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WireTap Studio 1.0.0
Ambrosia on Thursday announced the release of WireTap Studio 1.0.0, its audio recording and editing application that it claims features patent-pending technology for "professional caliber audio recording and editing." WireTap Studio, dubbed as a complete audio recording and management solution, can manipulate and manage audio, offering the ability to record the discrete audio output of any application (such as iChat or Skype), as well as all system audio; it also enables users to record audio input from any microphone, line- in, or audio input hardware. WireTap Studio also features a built-in audio editor and can record from two independent audio sources (that can be later edited, normalized, etc.)
ezGear iPod cases
ezGear has announced a new line of cases for the Apple iPod nano and iPod Classic. All cases are made of silicone, provide access to all ports, buttons, and switches, provide protection for the iPod screen and include additional accessories. The ezSkin Slimline for iPod nano G3 has a thin screen protector and a removable neck strap. It is available in four individual colors Onyx Black, Frost White, Ruby Red, and Princess Pink. There are also two three packs. Three Pack A comes with Onyx, Frost, and Princess. Three pack B comes with Cool Blue, Ultra-Lime and Ruby Red. ezSkin Slimline for iPod nano G3's suggested retail price is $25. The Three pack's suggested retail price is $35.
BackJack 5, Continuum
Synectics Business Solutions has announced BackJack 5 alongside a new application titled BackJack Continuum. Continuum is designed to complement as well as integrate with Apple's Time Machine application included in its forthcoming Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard operating system, helping Mac users to easily move their backed up files to an offsite location. "BackJack Continuum eliminates the need to physically rotate hard drives to an offsite location by providing a fully automated and secure solution that transfers files to our data centers on a nightly basis," Synectics said. "Continuum achieves this core business function in an extremely economical fashion, thereby allowing clients to stay focused on their core competencies."
Photo viewer keychain
Digital Foci has introduced the "Pocket Album," a digital keychain photo viewer with a 1.5-inch color LCD screen and 8MB of built-in memory that the company says can hold up to 74 digital images. The device comes bundled with Photo Viewer software, which allows you to convert JPG or BMP images and send them to the Pocket Album. The tool also includes crop, rotate and resize functions. The device runs on Lithium-ion batteries with up to 9 hours of battery life. The batteries can be recharged with the included AC adapter or with a USB cable. Other features for the device include a built-in clock with an automatic on/off timer and adjustable LCD contrast. The Pocket Album is priced at $40 and weighs 1.2 ounces, measuring about 2 inches tall.
AAPL down nearly 3%
Shares of Apple Inc. today fell 4.5 points (or 2.73%) after a sharp spike brought the company above $170 this morning. Apple shares plummeted in spite of an increase in anticipated earnings this quarter projected by well-known research firm Goldman Sachs, which raised its price target from $165 to $190 based on "across the board strength" in Macs. Goldman analyst David Bailey says Apple's thriving Mac business should bolster revenue as well as gross margin and earnings above Wall Street estimates for the company's fiscal fourth quarter -- which the company says will discuss via a conference call on October 22nd. [updated]
New Apple patents
Apple has filed a new multitouch patent application that appears describes technology used on the iPhone and iPod touch, as well as potentially forthcoming products. The patent describes force and location detection with two transparent substrates that, when combined, result in response to a user's touch input and location of the touch. In other words, the patent describes a display that can act as an input-output unit capable of both location sensing and force sensing operations. Apple says the patent could be applied to various types of LCD, Plasma and CRT displays.
