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iPod accessory manufacturer Mophie today unveiled the Ratchet 360° Belt Clip Swivel case for the iPhone, iPod touch, 3G Nano and Classic. The case includes a Base Case silicone sleeve, which the Ratchet then tightly grips from the sides, and pivots to store the device at any angle. Mophie offers the Ratchet 360° in two color combinations: pink/black, and grey/black, with a clear Base Case. It is currently selling for $20 for the iPod nano and Classic, while the iPhone and Touch model sell for $30.
Araelium Group on Wednesday unveiled Screenflick 1.6, an update to the company’s screen recording program, which introduces over 30 new features and improvements. Screenflick now offers improved stability and recording performance, while also optimizing the interface’s usability. Keyboard shortcut code was rewritten for greater flexibility, and the shortcut viewer can now show one or multiple events. Screenflick 1.6 is available from Araelium Group’s website for $30.
Apple’s recent acquisition of PA Semiconductor is being reviewed by the US Department of Defense, since the latter company’s processor chipsets power many of the military’s portable devices. According to the EETimes, the acquisition left PA Semi’s future lines of processors in an uncertain state, while Apple has said it would provide legacy support for the military. The Department of Defense said the component is an important and unique part of its integrated electronics systems.
Koingo Software has officially unveiled Slideshow Magic 5, a new version of the company's presentation tool that offers numerous enhancements and bug fixes. These include the ability to rotate frames, a completely revamped interface, and more advanced slide titling options. The tool now allows users to add an audio track to the entire slideshows, or add smaller audio clips for each segment and include transitions with varying durations between slides, and even insert customizable titles
DiskLibrary 1.8 ($40) media cataloging application for Mac OS X. DiskLibrary catalogs not just your complete file structure, it also creates thumbnails, and stores metadata, for most popular media formats. DiskLibrary is capable of importing export formats from CDFinder, FileFinder, WhereIsIt, DiskCatalogMaker X and DiskTracker. [Download - 2.5MB] ActivePerl 188.8.131.523 (free) ActivePerl includes core Perl, popular modules, the Perl Package Manager (PPM), and complete documentation. With over 250,000 downloads each month, ActivePerl remains the industry-standard for Perl development. ActivePerl is provided free to the community and is available as a supported and OEM product to enterprises globally. [Download - form] AddMovie 1.4.9 (donationware) tool for combining multiple movies or images into a single movie and batch exporting movies to any format supported by QuickTime. When combining movies you have the option of creating movie chapters with customizable titles. Other functionality includes: extracting audio tracks to files, splitting movies, setting movie poster frames and saving movie frames as images. [Download - 1.5MB] MenuMinder 1.4 ($10) Create quick, simple alert, email and SMS Text Message (mobile phone) reminders using the system-wide menu that can be accessed from any application. This new version eliminates the requirement that an email account be setup in Apple Mail. Using the new preference pane "Mail Server" users can specify any mail server for delivering email reminders. Version 1.4 also provides improved SMS messaging and global hot keys for creating reminders even more quickly. [Download - 1.1MB] RailModeller 3.1 ($40) solution for creating layouts for model railroads and slot cars on Macs. More than 180 libraries are included providing tracks and accessories from virtually any manufacturer of model railroad tracks, allowing the user tstart planning their model railroad empire right away. The latest update to version 3.1 delivers RailModeller as a Universal Binary and features various enhancements requested by customers. [Download - 6.8MB]
Two new Keynote themes have made their debut. Divine Fiat has announced the immediate availability of Distressed, its latest theme for Apple's Keynote presentation software. Distressed "remains subtle and keeps your images and information front and center while bringing a hip edge to your next presentation." It features artistic flare and understated pinstriping, using six slides of extras. Resizable media placeholders employing Keynote's new Picture Frames feature and custom decorative elements allow you to create your own Distressed style slide layouts. Color and texture palettes along with editable custom icon objects in the Distressed style further extend the themes flexibility. Distressed can be purchased by itself for $26.
IGG Software has announced iBank 3.1 the latest release of its personal and small business financial manager made exclusively for Mac OS X. Among the most important changes in the iBank 3.1 upgrade is the ability to preview direct downloads for matching transactions; users are alerted if a duplicate transaction has already been imported to iBank, or advised to proceed when no matching transaction is found. iBank's internal browser, which allows users to log in to online accounts without leaving the application, has been enhanced with improved page loading and more banks' websites available to users
AMD on Wednesday announced details on utilizing new GDDR5 memory in upcoming next generation ATI Radeon graphics cards. Graphics Double Data Rate version 5 is expected to become the new industry standard, the company says, as it provides up to four times the data speed rates of GDDR4 memory.
