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Apple: 7.6 market-share
A new report from USA Today's research branch indicates that Apple's market-share has reached an all-time high of 7.6 percent as of May 2007, more than doubling since the last similar survey in May 2004 which revealed a market-share of 3.2 percent. The research note does not indicate whether this figure is representative of the United States personal computer market, or the International computer market, though the former is assumed. It also does not cite any further statistical data or basis for the number. The note also quotes some numbers regarding Apple, including shipment of 21.1 million iPods in the fourth quarter of 2006, and 2.5 billion songs sold through the iTunes Store.
MacBook Pro 17" Hi-res
Computerworld reports (with images) that the screen on the new, higher-resolution MacBook Pro much brighter and clearer than its predecessors, representing the best LCD screen that Apple has yet shipped in a portable. The system uses a 1,920-by-1,200-pixel screen and features a 2.4-GHz Core 2 Duo with a "Santa Rosa" chip set for better performance and longer battery life (see our initial coverage of the new MacBook Pro models). Author Ken Mingis writes "There's been a lot of chatter in various online forums from would-be buyers about whether the hi-res screen makes text too small to see. The higher the resolution, the more desktop space you have, and the smaller the menus and text get. Indeed, the menus are slightly smaller, and I did bump the default text size in Safari up a couple of points. (I recommend Optima, 16 point, by the way.) But the added pixels also make this the sharpest screen I've used, and that includes the Vaio."
Interarchy 8.5.3 file transfer application for Mac OS X with support for FTP, FTP/SSH, FTP/SSL-TLS, HTTP, HTTPs, WebDAV, WebDAVs and iDisk. This release is recommended for all Interarchy 8.x users. It will once again retrieve the ftp proxy username and password from the System Keychain and restores the Download menu item that was accidently removed from Interarchy 8.5. It also fixes a crash that may occur if an AppleScript file in the Scripts folder does not have a valid filename extension and another crash that may occur when closing the Bookmarks window while a Net Disk is syncing. [Download - 7.8MB]
Temperature Monitor 4.2 is a system temperature utility shows measured readings, history data, extreme values and the permissible limits for the sensors. This release adds support for the new MacBook Pro series introduced in June 2007 and support for a variety of internal temperature sensors of new hard drive models. This affects old Macintosh computers not supporting the AHCI standard. Also, alert panels now display the exact time when the alert situation is detected.[Download - 2.8MB]
YummySoup! 1.3.1 ($20) recipe organization tool. Allows users to browse recipes with the adjustable full screen view, that gently fades into view. Can use Apple remote to flip through your recipes, or have your directions read aloud. In this release descriptions have been added to recipes and the sidebar now supports expansion state preservation. If you leave a group expanded, it will remain expanded on the next launch. Users can also now edit items in the sidebar just by double clicking them. Another new feature is that the library is saved every ten minutes in addition to saving on quit. [Download - 2.8MB]
MacA&D OSX 2.2 ($500) for system and software modeling, requirement management, code generation, reengineering and project reports. This release supports PHP design and code generation plus enhanced requirement management, diagram generation and editing. The new Global Search dialog scans thousands of text files and folders in seconds for matching text or wildcard patterns. The new release also enables template changes to be applied across existing entries. Requirement entries can be checked for missing or inconsistent data. The enhanced Requirement Matrix window presents data through user-defined views and queries.
PhoneValet Message Center 5.1.1 ($170) telephony product that creates a virtual call center with automated attendant, unlimited voice mail call tree, call blocking, recording, logging and screening, automated dialing and Interactive Voice Response (IVR) capabilities. The new release adds support for additional audio formats, enhancing compatibility with many Treo and other smart phones. Now owners of these wireless phones can receive voice mail messages by email, and listen to them on their handsets. This version also contains enhancements to PhoneValet's caller-specific voice mail features and stability enhancements. Phone Valet requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 later, QuickTime 6.5 or later and an available USB port.
Sprint seeking WiMax help?
A change in plans suggested by Sprint may have significant impact on mobile broadband in the United States. The company's VP for global broadband strategy, Don Stroberg, is now saying that it is investigating options for a joint venture or spin-off of its WiMax division, which would offer a two-fold advantage. The first is a "coordinated, cohesive use of the 2.5 spectrum," as both Sprint and Clearwire are planning to build nationwide networks, possibly creating unnecessary duplication. Clearwire has been suggested as the most likely partner for a joint venture.