ProjectForum, Doc Merge
Layer Groups 1.1 for InDesign CS-CS3 ($30) solution for organizing processes with extensive usage of layers. It enables user to set the non-printing to an entire layer - this feature was made compatible with the non-printing layers introduced in InDesign CS3. In this release the layer Groups plug-in was integrated into the new DTP Tools component providing easier activation, automatic updates and easier access to support. [Download - 2.6MB]
GarageBuy 1.1 (free) integrated solution for searching and buying on eBay for the Mac. A wide range of search options and support for eBay's categories make sure users find exactly what they are looking for. This release adds a new 'single image' mode for viewing eBay search results, improves overall application performance, and includes several other interface improvements. [Download - 3.3MB]
ProjectForum 5.6 ($80) a wiki-based software application that supports collaboration within and between professional workgroups. This release includes a number of new features and enhancements. Administrators can replicate individual forums, better track user activity and manage forum pages. Support for Atom feeds has been added to the existing RSS tools, while several enhancements were made to server network performance and other areas. [Download - 2.4MB]
Big Mean Folder Machine 1.0 ($15) file/folder management utility with a familiar assistant-styled interface. All operations may be performed without worrying about file name collisions; BMFM resolves name conflicts automatically. Unify entire file collections from various locations into a single folder. Or alternatively, split files into several folders based on a range of criteria. [Download - 932KB]
Doc Merge 2.0 ($35) utility that automates the merging of multiple Word documents. Allows one to drag multiple Word documents into a window and click a button to merge them together. [Download - 1.4MB]
Nikon moves to full-frame
Nikon intends to put out more affordable full-frame DSLRs, says Steve Heiner, the company's senior technical manager of SLR marketing. At present, the only Nikon DSLR with a full-frame sensor is the upcoming D3, a top-end professional camera. At $5,000, it is far more expensive than many people can justify, and it is also faced with competition from Canon's $2,300 EOS-5D. Heiner explains however that the D3's FX sensor represents a size Nikon is committed to, and that "We have seen so many technologies at the highest end that migrate downward."
Dell Latitude Release Info
Dell's first tablet PC, the Latitude XT, today received definitive specifications courtesy of leaked shots supplied to the French enthusiast group LesDelliens. In its final form, the device will be powered by Intel's 1.2GHz ultra low-voltage Core 2 Duo but use an AMD-made ATI mainboard with Radeon Xpress 1250 integrated graphics providing Vista-capable output. Buyers will have the pick of a 12-inch touch LCD lit either by a traditional cold-cathode fluorescent (CCFL) backlight or a pricier but thinner, more efficient, and more accurate LED light. The XT will have Bluetooth and 802.11n Wi-Fi as options for those who need the extra wireless support.
Web-apps list for iPhone
Apple today officially launched its Web-apps for iPhone website, after much anticipation earlier this week. Apple's site, modeled after its own software download site, lists over 200 third-party Web-based applications optimized and available for Apple's popular device, providing a description, company name information (name/URL) and date added. Previously, the company posted a Web-app development guide to help developers optimize and tune their Web applications. While users, developers, and companies have been clamoring over native application, the Cupertino-based company will reportedly focus on Web-based applications for the near future; however, new rumors indicate that the company may be preparing a broader-based native application strategy that would require certification.
Pinnacle PCTV HD Ultimate
Pinnacle today upgraded its PCTV video tuners with both its most advanced USB tuner and one of its rare internal models. Building on past models, the PCTV HD Ultimate Stick (shown) completely eliminates the need for software on the PC: integrated flash memory holds DVR software that runs directly from the drive and can record as much as two hours of TV programming on the device itself as well as to a hard disk. Pinnacle's offering is also one of the few that can pick up unencrypted digital cable signals with a ClearQAM receiver as well as the ATSC tuner need for over-the-air HD broadcasts. The HD Ultimate Stick needs a Windows XP or Vista PC and should be in stores within the next few days at a price of $130.
Dell triple-HDMI LCD
Typically associated exclusively with the American market, Dell is nevertheless selling a new LCD monitor in Japan, the 22-inch SP2208WFP. Like the American, 20-inch SP2008WFP, it has a native resolution of 1680x1050, and a built-in two-megapixel webcam. The 2208 however has a full three HDMI inputs, where many monitors have one or nil. More conventional DVI-D and analog D-Sub 15 ports are also present, as well as four USB connections. The screen itself is capable of 2,000:1 contrast, with a 2ms response time. The 2208 costs 59,800 yen ($510).
