Epson has announced a new line of ink jet printers for home and small office use. These new models include one single-function printer -- the Epson Stylus C88 -- and five all-in-one devices -- the Epson Stylus CX7800, CX5800F, CX4800, CX4200, and CX3810 -- that all utilize Epson's new DURABrite Ultra pigment ink. This new formulation of DURABrite pigment ink provides customers with fade-resistance, water-resistance and smudge-resistance
Brother today launched its versatile new QL-650TD 'Time & Date' direct thermal Label Printer. It produces easy-peel labels with accurate time and date information and a message of your choice -- all without needing to be tied to a PC. The Brother QL-650TD offers an ideal feature set for mid- and low-volume applications, combining a print speed up to 56 labels per minute, 300 dpi printing, low maintenance, low cost of ownership, easy-to-load label rolls, plus the versatility to print on a wide variety of pre-sized and free-length paper and film labels, up to 2.4" wide. In addition, labels can be custom designed on a PC using the included label design software, and then downloaded and stored into the QL-650TD's built-in memory, for future standalone printing. The QL-650TD is $200.
Pod2Mob today announced the launch of its podcast streaming service, which allows podcasts to be played on mobile handsets. The software, which Pod2Mob claims is the first to market, could increase the podcasting audience from roughly 25 million to an estimated 700 million listeners. Looking forward, sales of mobile phones are predicted to reach one billion annually by 2009, according to Gartner Research. The software provides an open directory where podcast feeds can be added, which the system automatically tracks and updates. Any podcast can be streamed to the phone, and the software enables a favorites feature for easy storage and retrieval of desired podcasts.
Fastmac today announced that it has begun shipping "the longest lasting battery upgrade" for Apple’s 4th generation iPod with Click-wheel: "All customers that placed pre-orders through the company’s website will receive their shipments in the next few days, along with their free gift with purchase." Fastmac has also extended the free charger with iPod battery offer until midnight, August 31st, 2005. Orders placed via the company web site will receive their choice of a free travel charger or cigarette lighter adapter. Fastmac's TruePower battery upgrades replace the iPod's original internal battery with a larger capacity and longer lasting advanced power cell battery. The upgrades offer 20%-70% more capacity than the original OEM battery and up to 7.5 times as many charge cycles, according to the company.
Apple's competitors Samsung, Sony, MSN, Creative Labs and others will turn up the heat this holiday season hoping to seize some of the market that has been dominated by Apple since the birth of the iPod revolution. Apple currently commands 80-percent of the MP3 player market and 75-percent of online music sales and with the debut of podcasting generated two million subscriptions in less than a week. Senior research analyst Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray, however, commented that "it's pretty much impossible" for anyone to sustain an 80-percent market share in a consumer electronics business for more than two or three years. Record executives are eagerly awaiting the increased competition, because a less dominant Apple spells a more robust market for digital music, according to Reuters.
IOGEAR today launched its new 5-Button USB Laser Mouse. The mouse incorporates an 'instant access' button that allows users to easily open any application, while the customizable shortcut wheel gives users the power to easily copy, paste, print, save or complete a variety of tasks commonly used in each application. IOGEAR says the USB Laser Mouse also provides 30 times more tracking power than traditional optical mice by using a Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Laser (VCSEL) as its light source. "The 1600 dpi mouse offers greater accuracy in space-restricted work environments, and users can work on almost any surface, including glass." IOGEAR has also incorporated side-buttons on the mouse to go back and forth between Web pages. It is available immediately for $40. (The mouse requires additional software to enable all buttons on Mac OS X.)
Audiofile today released Wave Editor, its document-based digital audio waveform editor software. Designed in Cocoa from the ground up, Wave Editor takes advantage of CoreAudio, Quartz Extreme, and other Mac OS X features. The software incorporates standard audio editing elements while providing other, more advanced features such as "audio layering", allowing audio professionals to layer audio of any rate, bit depth, number of channels, add audio units and fades on top of each other, edit them, and then flatten the resulting file. Wave Editor requires Mac OS X 10.4 and is available for $250.