Mac OS X 10.4.10
Apple's latest update to Mac OS X 10.4.10 (PPC, Intel, Server PPC, Server Universal) contains enhancements to Bluetooth, support for third-party applications, USB connectivity, and minor issues like responsiveness when using the Control-Eject key combination to display a shutdown dialog. The update is recommended for all PowerPC and Intel-based Mac computers currently running Mac OS X Tiger.
Playboy Cellphone Tip
Playboy magazine is looking to develop a custom-branded (if not custom-designed) cellphone, according to a source aware of its plans. The firm is reportedly intent on offering a glossy, "upscale" device that will reflect the company's sensual but still tasteful image. The phone would have to deliver on several checklist features such as Bluetooth, a camera, and MP3 playback, the tip claims. Only a few companies have been asked to help produce the phone but should involve Chocolate producer LG as well as Motorola and Siemens.
42-inch 1080p plasma
Panasonic has announced the TH-42PZ700U, a late addition to the company's 2007 plasma lineup. It is claimed to be the only 42-inch plasma capable of 1080p, making high contrast and resolution more affordable to the average buyer. The set has a contrast ratio of 5,000:1, and is equipped with two HDMI inputs, as well as an SD slot and compatibility with EZ Sync control technology. Panasonic plans to ship the 700U in early July for $2,500.
Review, music at Scotsys
In brief: MacNN has reviewed Dodge That Anvil!, Scotsys is holding a live music day in Glasgow on June 30th, and Sonos as well as Best Buy have announced that the Sonos Digital Music System is available at more than 450 Best Buy retailers across the U.S. MacNN has reviewed Dodge That Anvil!, an easy to use diversion game for users who don't have time to enter into a massive military or fantasy campaign. The cartoon arcade-type platform features 40 levels, challenging players to control the rabbit Harvester of Eastwarren to pull carrots from the ground for points.
iRiver UNIT2 Teaser
iRiver will soon have a premium two-piece media player and docking station combo, the company announced today through a teaser page. The UNIT2 will include a detachable and fully portable player with support for music, video, and Flash movies, including over Wi-Fi. But its base will greatly expand its features, iRiver says. With 2.1-channel speakers designed by home audio expert Niro Nakamichi, the dock will play DVDs, tune TV stations, and serve up content or connections as a wireless access point. A unique metallic controller with a 78-key QWERTY keyboard will steer not only the base station but also the portable unit through Wi-Fi.
MOTOMING 3G Rumor
An enhanced version of the MOTOMING phone, reportedly trustworthy sources claim. Demonstrated at the same event which revealed the RAZR2 and a popular phone choice for months in China and other areas where its handwriting-capable touchscreen were essential, an upgrade of the device is now said to be in the works with the addition of an HSDPA modem for 3G cellular broadband in the US as well as abroad. Added performance would also see video capture from the 2-megapixel camera improve to CIF resolution (352x288) while the menus would become livelier, according to the report.
Kyocera and Puretracks
Kyocera and Canadian online music shop Puretracks today joined up to help establish what they promise will be a truly international music store. Calling it a "white label" store, Kyocera says a new version of Puretracks' service will be attached to Kyocera-made phones rather than to a particular cell provider. This would let phone users use the same general store regardless of their exact region, the company says. It would also let many smaller carriers, which are rarely able to host their own stores, offer a music service while still giving it a customized feel.
Sony VAIO RM1N workstation
Though Sony's VAIO line is more closely linked with consumer laptops, the company has just announced the VAIO RM1N, the latest in its series of desktop workstations. The system is aimed squarely at digital video editing, since it comes preloaded with Adobe Premiere Pro 2.0, and its default storage comes in the form of a 1TB RAID 0 array. It likewise comes with a jog controller, and is one of the few machines that can burn double-layer Blu-Ray discs as well as play them.
Verizon on iPhone Killer
Verizon can use services rather than devices to compete against the iPhone, the carrier's CEO Ivan Seidenberg said today at a press event during this week's NXTcomm expo. The company head dismissed notions that one or more hot devices would be the only solution to counteracting Apple's effect on the US phone market, saying that services were at least as important and would convince users to keep subscriptions where many other carriers suffer from a rapid turnover of users who sign up for but soon leave their services. Verizon's customers are typically far more loyal, Seidenberg said.
