In brief: Several new royalty-free icon sets have been added to Iconfactory's collection. Each of the sets are geared towards web use and include a variety of image sizes. Meanwhile, Que Publishing has announced the release of four new Mac guide books. The books cover different topics that can be helpful for beginner and advanced Mac users alike.
iLuv has launched its new line of cases for the new iPod nano and iPod touch. The new series features four types of Nano cases, the first of which is a silicon case with a flame pattern on the back. The second and third case designs both feature a clear plastic shell with various graphics of famous cityscapes or a video camera graphic on the back of the device. The last model utilizes an elastic armband and features a glow-in-the-dark frame for running at night.
Mobistar has launched an iPhone portal in Belgium that allows users to view HD television from the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. The company has expanded its mobile television range through a partnership with two Belgian broadcasting companies, VRT and RTBF. The new portal will permit Mobistar customers to stream RTBF videos or read the VRT and RTBF news directly from the iPhone interface. Mobistar has also extended its live television range by partnering with other public broadcasters in the country.
T-Mobile on Friday said it has started rolling out the first 3G network in the US to support HSPA+. Currently active through about 20 cell sites in Philadelphia, the new network gives T-Mobile the fastest mobile Internet in the country with peak downloads of 21Mbps and uploads as high as 5.76Mbps. While actual speeds are likely to be much lower, the service is about three times faster than AT&T's newly unveiled 7.2Mbps network plans.
The California Energy Commission is considering new regulations that would effectively ban certain HDTVs from being sold in the state, the LA Times reports. The first-of-its-kind proposal for an efficiency standard is deemed necessary in order to offset the drain on the state's electric grid. If enacted, only energy-efficient models would be sold by 2011 and even tougher standards are due by 2013. Detailed specs for the standard are set for a release on Friday, with a 45-day period for public comment and approval expected sometime in November.
A recent soft Forbes article on Dell reveals that the PC maker will soon release a high-end notebook PC, the Latitude Z, that may have wireless charging capabilities. The flagship model, which was spotted at the FCC recently and may be released on October 25th, is being compared to halo cars, such as GM's Corvette, to boost the brand image and bring interest to Dell's products and foot and Internet traffic to its stores and website.
Chinese portable multimedia player maker RAmos will soon release an Android-powered mobile Internet device that will have the capability of playing back 1080p high-definition videos, according to a recent Pocketables report. The official release is expected to come at a press event on Friday, September 25th, with the device based largely on, if not simply a rebadged version of, the Rockchip Android-powered MID concept spotted last month.
Apple has already issued a response to today's release of an uncensored Google submission to the FCC, according to Silicon Alley Insider. "We do not agree with all of the statements made by Google in their FCC letter," reads a statement from an Apple representative. Reiterating an earlier point of view, the representative adds that "Apple has not rejected the Google Voice application and we continue to discuss it with Google."
A video of the upcoming Chocolate BL20 slider phone has been found online, revealing some of the handset's specs and functions. According to a Friday PhoneArena report, the Chocolate BL20 has touch-sensitive navigational and volume control buttons, and will support GSM voice and 3G data networks. Screen resolution is fixed at 320x240 pixels, and there will be a shortcut key that brings up the most often used applications, such as the contacts directory, alarm and calendar, among others.
The FCC is on the verge of introducing a new rule that would ban US cellular carriers from blocking Internet-aware mobile apps, a source from within the government agency claims. The tip claims that Chairman Julius Genachowski will use a keynote at the Brooklings Institute on Monday to provide early details of the rule. The only known detail at the Washington Post is that it would prevent carriers from filtering what users could see and do with online mobile apps.
An upcoming portable multimedia player from Teclast has been spotted along with its specifications. The T56 uses a 5-inch color display with an 800x480 resolution, but it should support up to 1080p and display it at native size thanks to its HDMI output. Because of the touch buttons on the face of the device, the screen isn't likely to have touch capability. The device does, however, sport an integrated GPS sensor, along with an SD memory card slot. Internal memory capacity, if any, is unspecified.
Apple and eBay are among many online retailers named in a new patent infringement lawsuit, reports say. Filed by TQP Development, the suit alleges that the defendants are violating a 14-year-old patent, titled Encrypted Data Transmission System Employing Means for Randomly Altering the Encryption Keys. The company uses the specific example of Apple's online store, noting that the website generates an assortment of pseudo-random keys for secure packet transmission.
Sprint will sell its 4G WiMAX mobile broadband service to Chicago residents starting on October 6th, when it will officially be announced during a press event. A Friday story from BBR maintains Sprint has been sending out invitations to members of the press for the event, where it will demonstrate the network's speeds in addition to formally launching the network.
A new demo on Friday supported notions that the HTC Leo will have the first-ever capacitive touchscreen and multi-touch input on a Windows Mobile device. The leak from ai.rs proves this by showing the phone responding to gestures that would either require active pressure on a normal Windows Mobile phone or wouldn't have worked at all, such as quickly flicking through HTC's TouchFLO interface or pinching to zoom into and out of photos.