Aspyr Media today began shipping LEGO Star Wars: The Video Game, which allows players to re-live the most memorable scenes from the prequel Star Wars film trilogies as unique LEGO characters: "For the first time ever, one of the world’s most successful film series meets one of the world’s favorite toys in an epic new video game. LEGO Star Wars: The Video Game features a game world and characters built from virtual LEGO bricks that allows gamers to play through the whole story of Episode I: The Phantom Menace, Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Episode III: Revenge of the Sith." Gamers can play as more than 30 of their favorite Star Wars characters through more than 18 levels, experiencing the entire storyline of the first three movies in the Star Wars saga. Additionally, players can enjoy a two-player cooperative play mode that lets a second player drop in and out of the action without interrupting gameplay. It is available now for $30.
Canon today launched its new compact PowerShot A620, A610 and A410, its AA-battery powered digital cameras that are esigned for both novice and entry-level photographers. The PowerShot A620 and A610 digital cameras feature a sleek new body design and powerful new features, including: 7.1 and 5.0 megapixel CCDs (respectively), 4x optical zoom, a maximum aperture of f/2.8-4.1, both manual and automatic (20) shooting modes, a 2.0-inch vari-angle LCD screen, a 9-piont AiAF "smart" autofocus system, option vertical/horizontal grid lines, and full compatibility with wide-angle, telephoto and macro supplementary lenses. The PowerShot A410 delivers a 3.2 megapixel CCD image sensor, 3.2x optical zoom lens, a 1.5-inch LCD screen, eight scene modes, VGA movie mode, and USB 2.0 connectivity. The Canon PowerShot A620 ($400), A610 ($300) and A410 ($150) digital cameras will be available in September.
Canon today launched three new design-oriented digital cameras: the compact 7.1 and 5.0 megapixel PowerShot SD550 and SD450 Digital ELPH models and the stylish new 5.0 megapixel PowerShot SD30 Digital ELPH series, which focuses on fall colors and optical zoom lenses. The SD550 and SD450, which join Canon's line-up between the SD500 and SD400 models (which will continue to be available), offer consumers a bigger 2.5-inch LCD screen with new UI display. Other new features on the new SD550 and SD450 Digital ELPH models include 3.0x optical zoom lenses, four new scene modes (Foliage, Snow, Beach and Fireworks), compositional grid lines, 30 fps VGA/60 fps QVGA movie recording with sound, movie playback at varying speeds, slide show transition effects, menu shortcuts and more.
Canon today announced three portable photo printing solutions at a new entry-level price range. The SELPHY CP510 model will carry an estimated selling price of $100 and is "compact and lightweight enough to fit into a tote bag." At $150, Canon's Compact Photo Printer SELPHY CP710 model lets consumers enjoy a 1.5 inch color LCD screen with built-in image information displayed and memory card slots for CF, SD, MMC and Memory Stick formats. Both printers feature additional USB ports for connection to a PC or external USB cable. These two new printers can create high-quality 300 dpi bordered or borderless color photographs. The SELPHY DS810 Compact Photo Printer features Canon FINE technology, with a higher 4800 x 1200 dpi resolution. Canon also launched its new PIXMA photo all-in-one printer series. The devices offer print, copy and scan functions. All four new Canon PIXMA photo all-in-one printers use Canon's ChromaLife100 system, which produces prints on select genuine Canon photo papers that resist fading for up to 100 years when stored in an archival quality photo album.
Canon today launched its new flagship PowerShot S80 digital camera, which features 8.0 megapixels of resolution and a 28mm wide lens. The sleek, compact camera offers a large 2.5-inch LCD screen for easy viewing, a high-quality XGA movie mode, high-speed USB 2.0 support, and a high quality, wide-angle UA (Ultra High Refractive Index Glass Aspherical) lens with a 3.6x wide-angle optical zoom (35mm film equivalent: 28-100mm). Canon says the camera allows users to capture a wider image area than most other compact digital cameras on the market. The camera delivers XGA movie resolution (1024x768), a realtime histogram, improved autofocus, refined exposure control, 21 shooting modes, and more. It will be available in October for $550.
Belkin today announced TuneSync, its new iPod dock with built-in USB 2.0 hub and stereo-out jack. Featuring five USB 2.0 ports with LED indicators, TuneSync charges and syncs iPods and iPod minis while providing port and power status. Over-current detection and safety technology is included to help protect connected devices. Designed to work seamlessly with both USB 1.1 and USB 2.0 devices, the TuneSync lets you connect up to five USB 2.0 devices, such as your printer, scanner, hard drive, digital camera, thumb drive, media readers, and more. It also includes LEDs to monitor device activity for master power status and all port activity. TuneSync will begin shipping in North America in November for $60.
