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Native Instruments has launched Acoustic Refractions, a new Kore SoundPack that combines unique sampled material with advanced processing in Kore Absynth, and other sound engines. Acoustic Refractions has a 100 individual KoreSounds and comes complete with morphable sound variations and parameter assignments for sound tweaking in Kore 2 and Kore player. It also comes with musical metadata for all presets to help it integrate with Kore.
Bjango has released iStat 1.0, a network monitoring app that allows users to check up on thier Macs. The app also provides detailed iPhone stats, including available memory, IP addresses, usage and load averages. Included network tools allow users to ping servers and resolve hostnames with traceroute. The Melbourne-based developer says iStat also includes a "Free Memory" tool which works to free up unused space reserved by third-party iPhone applications.
Apple has released two new updates, one for iDVD and the other for its iLife Media Browser. iDVD allows users to create, customize and burn a DVD for watching on a PC, Mac, or television. With the latest update to iDVD 7.0.3, overall stability of the application has been improved and a number of other minor issues have been addressed. To run the program users will require Mac OS X 10.4.11, or Mac OS X 10.5.6 and later.
The US Senate tonight said it had cleared a bill to move the digital TV transition from its original February 17th date to June 12th. The tentative delay follows concerns by senators and the new Obama administration that there wasn't enough time for the new presidency to manage the process and for more end viewers to be ready for the switch, which cuts off analog, over-the-air TV broadcasts in favor of digital and full HD equivalents.
The iPhone is being used as a "real-life" therapy tool for stuttering. The Hollins Communications Research Institute says it has developed special software for the device that monitors and evaluates speech patterns to help patients overcome the speech impediment which affects an estimated 66 million people worldwide. The software provides training and feedback for patients in their everyday lives, outside of a speech clinic.
Nyuk Nyuk ($1) gives users 30 different kinds of laughter to choose from in its comic laughter application. Containing almost nine minutes of laughter recorded in high-quality, users can either scroll the wheel or shake the iPhone to have the program choose a laugh for them. Some of the laughs to choose from are kid laughter, bellyache, diabolical, baby giggles, snort, the throng of laughter, annoyed nerd, and infectious hilarity
PopCap games has announced (via its Twitter feed), Peggle coming to the iPhone and iPod touch. Peggle is a pinball style game where users must eliminate pegs by shooting steel balls at them. Once shot, the balls bounce around the screen earning experience and power-ups until all the pegs are destroyed or the ball is lost. The company has not provided on whether the game will include the same levels as its PC version, or any other information regarding controls and features.
Featuring soft shadows and grey tones, Divine Fiat has released Keynote Air, the latest addition to its line of Keynote theme sets. Keynote Air comes with two themes Lightly Serious and Seriously Light.
Apple has released NVIDIA Graphics Update 2009 v1.0 aimed at addressing problems with the new Mini DisplayPort Dual-Link DVI adapter close . The update "improves cursor movement" on Mini DisplayPort enabled MacBook Air, MacBook and MacBook Pro notebooks. Apple says the patch also improves playback of HD video running on systems with NVIDIA GeForce 7300 GT or 9600M graphics chips.
Briksoftware has launched Snapplr, a screenshot taking and sharing tool that can replace Mac OS Xís original screen-shooting capabilities and fully integrates into the system. Snapplr displays a small control panel on the bottom of the screen when taking screenshots, that enables users to select the destination of their screenshot whether it involves sending them via e-mail, copying to the clipboard, or saved as a file. The tool also automatically uploads screenshots taken directly to Snapplr and gives users a URL in their clipboard that can be shared and used to view the shot.
NeoTron Design has released its Avid Media Composer 3.x KeyGuide, a 17-inch wide professional placemat that shows what the default keys are for Avidís latest Media Composer software-only product. The placemat is double-sided with one side showing editing operations functions and tool access, while the other side displays audio, effects, and tile tools and controls. A keypad flap is also added to offer mouse-with modifier key commands.
Netflix this afternoon bucked expectations by revealing a major leap in the number of subscribers to its movie rental service this past fall. The company says its subscriber base surged 26 percent versus a year ago to 9.39 million and that its net income has climbed even faster, jumping nearly 44.6 percent to $22.7 million. Both improvements are "near record" statistics, according to Netflix chief Reed Hastings.
Even if you're a regular National Public Radio (NPR) listener, there's a chance you won't catch your favorite shows during the day. Many NPR stations offer podcasts, but if you're not keen on manually hunting for files and loading them onto a media player, you can let a program like the NPR Mobile iPhone app do the work for you.
