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Adium 1.0.5, the latest version of the free instant messaging application for Mac OS X that can connect to AIM, MSN, Jabber, Yahoo, and more, includes several major bug fixes. It fixes inadvertent deletion of the chat transcript index after opening and closing the chat transcript viewer (this could lead to performing a full, slow re-index when next it was used) and resolves an issue with retrieval of user name and password for systemwide proxy. It also eliminates a potential crash when doing text-to-speech and does away with MSN's random "Authorization Failed" dialogs. File transfer progress for transfers on MSN is now correctly displayed, and the Hotmail Inbox for MSN now works more reliably. Finally, Google Talk accounts will now import buddies from your Gmail address book. Adium 1.0.5 requires OS X 10.3.9 or greater.
Interactive Solutions has announced MovieWorks Deluxe will be renamed to MediaWorks. Simultaneously, the company has developed and later this month will ship a Universal Binary edition of the combined video, sound, animation and paint/photo editing and multimedia authoring tool. In addition to gaining Intel-based Mac optimization, the new release will feature completely updated Help, and a new "Getting Started" document. The update will be free for registered users of 6.0 or higher. MediaWork includes five integrated applications (Author, Paint/Photo, Sound, Video and Animator), carrying the capability to incorporate analog (AV) or digital (DV) video, MIDI, MP3, CD music and more. The tool is priced at $80 and requires Mac OS X 10.2 or better. An analog to digital video capture product, or DV camcorder connected via IEEE-1394 (FireWire) or USB-2 are optional.
iPhone nano predicted
JP Morgan analyst Kevin Chang, based in Taiwan and perhaps gaining access to manufacturing channel sources, believes that a recently filed Apple patent indicates that Apple may be planning to build an iPod nano accessory that would allow owners to make phone calls, or build a new phone device around the iPod nano in essence creating an "iPhone nano." The patent, filed July 5th, details telephone and text entry interfaces for a cellular-capable device via a click-wheel. An accompanying patent discusses enabling users to "type" or dial phone numbers with a click-wheel interface and receive suggestions for completing words or phrases to speed typing efforts.
iPhone activation, plans
The recent launch of Apple's iPhone at its own retail stores and AT&T outlets across the U.S. has brought widespread recognition to a new way of handling customer interaction. Apple and AT&T are allowing iPhone buyers to activate their phones online without the need to visit a store and speak with sales representatives through a company called Synchronoss, according to IDC Link. Allowing users to activate their phones from home over the internet rather than visiting retail outlets saves both Apple and AT&T time as well as money, and could pave the way for wireless carriers to offer individualized rate plans to cellular customers on an on-demand basis without the need for lengthy explanations or discussions with sales reps.
New UK Apple store
In brief: Apple has officially confirmed that it will open a new retail store at Lakeside in the UK, Native Instruments has begun shipping AUDIO 8 DJ, Guimkie Software has unveiled an iWeb plug-in called "Accordion," and Pulsetechnology.co.uk has begun carrying new Logitech FreePulse Wireless headphones for iPods or other MP3 players. Apple has confirmed plans to open a new retail store at Lakeside in Thurrock, Essex in the UK. The company's website notes that it is looking to hire employees to staff seven upcoming stores in the UK located in Brighton, Exeter, Glasgow, Milton Keynes, Reading, Solihull, and Thurrock.
Forums July 9
Forums roundup: Members are offering advice to an iPhone user who accidentally damaged his new phone, noting that Apple may replace it due to reported store policy.... Other users are discussing the graphics card options on the current Mac Pro, examining the option to install third party Windows cards such as the NVIDIA GeForce 8800GTX.... A student of video production is looking for advice as to which Mac purchase would best suit their studies, a used PowerMac G5 or a 17-inch iMac.... Others are discussing whether or not it is wise to remove a charged battery from a MacBook Pro while running on AC power.... Meanwhile, other users are responding to the release of an iPhone crack by DVD Jon enabling iPod and Web services without an AT&T contract.