Recordare has released version 2.0 of its MusicXMLT sheet music file format, commonly used in sheet music preparation and publishing. The new version adds a compressed format that makes MusicXML files about 20 times smaller than before (the files have traditionally been very large), similar in size to the corresponding MIDI files. The compressed format also allows multimedia content to be distributed with digital sheet music. The MusicXML format was originally designed as an interchange format between different music notation applications running on Windows, Macintosh, and Linux systems. The format is available for use under a royalty-free license. It is supported by more than 75 applications including, Finale, Sibelius, SharpEye Music Reader and more. A definition of the spec, tutorial and MusicXML samples are available from this download page.
LG KU580 Introduced
LG today officially released the KU580, a phone that takes the glossy black look and touch-sensitive controls of the original Chocolate series but which adds far strong Internet abilities and a fresh design. The wider but lighter KU580 adds 3G wireless through UMTS and takes advantage of the extra abilities: a front VGA camera provides video chats while several Google utilities, including GMail and Google Maps, are preloaded for simpler messaging and route finding out of the box.
M-Audio ships Torq Xponent
M-Audio has released Torq Xponent, billed as a complete hardware and software package for computer-based DJs. The heart of the system is its MIDI control surface, which has over 64 buttons, four sliders, two scratch wheels, eight knobs and a touchpad, which keeps a DJ's hands on the Xponent for the entirety of a live event. LED meters allow users to keep an eye on levels. The corresponding software is both Mac and PC compatible, and features VST effects, a 16-cell performance sampler, and the ability to interface with programs such as iTunes, Ableton and Pro Tools without losing tempo sync. Supported music formats include AAC, MP3, Apple Lossless and more. Torq Xponent is selling for $750.
StarTech today released the SLIMDVDRW8U2, a compact burner for computer users with either ultraportable notebooks that lack optical drives or those who use the same drive for multiple systems. The Panasonic-made drive is originally built for notebooks and manages to stay travel-friendly, measuring only half an inch despite the new enclosure. Burning a single-layer DVD-R takes place at 8X speed, similar to faster notebook drives. Dual-layer discs burn at 4X while simpler DVD-RW and DVD-RAM discs burn at 6X and 5X respectively.
10m iPods in June quarter?
Apple's June quarter is likely to churn out 9.5-10 million iPod sales if the company maintains its current progress, according to Piper Jaffray senior analyst Gene Munster. "Our analysis of iPod unit data from NPD for the month of May leads us to a preliminary iPod approximation of between 9.5 million and 10 million units for the June 2007 quarter (our model calls for 10.5 million iPods in the quarter and Street consensus is 9.8 million)," the analyst said. Munster warned, however, that the approximation is based on various assumptions and is likely to change slightly after the third month of data is released.
LG HSDPA phones for Korea
Taking advantage of the SEK expo in Seoul, LG has unveiled a pair of upcoming phones. The highlight of the SH130 slider is its simplicity, since while it has HSDPA broadband -- allowing speeds up to 3.6Mbps -- it omits increasingly prevalent Korean features such as DMB TV. It will neverthless be capable of global roaming, something still rare in the country.
The KH1400 is not identified as having global roaming, but it should compensate with DMB support, aided by a screen that can be twisted to match a normal aspect ratio. Video can sent via output cable to a larger display, and still photos can be taken with a two-megapixel camera. LG has not set a timeframe for the release of either of its new products.
Verizon Adds Obopay
Verizon today revealed that it has struck a deal with Obopay to offer wireless payment through cellphones. The deal lets subscribers with supporting handsets buy items from many stores without having to carry a physical credit card. The service also acts as a virtual MasterCard account and allows fellow Obopay members to exchange money anywhere they can make a connection, Verizon says. As a backup measure, Verizon will also supply a conventional card that can send or receive money from Obopay through an ATM and other locations that might not accept wireless purchases as an option.
