike the GTK-Quartz attempt, GTK+OSX is Carbon-based and does not use Objective C." [927KB] Braided Matrix has released 4th Quarter 7.1, an update to its 4D-based accounting solution for mid-sized businesses, adding support for Canadian Value Added Tax (VAT) systems, to be used in conjunction with 4Q's extensive multiple currency system. It also extends inventory management to multiple warehouses. 4Q provides a comprehensive system in which businesses can modify their operations without having to revise their accounting system. Emagic's Audiowerk 8 and Audiowerk 2 now run in Mac OS X 10.2 using a new Core Audio driver, which allows these two PCI-recording cards to operate at a minimum latency of 1.5 ms. The EMI Driver Version 2.1 requires Mac OS X 10.2.2. [851KB] Checkbook 1.03 is an update to the Mac OS X-only account management application. It features a single-window interface, color-coded transactions, sorting, searches, password-protection, and both auto-save and printing functions. It is $10. [542KB]
iStumbler 0.5b adds a graph view of 'signal to noise' for the selected network and an updated interface to the Mac OS X utility for finding local wireless networks and services. "iStumbler combines a compact Aqua user interface advanced wireless scanning and reporting." [Download - 109KB] Optigold ISP 3.1.5 for Mac OS X is a maintenance update to the free cross-platform business software package for running all aspects of an Internet service provider. Version 3.1.5 adds the abillity for slave account customers to add domains through the customer Web interface. Additionally, the company email manager supports 'admin' and 'sales' email types. [Download form] Sci-Fi Hi-Fi has released version 1.1.1 of PodWorks ($6), the "only" iPod song copying utility that is capable of displaying song meta data by extracting it directly from the iPod's internal database. Version 1.1.1 fixes minor bugs introduced with the 1.1 revision, in addition to introducing a slight reworking of the drag-and-drop song copying functionality to make it more compliant with Apple's Human Interface Guidelines. [Download - 242KB] MultiSpec v021224 is a minor update to the collaboratively-developed processing system for interactively analyzing Earth observational multispectral image data such as that produced by the Landsat series of Earth satellites and hyperspectral image data from current and future airborne and spaceborne systems such as AVIRIS. [Download - Classic, OS X, 68K] GyazMail 0.9.8.1 adds automatic address completion, fixes search issues, has new dock features (icon notification and contextual menus) and other bug fixes to the free e-mail client for Mac OS X with support for multiple accounts, custom keyboard commands, MIME support, integration with the Address Book (Mac OS X 10.2), and other features. [Download - 1.3MB] Buena Software's Dissolve Factory is a powerful $40 tool for creating dissolve transitions for Final Cut Pro and Adobe After Effects. "It can simulate subtle effects like a film dissolve or create never-before-seen dissolves, like a saturation dissolve." A $10 discount is offered through mid-January. [Download - FCP, AE] ExecutiveSync ($20) is a file synchronization utility for Mac OS X. It uses the TAS (Time And State) synchronization technique, which employs true CRC32 bit checksums to guarantee accuracy, offers file archiving for backup purposes, and logging. [Download - 1.6MB] Yamaha has posted 1.0f firmware updaters for its CRW-F1 44x/24x/44x CD-RW drive, offering support for switching the maximum rotation speed in reading Audio CD between 8700 rpm and 4700 rpm, more support for 44x+ CD-R discs, and support for CMC Ultra Speed CD-RW disc (24x). SCSI, FireWire, and USB versions are available for both Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X.
Now AAPL Stock: 93.4 ( -2.7 )
WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu
Fifth Hong Kong store to open June 30
The 46th official Apple store in what the company calls the "Greater China" region will open at 10AM local time in Hong Kong's New Town Plaza in the Sha Tin district on Thursday, June 30, according to a new page on Apple's retail website. Despite slowing growth due to economic turmoil in China, the country is still Apple's fastest-growing market. The new story will be the fifth for Hong Kong, a lucrative market for Apple thanks to the high concentration of wealth there and a thriving "gray" market. Normal store hours for the new store will be 10AM to 10PM every day. http://apple.co/291diaT
Apple Music bug bites very short songs
There appears to be a reproducible bug in the current version of iTunes -- version 12.4.1, running on OS X 10.11.5, both the current non-beta versions of the respective software -- that causes a streamed song to become "stuck" in endless buffering if the streamed item just before this happened was 60 seconds or less in length. The problem appears to stem from code in iTunes that signals the next track to start downloading one minute before the currently-playing track is done, and thus songs shorter than one minute don't trigger the download. Locally-stored music is unaffected by the bug, and the problem does not appear to exist in either the macOS Sierra developer beta or versions of iTunes earlier than 12.4, and does not affect the iOS Music app at all. http://bit.ly/291cN0l
Walmart Pay expands to 15 states
Walmart, one of the key progenitors of the failed CurrentC mobile payment system that was distinguished from Apple Pay by its ability to collect and share customer financial and buying data among its participants, has expanded the soft rollout of its alternative solution "Walmart Pay" to an additional 15 US states following a pilot program in Arkansas and Texas last month. Walmart continues to resist adding Apple Pay. The system, built into the Walmart app for iOS and Android, works with a complicated system of the camera scanning a purchase code at the register, then generating a QR code which is then scanned by the register. The system is available now in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington, DC. http://apple.co/28SqZfu
Amazon refreshes entry-level Kindle
Amazon has added a new Kindle to its ebook reader range, one that is thinner and lighter than the previous entry-level model. Offering a six-inch 167-dpi touchscreen display, a doubled 4GB of storage, and an option for a white casing, the new model also adds in the ability to export highlights and notes to an email account as a PDF. Two versions of the all-new Kindle are available, priced at $80 including "Special Offers" and $100 without. http://amzn.to/28Q4c3R