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Samsung tonight pushed its DDR3 memory lineup forward with news of a new two-gigabit (256MB) module. Using a new 50 nanometer manufacturing process, the memory is twice as dense as before and enables RAM capacities that are still rare: a dual-die, error-corrected RAM stick can now hold as much as 16GB by stacking the chips. Notebooks should also see a boost with up to 4GB per stick in a thin package, while the regular unregistered memory used in most desktops should hold a similar amount.
Wal-Mart is following the actions of Microsoft, Yahoo and Virgin, shutting down its DRM (Digital Rights Management) servers on October 9. The move will render any Wal-Mart-purchased, copy protected WMA music files inert if not burned to CD prior to the server shutdown. Boing Boing is reporting that Wal-Mart has emailed customers warning them of the impending server shutdown and its effect on their collections.
Nintendo is developing its first real update to the DS since the Lite and may be prepared to launch it soon, according to claims from alleged sources for the Japanese newspaper Yomiuri. The new upgrade would have an integrated camera and would use at least photos in games. Nintendo would also focus on expanding the handheld's role as a wireless data device and would create a more "user-friendly" look for the system. Prices would be kept under $189 in the company's home country and could see Nintendo release the new DS before the end of the year, according to the report.
Mesa Dynamics has released a beta version of Stainless, a browser for Mac OS X inspired by Google Chrome. The application features multi-process browsing, allowing each tab to run tasks separately. When a site is visited that contains content that is typically slow to load, the other tabs can still run unhampered. In the event of a page crash, the browser itself remains responsive and other pages unaffected.
Last.fm Ltd. has updated Last.fm for iPhone to v2.0, streamlining the interface, adding tagging, personal tag radio, common artists (when viewing a profile) and a calendar-based events view. The new update also adds support for the iPhone 2.1 software update. The software allows users to design personal radio stations based on artists or genres, and offers artists bios, concert information, favorite track sharing and smart recommendations, based on user listening.
EazyDraw has released EazyDraw 2.7, an update to its drawing software that adds new text capabilities. The software now allows text to flow around graphics with live typesetting, and can add text flows inside graphics. It also adds text linking, text rotation and an enhanced spell check with grammar support. A tabs palette is new, supporting position, spacing and alignment, and CMYK color conversion has also been enhanced. Version 2.7 also features 17 documented bug fixes and adds a 300-page French language user manual.
Findley Designs has released iPod Access Photo 1.6 for the Mac, an update to the software that allows users to access and manage photo collections on iPods. The update adds support for the iPod nano 4G, improved photo cropping, photo statistic displays, faster load times and numerous bug fixes. The software works with all iPods that support photos, including the iPhone and iPod touch. It can disable iTunes photo sync, can copy photos both to and from multiple iPods and uses the highest resolutions possible for each photo.
Kupuk has released Zones 1.2 for the iPhone and iPod touch. The update to the Sonos remote control utility adds a browser list of favorite internet radio stations, adds support for playlists and displays album art while the music is playing. Sonos systems are whole-house music players, and Zones can control the playback over WiFi anywhere in a Sonos-equipped home. It uses UPnP over a local WiFi network, can browse music by artist, album and song, can conrol volume in each zone, plays internet radio stations and keeps track of upcoming songs.
Eric Cheng of Echeng.com says he has successfully installed and run a RAID 0 SSD array in a MacBook Pro, with strong performance results. Utilizing two 120GB OCZ SATA SSD notebook hard drives, and an MCE OptiBay hard drive adapter (placed in the MacBook Pro's SuperDrive bay), Cheng was able to configure the two drives and set them up in a striped RAID 0 array, and install a bootable copy of Mac OS X.
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Apple to open R&D center in India
A new report says that Apple will be opening a new technology center in Hyderabad, India, helping to boost the city's growing reputation as a tech center. The facility would operate within the WaveRock facility, and create 4,500 new jobs at a cost of around $25 million. In 2015, India surpassed the $1 billion in yearly sales milestone, and Apple has recently received permission to open retail stores in the country under its own control, an exception to rules that usually block foreign ownership. http://zd.net/1SMBVu4
Google killing Picasa starting May 1
Google Photos head Anil Sabharwal confirmed in a blog post today that the search engine giant will be shutting down acquisition Picasa. Support and downloads for the desktop application will terminate on March 15 with the application continuing to work for the time being. The transition to Google Photos truly commences on May 1, with deprecation of some Picasa API calls happening shortly thereafter. Users that have Google Photos access will find their photos already migrated. A mass-download tool for users not wishing to use Google Photos will be available sometime after May 1. http://bit.ly/1SmV2KH
Rogue Amoeba Piezo updated, departing App Store
In order to continue working on audio capture tool Piezo, developer Rogue Amoeba has simultaneously updated the app to version 1.5, and announced that it will pull version 1.2.6 from the Mac App Store. Customers who own the Mac App Store version have a one-time migration process to the Rogue Amoeba-served version. The company notes that the sandboxing restriction placed on Mac App Store versions "effectively stopped our ability to upgrade Piezo in any meaningful way." [8.80MB] http://bit.ly/1PIjz7l
FCC spectrum auction will happen without Google
After throwing its hat in earlier, Google (and associated companies) has declared that it is not participating in this year's FCC spectrum auction. A company spokeswoman said of the auction that "like all those interested in improved connectivity and equitable access, we'll be following the upcoming spectrum auction closely. That said, we have not filed to participate." http://on.recode.net/1oy5LWk
iPad Air 3, iPhone 5se sold Friday after launch?
Reverting the way products are actually released by Apple after an announcement to the way it was a decade ago, reports are circulating that new products revealed at a March announcement will go on sale the Friday immediately following the unveil. Slated to appear at a conjectural Tuesday, March 15 event are a new Apple four-inch phone with more up to date internals currently referred to as the iPhone 5se, and a new iPad Air 3 model with Smart Connector and other enhancements. http://bit.ly/1o7mqiY
Lexmark prevails in toner import appeal
Printer manufacturer Lexmark has won an appeal on the third-party US resale of its printer cartridges originally destined for markets outside North America. The appeals court ruled in a 10-2 vote in favor of Lexmark's demand to stop the sale and against Impression Products, both on the toner cartridge resale matter, as well as a related matter regarding overturning the reseller's refilling one-use cartridges and selling those in the US market. The ruling has ramifications in the tech industry, as well as the pharmaceutical and medical technology markets. Impression Products promises an appeal before the supreme court. http://reut.rs/1SLVmmG
AT&T expands BOGO promo to iPhone 6s
Beginning today, new and existing AT&T customers can purchase a new iPhone 6s and get another one free when adding a second line. Over the weekend, customers must purchase two phones through AT&T Next (one can be an existing number), and add both phones to a qualified plan. AT&T notes that "after three bill cycles or less" the account will start to receive up to $650 spread out over 30 monthly bill credits to offset the cost of the installment plan for the phone. Taxes are due at time of sale. http://soc.att.com/1SLUP4k