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A trio of new Google AdSense ads that surfaced this weekend have alluded to new iMacs and Mac minis as well as a similarly redesigned MacBook. Searches on the Dutch version of Google with the right keywords have shown AppleInsider text ads for a "brand new," "ultra thin" iMac in 20- and 24-inch models and a "thinner, lighter and stronger" MacBook. A Mac mini ad touts the system as "faster and more affordable than ever" but sells it for 499 Euros where the lowest official Netherlands price is 599 Euros.
LittleSnapper v1.5.1 and Voila v2.1 are screen capture and markup applications, allowing users to capture their screen, desktop, application windows or web pages. Both utilities can also add callouts, including arrows, circles and instructional text. LittleSnapper is able to capture all web pages, regardless of the elements used but is limited in its adjustment tools and parameter controls. Conversely, Voila features expanded filters and adjustment tools but mishandled some Flash web pages. In our latest review our reviewer contrasts the two apps and elucidates the good and the bad parts of each program.
Crackers at the iPhone Dev-Team began the weekend by releasing an updated version of PwnageTool that can jailbreak the iPhone 3GS. The 3.1.3 tool works only as long as the Apple phone was jailbroken with firmware 3.0 or 3.0.1 and won't work if the phone is already at Apple's official 3.1. The second-generation iPod touch can now also be de-restricted under the same firmware limits as the 3GS.
Palm today quietly circumvented Apple's protective measures again with webOS 1.2.1. Its second update in a week is the first to restore iTunes syncing for the Pre since iTunes 8.2 and will let the Pre take media from iTunes 9.0.1 as though it were a native device in the jukebox software. It even adds deeper integration and will now sync photo albums as well as lower-resolution versions that save space on the phone.
Blue Microphone has released the Eyeball 2.0, its upgrade to the original camera and microphone combo. The 2-megapixel upgrade is capable of broadcasting video at a maximum resolution of 1600x1200 at 30 frames per second. Like the original reviewed here, it has a retractable lens which can be stored into the microphone unit and automatically turns off to help ensure privacy. The device is designed to mount onto any display or notebook using its integrated adapter.
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Apple brings iTunes Movie Trailers app to Canada
After five years, Apple has expanded its iTunes Movie Trailers app for iOS to Canada. As of Saturday, the free app allows movie buffs to see HD movie trailers for new studio and independent features, and explore some other movie-related extras such as photos, behind-the-scenes footage, or clips from upcoming films. Users can save trailers for quick access, read reviews from RottenTomatoes.com within the app, use AirPlay to send them to an Apple TV, share trailers, and peruse the top movie charts. http://apple.co/1UUKtwr
Apple expands CloudKit API, provides web interface
On Friday, Apple notified developers that it was expanding a feature of CloudKit to allow for server-to-server web service requests. "In addition to providing a web interface for users to access the same data as your app, you can now easily read and write to the CloudKit public database from a server-side process or script with a server-to-server key," Apple said in its announcement. Previously, interaction with the CloudKit public database was limited to apps and web only. http://apple.co/20h1RwP
Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive, Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN