Daystar Technology today announced new lower pricing on its XLR8 MAChSpeed G4 ZIF Upgrades. Citing triple digit sales growth, and additional volume-based cost reductions, Daystar says it is continuing to pass its manufacturing cost savings to its customers. Acccording to the company, the MAChSpeed G4 ZIF is the only PowerMac G3 CPU upgrade that can provide "Quicksilver" performance at prices under $200. The upgrade features a large 1MB backside cache, which allows it to outperform a 700MHz Power Macintosh G4 "Quicksilver" system and that its exclusive design allows the Blue & White system bus to run at full 100MHz speeds. Pricing is now $100 for the 466MHz ($50 drop), $130 for the 500MHz ($50 drop), $160 for the 550MHz ($30 drop), and $180 for the 600MHz ($20 drop).
Apple today announced that in just two days iTunes customers have subscribed to more than one million Podcasts from the new iTunes Podcast Directory. iTunes 4.9 lets users find, subscribe, manage and listen to Podcasts. Users can "now have each new episode of their favorite Podcasts automatically delivered over the Internet to their computer and iPod." iPods now offer an easy to use Podcast menu, including bookmarking within a Podcast and the ability to display color Podcast artwork. “With the release of iTunes 4.9, listeners are voting with their ears,” said Adam Curry, co-founder of the PodShow Podcast Network. Continued on iPodNN. . .
Apple today announced that in just two days iTunes customers have subscribed to more than one million Podcasts from the new iTunes Podcast Directory. iTunes 4.9 lets users find, subscribe, manage and listen to Podcasts. Users can "now have each new episode of their favorite Podcasts automatically delivered over the Internet to their computer and iPod." iPods now offer an easy to use Podcast menu, including bookmarking within a Podcast and the ability to display color Podcast artwork. “With the release of iTunes 4.9, listeners are voting with their ears,” said Adam Curry, co-founder of the PodShow Podcast Network.
Apple's concerns over power consumption are unfounded, according to IBM. When Apple announced it would switch to Intel chips, CEO Steve Jobs said a major reason for the change was the need for power-efficient processors. Jobs said IBM's roadmap didn't provide the processors Apple needs for mobile and consumer products. IBM, however, disagrees. The company could build PowerPC chips that satisfy the needs of the entire range of Apple's product lines, including portables such as the PowerBook, said Rod Adkins, vice president of development for IBM's Systems and Technology Group, which produces IBM's PowerPC chips. But instead he said the nature of Apple's relationship with IBM is what limited the IBM chip roadmap, Adkins said. "They had Freescale primarily for the low-end and mobile solutions, and they really had IBM focus more on PowerBook, xServe and iMac. That's where we collaborated deeply with Apple," Adkins said. "There's really nothing in the architecture that prevents having an end-to-end line that can serve their needs."
Formac today announced its new Gallery Platinum LCD, available in 19.0 or 20.1 inch sizes. Taking advantage of the latest leap in TFT technology, the new Gallery 1900 delivers pixel response time of 8ms gray-to-gray, a contrast ratio of 800:1, and brightness rated at 300 cd/m2. Featuring a SXGA resolution (1,280 by 1,024) the Gallery 1900 displays the identical digital information of a 17" LCD, but on a screen real estate that is "comparable to a 20" wide-screen LCD." The 25 percent bigger picture "benefits text intensive applications such as web-browsing, spreadsheets, and word processing, but also is of advantage when working with highly detailed graphics." For a limited time Formac offers a direct pre-order discount of $40, lowering the price of the 19" LCD to $450, and the 20" LCD to $660.
Freeverse today announced that X2: The Threat is shipping. "From the freezing hell of the prison world of Artur to the pirate filled space-lanes of the deep black, X2: The Threat will take you as far as your ambition will carry you." X2 features dozens of interlinked missions, 70 different ship types, a host of weapons from lasers to remote droids and intercept rockets, a variety of commodities to trade and barter and a thrilling storyline that lets players choose their own path. "Command a freighter and trade your way to wealth and power, or become the admiral of your own fleet of mile-long destroyers and sweep your enemies before you." X2: The Threat is published by Virtual Programming and distributed in North America by Freeverse. X2: The Threat is priced at $40 and will be available at the Apple Stores and other fine Mac retailers.
macwareT announced today the release of its new version of photo manipulation software. PhotoEdit 2 makes editing easy with features like Smart Crop tool, DPI adjustment, new filters & effects, an effects editor that allows users to create virtually any effect, and more control over redeye removal. "PhotoEdit 2 developed through intensive study of our core PhotoEdit user base," said Ishan Amin of Product Development. "We discovered our PhotoEdit customers were also avid iPhoto users who needed some additional editing options, advanced crop tools, and the popular ability to paint or draw directly on their photos." PhotoEdit 2 is now available for purchase in Apple retail stores, CompUSA, Fry's Electronics, Microcenter and other software retailers or online for $30.
