HDTVs with 4K resolution, Smart TV features out in Korea next month
Samsung is preparing to launch 55-inch and 65-inch models of its UHD TV sets next month. Starting off in Korea, the new models will go on sale in June, with a view to releasing it in other markets shortly afterwards, with the two differently-sized 4K-capable TVs following the 85-inch S9 the company released in the country at the beginning of this year.
Hangouts conversations to carry between iOS, Android, Web
Google has shown a significant number of changes to Google+ at its Google I/O developer event, as part of its attempts to attract users. The redesign of the social network is accompanied by the rumored unified messaging system, branded Hangouts, and the automatic enhancement, editing and highlighting of photographs uploaded onto its service.
Minor update reaches Mac App Store
Apple has released a minor update for iMovie, the video editor included as part of its iLife suite. Version 9.0.9 copes with a trio of issues, mainly a glitch which can prevent iMovie from detecting connected video cameras. It also deals with general instability, and compatibility problems when importing iOS iMovie projects. The app is a 1.36GB download.
SOHO Printing line boosted by Brother
We've mentioned before that we are far from a paperless society. For now, at least, there are tasks that require a piece of paper for confirmation, proof of purchase, or a litany of other needs. Laser printers have existed since the first practical commercial model in 1984, and have since been known as one of the best products for high-quality text and printing at a consumer or business price point. One name present in printing for decades at this point is Brother -- the lineage grew this year with the LED Brother HL-3170CDW color printer with duplexer. Electronista has been living with one for a few months now, see what we think of this new printer!
Improves Mac performance
E-on Software has released LumenRT 4.1 Studio, an update of one of the developer's 3D modeling tools LumenRT meshes 3D models into realistic natural or urban environments, for instance adding people, plants, animals, and/or car traffic. The v4.1 patch introduces new animated water materials, ranging in scale from ponds to oceans.
New devices capture up to six QAM broadcasts simultaneously
Ceton Corp has announced the new InfiniTV 6 product line of CableCARD multi-tuner devices for Media Center PCs. InfiniTV 6 is available in two models, which each incorporate six QAM tuners and require only a single CableCARD. InfiniTV 6 ETH is a powerful Ethernet-based network tuner that plugs into a router or wired home network. InfiniTV 6 PCIe connects to a PC via a PCI-E slot for configurations where all six tuners are available on a single PC.
Samsung offloaded display company after not meeting expectations
Confirming earlier reports, Amazon has purchased touchscreen company Liquavista. The company, previously owned by Samsung, is one of the developers of low-power color e-paper technology. No terms of the deal are currently known. Samsung was previously said to be seeking sale of the manufacturer due to the acquisition not meeting expectations of Samsung executives.
Offers paid additional storage, cross-platform compatibility
Amazon has launched an iOS version of its Cloud Drive Photos app (free), which gives users 5GB in free storage space for backing up or offloading photos taking up too much room on their own devices. Depending on the format of the pictures, the Amazon Cloud Drive Photos storage locker can hold up to thousands of photos, and the company offers additional storage space for a fee starting with 20GB of additional space for $10 per year. The iPhone-oriented app also allows sharing of photos to Facebook, Twitter and email.
Currently offering discounted single-app memberships
Adobe is considering doing a "photographer’s bundle or photography cloud solution" to cater to one of its key markets, the company said in a blog post earlier this week. Under original plans announced on Monday, getting access to the next version of Photoshop, Photoshop CC, will normally cost at least $20 per month. People wanting the companion app Lightroom will still be able to buy a permanent license for that software, but getting access to both Photoshop and Lightroom -- as well as other apps a photographer might want -- could potentially be expensive.
Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom camera phone inbound
Samsung has submitted a Galaxy S4 Zoom to the Bluetooth SIG group for Bluetooth 4.0 certification. The device is set to join the fresh battle for the rejuvenated camera phone segment with a 10x optical zoom built-in for users looking for better camera shots as their first priority in a smartphone. Listed on the Bluetooth SIG site as a “Samsung Mobile Phone” the device also carries the model designation SM-C101.
Micro Four Thirds camera celebrates 50th anniversary of Pen F
Olympus has officially announced its Pen E-P5 Micro Four Thirds camera, one leaked earlier this month. Designed to look like the Pen F to mark its 50th anniversary, the Pen E-P5 boasts a string of thoroughly-modern components within its retro styling, including a 16-megapixel TruePic VI Live MOS sensor and a 1.04 million dot tilting LCD touchscreen on the rear.
