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KeynotePro today released KeyStation and KeyStation HD, a presenter/kiosk-mode hybrid theme for Apple's Keynote software designed to make creating interactive presentations and Keynote-powered kiosks fast and easy. The KeyStation Eclipse themes are built using a multi-layered, semi-translucent framework that reveals anything layered underneath. The themes include photo mask overlays--bordered and shadowed elements that show exactly where to mask imagery that allow the placement of photos over custom backgrounds without modifying the overall design. The overlay provides the flexibility to use the exclusive Quartz Composer motion backgrounds included with KeyStation Eclipse on any layout in a presentation, including photo masters. KeyStation Eclipse Pro edition is available for $30, while the standard edition is priced at $30.
Google--the world's largest search engine--is developing a beta version of its Google Earth geographical satellite imagery and mapping application for Mac OS X. The application accepts addresses, famous locations, and search terms such as "pizza parlor," and will then "fly" from space to the designated address or location via satellite imagery. Users can then zoom in on the aerial satellite view of the search location, view buildings and landscapes, or tilt and rotate the view to see 3D terrain and buildings. Google Earth also offers driving directions and lets users search for schools, parks, restaurants, and hotels. The application includes multiple layer support, allowing users to annotate satellite views and combine multiple layers of information such as restaurant locations, driving directions and service stations.
FireWireDirect.com today unveiled the HSB12-RM, its FireWire 12-bay rack-mount system offering up to six terabytes of storage with support for paired RAID level zero. The HSB12-RM utilizes cost-effective 3.5-inch IDE/PATA hot-swappable hard disk drives, and takes advantage of standard partitions, mirroring, striping, or any combination thereof. The system offers support for up to 12 3.5-inch IDE/PATA drives contained within a 3U rack height for space conservation. The device is 48Bit LBA compliant, supporting up to 500GB hard disks with a cooling system to improve drive reliability. The rack-mount system is intended for use with servers delivering large amounts of storage and applications that require enhanced accessibility and serviceability. The HSB12-RM is available starting at $750 from FirewireDirect.com
Microsoft today said that the Xbox 360 shortages are now being caused strictly by a lack of chips, reminiscent of IBM's G5 processor shortage earlier last year and the same problems that delayed the launch of the iMac G5. Microsoft's CEO Steve Ballmer said "in these new consumer electronics devices based on new chips, there's always the question of what yield will you get out of the manufacturing process of the new chip. We're getting a little less, but not much less than the yields we expected, and we know that the yields we expected will probably outrun supply. [...] We decided to go ahead and launch rather than wait until post-Christmas and get a few million units out into the hands of users. We're doing our best," according to Next Generation.
EzGear today introduced ezArmor nano, its protective case for iPod nano made from 100 percent anodized aircraft grade aluminum. The case is precision molded, designed to perfectly fit the profile of the iPod while protecting the device against scratching, shocks, and collisions. A clear protective screen and a clickwheel cutout offer unfettered access to the digital music player while it rests in the case, while a neoprene lining holds the iPod securely in place. The ezArmor nano ships with a removable belt clip and neck strap, and is available in standard aluminum or Onyx black (shown at right) for $30.
Pole Position Software today released LANrev 1.5, an update to its enterprise management software that adds integration with Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS), as well as significant performance gains. The application can transfer data from a Macintosh to an SMS database, allowing management of the data from within the SMS framework to further leverage previous costs, increased efficiency, and add functionality to existing tools. LANrev also eases software deployment, asset management, remote configuration, patch management, and software license monitoring. The software is built from the ground up on a modular architectural base, supports both Macintosh and Microsoft Windows, and is scalable to support large corporate networks. LANrev 1.5 requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later (pricing was unavailable).
A Bear Stearns retail survey found that demand for Apple's video iPod is matching demand for the company's iPod nano, and may be proving even more popular in some retail locations. Current demand for iPods is so great that tight supplies are driving customers to seek out other MP3 players from Apple's competitors. Bear Stearns found that iPods and laptops are still the most sought after technology categories for the second week of its retail holiday survey, according to a report from Reuters. Bear Stearns interviewed 36 randomly selected stores from 20 states regarding sales relative to expectations, inventory, and pricing trends for its survey--which excluded direct selling channels and Apple Stores.
Sirius Satellite Radio's CEO Mel Karmazin recently spoke with Apple's CEO Steve Jobs about working together [subscription required], though such an agreement is "unlikely" according to one Sirius executive. Sirius chief financial officer David Frear yesterday at a media conference in New York said that Sirius's technology duplicates some of the functions of Apple's iPod music player, which may make any partnership unlikely, according to the New York Post. The S50 portable satellite radio from Sirius that was introduced earlier this year allows customers to download media, and provides fast-forward and rewind capabilities. The device also stores music files, posing a key threat to Apple's digital-music dominance and would lower profits for music labels. "The combination of MP3 functionality and satellite is complementary," Frear said at the conference.
Hoodman has announced a new flat panel display hood, the E-1323. Crafted with graphic designers in mind, the hood features a neutral gray interior to promote optimum eye performance when viewing color, and offers glare-free viewing for color calibration. The E-1323 hood universally fits 13-23 inch flat panel monitors, mounting to the top and back of the display with Velcro tabs while resting on the front bezel. The E-1323 hood is available for $50 from hoodmanusa.com.
