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Sirius XM is about to launch a wave of new satellite radio devices that could include the first-ever add-on radio dock for the iPhone, a rumor asserts this evening. The satellite radio provider has reportedly sent invites for a New York press event on August 26th that will not only update Sirius XM's regular technology but also introduce an accessory for Apple devices known as the SkyDock. It would take advantage of iPhone OS 3's support for third-party hardware to give iPhone and iPod touch owners direct satellite radio access. A diagram of the peripheral given to Satwaves shows the dock having its own antenna that would also have a direct audio output to feed music to headphones or a car's aux-in jack.
Excel has released v4.0 of QuickHelp, used to author and deploy application help to almost all operating platforms including Windows 95 to XP, Mac OS 9, Mac OS X and Linux. The latest version adds Unicode text to support any human language and a Merge Help tool that helps to combine help files. The update also features a Convert Language tool that is used to author a help system for multiple human languages.
Blue Crowbar has introduced its newest iPhoto plug-in, Impression, used to add watermarks to photographs. The watermarks can consist of a company logo, a signature, text, other images and copyright statements. The plug-in automatically imports watermarked photos as copies, preserving the original images quality, and allowing the edited pictures to be uploaded to the web using iPhoto's built-in features.
An image has surfaced that allegedly shows the top shell of an unannounced Canon camera, potentially the EOS-7D, according to a forum post on Digital Photography Review. The component closely resembles the top of Canon's EOS 5D Mark II, although the button arrangement and left-side dial are both slightly different.
Apple on Thursday released an update to its Remote Desktop software, which offers several new features and bug fixes. Version 3.3 improves support for accessing client computers and task servers behind Network Address Translation (NAT) routers. Task Server and Directory Server scanners have been added, expanding the available tools for finding client computers.
iDonutGP ($1) is a puzzle game where the players goal is to create groups of donuts. Donuts will disappear when they are grouped together horizontally or vertically in pairs or trios. iDonutGP includes 45 different challenges that have been broken down into three different difficulties. Players can also compare their best scores on a global score board and compete in three different online challenges.
Twitter today publicly unveiled efforts to add location features to its app programing interface (API). The new code will let developers of apps, including on the web and on GPS-aware mobile devices like the iPhone, add the latitude and longitude coordinates of the user with any tweet. While developers of apps like Tweetie or Twinkle have often added location data themselves, the new feature would make it possible to see nearby tweets in any app.
Silverado, a California-based Apple dealer, has announced that it will automatically extend AppleCare coverage from three years to five years for all professional-grade Mac systems purchased after January 1st, 2009. For the first three years of standard coverage, customers can obtain normal service through Apple. During years four and five, Silverado, at its discretion, will determine eligibility for repair or replacement.
Apple, Cisco and Microsoft have won an appeals court ruling, limiting potential patent damages for products shipped outside the US, says Bloomberg. The court has stated that for specific types of patents, federal law does not allow patent owners to collect damages from infringers on overseas sales. American infringement cases are sometimes based on foreign sales, and the court notes that laws do still apply when it comes to patents for machines, manufacturing and the composition of matter.
Microsoft at its first WinMoDevCamp in Seattle made clear it wants a different philosophy towards mobile app pricing than Apple. The Windows Mobile developer's Loke Uei urged those third parties writing apps for the soon-to-launch Windows Marketplace for Mobile to charge significantly more than 99 cents per download when possible and noted that Microsoft would look at revenue, not popularity, to gauge the winner of a developer contest. Letting prices slip to the 99-cent mark devalues apps that are "worth more than that," Uei said, adding a belief that a developer could sell half as many apps but, at $10 per copy, make much more money.
Wireless provider Alltel announced on Thursday that it will soon offer the Samsung Glint and BlackBerry Tour handsets, with the Glint making its debut at any provider. The basic clamshell sports a VGA camera that has a night shot mode, a web browser, and Bluetooth 2.0. There is SMS, MMS and picture messaging functionality, and Alltel will offer the handset in pink or blue.
Notebook, RAM and flash memory maker OCZ recently introduced its Zee USB 2.0 flash drive. OCZ, which makes solid state drive upgrade kits for notebook PCs, hasn't offered a simple USB thumb drive before. The drives are minimalist in their design, and OCZ is likewise being modest and isn't releasing their peformance specs, though does say the drives are capable of mainstream speeds.
At the currently ongoing Gamescom show, Microsoft's announcement of a price drop for its Xbox 360 gaming console was conspicuous by its absence. Microsoft is apparently delaying the price drop for the Elite while it waits for stock of the Arcade and Elite models to clear out, an electronics retailer said. At the same time, Microsoft has informed retailers of a new Xbox part number being released, though specifics on it are unknown. It is expected to be the new, cheaper Xbox Elite, however. The price drop announcement was widely expected, especially in light of main competitor Sony's recent introduction of a slimmer, cheaper PlayStation 3 gaming console and the price drop of the company's existing products.
Apple will probably launch a new Apple TV within the next several months, argues Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster. In July's Q3 results call, COO Tim Cook stated that Apple would "continue to invest" in the Apple TV. The company could also have strong incentive to build a new set-top, says Munster, if it decides to offer a subscription service for iTunes video.