T-Mobile has already started selling its first 3G-class phone, according to a report made by Phone Scoop. Official carrier stores in New York City are said to have started carrying the Samsung t639, an Americanized version of the B660 and a GSM adaptation of the CDMA-only Alltel Hue. In the new trim, the device adds a 1,700MHz UMTS radio that allows it to run at 3G speeds, allowing T-Mobile customers to download from the Internet much more quickly than EDGE and also make calls on the enhanced network when inside its coverage area.
iPod classic teardown
Market research firm iSuppli has torn down Apple's new iPod classic, saying that the device has taken a backward-looking approach to personal media player functionality as well as technology. "While the rest of the iPod line has migrated to solid-state flash memory, the new iPod classic continues to employ venerable Hard-Disk Drive (HDD) technology for storage," the company wrote. "Furthermore, the iPod classic lacks some of the other advanced features found in the other new iPods, namely wireless capability and a touch screen." Apple can offer the iPod classic at a lower price than the its predecessor with increased capacity, but iSuppli says the dated features suggest "stopgap" measures that will likely limit the classic's life span and success in the market.
Sky IM-U220 banana slider
The Korean luxury brand of Pantech, Sky, has revealed its latest phone, the IM-U220. The product joins the preceding 210 in offering 7.2Mbps HSDPA, a technology just deploying in Korea, and extremely rare everywhere else. The phones also share a microSD slot in common, although the camera in the 220 is reduced to 1.3 megapixels. The greatest difference is in form factor, since while the 210 is a fairly conventional slider, the 220 adopts a "banana slider" shape similar to Motorola's RIZR Z8. It should be released shortly for 400,000 won ($437). [via Akihabara News]
In brief: We have reviewed a new iSkin case for the iPod Video, reports are surfacing that the plant used to manufacture iPods sent SMS threats to publications criticizing their operations, iPhoneDrive has been updated, and there's a new iPhone/iPod repair service .. We have posted a review of the iSkin evo3 iPod video case. The eVo3 offers a wide color selection, quality materials, and a clever design. The case adds a bit of bulk to your iPod, but since it's designed to protect, this is acceptable. All of the iPod functions are accessible, and iSkin even provides a protective flap that covers the dock connector. The hold switch is covered by an embossed button, and moving the switch feels a little awkward at first.
Moto RAZR2 Luxury Edition
Motorola today continued its string of releases with the advent of the RAZR2 Luxury Edition. The flip phone takes the already upscale aluminum and steel design and adds both 18- and 24-carat gold plating on the hinge and accent points. The black shell also features pinstripes around the external touch display and a snakeskin-like back texture, Motorola says. 2GB of built-in flash memory also provides a practical feature that separates the premium RAZR2 from most other versions. A gold-accented H680 Bluetooth headset and leather case also come bundled with the Luxury Edition.
LG Rumor Official
Despite an inadvertent teaser release by the company earlier this week, Sprint today officially confirmed the launch of the LG Rumor. The device blends between a conventional feature phone and a smartphone with a lateral slide-out keyboard geared towards e-mail and text messaging. A hot button on the phone switches instantly to messaging mode; sliding the keyboard automatically preps the messaging menu for use. Software on the phone also provides quick access to social networking sites like Facebook as well as multiple IM chat networks. Users can also blend text and voice, Sprint says: the phone can provide "text tones" that audibly identify text message senders and convert the user's text messages to voice on a recipient's end.
Stan Sigman Retires
AT&T Mobility today announced that its president and chief executive Stan Sigman would retire after 42 years at the company. The move would take effect immediately and would see Regional Telecom group president Ralph de la Vega take the helm; Sigman would remain to help transition to the new leadership until the end of the year, the company said. De la Vega will report to Randall Stephenson, who remains the chief executive for AT&T as a whole.
