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iPhone killer drive market
Displays commonly used in smart phones are facing increased sales following the upcoming release of so-called "iPhone killer" devices. According to iSuppli, worldwide shipments of displays ranging in size from 2.5-inches to 4.9-inches diagonally that feature QVGA quality pixel formating are projected to rise to 150 million units, and increase of 22 percent from 123 million units last year. These projections also indicate overall shipments of mobile displays will decrease by 11 percent this year.
ShrinkRay Final Cut effect
CrumplePop has released its newest video effect for Final Cut Pro, ShrinkRay. The effect uses titling and shifting techniques to alter the focal area in a video to make large scenes look very small. Users can reposition, expand, or contract the videos focal area to gain the desired effect. The plug-in also lets users control the amount of focus surrounding the focal point.
AMD Phenom II X4 965
AMD on Thursday released its newest 45nm quad-core processor for desktop PCs, the Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition processor. The device, codenamed Dragon, features a stock frequency of 3.4 GHz, 8GB cache, plenty of headroom, and high-speed DDR3 memory support. The processor also supports AMD OverDrive 3.0 technology for enhanced performance.
HTC sell 1m Magic phones
Handset maket HTC has sold more than 1 million of its Android-powered Magic handsets worldwide since its launch in late April, said CEO Peter Chou at an assembly recently, Chinese daily DigiTimes reported. At the same time, Chou revealed that HTC expects its mid-range phones to account for at least 50 to 60 percent of its total handset sales in the second half of 2009. HTC will focus on developing smartphones priced at the equivalent of about $300, which could be before any subsidies by carriers.
Rogers gets Hype A256
Canadian wireless provider Rogers has added the Samsung Hype A256 to its Pay-As-You-Go lineup. The entry-level candybar device features a QWERTY keyboard and has quad-band GSM/EDGE connectivity. Otherwise, there is Bluetooth support, a VGA camera with 4x zoom and just 16MB of internal memory supplanted by a microSD memory card slot.
Lenovo ships U450p laptop
After releasing several teaser images and specs on its website recently, PC maker Lenovo has unceremoniously launched the full-blown product page for its IdeaPad U450p notebook PC. The U450p uses Intel's CULV chips, but unlike the previously released IdeaPad U350, it uses a larger 14-inch LCD and adds an optical drive. With the official release, specs are now known for the notebooks.
Logitech wireless desktop
Logitech on Wednesday announced the upcoming release of the low-profile Wireless Desktop MK700. Comfort was made a priority, with concave Incurve keys that position users' fingertips in proper contact. An LCD screen provides information regarding keyboard status, while a cushioned palm rest further enhances comfort.
Drive Genius 2.2 review
MacNN has reviewed Drive Genius 2.2, rating the hard drive utility suite four stars out of five. The software features 12 modules, such as Repair, Defragment, Shred, Initialize and Integrity Check. The number of modules is described as a positive, along with better speed and ease-of-use than in previous versions. Problems are said to include difficulty unmounting non-startup drives, and a lack of online help.
Ultrathins in trouble?
Acer chairman JT Wang has admitted that the company's shipments of ultra-thin notebooks has not reached initial sales goals, according to the DigiTimes. The computer maker has adjusted its internal forecasts to reflect the changing conditions, reducing total shipment volumes for the third quarter from 30 percent to 20 percent. Fourth quarter volumes have been similarly reduced from 50 percent to 30 percent.
Sandy Bridge in Q4 2010
Intel has scheduled the release of its 32nm Sandy Bridge processors for the fourth quarter of 2010, according to DigiTimes. The architecture will succeed Nehalem and its condensed 32nm version, Westmere, the latter of which is set to be released in the fourth quarter of 2009. Sandy Bridge supports 4GHz clock speeds, with scalable CPUs using up to eight cores. The architecture also houses CPUs and GPUs on one die, unlike the two-die approach taken with Nehalem.
Mac OS X security udpate
Apple has released Security Update 2009-004 for systems running Mac OS X 10.5.8 and v10.4.11, including Server editions. The fix comes just a week after the company's last update which contained a longer list of corrected vulnerabilities. The current update addresses an issue relating to the Domain Naming System server. A remote attacker could potentially create a malicious update message to interrupt the BIND service.
Take Two Redux for Keynote
Divine Fiat has released Take Two Redux, a new theme for Apple's Keynote software. The theme features a slate board clapper, with white text on a black background. Designed with video professionals in mind, it uses resizable media placeholders in four common film ratios - 4:3, 16:9, 1.85:1 and 2.35:1 -- as well as customizable buttons and icons.