PodGear today launched a black limited edition version of HouseParty, its iPod-based stereo speaker system. Designed to sync, charge, and playback music from a variety of iPods, the mini system delivers 2x6W of stereo sound. "HouseParty offers a total solution for any recent iPod. As well as great sound, it will charge your iPod (3G, 4G/Photo, 5G/Video), iPod mini, iPod nano or iPod Shuffle, and even enables synchronisation with your computer over USB." The system includes support for the Shuffle, Mini, Nano, and 20GB iPod via included adapters. It also features a USB port for syncing the iPod with a PC, auxillary line-in input for attaching other music devices, and "funky blue LEDs" to light up the iPod. The £50 system is available in white as well.
Motorola and Burton Snowboards today announced their new Bluetooth-enabled Audex Jacket Series. The new Audex jacket allows winter sports enthusiasts to control any Bluetooth phone (wirelessly) and iPod (wired) using a special 'control panel'. Jointly developed by Motorola and Burton to bring "wearable technology" to active consumers, the jacket is designed for both amateur rider or professional users. "The Audex jacket line is a combination of Bluetooth Wireless technology from Motorola and Burton snowboarding gear, resulting in outerwear that acts as the control center for handsfree communication and entertainment while on the slopes ... or wherever a consumer may go." It is available starting at $600.
Independent game and software company Midori has announced "Smack Solitaire," a set of 30 solitaire games developed for Mac OS X. "In the set, players have a vast variety of Solitaire games from which to choose and will be able to enjoy and play through the the whole collection over a long, long period of time. Smack Solitaire players will get a taste of the most popular Solitaire card games known including the ever popular Klondike, as well as other Solitaire games that are as stimulating and entertaining but also that have entirely different types of game play." A free demo is available for download. The full version is $20 (€20).
Griffin Technology today announced that its updated iTrip (pictured at right) is now available in black to match the new black iPods and debuted a new wall charger for all iPods. Compatible with all full-sized dock connector iPods (and made especially with the newest fifth-generation black iPod with video in mind), the new iTrip offers superior performance and innovative features, including a large, easy to read backlit LCD screen makes setting its digital tuner easy and intuitive. It also features a convenient switch on the side of the iTrip to select a broadcast frequency. The device remembers its settings for convenience to help reduce the number of times a user has to adjust the frequency. The compact, self-contained design is compatible with the iPod photo, iPod U2, and third-, fourth-, and fifth-generation iPods. It is available for $50.
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Apple to open R&D center in India
A new report says that Apple will be opening a new technology center in Hyderabad, India, helping to boost the city's growing reputation as a tech center. The facility would operate within the WaveRock facility, and create 4,500 new jobs at a cost of around $25 million. In 2015, India surpassed the $1 billion in yearly sales milestone, and Apple has recently received permission to open retail stores in the country under its own control, an exception to rules that usually block foreign ownership. http://zd.net/1SMBVu4
Google killing Picasa starting May 1
Google Photos head Anil Sabharwal confirmed in a blog post today that the search engine giant will be shutting down acquisition Picasa. Support and downloads for the desktop application will terminate on March 15 with the application continuing to work for the time being. The transition to Google Photos truly commences on May 1, with deprecation of some Picasa API calls happening shortly thereafter. Users that have Google Photos access will find their photos already migrated. A mass-download tool for users not wishing to use Google Photos will be available sometime after May 1. http://bit.ly/1SmV2KH
Rogue Amoeba Piezo updated, departing App Store
In order to continue working on audio capture tool Piezo, developer Rogue Amoeba has simultaneously updated the app to version 1.5, and announced that it will pull version 1.2.6 from the Mac App Store. Customers who own the Mac App Store version have a one-time migration process to the Rogue Amoeba-served version. The company notes that the sandboxing restriction placed on Mac App Store versions "effectively stopped our ability to upgrade Piezo in any meaningful way." [8.80MB] http://bit.ly/1PIjz7l
FCC spectrum auction will happen without Google
After throwing its hat in earlier, Google (and associated companies) has declared that it is not participating in this year's FCC spectrum auction. A company spokeswoman said of the auction that "like all those interested in improved connectivity and equitable access, we'll be following the upcoming spectrum auction closely. That said, we have not filed to participate." http://on.recode.net/1oy5LWk
iPad Air 3, iPhone 5se sold Friday after launch?
Reverting the way products are actually released by Apple after an announcement to the way it was a decade ago, reports are circulating that new products revealed at a March announcement will go on sale the Friday immediately following the unveil. Slated to appear at a conjectural Tuesday, March 15 event are a new Apple four-inch phone with more up to date internals currently referred to as the iPhone 5se, and a new iPad Air 3 model with Smart Connector and other enhancements. http://bit.ly/1o7mqiY
Lexmark prevails in toner import appeal
Printer manufacturer Lexmark has won an appeal on the third-party US resale of its printer cartridges originally destined for markets outside North America. The appeals court ruled in a 10-2 vote in favor of Lexmark's demand to stop the sale and against Impression Products, both on the toner cartridge resale matter, as well as a related matter regarding overturning the reseller's refilling one-use cartridges and selling those in the US market. The ruling has ramifications in the tech industry, as well as the pharmaceutical and medical technology markets. Impression Products promises an appeal before the supreme court. http://reut.rs/1SLVmmG
AT&T expands BOGO promo to iPhone 6s
Beginning today, new and existing AT&T customers can purchase a new iPhone 6s and get another one free when adding a second line. Over the weekend, customers must purchase two phones through AT&T Next (one can be an existing number), and add both phones to a qualified plan. AT&T notes that "after three bill cycles or less" the account will start to receive up to $650 spread out over 30 monthly bill credits to offset the cost of the installment plan for the phone. Taxes are due at time of sale. http://soc.att.com/1SLUP4k