In brief: Super Technology has released a new line of RAM that is specifically designed for the latest Mac systems. The memory has been tested and certified by Apple's own compatibility labs and is available in 1GB and 2GB modules. A reminder has been sent out that the early-bird pricing special for WOWODC West 2009 will end on May 6th. The event will cover different trends and topics that are of importance to the WebObject community and anyone who purchases a ticket before the end of Wednesday will save $50. Meanwhile, Izatt is offering a special promotion for its iPhone app, MileBug, that will run until the 1.4 update is released. The application is currently on sale for $2 in the App Store which is a savings of 50-percent off the regular price.
In response to Apple's accusations that Psystar is withholding information, the clone maker claims it has submitted any required documents. The company goes further and argues that Apple is not abiding by prior agreements. "The documents produced by Apple are generally publicly available documents that ignore the scope of Psystar's discovery requests," said lawyer Colby Springer in a court filing. Psystar claims copyright and trademark registrations still need to be produced, along with copies of litigation pleadings.
Apple is the target of yet another lawsuit, as a joint complaint accuses the company of distributing unsafe MagSafe power adapters and forcing customers to buy replacements instead of addressing the problem with an improved design, according to AppleInsider. The plaintiffs, including Tim Broad, Jesse Reisman and Naotaka Kitagawa, claim the cables inevitably break down, leading to wire fraying that causes a potential fire hazard.
CrossLoop has released a beta version of its screen-sharing application for Mac. Having previously assisted PC users with technical support, the company wanted to extend its knowledge base to include the Mac platform. Users are connected to a technical assistant by typing in keywords associated with their problem and choosing from a number of people. The assistant then walks the user through potential solutions to the problem.
Digieffects has released FreeForm AE, a plug-in for Adobe After Effects. The company aims to provide an alternative to dedicated 3D-meshing programs, as the utility operates from within Adobe After Effects and works without leaving the comp window. The plug-in provides warping tools that allow users to manipulate a flat object into numerous shapes using a mesh in a digital 3D space.
MumboJumbo has released an update to its Mac game, Luxor 3, which features 140 new levels of gameplay. The latest version also features a new reflector to bounce the game balls on. Players can access new bonus levels that are unlocked through the course of the game. Seven different types of game modes are available, five of which are new with Luxor 3.
SUGARfx has released two new plug-ins, SUGARfx H.U.D., and SUGARfx Radial Wave. Each plug-in extends the visual-effects capabilities of Adobe After Effects CS3/CS4, Apple Final Cut Studio and Final Cut Express. The H.U.D. plug-in layers the original footage to appear as though the viewer is looking through different pieces of technology, such as an old camera or binoculars.
REALbasic creator REAL Software has launched REAL Server 2009 Release 1, featuring improved scalability and performance. The SQLite database server is geared toward developers who need to expand a single-user application into a multi-user platform. The release provides eight major new features, including a new architecture that is scalable to support over 10,000 concurrent connections. The software now utilizes multi-core processing and improved RAM usage to increase the speed of queries, with platform-specific optimizations to maximize performance.
PopCap has launched Plants vs. Zombies, a third-person zombie-shooter with a humorous edge. Gamers protect their lawns from invading zombies by using a variety of zombie-zapping plants. The game provides five different modes of play, including adventure, survival, puzzle, Zen-garden and mini-game challenges. The adventure mode contains 50 individual levels, while over 50 more levels are spread across the other four modes.
Acacia Tree Software has released an update to its flagship application, SousChef. The update now supports the metric system, providing a choice for the preferred unit of measurement, while alternate ingredients can be found in a substitutions menu. Users can also type in items from their fridge to find recipes.
Apple's online store currently has a variety of refurbished unibody MacBook and MacBook pro models starting as low as $1099. First up is the 2.0GHz MacBook with 2GB of memory and 160GB for $1099. The 2.4GHz model has 2GB of memory and a 250GB hard drive for $1299. For $600 more ($1899) get the previously mentioned configuration with the addition of a 128GB Solid State Drive. A wide selection of MacBook Pro models are being offered starting at $1699 for the 2.4GHz model with 2GB of memory and 250GB hard drive, or $2199 for the same configuration with 128GB SSD. For $2299 is the 2.8GHz MBP with 4GB of memory and 320GB hard drive, and top off at $2599 for the same configuration with 128GB SSD.