Following several Freedom of Information Act requests attempting to access Google's redacted documents regarding the FCC's Google Voice inquiry, the company has decided to drop the confidentiality requests. The unredacted portion of the document contradicts Apple's public statement that it has not formally rejected the app, as the matter is still being discussed.
Sprint and Verizon together have denied claims that problems with the BlackBerry Tour's trackball are resulting in extraordinarily high return rates. Both now admit that the trackball has been an issue but said that only a "small" number of early Tours were affected by the problem. Verizon indicated also that its return rate for the Tour has actually been lower than average and that it remains as committed to selling the newer BlackBerry Tour as before.
Gaming peripheral maker SteelSeries on Friday announced it will soon release the SteelSeries Siberia v2 full-size headset. As the name implies, it will replace the Siberia headset released in 2004, with the main improvement being the retractable boom microphone that comes out of the left ear cup. This makes the headset more convenient to carry when travelling, as the microphone tucks out of the way and gives it the profile of regular headphones.
A controversial remote deletion option for the Windows Marketplace is only a failsafe, according to Microsoft. The feature will allow Microsoft to remove applications from any Windows Mobile phone, with or without the consent of owners. A spokesperson clarifies, however, that the command is only intended to cope with apps exhibiting "harmful behavior" or "unforeseen effects."
Intel's upcoming Core i7 four-core parts for notebooks, nicknamed Clarksfield, should be much faster per clock cycle compared to their existing Core 2 Quad counterparts based on tests published today. Although normally clocked at just 1.73GHz, the mid-range Core i7-820QM is seen in PCPro benchmarks often coming close to, matching or outperforming the 2.53GHz Core 2 Extreme that costs significantly more than the expected $750 for the newer chip. The edge comes despite extra handicaps on the test system versus the Dell M6400 Covet used for comparison, as the Core i7 system had just half the RAM (4GB), a slower-spinning 5,400RPM hard drive and a more mainstream GeForce GT 240M graphics chip versus the workstation-grade Quadro FX 3700M in the older PC.
Movavi has launched a self-titled video converter, able to transfer video footage and associated audio files from one device to another. The software utilizes presets for common media players, and popular formats. The latter include AVI, MPEG, MP4, 3GP, FLV, MP3, WAV, AAC and FLAC. Some supported media devices include the iPod, iPhone, PSP, BlackBerry and Apple TV.
Macquarie analyst Phil Cusick today upgraded his rating for Apple stock from "Neutral" to "Outperform," and raised his price target from $175 to $220. The worth of Apple stock has already surged past $175 in recent days, and is currently valued at over $185. The spike is generally linked to an upcoming accounting change, which will allow Apple to more accurately state its iPhone and Apple TV revenues.
Redlex has launched a major update to its word processor for the Mac, Mellel 2.7. The app provides tools for creating and organizing documents, including support for endnotes, footnotes, and a special citations palette. The latest version delivers over 20 new features and enhancements, including support for Snow Leopard, floating images and wrapping text, as well as a variety of but fixes. Several added functions provide users with an object palette for controlling image attributes, and the ability to insert various features before a text heading, such as a page break or column break.
AT&T's promised 3G MicroCell should finally arrive next week, a source on the show floor of the 4G World expo claimed late Thursday. The often-delayed femtocell devices should have a rollout to a handful of cities that are believed to include Atlanta, San Antonio, Seattle and at least one city in North Carolina. An AT&T worker spotted by Unstrung has made Twitter posts (since pulled) supporting at least the Georgia (Atlanta) and North Carolina deployments.
Yamaha on Friday announced the upcoming release of its SoundGadget SoundGadget PSG-01S and Projectphone PJP-25URS speakerphones that are certified to work with Skype calls. Besides providing a microphone, the two are entirely USB powered and don't need drivers. The PSG-01S is meant as a personal speaker, while the larger PJP-25URS is meant to cater to small conference rooms where more than one individual is at one end of the conversation.
Pong Research has introduced the Pong iPhone case, said to reduce a userís exposure to phone radiation. Designed for the iPhone 3G and 3GS, it uses a silicone skin integrated with a proprietary module claimed to redirect radiation away from a person's head. The case has been FCC certified, and allegedly reduces the specific absorption rate by approximately 60 percent, and more intense "hot spot" radiation by 85 percent.
Sony is purposely limiting PSP minis in a way that could hobble them compared to their rivals on the iPhone, the company revealed in a Game Developers Conference presentation on Thursday. The small games will have a sped-up approval process compared to regular PSP games but are banned from using any networking features and can't have downloadable content. They also won't be allowed to support third-party peripherals, according to the company.
Apple is gradually de-emphasizing music in its business, a policy which could have much broader ramifications, a report argues. Although the company's iPod and iTunes updates on September 9th were nominally themed around music, the company notably placed a stronger focus on games, as well as the video camera added to the iPod nano. Music was only essential in terms of iTunes, with the addition of Genius Mixes, iTunes LP and a new iTunes Store layout.