School switches to Mac
St. Francis Xavier University of Antigonish, Nova Scotia is officially announcing that it will move away from Windows-based PCs and standardize on Apple's Intel-based Macs beginning this fall. The school will swap out Windows PCs and replace them with Macs in labs, classrooms and offices throughout the campus. St. Francis will also openly encourage students to purchase and use Macs as their personal computers. School officials say that the motivation behind the change was partially an increase in student choice for Macs, saying the academic environment will be more relevant to students with a full Mac set-up. St. Francis has placed an order for 350 new Apple systems as the first installation of the new technology for the campus. This will include 250 iMac systems for the computer labs and 45 MacBook notebook computers for faculty members. The school has more than 4,300 students.
DWV, Ferrari speaker tower
Joining the list of products marking Ferrari's 40th anniversary, such as Vertu's Ascent phone, is the Art.Engine, a speaker tower that is more closely modelled after the car maker's aesthetics. Beyond borrowing some of the color schemes available, it is made to resemble a Ferrari engine block, and uses similar materials including aluminum and carbon fiber.
The tower is also unusual in that both the left and right channels are in the same cabinet, and it can accept wireless audio from computers running iTunes. More conventional sources must connect through RCA jacks. Interested US buyers must request pricing info; for comparison however, the British price is £18,000 ($35,788). Click below for a larger image.
iPhone Site Update Details
Apple's update of the iPhone website that accompanies the YouTube feature launch also confirms extra details about the device, Electronista has discovered. In addition to confirming the design of the iPhone dock, which remains largely unchanged from the design first seen in January, the site has also changed to reflect features that have previously gone unconfirmed. New is the ability to synchronize contacts with an "Internet service" as well as with software on Macs or PCs, Apple says. No mention has been made of which services take advantage of contacts or how the sync is performed. The page also confirms that the planned dock for the phone exists and remains unchanged from its January design.
Apple TV 1.1
An Apple TV 1.1 software update has been released. The update presumably brings YouTube functionality to the device (as previously reported), as well as resolving a potential denial of service vulnerability and arbitrary code execution vulnerability in the UPnP IGD (Internet Gateway Device Standardized Device Control Protocol) code used to create Port Mappings on home NAT gateways in the Apple TV implementation. Apple says that by sending a maliciously crafted packet, a remote attacker can trigger the overflow which may lead to an unexpected application termination or arbitrary code execution. This update addresses the issue by performing additional validation when processing UPnP protocol packets. The new release is only available directly to the Apple TV. It is not downloadable through Mac OS X or Windows, nor from the Apple site. You can manually update your Apple TV using the TV interface by selecting Settings > Update Software, or allow it to automatically update (checks are done once a week).
WiebeTech upgrades to 1TB
WiebeTech has raised the size limit of drives used in its RAID enclosures, in some cases dramatically increasing total storage. Select models in the RTX, ProSATA and SilverSATA series can now be equipped with 1TB drives, each running at 7200rpm with a SATA II connection and a 32MB buffer. This can mean up to 5TB of storage in a SilverSATA V enclosure, 6TB in an RTX600, or 8TB in a ProSATA SS8 configuration. Prices begin at $630 for SilverSATA, $760 for RTX, and $6,950 for ProSATA. The new enclosures should already be in stock.
Vista Allows Google Search
Windows Vista's next major update will let users choose a service other than Microsoft's for system-wide searches, Microsoft and the US Justice Department announced today. Responding to accusations by Google that Vista's Instant Search actively interferes with other search tools, the Redmond software developer says that Service Pack 1 for the OS will let users choose which search is the default. Links inside the Start menu and Internet Explorer will also make it easier to launch a third-party search without other companies modifying the interface themselves. The move is a "step in the right direction," Google chief legal officer David Drummond says, but should be improved to ease access to rival tools even further.
CrushFTP 4.3.1 released
CrushFTP has released a significant update to its self-titled FTP and Web server software. The latest release -- CrushFTP 4.3.1 -- offers performance improvements and can act as a full-blown Web server with support for Server Side Include (SSL) directives as well as virtual domains. CrushFTP 4.3.1 supports virtual domains on a per-user basis, increases load handling under high connection rates, and improves the Webinterface with localization. CrushFTP 4.3.1 is priced at $30 with support for 10 concurrent users, up to $100 for no limitation on concurrent users (system requirements were unavailable).