Mustek PVR-H240 player
Mustek has announced a new version of its current personal video recorder, to be called the PVR-H240 Plus. While it should be able to play MPEG, ASF and AVI videos as well as MP3, WAV and WMA audio, its main purpose is in recording TV, saving to MPEG-4 files based on timed schedules. The hard drive in the recorder holds 40GB of content; both NTSC and PAL broadcasts are supported, but not unfortunately any HD formats, such as QAM or ATSC. Owners can view videos on the 2.6-inch display, or output them to a TV through an AV cable. Pricing and release dates have yet to be declared. [via Tech Digest]
iSkoot for BlackBerry
iSkoot on Monday afternoon unveiled a new version of its self-titled iSkoot for BlackBerry, giving RIM's device line a chance to use Skype's voice-over-IP service to save on cellphone plan minutes or to reach those who use Internet calling at home. The app is completely independent of a PC and is usable for all of Skype's core services. Owners who have switched on payment plans can receive SkypeIn calls from real-world numbers and reverse the direction with SkypeOut, iSkoot says.
AMD July 2007 Price Cuts
AMD today hoped to preempt Intel's anticipated late-July price cuts by making its own, touching on virtually all of the CPU maker's home processors. Most processors see cuts at about 25 percent, according to the company. The gaming-oriented 3GHz Athlon 64 FX-74 sees the biggest drop and declines from $799 to $599 in bulk; its mainstream equivalent Athlon 64 X2 6000+ drops a similar percentage to just $178. Low-end processors also see a reduction with the most basic, 1.8GHz Sempron 3200+ costing as little as $31.
Pontus EN-4500 GPS unit
Asian manufacturer Pontus is preparing the EN-4500, a combination media player and GPS unit. The product is notable not so much for its abilities however as where it is expected to be used -- despite having a 4.3-inch widescreen display, it is not limited to cars, as it is only 1.3 inches thick and can be carried handheld. Graphically it can produce maps in both 2D and fully-textured 3D views, and it is capable of WMV movies and 1Seg digital TV. Supported audio formats include MP3, OGG and WMA; storage is handled mainly through SD cards. Pontus expects to ship the 4500 to Japan for 60,000 yen ($487) by the end of July. [via Akihabara News]
Xbox 360 Project Falcon
Microsoft is planning radical changes to the inside of the Xbox 360 to combat the chronic overheating problems that prompted the three-year warranty for related issues, says one purported inside source. Codenamed "Project Falcon," the new architecture will not only shrink the processor from a 90-nanometer to a 65-nanometer process, the AMD-made graphics chipset will also receive the same treatment and (combined with improved heatsinks) should dramatically cool the inside of the case by using less energy therefore generating less heat.
Samsung Olympics phone
Reflecting its position as the "official cellphone manufacturer" for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Samsung has announced the P318+, clad on the back and sides with authentic 18-carat gold. The launch of the phone, the date of which is unavailable, will also see the release of a variety of Olympic downloads, including ringtones, wallpapers and video clips, possibly including event highlights.
The P318+ is otherwise based on the existing P310, notable mainly for its compact "credit card" shape. It also boasts Bluetooth 2.0 and a two-megapixel camera, which can be used to record stills and MPEG-4 video. Music playback supports AAC, MP3 and WMA formats. Being branded for the Korean carrier AnyCall, it is doubtful that a North American version will appear. [via Akihabara News]
Mexens Navizon GPS
Software developer Mexens today launched Navizon desktop, a computer-based version of its virtual GPS tool for cellphones. The suite gives any Mac OS X or Windows PC the opportunity to get an approximate location fix using the computer's built-in wireless features. Users with only Wi-Fi can triangulate using the position of local hotspots. Those with Bluetooth can optionally use their cellphone's connections to nearby cell towers to achieve a similar effect.
XtraLean Software has released ImageWell 3.2, an update to the image editor for everyday simple editing and quickly sending images, screenshots, and other files to other users over the Internet. The tool includes upload support for Flickr, SmugMug and ImageShack, and is free. XtraLean also sells ImageWell Xtras, which adds batch image processing (and batch uploading), the ability to drag and drop multiple images onto the canvas, plus a new Template feature for applying saved edit attributes to other images. This version adds a new built-in font control panel, the ability to create font collections, faster application launch speed, and many more enhancements. It requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or higher and supports both Intel Macs and Power PCs. The new release is available as a 925KB download.