Klipsch Audio has recently announced the upcoming launch of three new, entry-level 5.1-channel surround-sound speaker systems. The HD Theater 1000 is the headliner, sporting five identical speakers for its five channels. Each houses two 2.5-inch fiber composite drivers and a 0.75-inch aluminum dome tweeter with a MicroTractrix Horn. The bass is reproduced by a 10-inch subwoofer with a fiber composite cone. All speakers are driven by a hybrid class D amplifier.
Intel has given the public a small sneak peek at an upcoming Core 2 Duo processor, the E8700, with a 3.5GHz clock speed, by posting specs of it on its knowledge database. While the page is no longer active, TechReport has learned that the CPU will also sport 6MB of cache, a 1333MHz front-side bus and a 65W thermal envelope. The chip shares the same Wolfdale design as the existing E8600 processor, leading many to believe it could be a faster version of that CPU.
Comcast's systematic DOCSIS 3.0 release is quietly expanding, as it was reportedly launched last week in more Chicago suburbs and it is believed the service will become available in San Francisco's Bay Area before week's end. Comcast met its target of bringing 20 percent coverage to its markets by the end of 2008, and is now on its way to update all of its technology to the faster Internet access by the end of 2010. The provider's fast Internet service promises to bring download speeds as fast as 50Mbps to subscribers under its Extreme 50 service plan.
Sony Japan will release the PlayStation Portable gaming system in four carnival-themed colors, adding to the currently available black, white and silver editions of the system. The red, blue, green and yellow PSPs will be offered as standalone, with the console itself, an AC adapter and a 1,200mAh battery pack, or in a value pack, which adds a 4GB Memory Stick, a 2,200mAh battery and a color-matching carrying case.
Apple has again failed to make a list of the best American companies to work for, according to Fortune. In its 2009 compilation, the top company is named as brokerage firm Edward Jones, which has managed to avoid any ties to the credit crisis and during 2008 hired 698 new financial advisors in the first 10 months. In the upcoming year, the firm is said to be building a headquarters expansion for 500 more people.
Philips Electronics said it will cut its global workforce to the tune of 6,000 because it posted the first quarterly loss in about six years, according to a Monday report. At the same time, the company stopped the buy-back program of its shares. The 1.47 billion Euro ($1.9 billion) loss in the fourth quarter of 2008 is partly due to a write-down of Philips' Lumildes diode light business as well as the downgrading of its shares in NXP Semiconductors and LG Display. Net losses for 2008 amounted to 186 million Euros (nearly $242 million).
The recently leaked VX9600 Versa from LG will be making its way to Best Buy Mobile, thanks to a leaked inventory screen capture. If it holds true, the modular phone should be available at the retailer on February 22nd, with a release at Verizon Wireless expected around the same time. The handset introduces a new form factor, as it sports a detachable QWERTY keyboard that also has a small external display from the main, touchscreen section. When the two halves are joined, a cutout in the keyboard portion lets the camera in the touchscreen half take photos.
MSI this afternoon expanded on its CES news by detailing its new mid-size G-series notebook. The GT627 has a typical 15.4-inch display size but carries a GeForce 9800M GS with 1GB of memory to give it video performance more characteristic of desktop replacement notebooks. It also draws on MSI's now-familiar Turbo Drive to overclock the Core 2 Duo chip when on AC power and comes in an aluminum body that weighs just over 6 pounds.
Samsung is getting ready to release three new handsets, one of which will include the yet-unreleased Windows Mobile 6.5 operating system, according to a recent blog entry by online retailer Expansys. The code-named Samsung Pivot will replace the i780 and will reportedly run on the as yet unannounced Windows Mobile 6.5. The candybar handset will have a QWERTY keyboard, along with a 5-megapixel camera with LED flash, assisted GPS capabilities, Bluetooth and a Wi-Fi radio.
HTC tells Electronista that its 2009 remake of the Touch Cruise smartphone will ship to the US in the first half of the year. The company doesn't provide a release date or pricing, though the phone currently doesn't support native 850MHz 3G on AT&T or T-Mobile and is likely to appear as an unlocked-only device with EDGE and Wi-Fi as its picks for data on either carrier; Best Buy and other online stores have typically carried these models.
A leak of an updated Windows 7 beta build suggests Microsoft plans to closely follow Vista's approach of several feature-limited operating system versions. Although the publicly available beta has always suggested multiple versions by listing the software as Windows 7 Ultimate, the 7025 build gives users extra options for Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium and Business editions.
Oranged has published an update to Studiometry, its business management suite. The software handles a variety of the tasks associated with business, such as invoicing, accounting and scheduling, as well as project planning and filesharing. Central to v6.1 is the ability to track vendors and purchase orders; the former can be created new or from old clients, while the latter can be monitored for each vendor.