Today's featured DealNN deal is on the Seagate FreeAgent Go 250GB portable external hard drive from Amazon.com. It is regularly priced at $100, but has been reduced to $59.99 for today only. Get 250GB of portable storage space for photos, music, videos, documents and more. This hard drive is backed by a five year limited warranty from Seagate.
GeeThree has begun shipping its PhotoMotion, Producer and Fusion Factory plug-ins for Final Cut. PhotoMotion provides pan, zoom and slide show effects, with a dedicated user interface and a variety of adjustable settings. Users can import high resolution images without previously editing the files for size or aspect ratio. The plug-in allows duration changes or transition additions without needing to re-key.
The rumor of Microsoft developing a motion-sensing system for its Xbox 360 gaming console has potentially been corroborated as the technology is reported to come from a third party. While this is not confirmed, Microsoft is likely to source the technology from a company called 3DV and its ZCam hardware and software. Reports of a possible purchase of 3DV by Microsoft were rampant in February.
The hot-selling Nokia E71 is reportedly getting yet another new variant, E71i, equipped with some minor upgrades that include a 5-megapixel camera, up from the current models' 3.2-megapixel shooter. Otherwise, the new handset will also get a slightly new operating system, the Symbian S60 FP2, which was already seen on the Nokia E71x running on AT&T's network.
For the first time, Vudu will offer its library of more than 14,000 movies and 1,500 high-definition movies on hardware from a third-party, effectively becoming a service provider in addition to a hardware manufacturer in the process. Vudu chose Entone as its partner, which supplies set-top boxes and DVRs to small regional TV providers. Vudu will endow the Entone hardware with the same functionality as its Vudu Box offering, including on-demand access to HD and HDX movies, via a software update.
atebits has updated the Mac version of Tweetie, its Twitter client. The app allows users to post tweets, organize conversations, and search for popular topics. Amongst many small improvements, Tweetie 1.1.1 includes new features such as Growl support, which alerts users to updates from particular topics, people and conversations.
A new Google service currently in the beta phase will let BlackBerry users push Gmail e-mail and calendar items on their native client software, according to a Tuesday report. Included in the Premier and Education versions of Google Apps, the service will make it appear that messages sent from a user's phone will come from a given organization's Google mail account. Furthermore, users can access the company address book from their phones and synchronize contacts as well as calendar items. Adding software to the BlackBerry Enterprise Software (BES) is required, with a version that supports the Microsoft Exchange version of BES now available.
Moving out of beta, Synium has issued a polished release of MacFamilyTree 5.5, adding a History Database and a rewritten database engine to its genealogy software. Version 5.5 also delivers a redesigned search feature, an enhanced user interface, a customizable auto-save function and an improved GEDCOM importer. The History Database allows users to cross-reference past figures, events and dates with a personal family tree, and add personal historical data.
Palm's next stop with the Pre after Sprint may be Australia. Pointing only to insiders in its rumor, the Pacific nation's Smarthouse asserts that Telstra has landed a three-month exclusive for the phone on its network that would start from August. The phone maker's national manager, Brett Murray, doesn't mention a date but partly corroborates the report by confirming a second-half 2009 launch window for the Pre in Australia. He also can't confirm exclusives, though Sprint itself is separately rumored to have a three-month deal of its own.
AT&T has released myWireless Mobile, an application for the iPhone that allows customers to manage family and personal accounts directly from the handset interface. The service is designed as an extension of myWireless, with options to view monthly bills and make payments. The bill is available as a summarized preview or a PDF file. Users can also view voice and data usage, including text messages, or change add-on features.
Aquafadas has released SnapFlow, a new program capable of capturing images from video frames, comparing similar shots, and generating custom DVD covers. Video formats supported by the app include QuickTime, MPEG and others. Users begin by creating a project module, and then a host of albums and smart albums.
The Panasonic Lumix GH1 Micro Four Thirds camera, introduced at the start of March, has finally received a tentative US price through electronics retailer J&R's website. The new model is set at $1,500 for its standard kit version, which carries Vario HD 14-140mm, f/4.0-5.8 lens, which features four aspherical pieces of glass, optical image stabilization and is meant to capture both the close-up and telephoto shots likely in the camera's signature 1080p video mode.
FitnessTrack ($4) allows users to keep a log of their weight and cardio workouts. The application includes a database of more than 60 exercises and allows users to enter their own. Exercises can then be organized into workouts which can be saved for quick access later. FitnessTrack also includes functions for tracking weight and measurements allowing users to view their progress against a personal goal.