Health Tracker 3.0 ($20) is a graphing program to track health-related measurements, such as weight, blood glucose levels, body fat, etc. Version 3.0.0 is a complete re-write, offering several UI enhancements and import/export features as well as allows virtually unlimited number of measurements to be tracked. [Classic , OSX] OmniOutliner 3.03 (update) updates The Omni Group's outlining and organizational tool to include newly added Automator support and a number of fixes and improvements. Updates include improvements to recorded audio, HTML export, scrolling, and printing support under 10.2, as well as speed enhancements when editing large outlines. It is a free update to OmniOutliner ($40) and OmniOutliner Professional ($70). [Std, Pro] ConvertIt Pro 2.6.3 ($17) is a unit conversion program that offers 2500 unit conversions, including currency. It features a scientific calculator, pi display, scratch pad for saving and quickly accessing frequently used conversions and online definitions and offers up to 10,000 significant digits of accuracy for the mathematical professionals. [2.2MB ] Apimac Slide Show 6.4 (free) updates the slide show and presentation tool for multimedia files. It brings compatibility with Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger), display of basic IPTC tags (i.e, image metadata), and more. Apimac Slide Show lets users to customize presentations with custom backgroundsa and soundtracks for both Windows and Mac platforms; it is available in both Standard ($30) and Professional ($50) editions. [Classic, OSX] MainMenu 1.4.1 (free) is a menubar item to run many maintenance tasks such as repair permissions, update prebindings, clean system and users caches, empty many browsers caches/history, force empty the trash, and more. Version 1.4.1 lets users choose the menu icon, and fixes a bug where "Show Log Window" didn't turn into "Hide Log Window." [200KB] iTunes Library Manager 4.2 ($5) is an AppleScript applet that makes backup copies of the current iTunes Library and Preferences, allowing users to easily save multiple iTunes Library and Preferences configurations that can be retrieved and loaded at any time. Version 4.2 makes iTunes Library Manager compatible with iTunes 4.9. [311KB]
Nvu (pronounced N-view, for a "new view") is a complete Web Authoring System for Mac OS X, Linux, and Windows users. It is designed to rival mainstream programs like Microsoft FrontPage and Macromedia Dreamweaver. Nvu "makes managing a web site a snap," the developer says. "Now anyone can create web pages and manage a website with no technical expertise or knowledge of HTML." It includes integrated file management via FTP and reliable HTML code creation that will work with all of today's most popular browsers. Nvu is 100% open source. Anyone can download Nvu at no charge, including the source code to make changes.
Lismore Software Systems today released Guest PC 1.5, an update to its Mac OS X application that allows users to easily create and manage virtual x86 computers on a Mac. Users can install the Windows operating system and access applications available only for Windows compatible computers. Version 1.5 brings a significant improvements in networking, including file transfers and AirPort Extreme compatibiilty. In addition to better stability and compatibility, Lismore says that the new version also decreases the time it takes to install Windows by up to 30 percent as well as improves sound output in Windows ME/2000/XP. Guest PC 1.5 is available for $70; upgrades from any previous Blue Label PowerEmulator version are $35.
One analyst believes that Apple and Motorola along with Cingular will introduce a family of iTunes-compatible phones by the end of the year. The first phone in the new product family, which it says will include both low-end and high-end phones, will be formally announced by the third week in July, according to a BusinessWeek report that cites RBC Capital Markets analyst Mark Sue: "All parties involved -- Motorola, Cingular, and, perhaps most of all, Apple -- have much to gain from the hookup. The move could help them take the pole position in a promising new market -- delivering digital music to cell phones, a device that has become the center of the digital lifestyle for millions of people around the world.... Currently, the three companies are seen as laggards in this market."
Matterform has released Spamfire 2.1, an update to its recently re-designed and powerful anti-spam filtering software. Spamfire leverages four filter technologies to sort incoming email Definite, Probable and Borderline categories. The application automatically changes settings in many popular email program so that it picks up good email from Spamfire (rather than directly from your server), offers numerous keyboard shortcuts, Bayesian filters, automatic training, and more. Version 2.1 supports SSL for POP/IMAP, the ability to check mail after server-side filtering is complete, more delivery preferences, etc.; it also brings performance improvements, better memory usage, and several bug fixes. The full version is $40, while upgrades from v1.x are $25. Each license includes a renewable 12-month subscription to the Spamfire Filter Update Subscription service, which automatically delivers new filters to Spamfire users.
In Brief: Shares of Apple fell sharply on Wednesday after SigmaTel cut its outlook, citing lower-than-expected sales and price cuts.... iPodNN reports that DLO has introduced the DLO USB Dock Cable for iPod shuffle, a 4-foot USB cable that allows an iPod shuffle to connect to any Mac.... We've posted a review of a "Visual Start Guide" for GarageBand 2.... Seven major online music services including iTunes, AOL, Napster, Real, Sony Connect and Yahoo! have joined with record label trade body in the UK to fight what it says are "excessive" digital license terms demanded by music publishers and composers.... Steve Jobs' interview with ABC.com is available as a podcast from iTunes.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.02 ( -2.58 )
Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive,Â Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard DiskÂ Drive,Â GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN
MIT demoes 'Eyeriss' AI chip for mobile
At the International Solid State Circuits Conference in San Francisco this week, MIT researchers presented a new chip designed specifically to implement neural networks. The researchers claim that "Eyeriss" is 10 times as efficient as a mobile GPU, so it could enable mobile devices to run artificial-intelligence algorithms such as Siri or Cortana, rather than uploading all data to a remote server for processing. http://bit.ly/1TISJBe
Pocket for iOS adds readability settings
Offline reader iOS app Pocket has updated, with reader-friendly changes. With the new revision, premium subscribers can adjust character spacing, and choose from eight new fonts including one that makes it easier for sufferers of dyslexia to read saved content. The app itself is free, with a premium subscription available for $5 a month, or $45 a year. http://apple.co/1KuILBl