RIM CEO on iPhone Danger
Research in Motion head Jim Baisilie believes the iPhone could be potentially toxic for the cellphone industry, according to a recent interview. The head of the BlackBerry firm points out that while AT&T has obtained a multi-year contract for the device, the terms leave the carrier out of much of the sales process and give it little influence over the customization of the phone's hardware or software. Apple may be putting AT&T -- and other networks -- in danger of becoming simple enablers for hardware from other companies, Balsillie warns.
iQuiz college content
McGraw-Hill Higher Education is offering college-level content for Apple's iQuiz game application. The quizzes are usable with video iPods and enable instructors deliver a quiz to students via iPod. Instructors using the McGraw-Hill Higher Education's EZ Test Online program can create and deliver multiple-choice or true/false quiz questions by exporting a previously-prepared quiz that is ready for use with the iQuiz application. iQuiz is available from the iTunes Store for $0.99, and works with all fifth-generation iPods with video capability. The EZ Test Online program gives instructors access to hundreds of academic courses and is usable with McGraw-Hill textbooks.
Microsoft to cut prices?
Microsoft is about to follow Sony's lead in cutting the costs of its consoles, says one analyst. Michael Pachter of Wedbush Morgan is predicting that the "Core" Xbox 360 will be reduced to $249 from $299, while the Premium will slide from $399 to $349, and the recently launched Elite will drop from $479 to $399.
Pachter observes that if the cuts do happen, they will not be altruistic, but rather a direct response to both internal problems and Sony's tactics. "Last week," he says, "Microsoft announced a slight Xbox 360 shipment shortfall and we do not believe that the company is prepared to allow Sony to erode its pricing advantage." By contrast, the reduced price of the 60GB PS3 is $500.
iPhone shell access
Several hackers claim to have successfully accessed a full interactive shell on Apple's iPhone, which could enable technically-oriented users to make modifications or changes to the software installed on the phone beyond Apple's Web-based development movement. Hackers collaborating over Internet Relay Chat (IRC) appear to have brought up a serial console for the iPhone using the same pinouts as Apple's iPod serial connection. Those involved suggest using a resistor rated at around 6.8k from pin 21 to ground, then instruct users to tie pin 11 (serial ground) to the real ground. Following those changes interested users may send the following commands in recovery mode: 'setenv debug-uarts 1,' 'saveenv,' and 'reboot.' The hackers note however that users attempting to bring up a serial console need a level converter, such as the Max 232.
LG Trax Coming to ATT
AT&T is set to launch the LG Trax, a clamshell phone that merges both the carrier's faster mobile Internet linkup with a dedicated music phone. The Trax includes touch-sensitive external music controls; it also has a quick-access button inside that jumps to the media player no matter where the user may be in the phone's menus. LG additionally brings extended microSD card support up to 4GB and playback of AAC and WMA tracks beyond the more typical MP3 format. As the device runs on AT&T's HSDPA network, it also taps the provider's Internet music and video streaming services.
MS Exchange for iPhone
IceWEB today announced that its hosted Microsoft Exchange subscription service now supports Apple's iPhone, enabling corporate customers to access company Exchange email systems via their new Apple-branded cellular handsets. IceWEB has worked for months to position its IceMAIL service to fully support the iPhone, which should ease the fears of potential business customers who were rumored to shun Apple's handset due to a lack of interoperability with existing corporate mail systems. IceMAIL enables small and medium business customers to continue receiving hosted Microsoft Exchange email on most smartphones and eases the process of iPhone adoption for businesses fearing complications with the new device. IceMAIL is available from $8.50 per month.