Roxio officially announced Toast 7 today, a major upgrade to its CD & DVD burning suite. Last week, we reported that Toast 7 would ship at the end of the month with several major new features. These features include multi-image High Definition slideshows with pan and zoom effects, transitions and background soundtracks, audio DVDs with over 50 hours of rich Dolby quality music and advanced navigation, and data spanning, which allows users to backup large files, folders and applications across multiple CDs and DVDs. Toast 7 also "breaks new ground" by becoming the "first third-party application on any platform to support DivX 6." The integration of the latest powerful compression technology allows users, in a single step, to turn DivX format files into DVD-Video discs. In addition, users are able to convert any video file to DivX and turn iMovie HD and FinalCut HD projects into high-definition video discs.
In Brief: To celebrate its one-year anniversary, Advenio is having a $5 off sale and is giving away two Amazon.com gift certificates (use the 'MGONEYEAR' discount coupon code).... O'Reilly's MacDevCenter has published an article on the open-source ClamAV antivirus software for Mac OS X (and whether or not Mac users need antivirus software).... The Fast Icon Studio has released a new icon set for use in your desktop or instant messenger: Fast Emoticons, which offers seven (7) freeware icons "developed in Aqua style."... Mac minis are being used as affordable and robust control units for live event lighting equipment.... CS Odessa's Back to School offer combines special academic prices on ConceptDraw software for up to a 60 percent discount.
Barsark today announced the availability of Navicast 3.0, its professional web TV system with a revamped movie publication and system management tool, dubbed Navicast eZender. Navicast 3.0 boasts improved support for both multiple web TV channels and multiple users. The package consists of a movie publishing/system management tool and Navicast eZender, a streaming web TV channel displaying the published movies. The publishing process consists of drag-and-drop; Navicast eZender automates the publishing process, movie compression, uploading and indexing. Navicast features cross-platform support for Macintosh and Windows, improved ratings and reviews control with Navicast eZender, better stats reporting, and more. A free two-week trial period is available, while hosted Navicast packages are available from $170 per month.
Fujitsu [site not updated] today announced a 2.5" 160GB laptop hard drive. The 4200 RPM drive, which ships at the end of the year, offers the most capacity for a 2.5" laptop drive. The SATA drives also boast low power consumption, high shock tolerance, and quiet operation. It also features a hardware accelerator that maximizes Native Command Queuing (NCQ) performance, an important feature that enables the hard disk drive controller to intelligently and simultaneously queue and reorder up to 32 instructions, resulting in a significant improvement in overall hard disk drive performance. Fujitsu cites a growing trend towards laptops increasing demand for high-capacity 2.5" drives.
Ambrosia Software has released EasyEnvelopes, a free widget for Mac OS X Tiger (10.4) Dashboard for easily printing envelopes. "You can use EasyEnvelopes to quickly print a one-off envelope, or utilize its tight integration with Address Book which allows you to quickly find a person's address to print an envelope for. It handles USPS bar codes for both 5 and 9 digit bar codes, and boasts many time-saving nicities." EasyEnvelopes works with any country's addressing format, and is fully international-friendly and localizable. It lets you control the size of your envelope, the formatting for the return address and mailing address, and much more.
OpenOSX has began shipping OpenWeb 3.0, a complete, ready-to-use, stand-alone application featuring Apache 2.0.54 along with a host of fully-configured web applications, servers and extensions. The new OpenOSX product is the first version of OpenWeb requiring "zero installation and support" for Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger" and brings major new versions of most all of the included software while adding a functional "wiki" that allows for user generated/editable content. OpenWeb includes a secure shopping cart, a content management and publishing system, a "wiki" for user contributed content, web-based graphical server administration tools (supporting DNS, SSL, Apache, MySQL, Samba and more), SQL database backends, a search engine/spider, bulletin board systems, advertising management, project collaboration, a workgroup web-based calendar, and more. It is available immediately for $60.