Wi-Fi suit targets Apple
A business based in Austin, Texas has filed a new lawsuit through a US District Court, targeting Apple, Sony and Nintendo. Bandspeed accuses the three other companies of violating its Wi-Fi patents, specifically a pair related to choosing a Wi-Fi channel according to signal strength. These are titled Approach for selecting communications channels based on performance, and Approach for managing communications channels based on performance.
Space Invaders, Cartoonist
Peephole ($2) is a Twitter client with a special focus on image postings. The application allows users to view images that have recently been uploaded to popular Twitter photo sharing services. Images are collected from Twitpic, yfrog, and Twitgoo and can be displayed in either a thumbnail or full screen mode. Users are able to choose to view images attached to trending topics, images from the public timeline, images from friends, and more.
AirPort client update
Apple has posted a small but significant update to its AirPort client software for MacBooks and MacBook Pros. The new version fixes problems created by Mac OS X 10.5.8, which can potentially affect AirPort networking performance while a notebook is running on battery power. The update is 1.68MB, and can only be installed on 13-inch MacBooks launched between late 2007 and late 2008, 15-inch MacBook Pros from early 2008, and 17-inch MacBook Pros released any time last year.
Adobe drops PowerPC
Adobe on Wednesday announced that future versions of Creative Suite will only run on Intel-based Macs, and not on the older PowerPC systems. The company explains that it is merely following the same path as Apple, after its upcoming Snow Leopard operating system was also revealed to be limited to Intel systems.
Xbox 360 Pro price cut
A leaked image of an ad from a Meijer catalog reveals that Microsoft will indeed, as previously rumored, axe the Xbox Pro model from its lineup. In its place, the top-rung Elite model will get a price drop to just $300. This is also due to take place on August 30th, which is expected to be the date of the Pro's demise.
SDHC-bootable Wii DLC
Future games for Nintendo's Wii console, beginning with Guitar Hero 5, should allow automatic recognition of DLC on SDHC cards, a preview article reveals. In the past, some Wii music titles have required leaving the console's internal memory open to handle downloadable content. Because of a new detection process however, it should be possible to both store and boot necessary media from the same SDHC card.
Epson WorkForce line
Epson has released the 610 and the 1100 as part of its WorkForce line of printers. Both new models integrate Wi-Fi, wired networking and PC Fax capabilities, while the device construction is designed to be recyclable and meet ENERGY STAR standards. The all-in-one WorkForce 610 has a 2.5-inch LCD tilt screen and an automatic document feeder (ADF) that supports maximum print speeds of up to 38 pages per minute (ppm) in greyscale and color. Laser-quality work can be run at up to 15 ppm for black content or 9.3 ppm for color.
Apple's secret ad shoot
Apple has recorded a new TV ad for an unknown product, reports out of California say. The ad was filmed on Tuesday, at a restaurant called Jax on the Tracks, situated in the small town of Truckee. Restaurant owner Bud Haley claims the location was chosen by scouts in order to portray a "a hip and cool spot for the 20-something crowd."
Sony batteries with 4x cap
Sony on Wednesday announced it has released new olivine-type lithium iron batteries that have four times the capacity of conventional batteries from competitors. What's more, Sony claims the batteries can be charged to within 99 percent of their capacity in just 30 minutes. The batteries sport a power density of 1,800W/kg and a life span of 2,000 charge/discharge cycles.
Finder Rename, AudioRefurb
Warranty Hero 1.3.2 ($15) allows users to keep track of a products life-span and its accompanying warranty. The application can track a products name, vendor, purchase date and a warranty expiry date. Optional information for serial number, price, and a product image can be entered as necessary. Version 1.3.2 includes several new interface enhancements and removes an error dialog window from the demo version. Multiple bugs were also fixed with the update. [Download - 5.3MB]
OECD Communications report
Canada, Spain and the U.S. have the highest cost of cellphone services according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development's (OECD) latest Communications Outlook. The report compares domestic prices across countries for low-, medium- and high-use mobile phone consumers. The Communications Outlook suggests that between 2006 and 2008, mobile phone call prices dropped an average of 21 percent for low-usage consumers, while costs accrued by medium- and high-usage consumers fell 28 percent and 32 percent, respectively.