AT&T's version of the BlackBerry Curve 8900 could arrive ahead of schedule and with a price cut for its higher-end counterpart. Instead of the summer, the smartphone is now purportedly tapped for a May 25th launch and would cost $150 with a two-year plan, matching T-Mobile's own pricing for the 8900. The move would be accompanied by the Bold's sharp plunge in contract price from today's $300 to $200 after the new Curve appears.
Pomfort has released SilverStack 1.5, an update to the software that adds support for the ARRIRAW format of ARRI D-21 digital film cameras. The program provides tools for viewing, managing and exporting image sequences in various formats. The v1.5 update also includes improved metadata support from S.Two and Codex field recorders, enhancements for dailies workflow, and new filters for QuickTime work such as luminance sharpen. Other changes enable 16-bit TIFF export, and new aspect ratio settings for Hawk anamorphic lenses with x1.3 squeeze.
Intuit has announced that its QuickBooks Online accounting tools are now available on Apple's Safari browser, while new editing capabilities have been added to the iPhone version. The web-based application can be used to create invoices, pay bills or track expenses from any computer connected to the Internet. Users can generate and customize a variety of reports, then print or e-mail the documents as needed.
It's already known that The Beatles: Rock Band game and related custom controllers are due to ship on September 9th and details on the controller guitars have been recently revealed, thanks to a few product listing on retailer Gamespot's website. The Gretsch Duo-Jet and Rickenbacker 325 guitar controllers, styled after George Harrison's and John Lennon's actual respective guitars, will launch at the same time as the game itself, priced at $100 each for all three systems.
Canadian carrier Rogers is likely to follow Bell and Telus in beginning to charge for incoming text messages outside of its normal plans. A tip sent to BGR says Rogers will start notifying customers today that, as of July 7th, it will charge 15 cents per incoming message for customers that aren't already signed up to a bundle that includes SMS. The changes don't affect Fido customers or incoming messages from Twitter, which were restored to the service today and are free until the end of the year.
Sanho Electronics has announced the HyperMac series of external power packs for Apple's entire MacBook line. Available in four different capacities -- 60Wh, 100Wh, 150Wh and 222Wh -- each device includes a cable for connecting to a MagSafe port. The packs also come with a 5V USB power port for charging any USB device individually, or simultaneously alongside a MacBook. In addition to providing a second mobile power source, the packs can charge an internal battery while providing main power.
Americans who accidentally soak their iPhones can now replace the device without special penalty, reports say. Detectors in the iPhone indicate whether the hardware has been submerged in liquid, traditionally invalidating any warranty claims when trying to secure a replacement. The policy has required some iPhone owners to not only pay for a new phone, but lengthen their contract with AT&T beyond the original two years.
Microsoft's Laptop Hunter ads were potentially made by a largely Mac-based marketing firm, a visit to Crispin Porter + Bogusky shows. In spite of producing ads showing creatives opting for less expensive PCs over Macs, the company contracted to produce the commercials is seen in photos using Macs near-exclusively, hinting strongly that most of the production was accomplished using various MacBooks and even some eMacs.
A schedule that has surfaced today hints that T-Mobile is set to join AT&T and Verizon (pictured) with its own Visual Voicemail service. The feature found by TmoNews isn't attached to a particular device but, as with earlier implementations, would send audio file versions of messages directly to a subscriber's phone instead of asking them to call a typical voicemail box. If true, the system would be launched on July 16th, just ahead of a pair of Samsung phones known as the t469 Smiley and t549 XO.
The release of NVIDIA's GT 300 graphics chipset is now reportedly delayed until the first quarter of 2010, despite a recent leak claiming it would be out this October, according to a slip on Tuesday. The source for the Inquirer believes the delay is due because the tapeout, or the first instance of working silicon, was also held up. The GT 300 line is expected to represent a major architectural change to the GeForce series that may add new rendering features rather than simply speed up earlier designs.
Apple may indeed have an interest in merging 3G cellular broadband into Macs, a job listing hints. The company recently announced an opening for a communications QA engineer, who would work full-time within the Mac Hardware Group at the company's Cupertino headquarters. While mentioning routine duties for such a position, the listing also asks for someone who can test driver bugs relating to "3G Wireless WAN" connections, alongside Bluetooth, Ethernet and Wi-Fi.
