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Boris FX has released its latest Final Cut plug-in package, Motion Tracker. The tools are geared for video editing effects involving movement. The included Corner Pin module allows users to add graphics and pin them to moving objects in the video. Match Move works in a similar manner by locking onto movement, while adding the ability to integrate a second image clip.
Morrison SoftDesign has introduced v2.0 of FontXChange, a utility that can convert fonts to OpenType, PostScript Type 1 and TrueType. The update includes new folder naming options, file naming options and the ability to change display names of fonts in application font menus. Version 2.0 also improves support for complex contours in Type 1 fonts, previewing different font formats, and for the UniqueID field of the Name table.
ASUS PCs held the top rank in the second-quarter RESCUECOM Computer Reliability Report, a comparison between the required maintenance for a variety of computer brands. The ASUS Eee PC, released eight months ago, made a significant impact on the company's reliability scores and market share. The report relates the percentage of computers each company shipped to the number of calls to the RESCUECOM repair hotline over a three month period.
Screenshots of Facebook for iPhone 3.0 have been released by Joe Hewitt, the application's developer, according to appadvice. The application allows users to manage their Facebook account from their iPhone or iPod touch. The latest version offers a remodeled News Feed, matching it with the user's online preferences to eliminate posts from hidden accounts. The application adds the Like tool, featured on the traditional Facebook site, while allowing users to access Event pages.
Apple has been granted six new patents, including an iChat filing and several submissions involving product design. The iChat video patent, titled “Digital image coding system having self-adjusting selection criteria for selecting a transform function," relates to coding digital video images and reducing loss of image information by adjusting parameters in the coding process.
An FCC filing indicates that Sony has created a 250GB variant of the recently-announced PS3 Slim. Despite efforts to conceal the company name as "Sand Dollar Enterprise, Inc." and the product as a "Computer Entertainment System," the documents were still spotted by PS3 News.
Bare Bones on Tuesday transferred ownership of its flagship application, Mailsmith, to Stickshift, a company owned by Bare Bones founder and CEO, Rich Siegel. The owner stated that Stickshift has been created with the sole purpose of managing Mailsmith. The application is an Internet e-mail client that offers filtering, searching, editing and scripting capabilities. Along with the change of ownership, Stickshift has released v2.2 of Mailsmith. The software is now compatible with Snow Leopard, while the mail storage formatting has been changed.
Regular Rate and Rhythm has released v2.0 of its Rowmote Pro iPhone app. The software utilizes an iPhone or iPod touch to control a Mac and Apple TV, similarly to Apple's hardware remote. The latest version adds direct control over Elgato EyeTV, mPlayer, Safari, Songbird, and equinux The Tube. The update also improves the control speed of the keyboard and mouse.
Microsoft has filed a motion to avoid execution of the recent court judgment prohibiting the company from selling its Word software without code modifications. The motion is sealed, however, so the exact details have not been publicly disclosed.
The still-growing popularity of netbooks has likely robbed Apple much of its target audience for back-to-school Mac sales this year, a study from Retrevo found on Tuesday. Just over a third of notebook-buying college students, or 34 percent, plan to buy a netbook from any make for their return to class. About 49 percent of the total also specifically plan to buy a regular Windows notebook, leaving just 17 percent either buying a Mac or uncertain about what they will buy.
Research in Motion triggered a surprise in business today when it topped the list of the 100 fastest-growing companies on Earth. The originator of the BlackBerry outpaced others based both on its sheer revenue, which topped $11 billion in the past 12 months, as well as the balance of its growth: revenue grew 77 percent in the past three years, and its earnings per share grew 84 percent. Fortune credits the lead to RIM's push into home smartphone users, who helped the BlackBerry Curve outsell the iPhone this spring.
Rocket Golf ($1) is a golf game which features 2D, side-scrolling gameplay and 3D graphics. The game includes two different courses consisting of 36 playable holes with challengin terrain such as water hazards, sand traps, and variable wind. Users can choose to play the full course, the front or back nine, or practice on any hole. Rocket Golf also allows up to four players to compete on one device.