The replacement for Dell's XT tablet PC is forthcoming, and the computer maker has posted the specs and service manual for the convertible notebook recently. Major changes include switching to an integrated Intel GMA X4500 graphics chipsets from the original computer's ATI video hardware, and there will now be a 1.8-inch SATA hard drive. The ExpressCard slot will now take smaller 34mm cards instead of the original's 54mm slot. The XT2 will support up to 5GB of memory, a useful bump from the original's 3GB capacity.
Acer is looking to build its own mobile Internet device, patent applications are believed to show. The MID concept was developed by Intel, and typically describes a small handheld device used mainly for web browsing and e-mail; Acer's device would feature a display dominating the front surface, mostly likely a touchscreen, in a manner similar to many GPS units. Media playback would also likely be an important feature, as reflected by the presence of a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Verizon today revealed subscribers can now set up an extended cellular network in their home with the launch of the Network Extender. The Samsung femtocell connects to users' existing home broadband connections to supply a CDMA phone network coverage range of about 5,000 feet while maintaining the same call quality. Unlike AT&T's just-introduced 3G MicroCell, however, the Extender doesn't support either 3G (here via EVDO) or GPS.
Skorpiostech has released the latest version of its drink recipe app for the iPhone and iPod touch, Cocktails+ 1.5. The app is said to contain over 2,000 mixed drink recipes, with detailed ingredient descriptions. The update adds a "Contemporary Masters" tab, containing recipes from Dale DeGroff and Goncalo De Souza Monteiro. The update also includes a new icon, definitions and substitution information for ingredients, new metric display options, and the ability to dismiss the keyboard when browsing search results by tapping the search button.
Acer's Aspire One 10-inch netbook lineup will come soon will be kept simple, a French leak shows. The PC builder plans just three core models and will start off with a basic D150-0B model that comes with a current 1.6GHz Atom, 1GB of memory, a 160GB hard drive and a 3-cell battery; it will ship to France in February for Ä329 ($427).
wuonm has released Layers 1.0, a new screenshot tool for Macs. The software is distinguished by saving shots as Photoshop files, rather than just as static images; files are automatically separated into different layers for windows and the desktop, and can include objects such as icons, menu bars and the Dock. Adjustable factors include framing, shadowing and opacity.
The South Florida Business Journal has supported doubts regarding the fate of Windows Mobile at Motorola by revealing that that cellphone designer is cutting 77 positions at its office in Plantation, near Fort Lauderdale. The move is described as very specific for Motorola and will put an end to developing Windows Mobile phones at the Florida location. The particular cuts are slated to take place by March 27th.
A second Mac trojan is being spread through pirated software, Intego warns. Following the discovery of a trojan linked with copies of iWork '09, the security firm says it has now found a variant, attached to pirated versions of Photoshop CS4. OSX.Trojan.iServices.B also grants a remote user root access; the new trojan is associated with the crack application however, and is spawned under a different name whenever the crack is run.
Apple is nearing the release of its redesigned iMac but may not stick with the quad-core processors rumored for the system, Kaufman Bros. senior analyst Shaw Wu says. Investigations within the supply chain suggest that Apple is "almost ready" to launch updated iMacs but is still determining whether it will use the low-power Core 2 Quads introduced just last week or else will use faster Core 2 Duos with extra cache, though it's not known whether these last chips would be desktop or mobile parts.
Apple's recent Mini DisplayPort to Dual-Link DVI adapter may be causing problems with 30-inch LCD displays, complaints on Apple's support forums suggest. The adapter is mainly intended to connect modern MacBooks, MacBook Pros and MacBook Airs, which are currently the only devices that support Mini DisplayPort. Users of the adapter are reporting a variety of errors however, ranging from graphics corruption to temporary blackouts.
Sprint this morning took drastic action to maintain its performance and said it would cut 8,000 jobs, most of which will be eliminated quickly and disappear by the end of March. The carrier describes the layoffs as reducing labor costs in a difficult economy and estimates it will save $1.2 billion per year from the efforts. Just over 10 percent of the jobs are those from a voluntary exit program started last year.
AMD early Monday upped its claims to performance with a new set of Opteron HE quad-core processors. The new chips are the company's first of the type built on the current 45 nanometer "Shanghai" architecture and use just 55W of average power while also reportedly consuming about 20 percent less power than an equivalent Xeon when idle. The semiconductor firm touts the technology as ideal for servers but also makes it available for workstations.
