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Forums missing features
Forum roundup: Advanced features in Mac OS X that have gone missing are a topic of interest in the MacNN forums. Problems with Mail, Finder, Time Machine and Safari are addressed. For Mac owners who chose to install Windows XP on their systems, one user highly recommends slipstreaming service pack 2.
Apple deals iPods
Current generation refurbished iPod nano, iPod shuffle and iPod touch are now available at Apple's online store. The 4GB iPod nano holds up to 1,000 songs, comes in silver and is $99. For $149 you can get the 8GB iPod nano that holds up to 2,000 songs in silver, pink, blue, green or black. Both configurations can last for up to 24 hours of music playback or up to 5 hours of video playback. 1GB and 2GB iPod shuffles come in silver, blue, green or purple. The 1GB model ($39) holds up to 240 songs and the 2GB model ($59) holds up to 500 songs, both provide up to 12 hours of music playback. Starting at $249 is the 8GB iPod touch with a capacity for up to 1,750 songs, 16GB ($349) and 32GB ($429) models are available as well.
Europa Universalis: Rome
Developer Virtual Programming has announced that the Mac port of Europa Universalis: Rome will be launched on July 4th. The game is a stand-alone title based on the Europa Universalis 3 engine, but concentrates on the ancient Roman period, and specifically the era between the First Punic War and the formal foundation of the Empire. Players take charge of a nation and attempt to expand their influence through trade, negotiation and ultimately conquest.
Rogers Defends iPhone Data
Rogers Wireless is justified in its limited data plans as many other iPhone-carrying nations are doing the same or are more restrictive, a company spokeswoman tells Electronista. The Canadian company argues that a "majority" of international iPhone carriers have capped data and believes its plan to be better than these, citing as example Orange France plans that include a 500MB 'reasonable use' limit versus the 2GB maximum on Rogers' best iPhone plan. The company also tries to justify the caps by claiming that unlimited use would require customers pay for more than they need.
Orbino Aria MBA case
Accessory maker Orbino has released a new notebook case, the Aria. The case is designed specifically for the MacBook Air, and as a result is extremely slim; to store more than the computer, owners are expected to attach a removable accessroies pocket. In a similar manner, the shoulder strap can be removed if users want to rely on their hands, or only need to store an Air inside another case.
Gates leaves Microsoft
At an employee event held today, Bill Gates said farewell to the company he co-founded back in 1975. Gates will move from one giant to another, as he will turn his focus on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which is the world's largest charity. Reports say Gates and Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer delivered speeches to the assembled employees and press, each choking back tears as they spoke.
MSI delays Wind UMPC
MSI has again delayed getting its Wind UMPC into the hands of buyers. In a letter sent to customers recently, apologetic MSI says the delay stems from an industry-wide notebook battery shortage that took place in March. In an attempt to make up for the delay, MSI will give buyers free overnight shipping when the Wind does arrive on July 7. The last promised ship date for the long-awaited UMPC was June 16th, but US customers are still to receive their mini notebooks.
Norwegian iPhone prices
Following an announcement for Sweden by parent company TeliaSonera, Norway's NetCom has revealed its prices for the iPhone 3G. Subscriptions are divided into three different levels of iTalk plans -- Small, Medium and Large -- and are roughly equivalent to the Swedish plans, providing steps of 100, 250 and 1,000 in voice minutes, SMS texts and megabytes of data transfer. These cost 399, 699 and 1,099 NOK per month, in order.
Cynical Peak Software has released Rivet 1.1, a new version of that software that enables users to stream video, music, and photos from Mac OS X to an Xbox 360 over your home network. 1.1 adds better media browsing support and fixes performance and stability issues. Your Mac's folder structure and organization is completely reproduced to allow you to find what you want to view. Features include music streaming of your iTunes library, photo streaming of your iPhoto library and user defined folders, video streaming from user defines folders and full organization support
Global PC shipments
Despite tough overall economic conditions, the market for personal computers remained strong in the first quarter of 2008 according to iSuppli. Global PC unit shipments rose to 69.9 million units in the first quarter, up 12.1 percent from 62.4 million in the first quarter of 2007. Hewlett-Packard Co., Dell Inc. and Acer Inc. retained the top-three rankings with no change from the previous quarter. HP boosted first-quarter global PC shipments by 23 percent over the same quarter in 2007, to reach 13.2 million units. Dell in the first quarter of 2008 expanded its market share position by half a percentage point compared to the fourth quarter of 2007, at 15.4 percent, with worldwide shipments of 10.8 million units.