Elpical has introduced Claro Layout, a plug-in for InDesign that provides tools for image enhancement and correction. The utility automatically runs quality analysis and then makes the necessary adjustments. Users can integrate RGB images during layout, and then optimize the content without leaving InDesign.
Apple has the potential to start selling over 50 million iPhones a year by FY11, argues Bernstein Research analyst Toni Sacconaghi. Simply through a projected 27 percent growth of the smartphone market in both 2010 and 2011, says the analyst, Apple may gain 10.3 million more in sales, assuming the current marketshare holds. The company is currently expected to sell 20 million phones by the end of FY09, which arrives in September.
Qtrax recently announced that its free and legal music download service will soon launch, naming October 28th as the launch date in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand. A launch in the US, Canada and the UK will happen before year's end, Qtrax informs, while the rest of the world will get the service within the first half of 2010. The reason for the initial Asia launch is because of the region's record Internet user growth and specifically the ratio of Internet users downloading music, which is more than double that of the US.
Sony on Tuesday announced the upcoming release of four new Xplod in-dash CD Receivers. All four new head units are compatible with the Radio Data System (RDS) technology, allowing compatible FM radio stations to send artist and song information, which is then displayed on the head unit's display. The two higher-end models are the CDX-GT640UI and the CDX-GT540UI receivers, both of which have a USB input and auxiliary input on their front face which allows users to fully integrate and charge connected compatible iPods and iPhones as well as portable audio players.
Phone maker HTC will soon release an update for its Android-powered Hero handset, says a Tuesday SlashGear report, which owners will be able to download via the company's support site. Exactly what the update will bring remains unknown, but faster performance is expected, since many owners are complaining of slowdowns in the Sense UI.
Marware has launched the CEO Premiere+, an environmentally-themed holster case for the iPhone 3G and 3GS. The case is made of primarily out of "eco-leather," an RoHS-compliant leather produced with a minimal use of harmful tanning chemicals and dyes. A separate hard-shell case can be used in conjunction.
Lenovo this afternoon put an end to speculation and launched its IdeaCentre Q series of mini desktops as well as its first Windows Home Server. The Q110 is Lenovo's first home nettop and gets NVIDIA's Ion chipset, giving it enough power to decode 1080p in hardware as well as render reasonably modern 3D as well as accelerate some heavily optimized tasks like video encoding. Its other specs aren't known but involve HD video output and should be based on an Intel Atom chip at its $349 price.
Ben Software has released v2.0 of its surveillance utility, SecuritySpy. The application is used to manage surveillance cameras, and catalog recorded security footage. The latest version includes support for audio recording from Axis and Panasonic network cameras, along with Axis video servers. The update also uses OpenGL graphics acceleration, and can play audio back in real-time.
Buffalo Technology on Tuesday announced its latest storage product, the rackmount TeraStation III, aimed at small- to medium-size businesses. The network device is built on the same platform as the company's standalone TeraStation III, with support for hot swapping, replication, NFS, Active Directory and Time Machine backup. Users can configure the drives in RAID arrays or apply disk encryption for sensitive data.
Acer on Tuesday announced it will soon begin shipping its new Veriton N260G ultra-compact nettop in the US. Meant for use in classrooms or tightly-spaced offices, it can be VESA-mounted to the back of an LCD display or placed right on desks thanks to its retractable stand. Power comes from Intel's 1.66GHz Atom, 1GB of standard memory that can be doubled, Intel's GMA 4500M graphics and a 160GB hard drive that contains Windows XP Professional, although a recovery disc with Windows Vista Business is included.
Apple has produced a minor update for iPhoto, the photo editing and management utility included with iLife. The v8.1 patch is a minor one, introducing new print options such as an order for a 10x13-inch hardcover book. Three new book themes are present as well, including Asian, Old World and Tropical.
The PSP Go's launch October 1st will come with easily downloadable small games to match, Sony said during its Gamescom expo keynote. Known as Minis, the titles will be capped at 100MB or less to make them quick downloads over Wi-Fi and are similarly meant to encourage smaller, more independent developers to produce titles that don't have to compete on the same field as full-fledged PSP titles. Prices and other details weren't made public, but up to 50 games should be ready by the end of the year.
