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Apple's shares closed at a 3.5-year high on Friday, up more than 2 percent from yesterday's close of $36.35, which was a 52-week high. Apple's financial fourth quarter ends September 30th, with many of its sales promotions ending next Saturday, September, 25th (as noted earlier today). Apple is expected to release fourth fiscal quarter earnings on October 13, 2004 and also hold its Apple Quarterly Earnings call on the same date. [updated]
Apple is struggling to offer content from independent UK artists available at its iTunes Music store, despite an agreement with Apple to license their music, according to The Independent: "Thousands of tracks by independent artists, including the single certain to top the charts tomorrow and all the songs by the Mercury prize winners Franz Ferdinand, are still unavailable on iTunes, three months after its UK launch. Independent record labels spoke of their frustration last night that, despite an agreement to license their music to iTunes, Apple had still not made their work available to fans." Apple responded by saying that it was working with them and "hundreds of other labels" to make the content available "as quickly as possible."
Afternoon tech news: Music companies want support for CD copy protection built into Longhorn operating system; Sony is expected to unveil a smaller version of its popular PlayStation 2 game console on October 26; Six-figure incentives are the only way to persuade people to disclose the identity of co-workers, friends and others they know are responsible for flooding online mailboxes with unsolicited email, according to a FTC report.
ODLog ($80) is an easy-to-use application for the accurate timing and recording of observational data. With version 2 for Mac OS X, you can simultaneously score up to 12 different behavioral events. [1.0MB] KoalaCalc is a free scientific calculator for Mac. In 'simple' mode, it looks similar to the standard calculator that comes with the Mac OS X, however, the 'advanced features' mode makes KoalaCalc one of the "most advanced scientific calculators available." [1.5MB] KaraTunes 2.0 ($11), an add-on for iTunes, puts all your lyrics data in one single database, letting you save, modify, and search lyrics with a single interface. Version 2.0 lets you search Lyrictracker database and upload lyrics to your iPod. [5.7MB] Intellisys Project Desktop is a simple project management tool for Mac. Version 2.50 offers a German localization, language switching without restarting the program, and several important bug fixes. Pricing starts at $160. [not available] MacDopplerPRO 2.6 ($95) "gives you a seat right in the heart of the Operations & Command Centre for every satellite in orbit." Version 2.6 adds a ‘Behind Satellite’ camera point of view, a new logging dialog, and more. [8.1MB] Battlefield 1942 demo for Mac is now available. It "gives you a taste of the intense World War II combat in the game." It includes single player play on Guadalcanal island, one of the many locales the full version of the game supports. "Fly planes, drive jeeps and tanks, and try to defeat the enemy to prepare yourself for Battlefield 1942's unique multiplayer play that is available in the full version of the game." [300MB]
In Brief: WalMart.com has begun selling the HP iPod (along with a number of accesories) with a disclaimer that it is not compatible with the Wal-Mart music service.... A demo of Battlefield 1942 offers single player play on Guadalcanal island, one of the many locales the full version of the game supports, but does not support multiplayer mode.... TomatoChip.com is now taking pre-orders for the popular USB Christmas Trees ($13), with the first shipments expected next week.... UK game publisher Feral has posted screenshots of and information on Ford Racing 2, which is also available for pre-order now ($45).
Morning tech: U.S. law enforcement has seized $87 million worth of of fake software and filed charges against 11 individuals for software piracy.... A two-year investigation has shown that cell phones can be used on planes without interfering with navigation systems, paving the way for use in airplanes by 2006... Microsoft is looking for ways to work more closely with developers of the Open Office open-source project, while at the same time, apparently reserving the right to sue them... eBay's PayPal said it will levy fines of up to $500 for uses related to gambling, adult content or services, and selling prescription drugs from non-certified sellers.
Nisus Writer Express 2.0.1 ($60) fixes several issues in the powerful alternative word processing application, including opening of WordPerfect documents, improved launch times, new splash screen, and more. Version 2 offers a built-in table tool, user-definited styles, footnotes, endnotes, highlighter, smart quotes, and more. [form] Mellel 1.8 is a major update to the advanced multilingual word processor. The updated version offers advanced outline support and features, support for OpenType technology, enhanced support for languages and numerous other improvements. Mellel is $40, while a 5-user license is $60. [5.2MB] eMail Bounce Handler 2.0 ($20) is a a bounce e-mail filtering and handling tool that uses customizable set of rules to recognize/extract the recipients addresses allowing you to use them again to try sending your mail or to take them off your list. Version 2 adds IMAP support (for AOL, .Mac, etc.), a new Mac OS X interface, performance improvements of up to 10 times, etc. [Classic, OSX] Play Sound 1.4 (free) provides a simple way to play sound files in classic Mac OS and Mac OS X. Play Sound supports QuickTime sound files (for example, AIFF or MP3 files), Mac OS System 7 sound files (files with a file type of 'sfil' that contain 'snd ' resources), or any 'snd ' resources embedded into any file in the resource chain. [708KB] MegaTrack 1.2 (free) is an open-source utility that offers basic tropical storm/hurricane tracking for Atlantic storms as well as detailed information on storm using info from the internet. It offers more startup preferences, storm classification, automatic update of storm database, export of individual storm info, and a new icon. [2.0MB] AutoCal 1.1 (15€) allows users to automatically publish iCal calendars via FTP. It offers the ability to set publish options, send email notifications to your contacts and more. It offers a new Mach-O binary, system crash fixes, and improved ftp transfer speeds. [form]
Miglia Technology today announced the availability of a free software update for AlchemyTV DVR, that includes the much requested TitanTV integration for US customers. AlchemyTV DVR 2.2 now integrates Decisionmark's TitanTV EPG (Electronic Program Guide) directly into the program. Decisionmark's TitanTV EPG makes it easy to find TV shows and schedule them for recording or viewing with a single click. Using its scheduled recording functionality, AlchemyTV DVR can schedule as many recordings as required. It is available for any PCI-based G4/G5 Mac running Mac OS X 10.2.8 or later for $160.