HP's plans for a notebook with a 3D display could soon be followed by at least one and as many as three more computer makers, a Taiwan area newspaper said on Friday. The Commercial Times claims that local assembler Wistron is not only contracted by HP to build the notebooks but has been tapped by Dell to build a similar design. Talks are also reportedly underway with Lenovo and Sony as well.
HTC is rumored to be stepping up its smartphone presence with two rare smartphones meant primarily for Verizon as well as a possible significant processor boost. The Imagio is believed by BGR to be the final version of the Whitestone and, unlike with past claims, should be a more original design that may launch first on Verizon's network. It should have a 3.6-inch 800x480 touchscreen and usual features like 3G, GPS and Wi-Fi, but it should come preloaded with Windows Mobile 6.5 and support GSM for world roaming.
ASUS has finished the week by adding a pair of communications devices to its lineup, including one of its first headphone combos tailored to the Mac. The HP-100U combines an over-ear headphone set, a desk array microphone and a Xonar U1 that gives Mac users OpenAL audio acceleration as well as Dolby Home Theater processing. The Xonar hub also provides a headphone amp and in Windows provides a boost to DirectSound, EAX and OpenAL.
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Twitter for Mac gets Moments, Polls
Twitter has updated its Mac app with Moments and Polls, features previously rolled out in its web portal and in its mobile apps. The new Moments tab is designed to make it easier to find more interesting and relevant content. Content is curated in categories including News, Sports, Entertainment and Fun, with trending topics highlighted for an easier to use, more engaging experience. The Twitter for Mac app also picks up the ability to create custom multiple choice polls via Tweets that are live for a 24-hour period. Users can also share GIFs in both Tweets and Direct Messages thanks to a new GIF search function. http://apple.co/1rxCvA0
GoPro revenue drops, Karma drone delayed
Action camera maker GoPro announced its first quarter results on Thursday, and the news was largely bad. While unit sell-through of the cameras was close to the year-over-year compare, revenues dropped 49.5 percent from Q1 last year, though was slightly above the company's guidance. Overall, the company lost $107 million in GAAP net income, and margins declined to 32.5 percent from 45.1 percent in the year-ago quarter. The company further announced that it would be delaying its planned Karma drone product until this winter, which will likely further impact next quarter's results. The upside of the delay, said GoPro Founder and CEO Nicholas Woodman, is that the Karma will now benefit from debuting just before the holiday buying season. http://bit.ly/1OgpdgD
Netflix iOS app now offers cell-data controls
In a new update to its iOS app on Thursday, subscription entertainment service Netflix has introduced new user controls for streaming over cellular networks to prevent overages, throttling, or other usage issues caused by the high data rate of streamed HD video. Users can choose from a given amount of streaming video that "costs" 1GB of cellular data, which lowers video quality to allow as much as four hours of video per GB (the "automatic" setting provides three hours, while higher quality settings reduce the time to two hours, or one hour at the best setting). In addition, the updated app now offers more 3D Touch options from the app icon, beyond the "peek and pop" previews for video. http://apple.co/24AD1vR
Bentley launches app for Apple Watch
Carmaker Bentley now offers an Apple Watch app for its Bentayga SUV -- a vehicle with a starting price of $229,000 -- that offers some advanced automotive functions not previously seen in other car apps for Apple's wearable. The app allows Watch wearers to control various seat adjustments, environmental controls (including seat massage), and the entertainment system. In addition, various vehicle stats are available at a glance, including distance traveled and vehicle speed. The app is available free on the App Store. http://apple.co/24AyXvs
Lunch with Cook auction nets $515K
The Charitybuzz auction that offered lunch with Apple CEO Tim Cook at Apple HQ and a pair of passes to a future Apple event (winner's pick) has ended with a high bid of $515,000, the highest amount the annual auction has fetched since 2013. Proceeds of the auction will benefit Cook's preferred charity, the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organization, where Cook was recently named to the board of directors. The winner, who was unnamed, will be responsible for their own transportation and accommodation, and Cook has up to a year to schedule the meeting -- making it possible that the winner will be among the first to dine with Cook in the new Campus 2 cafeteria, which is set to open along with the rest of the new facility early next year. http://bit.ly/236Wf9N
Free Windows 10 upgrade program ends July 29
Ending speculation, Microsoft has officially announced that it will end free Windows 10 upgrades on July 29, the one-year anniversary of the rollout of the OS. Following the 29th, Microsoft's ubiquitous OS will retail for $119 and up. http://bit.ly/1O0a7kA
US tech giants to candidates: support TPP
Tech giants including Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Uber are among thirteen major US corporations who have written an open letter to Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton urging them to support the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal, reports Reuters. Although not yet made public, the letter also asks the candidates to make it easier for the companies to hire tech workers from overseas. Both are not happy with the TPP deal, although Trump is sterner in his opposition to any kind of trade deals between countries. Trump has not rejected outright the idea of importing high-tech talent from overseas, while Clinton has already voiced her support for the idea. http://reut.rs/1Wb0Zwq