Sony today confirmed the existence of the slim PlayStation 3. The new console is built on smaller, cooler Cell and RSX processors and as a result shrinks in size by exactly a third and sheds 36 percent of its weight. It further gets a larger 120GB hard drive without sacrificing the existing features of the PS3, including Blu-ray, two USB ports and built-in Wi-Fi.
Agent18 had released the StandHear travel stand, an accessory for iPhones and iPods. The product can be folded into a more portable size, capable of fitting into a pocket. It also includes a built-in headphone splitter, letting multiple users hear audio at the same time without sharing a headset.
Sony at its Gamescom keynote today expanded some of its non-gaming services with the more formal launch of the 3.0 firmware for the PlayStation 3. The new update has a much improved interface that provides quicker access to the news section (now known as "What's New") as well as to shortcuts to the latest games and other downloads without having to leave the regular XMB front end. Users can also now see messages from friends directly from their profiles instead of having to burrow deeper into the system.
iHome has released a set of full-ear headphones that sport an integrated in-line amplifier and can be converted into portable speakers rather than strictly operating in a private mode. The iHMP5 set includes a battery-powered, louder amplifier when users want to set it up in speaker mode while still providing a reduced amount of power at all times for regular headphone use. The 50mm (nearly 2 inches) drivers deliver the sound, and there is a volume control clip.
Garmin has let slip more details on three upcoming nuvi GPS units, beginning with the 1690. The model is described as having a 4.3-inch WVGA display, along with North America maps, text-to-speech conversion, and Bluetooth support for hands-free phone calls. The centerpiece is an EDGE data connection, which can retrieve data relating to traffic, flights, weather, fuel costs, movie times and local Google searches.
Key digital video architect MPEG LA has filed a lawsuit against Haier America for allegedly infringing on patents it holds for technology used in digital TVs. The complaint was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, and maintains Haier's TVs in the US are sold without the needed patent licenses for the country.
Qwest announced it plans to no longer provide wireless services by October 31st, according to statements by the company (subscription required). Qwest will begin notifying its customers soon, telling them they have 60 days to find a new provider, but will not charge early termination fees for those still in mid-contract. The provider had piggybacked onto Verizon's network to provide its wireless voice services, and announced in July that more than 75 percent of its wireless business was on Verizon Wireless network by the end of the second quarter.
Three American firms are ultimately going to take control of the smartphone business, RBC Capital Markets analyst Mike Abramsky said today in a research note. He believes that Apple, BlackBerry maker Research in Motion and eventually Palm are all "positioned for leadership" and should command the smartphone market when it reaches 35 percent of all phones, or over 500 million smartphones, by 2012. They represent the few companies that properly integrate the hardware and software from top to bottom, according to the analyst.
Pear Note 1.3 ($40) is a note taking application that can record audio and video while a user is taking notes. All activities during a session are recorded including audio, video, user actions, keystrokes and slide changes, which are then placed on a timeline which can be replayed. Version 1.3 includes a new Quick List feature that can be used to quickly add lists and outlines to Pear Note Documents. A Highlighting feature has also been added along with a preference for setting the default font. [Download - 3.2MB]
Apple is already fully aware of a critical security flaw in the iPhone Mail client, according to an inside source. The source claims to have proof of the fact, and suggests that Apple will probably fix it with the release of the iPhone 3.1 firmware. Temporary remedies may including rebooting a phone, loading messages several times, or simply waiting long enough.
Palm on Tuesday began accepting developer submisssions of paid apps to the Palm App Catalog. The move follows a month after the smartphone creator opened its SDK to all developers and will give developers a similar deal to what Apple has struck for its iPhone App Store or Microsoft for its Windows Marketplace for Mobile. While free apps are still an option, Palm will take only a 30 percent flat cut of the revenue from any paid app regardless of the number of copies sold.
Apple is looking into media stories of one or more exploding iPhones in Europe, according to European Commission spokeswoman Helen Kearns. Reuters notes that in in France, a teenager says he was injured when his iPhone shattered, shortly after it began making a hissing noise. Although Apple has only stated that it is waiting for the damaged phones before making a judgment, it is noted to be in contact with the Commission.