C-Command has released a new version of SpamSieve, a spam-filtering tool for Macs that relies on Bayesian algorithms. The software integrates with multiple e-mail clients, and evolves to more accurately block unwanted messages. It can decode messages intended to bypass filters, and incorporates both black- and whitelists, the latter of which can be compiled from Address Book, Eudora or Entourage in order to ensure common contacts are never blocked.
A new vulnerability in iCal has been discovered that allows un-authenticated attackers to execute arbitrary code on vulnerable systems with (and potentially without) the assistance from the end user of the application or to repeateadly execute a denial of service attack to crash the iCal application. Core Security writes that "the most serious of the three vulnerabilities is due to potential memory corruption resulting from an resource liberation bug that can be triggered with a malformed .ics calendar file specially crafted by a would-be attacker".
Microsoft today broke from its tradition of primarily endorsing in-house formats by revealing that it will add support to Office for a number of universal standards outside of its own. Office 2007 Service Pack 2 will support the Open Document Format (ODF) touted by OpenOffice, Sun's StarOffice, and other third-party tools as well as similarly universal document types such as PDF 1.5 and PDF/A. The upgrade will let users both open and create files in the formats without requiring either a plugin or an outside utility to convert the formats.
Apple Core has released v2.2 of the aTV Flash, an add-on for the Apple TV. The Flash is a USB flash drive, which when connected to an Apple TV will automatically install files that liberate some of the functions of the device. Users can, for instance, play AVI, WMV and DivX/XviD movies, as well as raw DVD files including subtitles. Rentals can be streamed from Jaman.com, in addition to the iTunes Store.
Sony today gave the PSP a seasonal update with the introduction of the Madden NFL 09 PSP Entertainment Pack. The special-run version of the handheld console gives the PSP a metallic blue tint and ships the system with enough to get the user started on the game: in addition to the new Madden sequel, the Sony bundle comes with a 1GB Memory Stick to save games and an UMD video disc of the NFL's In One Play. A coupon also comes in the box good for a download of the game Beats that can be sideloaded to the PSP from a host PC.
Flip Video may not have officially revealed any new products yet, but a new simple video camcorder from the company has been spotted on Wednesday in a B&H print catalog. While not much is known about the new camera, its $180 retail price suggests it will be the company's flagship offering, and will be available in black or white.
Peripheral maker Creative Labs has introduced a new speaker setup for iPods, the TravelSound for iPod nano. As opposed to most such speaker systems, which rely on separate, desktop-sized satellites, the TravelSound meshes two channels into a single body, in which the Nano docks flush. The speaker is also designed to be tiny enough to be handheld, or carried in pockets, purses or luggage. Each channel produces 700mW of RMS power, with a frequency response of 180Hz to 20KHz.
Americans browse the web on their cellphones almost twice as often as their British counterparts even without the help of web-friendly devices like the iPhone, according to a new study by M:Metrics. Despite the reputation of Europeans as more openly embracing smartphones, Americans in March were known to spend an average of four hours and 38 minutes per month on websites using their phones versus almost exactly two and a half hours for British users. The difference is largely attributed to the prevalence of flat-rate data plans in the US, which give customers either a block of data or unlimited access instead of the metering that more often exists in Europe.
Microsoft today announced Live Search cashback, an online search program that rewards users with ad-funded cash rebates when they search for and purchase products from partnering online stores. Users will be able to collect their savings, accumulated by making purchases found via the new site. They will need to set up an account, and can cash out when the account reaches a minimum of $5.
AT&T will expand its phone insurance to include nearly every device it offers except for the iPhone, a leaked memo obtained by BGR says. An update reportedly scheduled for June 2nd will see the provider expand its coverage to include high-end devices and limit the deductible based on the value of the device; users of most devices will be liable to pay no more than $50 out of a claim, while owners of more expensive phones will at most pay $125.
Logitech has announced a new mouse for notebooks, the V450 Nano. The mouse uses a laser sensor to achieve greater precision than optical mice, and like other Nanos operates wirelessly, using a tiny 2.4GHz receiver that plugs into a notebook's USB 2.0 port. This receiver can also be stored inside the mouse, in order to prevent it from being knocked out of a notebook during travel. Controls include left and right buttons plus a scrollwheel.
Canon is working on its own answer to Nikon's low-end D40 cameras, a publication claims. PHOTO says it has obtained data on the "EOS-1000D" (not pictured), a model which would represent a new, cheaper entry point for Canon's DSLRs, and combine technology from its two most recent low-end models, the EOS-400D and 450D. The publication notes that it would further resurrect a designation used for old EOS film cameras, much as with the 1D and 300D. Nikon's D40 cameras were created for amateurs just entering serious hobby photography.