Panasonic denies OLED TV
Panasonic will not bring a 37-inch OLED TV to market by 2011 as reported on Tuesday, according to the company. Panasonic executives are instead hinting its OLED TVs will be sold to consumers closer to 2015, although they are officially keeping tight-lipped about specific timelines, saying only that research and development is ongoing in Japan.
AKVIS Magnifier 1.0
Developer AKVIS has released the first version of Magnifier, a resizing tool. The app is meant to scale images without affecting quality; this is mainly a problem when scaling upwards, as bicubic interpolation typically results in pixellation. As Magnifier enlarges an image, it attempts to smooth out pixels while still retaining sharpness, allowing for reproductions 10 or 20 times their original size.
VIA's slim motherboard
Taiwan's VIA Technologies today announced its slimmest Pico-ITX motherboard to date with the EPIA P700 Pico-ITX. To save space, it features an integrated power supply and is meant for use in ultra-compact systems. The P700 also sports in-line I/O pin-headers, Gigabit LAN support and a SATA II interface. The board comes with VIA's VX700 IGP chipset and a choice of a 1GHz C7 or fanless 500MHz Eden ULV processor.
Swedish iPhone prices
Scandinavian carrier TeliaSonera has published the complete list of Swedish prices for the iPhone 3G, an announcement reads. As previously confirmed, subscriptions will be divided into iMini, iMidi and iMaxi plans, in 100/100/100, 250/250/250 and 1,000/1,000/1,000 combinations of voice, SMS and data; new is that these will cost 299, 489 and 859 SEK a month, respectively. Telia hotspot access is free in all plans.
Sony SOCOM PS3 Headset
Sony today prepped its PlayStation 3 audience with official details of its official Bluetooth headset. To be packed in with the retail copy of SOCOM Confrontation, the earpiece works with any game or software that supports voice chat on the console and includes extras that aren't always standard with most headsets for cellphones, including a mute button to prevent unintentional noise outside of normal use and a USB charging cradle to power the headset either from the PS3 or a computer.
Sony Ericsson Breaks Even
Sony Ericsson today warned that its income and shipments will have shrunk this quarter over expectations. The cellphone producer now expects its pre-tax income to only "break-even" when reported in mid-July and says it will ship fewer cellphones over the three-month period than it did a year ago, with about 24 million phones shipped worldwide. The company also expects the average selling price to drop further still from the last quarter, dropping from roughly $192 at the start of the year to about $181, earning the company less for each device.
BBC iPlayer set-top box
The BBC is planning to build its own set-top box for iPlayer users, a report reveals. iPlayer is a free web service which allows TV license payers to stream the past week of BBC programming for free; it is typically accessed via computers however, with the exception of devices like the iPhone and the Nintendo Wii. The new set-top will hook up directly to a TV, and feed data from a broadband connection to effectively create an IPTV link.
PS3 switching to 65nm tech
The PlayStation 3 is already using some 65nm manufacturing, says Sony Computer Entertainment CEO Kaz Hirai. The technology has actually been used in the PS3's Cell processor since the last holiday season, Hirai confirms, and the full switch from 90 to 65nm should be complete by the fall, when the RSX graphics processor will make the leap. Manufacturing of new RSX chips has already begun, but the company is waiting until later this year to install them.
Verizon iPhone Conspiracy
Estimates that the iPhone will become a widely accepted device are evidence of a bias from those who expect Apple to succeed, Verizon chief Ivan Seidenberg tells the Financial Times in an interview. The executive behind the carrier rebuffs notions that iPhone 3G's up-front price cut to $200 will translate to much larger sales and claims Apple's currently small total marketshare as evidence. Apple is a newcomer that has to prove itself, according to the Verizon head, who also suggests that Verizon itself can be disruptive in a shift to mobile devices from computers.
MacBook Pro video glitches
Owners of Santa Rosa-based MacBook Pros are suffering from video failures, reports claim. Victims say that the problem arises after waking or rebooting a Pro, at which point the computer may suddenly stop displaying video, whether on its native LCD or an attached monitor. Debugging is said to have revealed that the issue is with misidentified graphics chipsets -- rather than acknowledging their dedicated GeForce 8600M GT cards, Pros may be treating them as integrated X3100 chipsets.