Rogers this morning switched on its promised 50Mbps Ultimate tier of cable Internet service. The $150 monthly DOCSIS 3.0-based service is the fastest outside of Quebec and is now known to have the largest transfer cap: increasing it from the initially proposed 120GB, the provider now gives users up to 175GB of data in either direction before overage fees start. Unlike some providers, Rogers caps its overage fees at $25 extra per month.
Exactly one quarter of all music sold in the US now comes from iTunes, the NPD Group said today. Its portion of the market for the first half of 2009 is up from 21 percent in 2008 and represents 69 percent of the digital-only market. By comparison, Walmart now has just 14 percent of all music while Best Buy claims third place with an unspecified amount. In digital, Amazon MP3 is a distant second with just 8 percent of the market.
Blockbuster today said will soon offer its online video content on next-generation Motorola handsets via an OnDemand application. Some future handsets will have the ability to download the movies from Blockbuster, which marks the first time Blockbuster has offered its service on cellphones. Users will have access to "thousands" of titles offered by Blockbuster, including movies and TV shows. Technical details as well as timelines have not yet been made available, nor how much movies will cost.
Sony launched a new rang of bookshelf audio systems specifically meant for Best Buy. The Altus line is all built on Sony's S-AIR wireless system and is designed for multi-room audio as well as simply reducing the number of wires. Topping the range are two systems intended for iPhones and iPods: the ALT-SA31iR includes both a central dock for an Apple device as well as two wireless speakers, each with their own remote controls and on-speaker buttons. The AIR-SW10Ti has just one speaker that itself has the iPhone or iPod dock but has a wireless subwoofer and puts out a total 60W of sustained power.
Apple continues to hold first place in tracking conducted by the American Consumer Satisfaction Index, says Fortune. The company has scored 84 out of 100 in a 2009 study, leaving it in a dominant position over rival computer builders. It has also dropped a point since 2008 however, when it achieved its highest-ever score.
Samsung Mobile on Tuesday released a trio of Bluetooth headsets, including the WEP870, the WEP850 and the WEP470. The high-end WEP870 is a noise-canceling Bluetooth mono headset with music streaming capabilities. It can be paired with up to two Bluetooth handsets at the same time, and can be worn on either ear. It also ships with a stereo earbud lanyard that places the WEP870 around a user's neck, with the dual microphone pointed toward the mouth, still allowing for phone conversations.
Western Digital shrunk its media hub today and produced the WD TV Mini, a new extra-small version of its earlier media sharing device. The set-top box omits HDMI output but now measures just 3.6 inches square and 0.8 inches deep while still capable of playing 1080i video depending on the codec. RealVideo format support is equally new and complements the existing MPEG-1/2/4, VOB and XviD formats.
With little fanfare, Dell this morning has launched its first notebook based on Intel's CULV (Consumer Ultra Low Voltage) platform. The Inspiron 11z costs as much as a netbook but uses an ultra-low voltage 1.2GHz Celeron that Dell estimates is about 40 percent faster than a 1.6GHz Atom. It also has a larger 11.6-inch, 1366x768 screen and faster GS45 integrated graphics, but isn't tangibly bulkier at about 1 inch thick and just over 3 pounds in weight.
MSI plans to preempt the rest of the market by launching the first netbooks based on Intel's Pine Trail Atom platform, according to PC industry tips. Still maintaining that the smaller, much more integrated processors may not be officially ready until early 2010, DigiTimes has heard that MSI intends to ship portables in December rather than wait for the rest of the market. The lead time would let it avoid competing on price for weeks or more.
Casio this morning upgraded its Exilim Zoom compacts with two new models that focus on software, not hardware. The EX-Z450 and EX-Z90 both have an Intelligent AF addition that can recognize many objects in a scene, not just humans, and automatically tune both focus and exposure to capture what it believes is the right subject. They also have a new Dynamic Photo compositing mode that can cut out a moving subject and put it in another shot by taking a single photo with a solid-hued background.