Social networking site MySpace this morning launched MySpaceIM, its first instant messaging network and a different approach compared to traditional IM networks. Instead of relying on a simple screen name, the service draws on MySpace member profiles and hooks into the site's social features. Comments, friend requests, and mail alerts arrive as soon as the messages appear, rather than coming only through e-mail; a music player will stream friends' profile songs, and finding profiles themselves speeds up, according to MySpace. New to MySpaceIM is the ability to trade short sound clips and photos as well as multi-user instant chat.
Sanyo SCP-3200 at Sprint
Sprint on Wednesday announced that it had picked up the Sanyo SCP-3200, a clamshell phone with a handful of features that lift it above strictly entry-level handsets. Bluetooth and a VGA camera add hands-free calling and photography, but the phone's distinguishing trait is its long-range wireless, according to Sprint. The 3200 includes Internet access (though likely limited to basic 1xRTT) for web browsing, mail, and picture sharing; assistive GPS support also lets the phone provide car navigation.
DTP Tools has launched a beta of its new Cross-References plugin for Adobe's InDesign CS2 and CS3. Cross-References, a modular system for referencing need, inspired by a similar feature in Adobe FrameMaker while taking a full advantage of InDesign's environment utilizing paragraph and character styles with XML driven format, the company said. The plugin can work as hyperlinks for electronic output, formats can be defined to automatically localize the reference according to the text language. References can point across files with live updates for all open documents. Users can reference file name, page number, paragraph number, paragraph text and chapter number (in CS3) as well as specify elements with their own character styles including overrides, language settings and localization alternates. Cross-References plugin is available for InDesign CS2/CS3 on both Windows and Mac OS X. A single license price is $130.
PocketMac Remote ships
Information Appliance Associates today released its new presentation tool, PocketMac Remote: the new software is designed for Intel-based Mac who want to extend the functionality of the Apple Remote. PocketMac Remote works by re-routing the play/pause, volume control and forward/back buttons so they effectively control business people's presentations in either Microsoft PowerPoint or Apple's Keynote application. "We're thrilled to release PocketMac Remote," said Tim Goggin, VP of Sales & Marketing for IAA. "With so many business people taking their PowerPoint and Keynote presentations on the road, it just makes sense to add the functionality to control those presentations with the cool little remote that comes with all of the new Intel Macs." PocketMac Remote is available for $10 and requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later.
Levi's Mobile Phone
Jeans producer Levi's today ventured into unknown territory by launching the Levi's mobile, its first cellphone. The ModeLabs-designed handset is built out of steel that not only matches the company's famous clothes but also hardens the phone against the impacts that often break other phones. A matching chain also links to a belt loop or a bag to prevent the phone from being easily stolen. The company has refrained from providing concrete hardware details but confirms a camera, music playback, and media sharing features.
Logitech V220 and More
Logitech today launched a major expansion of its notebook peripherals with a mouse joining desktop stands and travel cases. The V220 is built to be useful both at home and on the road and includes a 1,000 DPI optical sensor that gives better tracking than many other notebook mice; it also includes horizontal scrolling and an RF wireless USB adapter that stows underneath the mouse for traveling. Battery life is estimated at 6 months but can be made even longer when using an automatic power-down feature that saves energy during idle moments, Logitech says. The V220 supports both Mac OS X and Windows and will ship in July for $30.
YouTube coming to iPhone
Apple today announced that iPhone users will be able to enjoy YouTube's originally-created content on their iPhones when they begin shipping on June 29. A new Apple-designed application on iPhone will wirelessly stream YouTube's content to iPhone over Wi-Fi or EDGE networks and play it on the iPhone's 3.5-inch display. In addition, Apple announced that YouTube is now live on Apple TV, following its announcement last month. Users can download the free software update using Apple TV's built-in software update feature, and then easily navigate through YouTube's familiar video browsing categories or search for specific videos. YouTube members can also log-in to their YouTube accounts on Apple TV to view and save their favorite videos.
Yahoo up mobile offerings
Yahoo has expanded its mobile phone offerings into Asia, Canada and Europe and is revising its US services ahead of the iPhone's launch. Yahoo Go 2.0 has been in testing for since January in the United States and will now be offered in 13 countries including France, Germany, Spain, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. CNN reports that version 2.0 also lets users download Yahoo Mail, organize e-mail into folders or read file attachments. It can also search the Web on their phones for locally relevant answers or zoom in on maps with current local U.S. traffic conditions
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