Panasonic in Japan on Thursday introduced the first Blu-ray player made for cars with its CY-BB1000D along with a conventional but HD-capable counterpart, the HX-3000D. The former sports an HDMI input and 7-inch display with 1280x720 resolution that will play the Blu-ray content in HD. While the player will support Bonus View content on compatible BD media, accessing BD-Live content that requires an Internet connection isn't an option.
Future devices could have conventional LED displays and lights that can flex and otherwise shape around other objects, scientists at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign said today. A discovery published in Science would build LEDs on a film that is chemically dissolved while the lights are held in place. These in turn can be stamped on common surfaces, including hard ones like glass but also rubber and other materials that can bend.
iLuv has announced the newest additions to its line of iPhone and iPod accessories, the iAD115 and iAD119. Both products plug into a users DC car jack and utilize USB inputs to connect to a users iPhone, iPod, MP3 player, or GPS. The iAD115 Micro features one USB input, whereas the iAD119 includes two USB inputs for multiple devices. Both chargers feature a blue power LED that indicates the devices are getting power from the DC input.
Executives at Chumby have said on Thursday that they plan on bringing the gadget's software to other consumer electronics via a series of partnerships. The Chumby can so far bring weather, music, news, photos and trivia to living rooms from the Internet. According to a Thursday Forbes report, the company's chief executive, Steve Tomlin, has established partnerships with Sony, Samsung, Broadcom and Marvell to bring the open-source operating system into TVs, Blu-ray players, clock and tabletop radios and other consumer electronics, with some expected for a release before the end of 2009.
Wallet 3.1 ($20) is a storage application that allows users to keep track of contacts, passwords, serial numbers and credit cards. Wallet stores and organizes the information and encrypts data using 256-bit AES encryption to make sure the data is safe. The v3.1 update includes WebDAV sync support along with an improved password generator and a new keyboard shortcut for the menubar application. Snow Leopard support has also been added and syncing is said to now be more reliable. [Download - 3.4MB]
Nokia itself fueled rumors it would make its first netbooks late Wednesday with remarks by company chief Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo at a conference. The executive stopped short of committing to any plans but acknowledged that his company is "looking" at netbooks as part of its drive to make more converged devices. As the computer and phone get closer in feature sets, there's a "lot of opportunity" for Nokia to enter these catgories, Kallasvuo said.
Apple is once more being sued over the misuse of the same photo, says Dow Jones. Louis Psihoyos, a National Geographic photographer, specifically alleges that Apple has again infringed on the rights to an image called The Information Revolution, 500 Monitors (seen below), depicting a man surrounded by a curved wall of displays. The new incident is attributable to a third-party iPhone app, i.TV, which is claimed to use 500 Monitors without permission.
Nintendo on Thursday acknowledged its role in the removal of a DS simulator app, DS DoubleSys, from the App Store. The app was not licensed or approved by Nintendo, although it simulates the DS interface with similar sounds and menus. Nintendo spokesman Charlie Scibetta told CNET News the company notified Apple that the app was violating intellectual property rights.
The UK division of Orange announced on Thursday it will be the exclusive provider of the LG Watchphone, the GD910, with the device first sold in the carrier's Bond Street Station store in Central London on August 27th. The device will sell for the equivalent of $824, or much less than the previously reported $1,291, but only for a limited and undisclosed amount of time. The handmade watch phone is expected to be relatively popular and will be sold on a first-come, first-serve basis, with only one per person. Orange also said another limited batch of the devices will be made available from the provider's online store in mid-September.
Smartphones now represent more than a quarter of all cellphones sold in the US, the NPD Group has revealed in findings on Wednesday. Shipments of the devices jumped by almost half, or 47 percent, year over year in to where they represented 28 percent of all phones in the country this spring. The shift helped push the average price of a phone up $4 to $87.
Real has announced an update to its media player, RealPlayer SP, which adds a variety of new functions for sharing content or transferring videos to portable devices. Users can download videos from the Internet, and then select their particular mobile device from a drop-down list.
Verizon on Thursday announced the Escapade, a PCD-made world phone. The device is one of the least expensive in the carrier's lineup that can support international roaming thanks to its dual-band CDMA and quad-band GSM/GPRS support. The clamshell already ships with a SIM card.
The FCC has approved a new version of the HTC Hero, testing documents reveal. Dubbed the HERO200, the model is compatible with CDMA networks, in contrast with the GSM model currently in production. It also supports EVDO broadband, and may validate rumors that the phone will soon be available through Sprint.
Sony has quietly pulled the VAIO TT from its lineup. The move ends Sony's current participation in the ultraportable world and comes without any sign of an immediate replacement. Dropping the system leaves only the Atom-based VAIO P and VAIO W with screens below 10 inches in Sony's lineup.
Apple has considered incorporating simultaneous file transfers during iPhone calls, a newly-published patent application shows. Though files can be uploaded through many different iPhone apps at present, the filing notes that in the middle of a call, it is currently impossible to send files or even text messages. It may also be necessary to quit a call to look up secondary contact info.