The BlackBerry Storm's initially buggy software was not only the product of being rushed for Verizon but should have been expected, Research in Motion co-chief Jim Balsillie tells the Wall Street Journal. He acknowledges that the phone was shipped "by the skin of our teeth" to meet the Black Friday deadline and help Verizon's sales but defends the decision by saying the need to patch the phone's code later is part of a "new reality" of shipping large amounts of smartphones.
AT&T ahead of any official announcement has revealed the 3G MicroCell, the company's own approach to in-home cellular hubs. Similar to the Samsung AIRAVE for Sprint, the Cisco-made device serves as a cell tower for homes where coverage is poor and puts the data through an existing broadband Internet connection. Unlike the Sprint device, however, the MicroCell requires 3G and also supports GPS to provide location services.
TIME Magazine has created a list of the 'Top 10 Apple Moments,' outlining notable achievements and transitions throughout the company's history. The founding of Apple marks the first item, dating back to 1976 when 21-year-old Steve Jobs joined forces with Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne. The group brought experience from previous positions with HP and Atari. Wayne did not stay with the company through its incorporation, instead selling his stake back to Jobs and Wozniak for $800.
Apple has begun shipping orders for iLife '09, falling in line with the initial estimate of late-January, according to MacRumors. iPhoto now integrates facial-recognition technology, allowing the images to be automatically sorted or searched by the name of individuals. Geotagging support can be used to filter photos by location, while albums can be generated around particular people and single locations or vacations that pass through different areas.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.99 ( -0.02 )
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
Apple want ads hint at future Watch faces
An Apple job listing for a dedicated clock face team may suggest future fashion-brand partnerships, possibly in time for the updated watchOS updates that are likely to be revealed at this spring's Worldwide Developer Conference. Since the introduction of watchOS 2, there has only been four new watch faces, but three of them were left over from the first release, with only one truly new one -- the co-branded Herm√©s face exclusive to that edition. There is a rumored March 15 event, but if that takes place it will likely focus on new band options as regards the Apple Watch. http://apple.co/1O1TbTI
Microsoft may end Office Support Professional prog
Microsoft appears to be either ending or seriously revamping its "Accredited Support Professional Program" for training on Microsoft Office for Mac and iOS it has offered at MacTech conferences since 2013. The program is not on offer at the upcoming MacTech tour, which begins on March 16 in San Francisco and includes a number of other cities. Microsoft has released a statement that it is "evaluating options for 2016, but don't have anything to share at this time." http://bit.ly/1KDz3MQ
Office for Mac v15.18 released
Microsoft has issued an update for the Mac version of its productivity suite, Office 2016. The v15.18 update offers improvements for all of the included apps, such as bringing full screen support to Outlook and allowing Word to save PDF files to flash drives. In addition, a new selection pane has been added to PowerPoint and Excel for keeping track of objects, and shapes can now be added to OneNote notebook pages. The update is free for all users, but requires a Mac running OS X 10.10 or later and a valid Microsoft Office 365 subscription. http://bit.ly/1Q7pAzW
Apple to open new south Florida mall store
According to real estate trade papers in south Florida, Apple has signed a lease for a new retail space in Miami, at the forthcoming Brickell City Centre (yes, the UK spelling is used) open-air mall, which is set to open later this year. The center will feature a five-story shopping area, condominiums, a hotel and office buildings, along with a "climate ribbon" in the shopping area to keep visitors cool, eschewing traditional air conditioning. The exact location of the Apple Store within the plan is not yet clear, but the destination already boasts 75 confirmed stores. http://bit.ly/1Q7n7Wd
Filemaker provides free custom app guide
FileMaker announced today the release of the first in a three-part series of free how-to guides that will lead teams through the process of building a custom app using the FileMaker Platform. FileMaker's new how-to guides provide a step-by-step process that starts with a planning cycle covering goals, requirements, functionality and usability, and run all the way through identifying user scenarios, defining requirements, addressing integration, providing security, and deployment of the final product. http://bit.ly/1o08wQh
OCZ Trion 150 SSD shifts to 15nm TLC NAND
SSD manufacturer OCZ has updated its entry-level 2.5-inch Trion 100 SSD. The new Trion 150 has similar performance to the now replaced model, and now utilizes 15nm TLC NAND. Sequential read speeds top out at 550MB/S, with 4KB random write speeds running from 25K IOPS in the 120GB model, to 64K IOPS in the 960GB version of the drive. Endurance is limited to 30TB in the 120GB, and peaks at 240TB in the 960GB version. Retail prices vary between $46 for 120GB, to $270 for the 960GB version. http://bit.ly/1nVmlyL