Arty is a new service that allows users to design their own customized iPod cover. "iPods are personal and I liked the idea of a cover being personal, almost like a tattoo that you're not going to swap, in the same way that I wouldn't swap my iPod," said Wrappers owner Freddie Procter. Launched by the Oxford based company Wrappers, Arty makes it possible to have your favourite picture reproduced as a cover. Prices for covers are quoted individually and start from £32.00 incl P&P worldwide. "The very high density stitching used to reproduce pictures creates a tapestry panel with similar, long lasting qualities to upholstery fabric. The strong but soft finish provides plenty of protection but not at the expense of making gadgets bulky. Arty covers are some of the slimmest cases on the market, adding only a few millimetres to the size of the gadget. "
Pacific Rim today announced that the iDiddy -- a wearable, leather case and integrated earbud combination that eliminates tangled wires -- has begun shipping. The first in a family of products, the iDiddy provides the user with enhanced quality earbuds and a hand sewn designer styled leather case brought together in a single unit. "No more loose wires, no more wishing for a third hand. iDiddy gives you freedom to walk, run, or lounge. Because itís wearable, you can keep it conveniently under a shirt, jacket or sweater if you donít want prying eyes to see it. iDiddy lets you enjoy your iPod more."
Native Instruments has announce the Akoustik Piano, a new sample-based software instrument that "brings four classic pianos to life with unprecedented authenticity, flexibility and ease of use." Akoustik Piano "recreates each nuance and detail of the original instruments by combining elaborate multi-sampling with sophisticated emulation of soundboard resonance and pedal behavior." The suite includes three famous Grand pianos that have been at the heart of countless classical concerts and recordings for many decades - the powerful and dynamic Boesendorfer 290 Imperial, the crystal-clear and versatile Steinway D, and the gentle Bechstein D 280 with its subtle harmonic overtones. Akoustik Piano will be available in September for $350.
Ableton today offered the first public showing of Live 5 at the 2005 Summer NAMM in Indianapolis, IN. Live 5, which is now shipping, offers several new features and enhancements fo creation, production and performance, including new sound-shaping and organizational tools, "Clip Freeze" for freeing up CPU power and easing the transfer of projects between computers, automatic plug-In delay compensation, new Launchable Arrangement Locators for arrangement/song-position markers with MIDI mapping and quantized recall, and Mackie Control with support for Tascamís FW-1082/1884, Yamahaís 01X and Mackie Control. Live 5 is available now for $500 with upgrades priced at $120 (electonic) or $150 (boxed).
TLA Systems has announced an early public beta release of DragThing for Intel-based Macs. It is available to download now. This pre-release version is only of interest to developers and other users who have access to the Developer Transition Kit hardware. "We hope that it is a clear statement to existing and potential DragThing users that we will be ready to support new Apple's new Intel machines on day one [...] At this stage we are actively seeking beta testers with Intel machines to help us. Anyone who is interested and has the necessary hardware, please send an email to intel at dragthing.com."
In brief: Several readers note that iBooks and Mac minis now show shipping estimates of 5-7 business days at the online Apple Store (a sudden extension of shipping estimates sometimes indicates an imminent update).... The Macintosh Astronomy Workshop (MAW) and Imaginova have announced Jeremy Macon and Shae Trumpy as the winners of the Macintosh Astronomy Workshop Student Essay Competition.... Apple's emergence as a leader in podcasting may bring it more public scrutiny, as one report notes the availability of several "adult-oriented" podcasts on iTunes.... Griffin Technology yesterday announced its Chameleon case for the iPod mini.
Babya Software Group today unveiled Babya Logic and Babya Logic Pro, compatible with Apple Logic Pro 7 and Logic Express 7. Babya Logic 2006 is an audio production suite that includes Babya bMix, a 8-track music creation application-that enables you create music that "sounds like Abba or Michael Jackson's music style." It also includes Babya Jam Pack: Studio Tools, Babya MicroKit and UltraSynth. Babya Software Group's product manager for digital media, Alvin Novick said: "Babya Logic is a suite of audio production software that includes Jam Pack 1 which provides six impressive ways to make or edit audio, plus Babya bMix and a powerful riff and percussion generator." Babya Logic and Logic Pro 2006 will be available in late August.
Apple this year has increased its brand value, according to a new BusinessWeek Brand Equity special report. A new report of companies with values greater than $1 billion found that Apple moved up two spots to No. 41 by increasing its brand value by 16 percent to nearly $8 billion. "Apple returns as one of the top five climbers with its 16 percent growth following last year's 24 percent growth, due to its lower price point products (iPod shuffle and Mac mini) and the success of iTunes," according to Macworld UK. Coca-Cola was No. 1 again in the ranking with a brand value of $67.5 billion.