Cocktail 3.8.1 ($15) a general purpose utility for Mac OS X with maintenance and troubleshooting tools, as well as access to command line routines and cuztomixation options for Mac OS X. The new release addresses an issue in which Cocktail may fail to gather disk information, minor Mac OS X 10.4.10 compatibility issues and few other bugs discovered in the previous release. Cocktail 3.8.1 (Tiger Edition) requires Mac OS X or Mac OS X Server 10.4 - 10.4.10 and is tested for compatibility with Mac OS X and Mac OS X Server 10.4.10 (v1.1). [Download - 1.8MB]
Interarchy 8.5.3 ($60) Download/upload tool for FTP, FTP/SSH, FTP/SSL-TLS, HTTP, HTTPs, WebDAV, WebDAVs, iDisk and Amazon S3. Includes Growl Support and transparent File Encoding with File Converters. This release re-adds the download menu item that was accidently removed from Interarchy 8.5 and fixes a crash that may occur if an AppleScript file in the Scripts folder does not have a valid filename extension. It also fixes a crash that may occur when closing the Bookmarks window while a Net Disk is syncing. [Download - 7.8MB]
SoftRAID 3.6.3 ($129) software-based RAID solution for Mac OS X Systems. This release has no feature changes relative to SoftRAID 3.6.2, which improves support for Leopard. Instead it resolves a bug in version 3.6.2 of the SoftRAID application that could cause disks which had been formatted with Apple's Disk Utility to become damaged when they are converted to the SoftRAID format. The new release can reliably convert these disks. All registered users will receive a free upgrade via email. [Download (demo) - 3.9MB]
NoteMind 1.5.3 ($20) helps you to collect and to organize information centrally in one single place. It learns the way you organize your documents, and automatically tries to find a matching folder for new information. In this release, docked windows can be configured to float above all other windows for better accessibility. The formatting bars in the note editors can be hidden in the preferences and there are several bug fixes. [Download - 5.3MB]
xBack v3.7. ($10) a utility that allows you replace your desktop with a screen saver. The tool allows users to configure screen saver preferences without having to open System Preferences and set a different background for each display. Includes support for iPhoto Albums and Slideshows, Quartz Composer files ( Mac OS X v10.4+ Only) and more. The new release resolves a crash when loading some screen savers. [Download - 1.1MB]
seSales 1.5.2 ($250) a point of sale solution designed exclusively for OS X. With a primary focus of delivering a fast and accurate check-out experience for the end customer, the workflow for invoice processing is streamlined to work completely via keyboard commands or by mouse menus. This release adds an "Employee Sales" report which shows the amount of sales produced per employee for a configurable period of time. It also adds average vendor cost to the Sales By Category report. [Download - 6.4MB]
Samsung and Ericsson Truce
Samsung and Ericsson today agreed to drop lawsuits filed against each other, ending a patent dispute between the cellphone makers relating chiefly to their use of 3G Internet technology. The two firms have struck a cross-licensing deal that will let either company develop their phones without further legal trouble relating to the patents. Neither company has commented on the deal.
V-MODA ships VIBE Duo
V-MODA today unveiled its VIBE Duo for Apple's iPhone, a dual-use earphone with microphone combination. The VIBE Duo headset for iPhone features hi-def sound and features black fabric cables with an all-metal design. The earphones are lightweight and come with three sizes of soft silicon fittings to fit most ears, while a small clip ensures the accessory doesn't jar loose during strenuous activity. V-MODA's VIBE Duo headset for iPhone is priced at $100, and is designed to complement Apple's cellular handset with its metallic finish and sleek black cabling.
Viliv flash-based GPS
The Korean-based Viliv has just uncovered the X2 Flash, its newest GPS system. The device is based on the P2, which likewise has a SiRFstar III receiver, and an identical Chocolate-like control pad; the main difference is memory, altered from a 20 or 30GB hard drive to 4 or 8GB of flash. Since this may be constraining for some users, the X2 is also one of the few GPS systems to accept SDHC cards, ranging in size from 4 to 32GB. A slot is also present for regular SD cards.
Tekkeon myPower ALL Plus
Tekkeon this afternoon revealed the myPower ALL Plus, a successor to its previous multi-purpose charger. The Plus (also known as the MP3450) adds a USB port to charge a handheld device such as a camera, cellphone, or iPod while simultaneously powering most notebooks. When committed solely to a notebook, the charger can extend the useful run time by as much as four hours, Tekkeon says. Estimates also have the average portable media player lasting for an additional 42 hours, while cameras typically see an extra 12 hours. Two batteries at once can be used for even more power, the company notes.
Last.fm signs up Sony
Having recently been bought by CBS, Last.fm is now announcing a deal with the Sony BMG family of record labels, which plays host to artists such as Bruce Springsteen and Justin Timberlake. This will allow Last.fm users to legally stream all Sony music, along with other artists on the site's custom-made radio stations; of particular interest to Sony however is the recommendation function, which suggests new artists to listen to based on what a user has recently played.