Despite Apple's claims to the contrary, a test by a forum member at Weiphone suggests the iPhone 3GS may already have enough performance to smoothly play full HD video. By manually copying over videos using file transfer apps on a computer and the iPhone, the community member says he could play up to a 1080p (1920x1080) clip at 30 frames per second at up to a 35Mbps without any lag or stuttering. Although they don't show in the official iPod app, they work using Apple's built-in video player when called by a third-party program.
Apple could be reconsidering allowing the C64 Emulator app onto the App Store, following its rejection in June. The developer, Manomio, recently claimed in a tweet that it was contacted by a senior director at Apple and there is "BIG news coming," although further details have not yet been announced.
PopCap has begun shipping the retail version of Plants vs. Zombies, its well-known tower defense game. Players defend a middle-class house against a horde of zombies, using plants grown in the front lawn; these include the likes of sunflowers, pea-shooters and wall-nuts. As players gain access to better plants, zombies become more difficult to kill through larger numbers and new adaptations.
Plantronics on Thursday introduced its newest Bluetooth headset, the Discovery 975. It will replace the current Discovery 925 when it launches and sports the same dual microphones and Plantronics' AudioIQ and WindSmart sound-enhancing and noise cancelling technologies. A newfound feature is the 975's storage case, which doubles as a portable charger for the headset and can extend it battery life from 5 hours to 15 hours. It sports an LCD screen that shows charge level of the headset and the case's own battery levels, as well as Bluetooth connection status.
Canada may have the highest proportional number of Mac users in the world after recent gains by Apple, according to an IDC study of computer sales in the country during the spring. The American company broke into double-digit share there for the first time by accounting for 10 percent of all non-server computers shipped between March and June. Such a gain left it only behind world leaders HP and Dell, who held on to 22.1 percent and 20.7 percent respectively.
An issue with Wi-Fi connections is affecting iPhone 3G owners, according to forum discussions. Those with the problem cannot connect to Wi-Fi networks, regardless of signal strength. The originator of the forum topic notes that Wi-Fi may only work after a phone has been freshly rebooted. Alternately, multiple people have commented that while a connection may technically persist after a phone has been put to sleep and awakened, users may suddenly find themselves unable to receive data.
Ricoh this morning revamped its most important non-pro camera by launching the CX2. The point-and-shoot has one of the longest reaches of any camera its size with a 10.7X zoom (28-300mm equivalent) lens; at its closest zoom, it's considered a wide-angle camera. Continuous shooting has also been sped up to 5 frames per second at full detail, while less professional photographers also get improved face detection and new shooting modes that replicate high-contrast black-and-white and miniature (tilt-shift) photography.
Piqqem has released sentiment predictions for Apple Q4 performance, which call for the company leading Google, Microsoft and Dell. An average across 35 analysts shows $1.37 in EPS for Apple, based on $9.12 billion in revenue. The company has seen 28 upward-estimated share price revisions in the past month with no downward revisions; similarly, stock price has risen over 12 percent in the most recent quarter.
AT&T might axe its first Android phone before it has even been released, Taiwanese sources claimed today. The HTC Lancaster was originally slated for a summer launch but is now reported by DigiTimes as having been delayed or even facing cancellation altogether as it still hasn't passed AT&T's validation process to ready the phone for use. No explanation has been given as to the nature of the issue, including whether hardware or software is to blame.
Apple has posted a minor Bluetooth firmware update for Macs, bringing support up to v2.0.1. The patch is described as implementing bugfixes, as well as "better compatibility" with the Wireless Mighty Mouse and Wireless Keyboard. A 1.78MB download, the update requires Mac OS X 10.5.7 and a Mac using a Broadcom Bluetooth chipset.
Hannspree decided to veer away from its focus on displays in the US by launching the HannsNote netbook in the country. The 10-inch PC clings tightly to the common netbook formula of a 1.6GHz Atom processor, 1GB of RAM, a 160GB hard drive and Windows XP but comes stock with a six-cell battery that gives the system as much as five hours of battery life where many netbooks still use three-cell packs. The inclusion of a 1.3-megapixel webcam, 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth as standard also set it slightly above the most ubiquitous systems of its class.
Apple's practice of striking agreements to avoid poaching other companies' workers almost extended to Palm as well, according to a leak of conversations between the two. Just as the US Justice Department has been investigating possible anti-competitive behavior between Apple and Google as well as other technology firms, Bloomberg has reportedly found that since departed Palm chief Ed Colligan rejected a proposal from Apple's Steve Jobs in 2007 that would have prevented either company from hiring each other's employees.
PopCap Games has announced Zuma’s Revenge, a sequel to the original arcade-style ball-blasting Zuma game. The latest installment adds over 60 new maps, additional game modes, and a variety new power-up balls such as Laser Frog and Lightning Color Nuke. Some of the new modes include a Speedy blitz-style challenge game, along with the Iron Frog gauntlet for experienced players. Zuma’s Revenge also increases the challenge by incorporating six different custom boss battles where players go against giant, evil tiki spirits.
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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