Motorola basic phones
As a counterpart to the announcement of the MOTO U9, Motorola has also announced several "everyday" phones that cater to simpler interests. The most advanced of these is the W377 (pictured at right), a fliphone which features Bluetooth, MP3 ringtones and a built-in FM radio. A VGA camera is included, as is 10MB of user storage. The W206 and W213 are candybars stripped down to the 377's ringtones and radio, the latter only being available on the 213. Memory is shrunk down to 1MB.
The W175 and W180 lose even the special ringtones, although the W180 keeps radio. Finally, the W160 also has radio, but it and the W156 switch from color screens to monochrome. All of the new W-series phones should be out by the end of 2007.
VAIO anniversary models
Sony Japan has decided to mark the 10th anniversary of its profitable VAIO Note 505 with a new, special edition of the VAIO Type T notebook. Resembling its predecessor, the VGN-TZ91 has a 11.1-inch LCD, with a native resolution of 1366x768. The processor is a 1.2GHz Core 2 Duo, running on an Intel 945GMS Express motherboard with integrated graphics, but accessories include Bluetooth 2.0, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, an ExpressCard slot and ports for SD/MMC cards and Memory Sticks. Japanese-only features include slots for FOMA 3G broadband and FeliCa smartcards.
Google Maps on iPod touch
Hackers claim to have successfully brought Mail, Google Maps, and other third-party applications to Apple's iPod touch in spite of Apple's decision to ship the device without those programs. The Cupertino-based company began shipping its higher-priced iPhone in late June of this year with Mail and Google Maps built-in, but removed these applications from its iPod touch before launching the WiFi-enabled portable player at a special event on September 5th. Following a series of attempts to break through Apple's security on both its iPhone and iPod touch, hackers managed to 'jailbreak' the devices which allowed them read and write access to the filesystems, which enabled developers to write and install their own non-Web-based software on the gadgets.
Motorola today surprised the market with news of the MOTO U9, a new clamshell music phone that carries on the legacy of the company's ROKR music phones. Its design borrows equally from the PEBL flip phone as well as the more recent RAZR2; the smooth outer shell is broken only by a stealth OLED display that pop ups call and music information only when needed. A set of touch-sensitive music controls on the outside translate from the RAZR2 (without haptic feedback) in addition to the CrystalTalk technology which cancels outside noise and adjusts volume to ensure an audible conversation. Its software interface and 2-megapixel camera are also new to the PEBL-like shape and are shared with some RAZR2 handsets.
Apple DRM patent suit
A company by the name of Digital Reg of Texas is suing Apple, Hustler.com, Microsoft, Playboy, Audible, Sony, Macrovision, and Blockbuster on the grounds of patent infringement for DRM technology. The suit alleges that Apple has infringed and continues to infringe on a Digital Reg patent numbered 6,389,541 by making, using, providing, offering to sell, and selling (directly or through intermediaries), digital content incorporating DRM technology. The complaint reads "Apple provides such content through its iTunes Music Store and its iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store. Apple further provides controlled access and play out of digital content incorporating DRM technology through its iTunes Player. Apple also provides controlled access of digital content through its FairPlay Platform."
PhotoVu 22-inch photo LCD
Following quickly after the release of new supporting software, PhotoVu has launched a new digital photo frame, the PV2265w. The screen measures 22 inches in a 16:10 widescreen format, and has a native resolution of 1680x1050, with up to 16 million colors. Users can load photos through a USB flash drive inserted into a hidden slot, or connect remotely through Wi-Fi. This latter option allows users to control the display from a web browser, and set up slideshows via RSS feeds. Some supported services include Flickr, Picasa, and iPhoto/.Mac.
UpStage Beyonce Edition
Sprint on Thursday morning livened up the Samsung UpStage with the B'Phone edition, a limited-run version of the handset with influence from singer and UpStage promoter Beyonce Knowles. The musician's version varies from the ordinary model (review) with a two-tone red shell as well as a gold-colored directional pad and trim. It starts up with a Beyonce wallpaper and comes with special access to a catalog of her music and videos on Sprint's online store, including a rare song from her youth.