CDFinder 5.5 ($39) catalogs photos, music and other files kept on any sort of connected storage, including hard disks, DVD drives and server volumes. The latest release now has support for movie files and is said to include speed improvements when cataloging. CDFinder 5.6 now catalogs thumbnails of various video file formats, improves geotagging support for photos, and has improved cataloging. Now while cataloging CDFinder includes the contents of ISO disk images, contents of RAR archive files larger than 4 GB, and the cover art of AAC files. [Download - 8.1MB]
Epson has announced that its printers are now supported by EuroSmartz's Print & Share app for the iPhone and iPod touch. With the added compatibility, users can wirelessly print information stored on an Apple handheld; the printer itself must be connected to a computer via networking or USB. Some supported document types include photos, PDF files and general business documents.
Microsoft on Tuesday began the second round of its 5,000 job cuts with a memo circulating the news at the company. Obtained by All Things D, the note from Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer doesn't say how many more of the cuts have been made but explains that the company is "mostly but not all done" with the total sum, which it expects should be completed by June 2010. It adds that the layoffs aren't limited to the US and will include a share of international workers.
USBfever has launched the latest in its line of iPhone and iPod accessories, the Bicycle Handlebar Mount & Holder and the 4-direction Privacy Film/Screen Protector. The handlebar mount is designed for the iPhone, iPhone 3G and iPod touch, and allows users to keep a device accessible while riding. It is build of hard plastic, and described as suitable for handlebars measuring 3/4 to 1 inch in diameter. Two cushioned inserts are supplied.
Eye-Fi on Tuesday announced users of its Eye-Fi Share Video and Eye-Fi Explore Video cards can now upload photos or videos to Picasa Web Albums, Photobucket and SmugMug in addition to the previously supported YouTube and Flickr. The addition lets any appropriately enabled still or video camera publish videos to the sites over a Wi-Fi connection created directly from the memory card itself, bypassing computers entirely as with the earlier version.
Sprint has given further signs that it's nearing the launch of the Palm Pre with Twitter reports from film worker Jaime Gonzalez that the carrier is shooting a TV commercial for the phone in Los Angeles. Although some details are left out, a photo from Gonzalez shows a set with a Facebook profile extruded into 3D that will presumably have actors 'interacting' with the page. Palm has already emphasized Facebook as a cornerstone of its webOS Synergy feature, which merges Facebook data with the Pre's address book and other parts of the smartphone's experience.
Contrary to rumors, Apple has expressed no serious interest in buying Twitter, says All Things Digital's Kara Swisher. Some in the industry are said to be claiming that Apple is already in "late-stage negotiations" to buy Twitter, whose microblogging service has skyrocketed in popularity following adoption by celebrities like Stephen Fry, Lily Allen and Shaquille O'Neal. Apple has so far only "said hello" to Twitter though, according to Swisher.
As previewed at CTIA, Quickplay today took its PrimeTime2Go mobile TV live for BlackBerry smartphones. The subscription service gives owners unlimited access to TV shows from multiple networks, including ABC, NBC and SciFi, and relies on a relatively transparent system to provide the videos; chosen episodes are downloaded in the background whenever the phone is on a Wi-Fi connection. Owners can also follow seasons and receive new episodes as soon as they're made available.
Content restrictions at the App Store may lower significantly with the advent of iPhone 3.0, reports say. In tandem with iTunes 8.2, the next iPhone firmware is said to offer the choice of limiting app access by age. Parental controls divide access into 4+, 9+, 12+ and 17+ categories, suggesting that games with violence and some other forms of "adult" content may be allowed to go on sale.
Renesas today unveiled a mobile media processor that it says should finally allow full HD video in and out on phone-sized devices. Part of the SH-MobileHD1 family, the SH7370 will have video processing hardware fast enough to not only decode 1080p, H.264-based video at a full 30 frames per second but to encode video at the same frame rate. The feature would let phones produce and play video in the same basic format as Blu-ray, including with 5.1 Dolby Digital surround and HDMI video output at full quality.
HP may be attempting to spark new life into its slumping smartphone business based on a recent hire. The LinkedIn profile for former Palm senior director Jonathan Oakes reveals that the executive has jumped to HP's Emerging Businesses Unit, which centers on the company's iPAQ smartphones as well as its general mobile business and custom PC software. Oakes doesn't specify what the role involves other than creating "new products and business models."
A US House of Representatives hearing scheduled for later today will be devoted to deciding if a law should be made that requires peer-to-peer (P2P) programs to issue a specific notice to users that warns them that their files may be shared, CNET has reported. The Informed P2P User Act bill introduced in March by California Republican Mary Bono Back will be the focus of the hearing. The wording in the Act, which would require P2P software to allow file sharing only if two rules are met, could also apply to web browsers, FTP applications, IM programs and any other applications that send and receive files.