Gartner on iPhone sales
Apple has managed to hold on to its position as the third-largest smartphone maker in the world, says Gartner. The firm's research director, Carolina Milanesi, notes that Apple sold over 5.4 million iPhones in Q209, many times the 892,000 sold in the same quarter of 2008; the difference represents a greater growth than for any other smartphone company. By the end of the 2009 quarter, the business had reached 13.3 percent of worldwide sales. A third-place position was first achieved in Q308, on the back of much wider international distribution.
OCZ Solid 2 SSD announced
OCZ has released its OCZ Solid 2 SATA II 2.5" Solid State Drive, using MLC-based NAND flash memory for a balance between performance and price. While MLC memory is slightly slower than SLC memory, the new drives deliver 100MB/sec write (120GB model) and 125MB/sec read speeds and a seek time of less than 0.1ms using the less expensive memory type. The drives carry a 64MB onboard cache and a three-year warranty, while mean time between failure is rated at 1.5 million hours.
Dell intros Vostro laptops
Dell recently announced the upcoming release of three more Vostro-series notebook PCs, with the 14.1-inch 1014 and 1088, as well as the 15.6-inch 1015. All are meant for small business users and will be priced as entry-level models. While specific features for each model are not known, Dell does reveal that all sport Intel Core 2 CPUs, optical drives and Wi-Fi connections, along with integrated modems and energy-efficient WLED LCD screens.
Microsoft Nokia alliance
Microsoft and Nokia on Tuesday announced a new alliance designed to expand reach of business software onto the Symbian mobile platform. Initial work will focus on integrating Microsoft's Office Mobile tools, business communications technology and device management software.
MobileMe SMTP problems
At least some MobileMe subscribers have been experiencing problems with Apple's SMTP servers, according to forum discussion. In attempting to send out e-mails, the subscribers have been running into timeouts, at which point they have been prompted to pick another SMTP server. The consequence has been inconsistent delivery, frequently blocked but sometimes successful.
Styloid 2.0 for iPhone
RadTech has announced Styloid 2.0, its latest soft-tip precision stylus for the iPhone and iPod touch, or other touch-control displays. The Styloid is designed to resemble the style of a pen, and provides users with a tool for either controlling their touchscreen or pressing small buttons. They stylus is made from a hard-anodized aluminum barrel with polished stainless steel accents, and finished with a satin black color coating. The device also is free from any sharp edges to help prevent scratching the users display.
Sony Ericcson Jalou phone
Sony Ericcson has debuted its latest clamshell handset, the Jalou, along with a Dolce&Gabbana special edition. The handsets are designed for the style-conscious, with a small form-factor measuring 73mm long. The two-inch display doubles as a mirror after pressing a dedicated key.
Logitech intros iPod docks
Logitech on Wednesday announced the upcoming release of two new iPod docks, including the Rechargeable Speaker S315i and the Portable Speaker S125i. The semi-portable S315i is said to be able to provide up to 20 hours of listening time from its built-in lithium-ion battery, while charging a connected dockable iPod or iPhone. Logitech has designed it with portability in mind, as the S315i is less than two inches thick and has toughened metal speaker grills covering the full-range drivers.
Schiller on Google Voice
Apple's senior VP for worldwide product marketing, Phil Schiller, has taken the unusual step of personally responding to a blog post criticizing the App Store. The blogger, Steven Frank, became irate over Apple's rejection of Google Voice apps, calling it the "final straw" in a series of problems and deserving of a boycott. Apple needs to work on maintaining consistent rejection policies, according to Frank, and telling developers what can be done to gain approval.
MacBook refurb price cuts
Apple is offering several new discounts on refurbished MacBooks ordered through its online store. A 13-inch unibody MacBook, equipped with a 2GHz Core 2 Duo, 2GB of RAM and a 160GB hard drive, is now being sold for $899 with free shipping. The model is also notable for LED backlighting, and a one-year limited warranty.
HTC Touch Pro2
T-Mobile on Tuesday launched the HTC touch Pro2 smartphone, which is available with an instant discount of $200. The Windows Mobile smartphone features a 3.6-inch, 800x480 touchcreen displaying HTC's TouchFLO interface, along with a five-row QWERTY keyboard. The device runs on the carrier's 3G network and supports Wi-Fi and GPS.
Judge bans Word sales
As part of the final order in a patent infringement suit, Judge Leonard Davis in the U.S. District Court of Eastern Texas has issued a permanent injunction against Microsoft. The company has been effectively banned from selling Word 2003, Word 2007 and similar products.
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