Samsung Flipshot Leak
Samsung's U900 Ultra Edition phone will be rechristened the Flipshot when it arrives in the US through Verizon, according to leaked details provided by Mobiledia. The device has had most of its American specifications revealed and will earn its name through its swiveling display: twisting the LCD horizontally helps turn the phone into an impromptu 3-megapixel camera or camcorder with a photo-friendly landscape view. An onboard flash and image editing software produce better-looking shots before they reach a computer or are sent to a friend.
Three new Apple stores
Apple is laying the groundwork for three new retail stores, according to separate reports. The first is a potential addition to the San Francisco Bay Area, in this instance within the town of Brentwood, located in the Sacramento River delta. A developer by the name of Continental Real Estate is constructing the Streets of Brentwood "lifestyle" mall, which will open in late 2008 or early 2009; Apple is one of the companies expressing interest in becoming an initial tenant. The location is said to be an unusual choice if Apple commits, as Brentwood is relatively remote. The town's average household income is $97,000 however, and approximately 250,000 people live within 15 minutes' distance of the future location.
Sanyo Sells Off to Kyocera
Sanyo today revealed that it was transferring its cellphone business to Kyocera for an undetermined amount, according to a report by the Kyodo World Service. The Katana maker agreed to offload its handset manufacturing for a yet to be determined amount after suffering a $387 million loss in 2006 due in part to low phone sales. The focus will instead be on batteries and other areas where business is thriving, Sanyo said. No date was given for the deal, although both Kyocera and Sanyo hoped to finalize details by the end of 2007.
Apple dominates T3 awards
Apple took home a total of six awards last night as UK-based gadget website T3 revealed its list of winners. The Cupertino-based company's iPhone landed the Most Anticipated Gadget for 2008, as voted for by Sky News online readers, while iTunes was crowned as the year's Best Download Service. Apple's iPod swept up the titles of Best Commuter Gadget, Best Music Gadget, and even Best Gadget of All Time -- as voted for by readers of thesun.co.uk. Finally, the MacBook Pro won the Drop Dead Gorgeous Award by beating out its primary contender, the LG Prada. "It's clearly been a fruitful year for Apple [...] and the T3 Awards show just how well regarded they are, not just by us hacks, but by readers too. Apple, enjoy your success, it's clearly well deserved."
Gateway P- and GT-Series
Gateway on Thursday ramped up its efforts to pull in holiday sales by releasing a new set of portables and desktops. Its 17-inch P-series notebook line now has multiple speed grades to draw users who want the screen size without a high price. The base P-6801 cuts price by using a 1.46GHz Pentium dual-core, 1GB of memory, and basic but recent Intel X3100 integrated graphics; at the same time, it offers a relatively large 160GB hard disk and metal, Motorola RAZR-like media buttons. A second model, the P-6822, adds the 64-bit capable 1.5GHz Core 2 Duo as well as a 1.3-megapixel webcam, a larger 250GB drive, and HDMI output to link with an HDTV. Both versions of the notebook should be available by October 14th for prices of $800 and $950 respectively.
AutoDeNoise 1.8 plug-in
Human Software has released the first public version (v1.8) of AutoDeNoise, a plug-in for Photoshop, Paint Shop and other image production programs. The app is used to reduce the speckles caused by high ISO sensitivity on digital cameras, as well as grain found in scanned film images; separating it from some other filters is the ability to accomplish this in a single step, using an algorithm that attempts to preserve sharpness and detail. The app can also create profiles suited to particular cameras and tastes, and quickly preview noise reduction before cleaning.
Accompanying the K630, Sony-Ericsson today also saw fit to unveil the HCB-105, a new Bluetooth hands-free speaker that saves drivers from having to reach for their phone or a dash-mounted speaker unit. The Swedish firm's new device is designed to clip just to the overhead visor in a car, where the microphone placement is ideal. At the same time, its narrow shape makes it genuinely pocketable to prevent theft or for use in other locations. The call, answer, and volume buttons are all deliberately oversized to cut down on distractions.