Spanish iPhone prices?
Prices for Spanish subscriptions to the iPhone have been leaked, according to reports. Exploration of the Movistar website has allegedly uncovered a page displaying phone prices, with a cost of €99 for an 8GB iPhone, and €199 for a 16GB model. Options are further divided into "iPhone" and "iPhone Plus" tariffs.
Virgin Mobile Buys Helio
Virgin Mobile today shook up the American wireless business with news that it would acquire Helio for $39 million in share equity, merging the latter into Virgin's mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) business. The deal also has Virgin absorbing some of Helio's debt and also gives the carrier Helio's 170,000 customers in the US, with the latter ending its brand in the US. The deal should be completed during the summer pending US government approval, according to the two companies.
Xbox 360 Pro 300 Rumor
Microsoft is poised to lead off E3 by cutting the price on its Xbox 360 Pro console, according to a flyer spotted by a forum user. A Kmart ad for the week of July 6th claims the 20GB console will sell for $300, or $50 less than its current asking price; the drop doesn't indicate a sale or any other form of temporary discount. The feature set appears to remain the same as for the existing console.
Rogers iPhone 3G Plans
Canadian cell provider Rogers Wireless and its sub-brand Fido today listed their iPhone 3G plans, revealing the strategy for carrying the device in the country. All plans will need both voice and data and have finite data limits; unlike previous rumors, there will be no option for unlimited access with either service, though all will include Visual Voicemail as well as unlimited weekend and evening calling; incoming SMS messages are also unlimited, as is access to Rogers- and Fido-owned Wi-Fi hotspots.
3 Australia iPhone poll
Wireless carrier 3 Australia has received a strong surge of interest in carrying the iPhone 3G, a corporate blog claims. On Thursday the carrier posted a message explaining that it has contacted Apple about carrying the 3G, but that it is seeking public response on the issue as a means of getting Apple's attention. Hundreds of mostly positive comments have since been posted on the site, and visitors can currently sign up for e-mail notifications about the iPhone.
Sony Alone on PS3 Video
Sony's PlayStation 3 video service (now part of Life on PlayStation) may not have extra support from other studios and will rely tightly on integration with Sony's own formats, according to sources speaking to Variety editor Ben Fritz. The console maker has allegedly talked to major studios about offering their movies through the PS3 and PlayStation Network but so far hasn't negotiated any deals, leaving the current offering only to Sony Pictures titles.
Apple, China Mobile warm
Past divisions between Apple and cellular carrier China Mobile are narrowing, Reuters reports. For months, informal talks to bring the iPhone to China have been stalled, as the two companies could not agree on fundamental points of interest. These have been resolved, says China Mobile spokeswoman Rainie Lei. The largest obstacle is said to have been revenue sharing, something Chinese companies do not practice as a rule.
Brother MFC 6490CW
Brother finished the week with news of an update to its MFC series all-in-one color inkjet printers with the MFC-6490CW. The device is billed as one of the first at its $300 price to build color printing, faxing, and scanning into one printer while also adding extra-large printing. The tabletop printer is large enough to capture and produce 11-by-17 inch ledger prints, and can potentially save an expensive run to a custom printing location, Brother claims. The extra size similarly allows books and other texts larger than letter size to be scanned in.
DXG-567V HD Camera
DXG is expanding its still-new HD video camera lineup with the DXG-567V. The pocketable camcorder is capable of the same full-speed, 720p recording in H.264 as the earlier 569V but switches from the larger, swivel-display format of the earlier camera to a smaller LCD on the back of the camera, allowing it to fit in more places. DXG still gives the device a built-in web upload feature that, with Windows software, streamlines getting video to YouTube or other video hosting sites when the 567V is connected to a computer through USB.
Nokia Supernova Phones
Nokia chose to make an unusual Friday announcement with the launch of its Supernova cellphone line. The entire series is targeted at style-aware users with both swappable front and back color faceplates as well as a Theme Colorizer app that lets users snap a photo to sample a color for their phone's wallpaper; they all also focus much more on photography than some models. The 7610 Supernova slider is Nokia's flagship with a 3.2-megapixel camera, dual LEDs for flash, FM radio, and microSD that holds both photos and music. The phone is limited to EDGE for data but supports US frequencies and will be available in the summer for 225 Euros ($355) before carrier discounts.
