eScope 1.0 is a personal horoscope monitoring program for Mac OS X 10.2. It features a one-touch button for retrieving horoscope data from the internet, and the added ability to add each day's horoscope directly to iCal or have eScope eMail your daily horoscope automatically. [1.0MB] Morphon XML-Editor 3.0b4 is a validating XML editor that lets you easily create and modify XML documents. It offers improved handling of misplaced text, faster loading times for plugins, and many bug fixes. Pricing for version 2.x of the Java-based application is $150. DCIT announced it will unveil the latest version of its BusinessMind for Jewelers software suite at the JA International Jewelry. Version 3.0 offers improvements in installation and networking. BusinessMind for Jewelers, billed a as a scalable software solution for jewelers for deployment in large multi-location network environments or simple single station systems, is expected to ship in the first week of Febraury. It will be a free update to existing users who have an active support and upgrades subscription. RedleX has released Mellel 1.4.2, a minor update to its advanced word-processor for Mac OS X. The update includes support for import of vector graphics and hi-resolution images (including PDF), support for export.import encodings for Greek, Cyrillic and Central European languages, enhanced default view options, support for Greek and Cyrillic scripts, and more. It is $20. [2.0MB]
Willow Design has announced a new line of slipcases for the Titanium, 12" and 14" iBooks. The new slipcases are based on its previous line, but add more space for accessories: "To meet their needs, we've designed the new line to feature a slightly thicker front pocket for accessories and then added a flat rear pocket which can bellow out to add a couple of inches of space when needed." The slipcases also include an externally accessed keychain clip and a change or small accessory pocket in the lid. Pricing is $80 each. Slipcases for the new 12" and 17" Powerbooks are in production and should be available within the next couple of weeks.
c|net reports on the slew of Keynote problems users experiencing with the recently released presentation application, noting problems on older systems, printing glitches with translucent objects, and much larger-than-expected PDF files when exported. (See also Apple's Support Forums on Keynote.)
Lexmark today introduced its Lexmark X5150 AIO Print Center, an all-in-one (AIO) inkjet-based device. The X150 features high-end print, scan, PC-fax functions, and flatbed copy functions. It offers 4800x1200 dpi printing in black and color (on all paper types); 19 ppm black and 16 ppm color print speeds; up to 11 ppm color copying; 600x2400-dpi optical resolution and 48-bit true color/12-bit grayscale for flatbed scanning; and a software bundle with photo editing software, BVRP Fax Software, and Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software. It is available for $150 and supports Mac OS 9.2.2 and Mac OS 10.1.5.
Synergy Software is now shipping KaleidaGraph 3.6 for Macintosh, which brings Mac OS X support. The suite also adds new parametric tests (ANOVA, Student T-test), new nonparametric tests (Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test, Matched Pairs Test, etc.), and Post Hoc Tests (Tukey HSD, Bonferroni, Holm, and Dunnet). Other improvements include scroll-wheel support,support for high resolution PICT and TIFF files, improved text import, and an improved documentation and help system. Upgrades are $50, while the full version is $160 for a single-user license and $730 for a 5-user license.
A MacNN reader reports receipt of his 12" PowerBook G4: "Just unpacked my cool new 12" Tin G4. My LA dealer got directly from Apple. No Tech-Data, No Ingram yet. Basic unit 256/40G with NO extreme airport card. Not yet avail. Very pretty black box!! Comes with 10.2.3 Build 6H28 and Quickbooks 5 New User Ed CD (not Quicken) Netscape and Explorer installed but no Safari." Meanwhile, MacNN reader John Byrne has posted photos of the new PowerBook. Another reader provided some more info on the new PowerBook: [updated]
MacNN sources have confirmed the iLife delay reported yesterday. Apple resellers report that the digital hub suite has been put on "indefinite hold," and have been told to notify pre-order customers. However, it is still unknown whether iMovie 3 and iPhoto 2 will be released for download via the Internet as previously announced. (Apple's iLife Website still indicates a January 25th ship date, although orders from the Apple store are delayed by 5 days or more with some now indicating "on or before February 5, 2003".) Update: Sources indicate the iLife suite (and the iMovie 3 and iPhoto 2 downloads) will not be available until January 31st. (Apple did not return phone calls confirming the delay or new ship date, but recently updated its iLife Website with "available soon.")
JR Hill & Co has announced its new Screen Protectors for the new 12" and 17" Aluminum PowerBook G4s, which are available in both full grain leather or durable vinyl. The Screen Protector for the new 17" PowerBook G4 retails for $18 (leather) and $10 (vinyl), while the counterparts for the 12" PowerBook are $13 (leather) and $7 (vinyl). The Screen Protectors ship with a Lifetime Warranty and are available now.
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