Timing its launch with news of strong sales, Sony-Ericsson today released the K630i and a companion Bluetooth speaker set to bring wireless music to the new phone and most any similar device. The new candybar handset is intended as an all-purpose phone that focuses on media functions but can handle some business tasks on the side. For day-to-day use, the phone comes with a 2-megapixel camera as well as a dedicated music key like most Walkman phones; for work, it brings full Exchange e-mail support. Both sides can take advantage of 3G Internet access over HSDPA to stream audio and video (including video calls) as well as check e-mail and the web at speeds closer to landline broadband.
AT&T back-peddles on TOS
AT&T on Thursday clarified its disconcerting internet terms-of-service, completely reversing its stance with a much more progressive policy that it says underscores "the company's commitment to freedom of speech and open dialogue...whether that be via the Internet or elsewhere on the AT&T network." The world's largest telecom company -- and US largest wireless carrier -- apologized for the confusion and reiterated it would not terminate or suspend a customers' Internet access service based upon their political views or criticism of AT&T. Previously, the company TOS said the company could terminate service for any behavior it deemed detrimental to the company or subsidiaries, as noted earlier this month by weblog Gizmodo:
Unlock for iPhone 1.1.1
Users can now unlock iPhones running the latest v1.1.1 firmware, despite warnings from Apple that its v1.1.1 update would likely damage (i.e., "brick") phones that were unlocked to run on non-AT&T networks. Following the public release of the first "jail-break" hack for iPhone v1.1.1, iPhoneSimFree has released an updated version of its unlock software for v1.1.1 users that not only works with the v1.1.1 firmware but also can restore "bricked" iPhones, according to the team: "Our sincere congratulations, to the iPhone/ iTouch Dev Team for their brilliant work in finding an ingenious way to jailbreak the 1.1.1 system. This exciting news means we are now able to gladly welcome all SIMFREE unlocked phone owners to UPGRADE to 1.1.1 if they so wish."
Apple Australia retail
Apple is looking to significantly expand its presence Down Under with a new retail store partnership and new branded-store locations in both Sydney and Melbourne. New reports provide more details on Apple Australia's newly revealed retail "store-within-a-store" strategy and about its previously announced flagship location in Sydney. With new Apple store locations in Brooklyn and Manhattan noted earlier this week, Apple will likely open its flagship Australian store in Sydney store by mid-2008, according to city council documents. The store will feature a glass facade and a large white Apple logo suspended in a glass cube -- much like its flagship Fifth Avenue location in Manhattan -- as well as a glass staircase. The store will be the first Apple-branded store location in Australia, but another is already planned for Melbourne.
Rogers for LG Shine Slider
Rogers Wireless has announced that it will carry the LG Shine Slider, which sports a stainless steel body and a 2.2 inch mirror-like screen, in Canada. The Shine Slider is an HSPA model, which can take advantage of Rogers wireless video calling. Other features include access to the Rogers MusicStore, a 2 megapixel camera, a built-in MP3 player, a microSD memory slot and stereo Bluetooth capabilities. The Canadian LG Shine Slider will be premiered during a special event at the Birks Yorkville store in Toronto on October 11th at 7 p.m. It will be available exclusively at Rogers on-line and at retail locations at the beginning of November. Previously, an anonymous source posted images of what appears to the LG's popular Shine phone with AT&T markings. This suggests that the phone will be adopted by the American carrier.
Jailbreak for iPhone 1.1.1
Over the last few days hackers have begun publicizing ways into and around Apple's newest iPhone v1.1.1 firmware update that disabled many third-party hacks. iPhone firmware v1.1.1, which Apple warned may damage (i.e., "brick") unlocked iPhones, also disabled many third-party applications and hackers,w ho have been feverishly working to find a way into updated iPhones to install third-party applications, have finally released details of "jail-breaking" an iPhone running v1.1.1 firmware -- a process that is still fairly complicated compared to the initial "one-click" methods.
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