Yahoo Japan has launched a new online music service that allows customers to listen for free to any of 100,000 songs before buying them as the company tries to counter Apple's iTunes Music Store, according to The Associated Press. The aggressive marketing move by the nearly 5-year old Yahoo Japan service comes a few weeks after Apple's launched iTunes for Japan. "Other Internet music services in Japan offer only 30 seconds from free sampling, making Yahoo's the first to offer free listening to full-length songs.... The free songs will have sound quality comparable to that of FM radio, but listeners will be able to pay to download and save higher quality recordings. While users won't be able to choose the free songs or save them on computers, Yahoo thinks the offering will help generate increased advertising revenue and traffic at its sites." Yahoo will reportedly allow companies such as Toyota and Asahi to advertise on video commercials before the free songs, according to the report.
Now AAPL Stock: 97.59 ( + 1.16 )
QuarkXPress 2016 now shipping
Quark is now shipping QuarkXPress 2016, the newest version of Quark's graphic design and desktop publishing software that now features near-WYSIWYG fixe HTML5 publishing as well as improved operability with InDesign and Illustrator and support for multi-Color Gradient Blends, OpenType Stylistic Sets, a Color Picker (Eyedropper tool), Touchpads for Pinch and Zoom (Mac only) and more. Users on any previous version of QuarkXPress (versions 3-10) can upgrade to version 2016 for $350, while QuarkXPress 2015 users can upgrade to 2016 for $180; new licenses are available for $850 (education licenses are available for $90). http://bit.ly/1OL23Pu
Kanex debuts GoPower USB-C for MacBooks
Kanex today introduced its GoPower USB-C, a portable power solution designed to charge a USB-C MacBook on the go along with an iPhone or iPad simultaneously. Featuring 15,000 mAh of power--capable of charging an iPhone 6s seven times or the USB-C MacBook one full time--the GoPower USB-C Portable Battery features one 3A USB-C port and one 2.4A port for other devices, priority charging detection technology and a pass-thru charging to your devices when the battery is plugged into a power source. http://bit.ly/1TKaf8z
Ultimate Ears debuts UE Roll 2 speaker
On Tuesday, audio accessory maker Ultimate Ears unveiled a new version of the UE Roll Bluetooth speaker. The new UE Roll 2, which sells for $100, looks identical to the previous version, but gets about 15 percent louder. In addition, the unit now supports a Bluetooth source signal up to 100 feet away, an improvement on the original's 65-foot limit. While both the old and new versions of the UE Roll offer an IPX7 waterproof rating, the company now includes a blow-up "floaty" with the speaker to avoid the risk of prolonged exposure. The new unit will begin general shipping next month. http://bit.ly/1TJWE0Z
Philips launches Hue White Ambiance bulbs
Philips latest HomeKit-compatible Hue light bulbs have hit the market. The new Hue White Ambiance bulbs are designed to allow users to control their color temperature to enhance either focus, or create a more relaxing tone. Combined with the latest update to the Philips Hue app, the new bulbs can be set according to user "routines." The "wake-up" mode gently turns up the brightness of the bulb, while conversely, the "go to sleep" mode gradually reduces the color temperature and brightness. The Philips Hue White Ambiance starter kit retails for $130, while single bulbs sell for $30. http://bit.ly/1TJT3Qn
Pluggable Technologies three-display USB-C dock
Peripheral company Plugable Technologies today launched the industry's first wave of USB-C docking stations with both Power Delivery and DisplayPort Alternate Mode support. The Plugable UD-CA1 Docking Station integrates support for both of these new capabilities, along with the full set of standard USB docking features like wired network, audio, and extra USB ports. Model UD-ULTCDL builds on this, adding support for three total displays using DisplayLink USB virtual graphics technology. The UD-CA1 retails for $129, with the UD-ULTCDL selling for $179, and available soon. http://bit.ly/1TrVVTJ
Spotify deploys new $15 family plan
Spotify has today launched a new family program. Up to six family members can have individual accounts for $15 per month for the group. All current "Premium for Family" members will be migrated to the new program. The new plan is available today globally, minus Canada. http://spoti.fi/1OSJrCK
Speck CandyShell Clear with Glitter case
Speck today announced CandyShell Clear with Glitter. Thousands of tiny pieces of glitter are embedded within the case, with what the company calls "military-grade drop protection in a slim profile." CandyShell Clear with Glitter is available now on Speck's website for $40 and up. http://bit.ly/1OSHIgM