Messenger for Mac 7.01
Microsoft on Thursday took the wraps off Microsoft Messenger 7.0.1 for Mac. Designed to offer improved compatibility with Office Communications Server 2007 for OS X, Microsoft also integrated a number of bug fixes. Version 7.0.1 sees a resolution to user interface issues when using European languages and also improved support for the 'VoiceOver' feature. Messenger still offers users with a 'Windows Live' account the ability to chat with family, friends or co-workers, and share files across the internet. Compatibility with Apple's Bonjour technology was also implemented, allowing improved connections to other users on the same local-area-network. Messenger 7.0.1, a Universal Binary, is free to download. System requirements for this latest version have been upped to Mac OS X 10.4.9 or later.
Apple updates Pro Apps
Apple has released Final Cut Pro Server 1.1 (50.1MB) and Pro Applications Update 2008-02 (138MB). Both are available directly through Mac OS X's 'Software Update' feature, and also from the Apple website. Primarily a maintenance release, Final Cut Pro Server 1.1 packs in an impressive amount of bug fixes. Aiming to improve 'general reliability', it fixes specific issues when using multi-byte fonts, updating 'checked out' assets, and Project XML. A requirement for users to run QuickTime 7.5 has also been noted in the release notes. The Pro Applications Update is again primarily a maintenance release to 'improve reliability'. It includes point updates to Final Cut Pro, updating the application to 6.0.4, and Compressor 3.0.3. Other changes include enhanced support for Final Cut Pro Server, changes to XDCAM HD422 sequence presets, and a fix to HDV capture from QuickTime 7.5; the release notes document no other significant changes.
Sena iPhone cases
Luxury handheld device accessory designer Sena Cases, this week announced a new special collection of cases exclusively for the iPhone 3G. Handmade in Europe by 'leather artisans', the new range features only the highest quality, full-grain Italian Napa leather, in a variety of fashionable colors. Expected to ship on the launch of the iPhone 3G next month, Sena is currently offering generous pre-order discounts.
Geneforge 5: Overthrow
Spiderweb Software this week released new information about Geneforge 5: Overthrow, the final part of its epic fantasy game series -- 'Set in the land of the Shapers, a secretive sect of wizards with the ability to create new life to serve them. Play a lone traveler in this strange land and fight to bring an end to this war. Or, if you choose, join them and destroy the rebels once and for all' -- With release expected in December 2008, Spiderweb software promises a 'huge open' storyline with 'dozens of different endings' and immersive gameplay. Packing in over 80 areas to explore, five different in game factions, and in-game cities, Geneforge 5 is designed to offer extensive replay value. A Universal Binary, Geneforge 5: Overthrow currently requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later; pricing details are expected to be announced closer to launch.
Safe Eyes 3.0
InternetSafety.com on Thursday unveiled Safe Eyes 3.0 for Mac, its parental control software that allows users to limit children's access to inappropriate content on the internet. The new Mac version adds several new features from the Windows equivalent, such as time limits, instant message blocking, or restricting access to entire applications. InternetSafety.com is currently selling Safe Eyes 3.0 for a yearly fee of $50, and can be installed on up to three computers.
New iPhone SDK iTunes 7.7
Apple has unveiled the eighth incarnation of the iPhone SDK beta, but for the first time, requires users to install the pre-release version of iTunes 7.7. An insider tells MacNN that the new beta is compatible with the finalized iPhone 2.0 OS, and is App Store upload-capable - a feature most likely present in the new version of iTunes. The 3G iPhone, v2.0 OS, and App Store are set to land in July, with the apps themselves theoretically ranging from free to just shy of $1000.
Apple sues tech over iPod
After filing documents trademark documents concerning the use of "Pod" and "iPod" in products and advertising, Apple is pursuing a lawsuit against a Michigan iPod repair business, the iPod Mechanic. AppleInsider reveals that in 2006, Apple had warned business owner Nicholas Woodhams over the use of the terms, asking him to stop. Woodhams allegedly agreed, but did not follow through, and has now supposedly tipped the scales by committing fraud against Apple.
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