In addition to the 800w, Palm is designing a thinner, sleeker Treo for GSM networks, BGR confirms through a leak. The Treo 850 is likely to replace the 750 but should be thinner at roughly the same depth as a BlackBerry 8800 and will move the phone's design upscale with a chromed directional pad and an overall look that more closely reflects a new style introduced with the Centro.
Apple has posted a new television ad on its website, under the iPod+iTunes section. The ad features the British band Coldplay silhouetted against brightly-colored lights, as they play a single from their upcoming album, Vida la Vida, due on June 17th. The spot specifically highlights the album as an "exclusive" to the iTunes Store, although this refers only to digital sales rather than physical copies. Stores such as Amazon will be allowed to carry CD and LP versions.
AKVIS has released the fourth major version of ArtSuite, one of its phone enhancement programs. The software is used to add simple effects to images, primarily frames such as ragged or wood edges, a curling page, or another photo. Users can additionally change the image itself through tools such as a channel mixer, a black-and-white converter, and texture selection.
AT&T will have a complete HSPA-based 3G cellular network by the end of June, the company has announced on Wednesday. The carrier plans to have added the faster, more upload-driven HSUPA component of the spec to six of its remaining 3G markets by the end of next month, giving those areas DSL-like access speeds over wireless: users can anticipate real-world speeds of as much as 1.4Mbps downstream and between 500Kbps to 800Kbps for uploads, AT&T claims.
Fashion house Christian Dior is today unveiling a new phone it says will help lift the company's profile. The Dior phone takes a different approach than the LG Prada or Samsung's P520 Armani and opts for flip design with both a keypad and a touchscreen. Additionally, the new phone includes a miniature handset known as the My Dior: the device is small enough to clip to a bag but pairs with the main phone to handle most call functions by itself.
Western Digital has introduced a new line of portable hard drives for Macs, the My Passport Studios. The drives are specifically journaled and HFS+-formatted for Macs, and are compatible with Apple's Time Machine utility in Mac OS X Leopard; they are likewise equipped with a FireWire 400 port, in addition to a more standard USB 2.0 connection. A rounded silver case is intended to blend in with other Mac hardware.
Acer this morning is boosting its previously low-key gaming efforts through the Aspire Predator, a new line of high-end gaming desktops. Every system comes with a uniquely angular case that provides a lifting front cover to shield the PC's front as well as similarly dramatic side doors for case expansion. Past the shell, the front also hides game-friendly expansion, including front-mounted ports and a multi-bay hard drive cage that lets users add or replace disks without having to open the computer itself.
Apple is facing a new lawsuit over its Mighty Mouse peripheral, reports say. The case was filed in Greenbelt, Maryland by a company called Man & Machine, which is accusing Apple of violating a trademark associated with its own Mighty Mouse device, an optical mouse designed to be waterproof and chemical-resistant for use in environments such as labs and hospitals. Crucially, M&M began selling its product in 2004, over a year before Apple's device went on the market.
Microsoft on Wednesday lost a lawsuit it had filed against Alcatel-Lucent over patents relating to telephone-to-Internet technologies. The US-based International Trade Commission has absolved Alcatel-Lucent of claims that it had infringed four patents for the bridging technology, further reversing an initial decision that had found the company culpable of infringing on at least one patent.
The Federal Communications Commission is exploring a deal that would cap early termination fees (ETFs) on cellphone contracts in exchange for leniency in ongoing lawsuits, according to information gleaned from alleged sources by the AP. FCC officials are reportedly discussing rules suggested by Verizon which would require that carriers pro-rate their ETFs based on the length of a customer's stay with the service, preventing charges that can run up to a typical $175 even if a customer leaves a service one month before the end of a given contract.
The first Apple Store in the Canadian city of Vancouver, or its home province of British Columbia, is scheduled to open this Saturday, May 24th. The store is located at 701 West Georgia Street within the Pacific Centre Mall, and on its opening day, will operate from 10AM to 7PM. Sunday hours are 11AM to 6PM; Monday and Tuesday return to the Saturday schedule, but Wednesday throguh Friday, the store will be open until 9PM.
T-Mobile USA today said it would carry the Nokia 5310 XpressMusic. The candybar phone gives the American carrier a mid-range media phone with a 2-megapixel camera, dedicated music controls along the side of the display, and a full headphone jack for listening either to AAC/MP3/WMA songs stored on the phone or else to FM radio. The T-Mobile edition comes with a 1GB microSD card preloaded with a pair of songs and music videos, and comes with trim in any one of three colors, including Nokia's stock red as well as unique orange and purple hues.