Apple's latest series of promos for both education and other consumers end next week, as its financial quarter comes to a close. Several promotions are scheduled to end next week on September 25, including Apple's popular Cram and Jam promo for students, which offers $200 back on the purchase of an iPod along with any Apple laptop; Edit like a Pro. Instant savings, which offers Final Cut Express 2 video editing software for only $100 with purchase of any Mac; Great-looking deal, which offers up to a $100 savings when an HP printer is purchased along with a Mac; and Sweet deal on .Mac, which offers $30 off the $100 membership price of .Mac. Each of the promotions are available at the Apple Store online, Apple retail stores, or other Apple resellers.
Discount warehouse Costco.com will begin selling the iPod mini. The website indicates that the company will begin shipping the MP3 player beginning October 1st and will offer the Pink, Silver, and Blue versions of the iPod mini for $270, a slight premium over the $250 price from Apple and other retailers; however, Costco.com is bundling 15 free iTunes tracks as well the Apple iPod Armband station, which retails for $30. Users can choose Standard (15-20 business days) or Express (3-6) shipping options. [updated: the page no longer mentions the iPod mini dock]
Now AAPL Stock: 94.27 ( -0.72 )
HBO Now has 800,000 subscribers
The CEO of HBO, Richard Plepler has confirmed that the online streaming HBO service, HBO Now, has 800,000 subscribers. When criticized for the seemingly low number, Plepler noted that the still nascent service was bound to Apple exclusivity during the fifth season of Game of Thrones. Plepler declared during the Time Warner quarterly earnings conference call marketing for the online-only offering would be enhanced in 2016. While HBO Now's critics are slamming the low numbers, the service must also compete against itself on cable, in addition to Netflix and other streaming services. http://on.recode.net/1QWoLHe
Unsafe IoT called threat to humanity
US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told two different Senate committees yesterday that the Internet of Things posed a clear and present danger, and could be weaponized by governments. Before the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Clapper declared that insecure IoT "will bring new security vulnerabilities" and "will connect tens of billions of new physical devices that could be exploited" by those wishing to perpetrate violence or eavesdrop on the populace of the world. http://bit.ly/23Xvcky
Apple public betas for iOS 9.3, OS X 10.11.4
Following Monday's release of betas for the iOS and OS X, Apple has unveiled public betas for both operating systems. The iOS 9.3 beta includes all of the previously reported enhancements for education customers, along with Wi-Fi calling for Verizon iPhone owners, and a carrier update for T-Mobile users. The OS X 10.11.4 third beta includes enhancements to Twitter URL opening, Live Photo viewing and sharing, and Evernote note importation into Notes.
Google given NHTSA SDS waivers
In contrast to the California Department of Motor Vehicle's approach, the US National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) has confirmed that it is declaring the software in autonomous cars is the legal driver of a so-equipped vehicle. In a letter to Google, the NHTSA says that it "will interpret 'driver' in the context of Google's described motor vehicle design as referring to the SDS [self-driving system], and not to any of the vehicle occupants." Other matters, such as legally-required rear-view mirrors for occupied vehicles has yet to be determined. However, regulations specifying the "driver" need no longer be interpreted as meaning a person behind the wheel, as the agency writes that self-driving cars "will not have a 'driver' in the traditional sense that vehicles have had drivers during the last more than one hundred years" http://1.usa.gov/1QrAGtR
Dropshare 4 for Mac now available
Dropshare 4 for Mac has shipped, introducing support for uploading files and screenshots to Amazon S3 API-compliant services, like DreamObjects and OpenStack. The update also introduces a new popup design, an in-app editor for custom landing pages, an improved upload history window, and security improvements when using SSH connections. The paid upgrade costs $25, though it is free for customers who bought the previous version this year and half-price for those who acquired version 3 of the app last year. http://bit.ly/1XixV3q
Google starting phase-out of Flash ads
Search engine and advertising giant Google will shortly no longer accept Adobe Flash-created ads for its AdWords network. Starting June 30, ads in the once-ubiquitous format will no longer be accepted. Additionally, after January 2, 2017, the network will no longer serve Flash-based advertisements, and the network will be completely HTML 5 based. http://bit.ly/1PNx1uc
Sonos now works with Apple Music
Wireless music system manufacturer Sonos has announced that its systems worldwide will gain compatibility for streaming the paid Apple Music subscription service starting today, February 10. "Music fans worldwide will have access to Apple Music features like For You, New, Radio, and My Music, and will also be able to stream the entire Apple Music catalog through Sonos smart speakers tuned for great sound in every room of their homes," the company said in an email to journalists. Apple Music's streaming service costs $10 per month, with a free three-month trial. http://bit.ly/1Wdi2Ko