Apple's FileMaker subsidiary on Tuesday made a trio of announcements related to the iPhone, including a mobile version of its Bento personal database software, a free update to its Bento 2.0v4 desktop application for wirelessly syncing to the iPhone app, and a new tool for FileMaker Server 10 to create iPhone-friendly websites for FileMaker data. Bento for iPhone and iPod touch enables users to view, organize, create, and search for data easily on their mobile device as well sync that information to their Mac using Bento 2.0v4 (available separately). The portable version of the application, is now available for download for US$4.99 from Apple's App Store, while Bento 2.0v4, a free update for existing v2.0 users, is available on the Web.
ASUS has fleshed out the details of its designer U series notebooks. Ostensibly based on the shape of a butterfly, the systems share the same tapered shape of the MacBook Air and are also faster, larger versions of the Eee PC 1008HA. The 12-inch U20A, 13.3-inch UX30 and 15.6-inch UX50V are all based on the basic processors expected to be part of Intel's Consumer Ultra Low Voltage (CULV) effort and attempt to bring ultra-thin designs to larger systems, ranging from the entry 1.2GHz Celeron M in the U20A to the 1.3GHz Pentium, 1.4GHz Core 2 Solo and 1.6GHz Core 2 Duo in the UX30 and UX50V.
As promised, Microsoft today made the Windows 7 release candidate available to the general public. The wider distribution follows a developer-only launch and gives the same access to the new build, which improves on the public beta through a modified taskbar and Aero Peek behavior, performance improvements and more features accessible through touchscreens. Business owners also have access to a beta XP emulation mode that allows most incompatible apps to still run properly.
T-Mobile may be prepping a third Android phone from HTC if a set of photos of the device bear out. Internally nicknamed the HTC Hero, the phone is expected by CodeAndroid to be rebadged as the T-Mobile G3 for a future US launch. It would have some of the aesthetics of the Touch Diamond2 and, like the Windows Mobile phone, would go without the trackball that has existed both on the T-Mobile G1 and the HTC Magic, instead using the touchscreen for nearly all of its navigation.
Now AAPL Stock: 93.4 ( -2.7 )
WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu
Fifth Hong Kong store to open June 30
The 46th official Apple store in what the company calls the "Greater China" region will open at 10AM local time in Hong Kong's New Town Plaza in the Sha Tin district on Thursday, June 30, according to a new page on Apple's retail website. Despite slowing growth due to economic turmoil in China, the country is still Apple's fastest-growing market. The new story will be the fifth for Hong Kong, a lucrative market for Apple thanks to the high concentration of wealth there and a thriving "gray" market. Normal store hours for the new store will be 10AM to 10PM every day. http://apple.co/291diaT
Apple Music bug bites very short songs
There appears to be a reproducible bug in the current version of iTunes -- version 12.4.1, running on OS X 10.11.5, both the current non-beta versions of the respective software -- that causes a streamed song to become "stuck" in endless buffering if the streamed item just before this happened was 60 seconds or less in length. The problem appears to stem from code in iTunes that signals the next track to start downloading one minute before the currently-playing track is done, and thus songs shorter than one minute don't trigger the download. Locally-stored music is unaffected by the bug, and the problem does not appear to exist in either the macOS Sierra developer beta or versions of iTunes earlier than 12.4, and does not affect the iOS Music app at all. http://bit.ly/291cN0l
Walmart Pay expands to 15 states
Walmart, one of the key progenitors of the failed CurrentC mobile payment system that was distinguished from Apple Pay by its ability to collect and share customer financial and buying data among its participants, has expanded the soft rollout of its alternative solution "Walmart Pay" to an additional 15 US states following a pilot program in Arkansas and Texas last month. Walmart continues to resist adding Apple Pay. The system, built into the Walmart app for iOS and Android, works with a complicated system of the camera scanning a purchase code at the register, then generating a QR code which is then scanned by the register. The system is available now in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington, DC. http://apple.co/28SqZfu
Amazon refreshes entry-level Kindle
Amazon has added a new Kindle to its ebook reader range, one that is thinner and lighter than the previous entry-level model. Offering a six-inch 167-dpi touchscreen display, a doubled 4GB of storage, and an option for a white casing, the new model also adds in the ability to export highlights and notes to an email account as a PDF. Two versions of the all-new Kindle are available, priced at $80 including "Special Offers" and $100 without. http://amzn.to/28Q4c3R