Apple's emergence as a leader in podcasting may bring it more public scrutiny, as one report notes the availability of several "adult-oriented" podcasts on iTunes. Analysts say that the acceptance of amateur podcasts has inherent risks, and while users can let the company know if they object to certain content (as the company provides no specific guidelines), Apple says it tries to review as many submissions as it can for "really obvious" adult content, according to the Wall Street Journal report. "As podcasting reaches a more mainstream audience, the more risque audio shows -- and Apple's role in distributing them -- could come under greater scrutiny. Apple declined to say whether any of its users have complained about the adult podcasts, which can be downloaded by anyone regardless of age. The company said it could potentially pull programs that it deems too explicit, but declined to say whether it has done so yet."
Ikivo AB, a provider of Mobile SVG tools, today announced that Ikivo Animator 1.1 is now shipping. The latest version of the mobile content authoring solution now includes a numerous new features including opacity and gradient support and extensive preview profiles. Ikivo Animator is a Mobile SVG software application for producing high-quality SVG Tiny animations. Designed to work with Adobe Creative Suite, Ikivo Animator integrates with Adobe Illustrator CS and Adobe GoLive CS to help designers and developers rapidly design, animate, test, and deploy rich Mobile SVG content to mass-market devices. Ikivo Animator enables designers to move, scale, rotate, and change the attributes of SVG Tiny content over time, as well as to embed interactivity. It is available for $350.
Apple ranks No. 1 as the most innovative company in the world in BusinessWeek's latest special report. The "Get Creative!" survey polled nearly 1000 senior executives--nearly 25 percent of whom ranked Apple as the most innovative, more than double the next highest rank company. 3M was ranked No. 2 with nearly 12 percent of the votes. Microsoft, GE, Sony, Dell, IBM, Google, P&G, and Nokia round out the top 10, respectively. "CEO Steve Jobs has turned Apple into the paragon of the creative corporation, and with the evolution of the economy toward creativity underway, companies throughout the world are deconstructing Apple's success in design and innovation," according to the report. BusinessWeek's special report, "Get Creative!," is featured in the August 1st issue, on newsstands July 25th and will soon be available on the website.
SubRosaSoft.com today released FileSalvage 4.1, an update to its file recovery software for Mac OS X. The software adds detailed logging and the ability to process disk images. The company also said the update allows defense attorneys, law enforcement and corporate agencies to access EnCase, Unix DDM, CopyCatX, etc. image file systems without purchasing expensive computer forensics software. FileSalvage is a powerful Mac OS X application for data recovery that can retrieve deleted files, rescue data from corrupted media, and recover lost files a crashed hard drive or storage device. It supports many media devices, including Mac OS hard drives, USB keys, PC drives, Linux disks, FLASH cards, CDs, DVDs, etc. FileSalvage runs on Mac OS X 10.3 or later and is available for $90 (with a $10 discount offered for electronic delivery).
Edirol has launched previewed the world's first professional Hi-Speed USB (USB 2.0) multi-channel audio device for Mac OS X Tiger. The company previewed its UA-1000 and UA-101 USB 2.0 Audio Interfaces with new support for Mac OS X Tiger. "Edirol pioneered USB 2.0 audio interfaces with the UA-1000 in March of 2003 and is now the first company to support multi-channel Hi-Speed USB audio on both Windows XP and Mac OS X Tiger. Edirol was also the first company to fully support and implement class-compliant FireWire Core Audio drivers for Mac OS X Panther when it introduced the FA-101 in January 2004." A preview beta version of the driver for Mac OS X Tiger is currently available; the official driver release is expected fall of 2005. [driver not yet available]
Now AAPL Stock: 94.02 ( -2.58 )
Apple brings iTunes Movie Trailers app to Canada
After five years, Apple has expanded its iTunes Movie Trailers app for iOS to Canada. As of Saturday, the free app allows movie buffs to see HD movie trailers for new studio and independent features, and explore some other movie-related extras such as photos, behind-the-scenes footage, or clips from upcoming films. Users can save trailers for quick access, read reviews from RottenTomatoes.com within the app, use AirPlay to send them to an Apple TV, share trailers, and peruse the top movie charts. http://apple.co/1UUKtwr
Apple expands CloudKit API, provides web interface
On Friday, Apple notified developers that it was expanding a feature of CloudKit to allow for server-to-server web service requests. "In addition to providing a web interface for users to access the same data as your app, you can now easily read and write to the CloudKit public database from a server-side process or script with a server-to-server key," Apple said in its announcement. Previously, interaction with the CloudKit public database was limited to apps and web only. http://apple.co/20h1RwP
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,¬†Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk¬†Drive,¬†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