Corel Painter X 10.1
Corel has released Corel Painter X 10.1, a free update to the natural-media painting and illustration software for Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows that improves performance. The latest release of Corel Painter X is available in English and Japanese language versions only, but the company is highlighting a slew of educational resources alongside the software update. Learning resources for aspiring artists include Corel Painter Magazine; Painter X for Photographers; A Celebration of Art: Paint Like A Master; Karen Sperling's Artistry Tips and Tricks E-Zine; Painter X Creativity; Learning Corel Painter X; and The Painter X Wow! Book. Corel Painter X is priced at $400 and requires mac OS X 10.3.9 or later. Upgrades are available from $200.
iSee for iPhone ships
Contour Design today announced that its clear protective case designed for Apple's iPhone has hit shelves in Apple Stores alongside the iPhone itself. The iSee for iPhone is built to guard the phone's display while showcasing the device itself, and offers access to all connections as well as controls. iPhone owners can still use the touch-screen to operate the device or sheath the cellular handset in an included holster that allows the phone to sit in numerous positions. The case allows easy insertion and removal, while small rubber feet stabilize the case on flat surfaces. Contour Design is selling the iSee for iPhone alongside the actual device in Apple Stores for $30.
Neuro Logic RFT2-L19
Neuro Logic today unveiled a unique folding enclosure for servers or anyone who needs both displays and controls in a rackmountable space. The RFT-2L19 stows away in a two-unit-tall enclosure but slides out to reveal two 19-inch LCDs stacked one on top of the other for multi-monitor support without blocking nearby hardware. The system also includes its own keyboard and trackball for either plugging directly into a computer or piping through its built-in KVM switch to interface with multiple PCs.
USBFever supports iPhone
USBFever.com today confirmed that its iPod/PDA portable USB charger works with Apple's iPhone, charging the device alongside any dockable iPod or USB-compatible PDA or cellphone. The external charger includes a Lithium-Ion battery with 2200mAh, recharging iPhones and iPods via a USB-powered dock. iPod and iPhone users needing to recharge their devices on-the-go can insert the mini-USB cable into a device or simply dock an Apple device to replenish battery power. The USB charger itself recharges via a plug to any wall outlet, providing an extra boost of power when outlets are scarce. USBFever's iPod/PDA USB charger is priced at $33.
BlackBerry Wi-Fi confirmed
A filing recently approved by the FCC has confirmed the existence of the first BlackBerry with Wi-Fi, most likely the Curve 2 (seen right), based on its similarities. Connection options should come in the form of 802.11a/b/g, which is discerned by the 5.4, 5.8 and 2.4GHz frequencies evaluated in FCC tests. Bluetooth and a microSD slot are other confirmed features.
Wi-Fi may be a critical addition to the BlackBerry phones, which have consistently lacked the option despite its presence in other high-end phones, most recently the Apple iPhone. Users should thus be able to access mail and the web without costly cellular data fees. [via Phone Scoop]
Jobs in London, BOOQ case
In brief: Rumors are circulating about a potential forthcoming announcement by Apple CEO Steve Jobs regarding an exclusive iPhone carrier in the UK, BOOQ has unveiled the Anaconda 5 accessory case for Apple's iPhone, and an iPod ad parody has surfaced from India depicting a police officer holding an iPod. One blogger has optimized his WordPress blog for iPhone users without changing the display for computer-based visitors, and Compwave has debuted its new second-generation MiniHitch Multi Mount Mac mini mounting bracket. Apple CEO Steve Jobs yesterday visited the Regent Street Apple Store in London, sparking rumors that the executive is visiting the UK to put the finishing touches on an iPhone contract with an unknown UK-based cellular carrier.
Netgear Storage Central T
Netgear this morning officially shipped its Storage Central Turbo network storage device. Intended as much for the home and work, the device loads up to two desktop-sized Serial ATA drives of the user's choice and shares them across up to a gigabit Ethernet network. This lets it handle even live HD video streams in real-time, Netgear says. Specialized storage area network techniques let users upgrade relatively easily by just adding more of the SCT devices to the network, while SmartSync software allows redundant backups between drives and to guard folders against public access or for individual users.
Acer Gemstone at US Retail
Acer has quietly rolled out its Gemstone design notebooks to US stores, offering a special configuration for retail that may be the least expensive HD DVD notebook available in the US. A version of the Aspire 5920 provides support for reading the next-gen disc as well as reading and writing CDs and DVDs; it also includes the 256MB GeForce 8600M GT and HDMI output of the upper-echelon portables for displaying 1080p video at its native resolution without dropped frames. Cost savings primarily come through the choice of the recently introduced low-price 1.5GHz Core 2 Duo and a 1280x800, 15.4-inch display.