(Update with Kmart pre-order info) A pair of ads uncovered overnight have all but confirmed Sony's plans to launch a slim, low cost PlayStation 3 later today at the gamescom expo in Germany. A visit to the Kmart front page now shows a banner claiming "the rumors are reality" and tout both a lowered price for the PS3 as well as a "new exciting" model. Simultaneously, a poster received in advance at retailer FYE shows the prices on 80GB and 160GB PS3s each dropping by $100 to $300 and $400 respectively, but only "while supplies last."
Now AAPL Stock: 93.23 ( -1.04 )
Weber buys iDevices' iGrill, Kitchen Thermometer
Cooking gear manufacturer Weber is purchasing iOS accessory manufacturer iDevices iGrill and Kitchen Thermometer lines. As part of the purchase, Weber is working in parallel with iDevices to roll out a new version of the products, and associated apps, this spring. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. CEO of iDevices Chris Allen said that the transition will allow the company to "focus even more heavily on becoming a leader in the home automation market." http://bit.ly/1PFk3uZ
Vevo music video app launched for Apple TV
Vevo today announced its new native tvOS app for the fourth generation Apple TV. The new app allows users Siri Remote navigation for discovery of top videos by genre, or to search for individual artists and videos. Playlists generated on another device sync between all the iterations of the app. http://apple.co/1PFhxEU
HydraDock team unveils USB 3.1 Type C Roadie
KickShark, the team that brought the HydraDock desktop USB-C dock to market, has launched a Kickstarter project for The Roadie -- a USB 3.1 Type C standard-compliant pocket hub for the 12 inch Apple MacBook and other compatible devices. The Roadie occupies the same footprint on a desk as a credit card, with a short USB-C male cable on one end for connecting to a 12 inch MacBook, and a female USB-C port on the other end for plugging in a MacBook power adapter. One side has an RJ45 jack for gigabit Ethernet, and an HDCP-compliant HDMI jack that handles up to 4K displays. KickShark promises shipment of all products within four weeks of campaign completion. The "early bird" offer for the hub is a $69 commitment, with a $79 commitment for a Roadie after 500 backers have pledged. http://kck.st/1o6knw5
HBO Now has 800,000 subscribers
The CEO of HBO, Richard Plepler has confirmed that the online streaming HBO service, HBO Now, has 800,000 subscribers. When criticized for the seemingly low number, Plepler noted that the still nascent service was bound to Apple exclusivity during the fifth season of Game of Thrones. Plepler declared during the Time Warner quarterly earnings conference call marketing for the online-only offering would be enhanced in 2016. While HBO Now's critics are slamming the low numbers, the service must also compete against itself on cable, in addition to Netflix and other streaming services. http://on.recode.net/1QWoLHe
Unsafe IoT called threat to humanity
US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told two different Senate committees yesterday that the Internet of Things posed a clear and present danger, and could be weaponized by governments. Before the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Clapper declared that insecure IoT "will bring new security vulnerabilities" and "will connect tens of billions of new physical devices that could be exploited" by those wishing to perpetrate violence or eavesdrop on the populace of the world. http://bit.ly/23Xvcky
Apple public betas for iOS 9.3, OS X 10.11.4
Following Monday's release of betas for the iOS and OS X, Apple has unveiled public betas for both operating systems. The iOS 9.3 beta includes all of the previously reported enhancements for education customers, along with Wi-Fi calling for Verizon iPhone owners, and a carrier update for T-Mobile users. The OS X 10.11.4 third beta includes enhancements to Twitter URL opening, Live Photo viewing and sharing, and Evernote note importation into Notes.
Google given NHTSA SDS waivers
In contrast to the California Department of Motor Vehicle's approach, the US National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) has confirmed that it is declaring the software in autonomous cars is the legal driver of a so-equipped vehicle. In a letter to Google, the NHTSA says that it "will interpret 'driver' in the context of Google's described motor vehicle design as referring to the SDS [self-driving system], and not to any of the vehicle occupants." Other matters, such as legally-required rear-view mirrors for occupied vehicles has yet to be determined. However, regulations specifying the "driver" need no longer be interpreted as meaning a person behind the wheel, as the agency writes that self-driving cars "will not have a 'driver' in the traditional sense that vehicles have had drivers during the last more than one hundred years" http://1.usa.gov/1QrAGtR