Every MacBook released in 2009 will use an LED backlight, says the Taiwan-area newspaper Economic Daily News. Backlight manufacturer Kenmos Technology was Apple's chief supplier of the more color-accurate, efficient screen hardware for 2007 and is expected to have an even more dominant role next year as Apple switches its consumer models to LED lights. Kenmos is said to be shipping as many as five times more LEDs this year, at 1.5 million, though it's not known what number of these are destined for Apple or other customers.
EA on Tuesday unveiled a new high-definition movie trailer of the cellular stage in Spore – a highly anticipated, all-encompassing simulation of evolution and civilization. The trailer shows how basic gameplay works during the entry stages of a Spore organism, illustrating the differences between jaw-bearing carnivorous entities and filter-mouthed plant feeders. It goes through several stages, from birth through to evolving the desire to come above water. Spore is expected to ship September 7th.
Microsoft on Thursday revealed its plans for an advertising network built into its Zune media players, offering advertisers a direct line to consumers through the device. Yahoo writes that the company demonstrated the concept using a phony Doritos mockup. In the example, a user could befriend a musician through the Zune social page on a Doritos’ sponsored concert to view news and updates on the artist’s profile.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.27 ( -0.72 )
HBO Now has 800,000 subscribers
The CEO of HBO, Richard Plepler has confirmed that the online streaming HBO service, HBO Now, has 800,000 subscribers. When criticized for the seemingly low number, Plepler noted that the still nascent service was bound to Apple exclusivity during the fifth season of Game of Thrones. Plepler declared during the Time Warner quarterly earnings conference call marketing for the online-only offering would be enhanced in 2016. While HBO Now's critics are slamming the low numbers, the service must also compete against itself on cable, in addition to Netflix and other streaming services. http://on.recode.net/1QWoLHe
Unsafe IoT called threat to humanity
US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told two different Senate committees yesterday that the Internet of Things posed a clear and present danger, and could be weaponized by governments. Before the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Clapper declared that insecure IoT "will bring new security vulnerabilities" and "will connect tens of billions of new physical devices that could be exploited" by those wishing to perpetrate violence or eavesdrop on the populace of the world. http://bit.ly/23Xvcky
Apple public betas for iOS 9.3, OS X 10.11.4
Following Monday's release of betas for the iOS and OS X, Apple has unveiled public betas for both operating systems. The iOS 9.3 beta includes all of the previously reported enhancements for education customers, along with Wi-Fi calling for Verizon iPhone owners, and a carrier update for T-Mobile users. The OS X 10.11.4 third beta includes enhancements to Twitter URL opening, Live Photo viewing and sharing, and Evernote note importation into Notes.
Google given NHTSA SDS waivers
In contrast to the California Department of Motor Vehicle's approach, the US National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) has confirmed that it is declaring the software in autonomous cars is the legal driver of a so-equipped vehicle. In a letter to Google, the NHTSA says that it "will interpret 'driver' in the context of Google's described motor vehicle design as referring to the SDS [self-driving system], and not to any of the vehicle occupants." Other matters, such as legally-required rear-view mirrors for occupied vehicles has yet to be determined. However, regulations specifying the "driver" need no longer be interpreted as meaning a person behind the wheel, as the agency writes that self-driving cars "will not have a 'driver' in the traditional sense that vehicles have had drivers during the last more than one hundred years" http://1.usa.gov/1QrAGtR
Dropshare 4 for Mac now available
Dropshare 4 for Mac has shipped, introducing support for uploading files and screenshots to Amazon S3 API-compliant services, like DreamObjects and OpenStack. The update also introduces a new popup design, an in-app editor for custom landing pages, an improved upload history window, and security improvements when using SSH connections. The paid upgrade costs $25, though it is free for customers who bought the previous version this year and half-price for those who acquired version 3 of the app last year. http://bit.ly/1XixV3q
Google starting phase-out of Flash ads
Search engine and advertising giant Google will shortly no longer accept Adobe Flash-created ads for its AdWords network. Starting June 30, ads in the once-ubiquitous format will no longer be accepted. Additionally, after January 2, 2017, the network will no longer serve Flash-based advertisements, and the network will be completely HTML 5 based. http://bit.ly/1PNx1uc
Sonos now works with Apple Music
Wireless music system manufacturer Sonos has announced that its systems worldwide will gain compatibility for streaming the paid Apple Music subscription service starting today, February 10. "Music fans worldwide will have access to Apple Music features like For You, New, Radio, and My Music, and will also be able to stream the entire Apple Music catalog through Sonos smart speakers tuned for great sound in every room of their homes," the company said in an email to journalists. Apple Music's streaming service costs $10 per month, with a free three-month trial. http://bit.ly/1Wdi2Ko