Mac OS X iPods by January?
Changes to the iPod may soon bring it in line with the iPhone, while avoiding cannibalized sales, according to a new outlook report. Analysts at the research firm Piper Jaffray suggest that as expected, the next generation of iPods will be based on the iPhone's touchscreen interface; while there will likely be no Internet or phone services, future iPods are expected to be based on Mac OS X, though whether or not users will be able to install software on them has not been raised as a question. Analysts do however propose that they will be announced in the fall or winter, at the latest by January's MacWorld event.
Cowon Ships iAudio 7
Cowon this morning confirmed its launch details by shipping the iAudio 7, the company's latest compact music player. The media player builds on the "swing touch" control scheme of the version 6 device but improves battery life and features. In spite of its size, a new power management method extends battery life to as long as 60 hours on a single charge. EQ has also been improved and Windows users can take advantage of Windows Media DRM for unlimited music subscriptions.
iPhone CPU Java Support
The ARM processor found inside the iPhone includes special features for accelerating Java code, a study of the chip reveals. The chip is likely to be the Samsung-made S3C6400 and therefore supports the Jazelle engine, which reduces memory use to a fraction of what would be needed for software and uses a virtual engine that juggles multiple Java programs at once without a major drop in performance. Phones can use this to easily load chat and games without requiring more expensive hardware, the ARM group says.
Quizzler comes to iPhone
Pocket Mobility has updated its Quizzler Maker program to v5.6, adding compatibility with the iPhone. The software is used to produce quizzes and trivia games, which can be run directly on Mac and Windows computers, printed out for teaching, or exported to portable devices such as iPods and PDAs. The iPhone joins the last category, with the difference being that Quizzler generates a webpage instead of a limited local file; the page is also formatted for the iPhone's narrow view and touchscreen interface. A preview site lets users try sample quizzes or find out how to create their own. Quizzler Maker 5.6 costs $30 for a single license.
iRiver clix Rhapsody
iRiver today updated its second-generation clix with a new version that makes full use of Real's Rhapsody online shop. Synchronizing the player with a PC set to use the music store will not only auto-fill the player with subscriptions but can also personalize the music using Rhapsody DNA; listeners can optionally have new recommended songs sync directly with the player to provide a fresh experience without hunting for new music themselves.
AMD TV Wonder 600 and 650
AMD today grew its TV Wonder line with two models that branch out into unfamiliar territory for the company. The TV Wonder 600 USB is the first from the chipmaker's ATI label to offer both HD and analog cable in an external form with a co-ax input for either an antenna or a cable feed. More advanced users with desktops can opt for the TV Wonder 650 PCIe, the company says: the internal card not only packs dual tuners that allow recording in one format while recording in the other, but offers ClearQAM descrambling for picking up most non-HD digital cable signals. Users can also tune into FM radio with the extra hardware afforded by the PCI Express slot.
iChat coming to the iPhone
On the heels of bad press about its activation and customer support processes, AT&T last week began sending a survey to some iPhone customers asking them to rate various aspects of their iPhone experience. One page of the survey asks "Now, based on the scale below, please rate the EDGE data network performance when using each of the following applications on your Apple iPhone." The survey oddly asks for feedback on Apple's own iChat instant messaging application -- which of course, is not available on the device, but is much reqquested feature. Some speculate that it could be a precursor to an iPhone software update to include iChat on the phone; however, it could simply be a mistake on the part of the survey writer, perhaps conflating iChat with the iPhone SMS messaging application that closely resembles iChat under Mac OS X.
Sony debuts 80GB PS3
Ahead of the E3 gaming conference later this week, Sony on Monday announced a new 80GB model of its PlayStation 3 entertainment system as well as cut the price on the currently shipping model by $100 and promised more titles for the gaming system. Expected to ship in August, the new 80GB PS3 model, which surfaced in April, will be available in North America for $599 and will include the MotorStorm racing game, which allows up to 12 players to play simultaneously via the internet. Following the discontinuation of the 20GB PS3 in April, the company also said that the current 60GB PS3 model will be available in North America for $499 (CND$549), a $100 price cut that was first noted late last week, but initially denied by the company.
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