'Light Leak' effect simulates broken-down cameras
The developer of Pixelmator has released an important v2.2 update for the image-editing software. Codenamed Blueberry, the update makes several enhancements to the app's shape tools, for instance adding "smart" controls that rapidly adjust outlines. The Shape Style palette has new Fill, Stroke Style, Shadow, and Inner Shadow options, and the Custom Shapes palette now includes dozens of preset objects.
Extra DivX features provide multi-language subtitles, audio, chapters
Rovi has revealed that Toshiba will be the first television manufacturer to launch a range of DivX Plus Streaming-certified HDTVs. The addition of DivX Plus Streaming to the televisions will allow users to watch streaming content with typical features found in DVD and Blu-ray Disc usage, such as support for multi-language subtitles and audio tracks.
Basic portfolio service to promote sharing, showcasing work
Adobe's move into a subscription model with its rebranded "CC" suite doesn't mean it is entirely leaving behind users who haven't yet or opted not to join Creative Cloud, the company reports. In its press release heralding the improvements and features of its now fully-integrated Creative Cloud programs, Adobe added that it would continue to offer a non-CC version of Creative Suite 6 for the foreseeable future, and is obligated to support existing software for years to come. In addition, the Behance portfolio feature is available to non-Cloud users as well.
Pressure-sensitive stylus and digital ruler still in development
Adobe showed off a hardware project for drawing it has been working on at its MAX Conference. Project Mighty is a pressure-sensitive stylus for tablets that is connected to the Adobe Creative Cloud, while Napoleon is an accompanying ruler that effectively works as a protractor for Project Mighty to work with in the tablet app.
Company continues subscription push
Adobe has introduced a wide range of software updates, dropping the Creative Suite branding as the company continues to embrace its Creative Cloud subscription service. New features have been added to Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash Pro, After Effects, Muse and Dreamweaver, among other titles.
Folds in 3D tools from Photoshop Extended
One of the core pieces of today's Adobe announcements is Photoshop CC, its rebranded and updated photo-editing software. Among new features in the software is Smart Sharpen, which analyzes images and attempts to produce the best-possible sharpening, while minimizing any halos or noise. The process can be tuned as needed.
Capable of 600dpi scans, 20 color pages per minute at 300dpi
HP has announced the availability of the Scanjet Pro3000 s2 for business users. Said to plug into existing scanning platforms, the sheet feed scanner includes a 50-page automatic feeder for mass document scanning, and is capable of scanning A4-sized pages at 300dpi in color at up to 20 pages per minute.
Android app gets grids, better upload quality
Instagram has launched a new service feature, "Photos of You," through updates to its iOS and Android apps. The option lets people tag others in their photos in a manner similar to Facebook; the collected photos will eventually appear in a Photos of You profile section. The tagging also works for corporate brands.
Films downloadable to Kaleidescape servers at Blu-ray quality
Kaleidescape has launched a new online video store for its range of home media servers, claimed to be the first in the world to deliver Blu-ray quality movies. Emerging from being in beta since December 2012, the service provides downloads of movies instead of streams, with audio and video quality said to be equal to that of films on Blu-ray disc itself.
Developer promises app-wide speed boosts
Flying Meat has released Acorn 4, an upgrade of its Mac photo-editing utility. The update adds several major features, such as non-destructive filters and a curve editor, which offers more precise control over shadows, midtones and highlights. The new Merlin HUD lets users control the radius and center points of a filter while still on the canvas.
Shuttles edits back and forth between DNG, RAW
Adobe is developing an iOS companion app to the desktop version of Lightroom, the company's product manager for Lightroom, Tom Hogarty, revealed Wednesday via an online show, The Grid. The app should support controlling many of the same elements as the desktop software, such as exposure, clarity, shadows, highlights, white balance, and noise reduction. At the foundation of the app though is the Smart Previews technology from the Lightroom 5 beta.
Vast majority of recovery shares being awarded to secured creditors
Eastman Kodak has filed its latest plan to exit from Chapter 11 bankruptcy that gives ownership of the venerable company to unsecured creditors and bond holders. Second-lien note holders will receive 85 percent of common stock in the company, worth nearly $374.85 million. Unsecured creditors will be awarded the remaining 15 percent of shares.
Sources suggest E-P5 to be announced on May 9th, 10th
Images for an upcoming mirrorless camera from Olympus have leaked online. The shots of the PEN E-P5 camera have also been supplemented by a separate leak describing its specifications, including its 16-megapixel sensor being similar to the E-M5, and improvements made to its autofocus and five-axis stabilization.
Compact system camera replaces most controls with touchscreen options
Samsung has unveiled a new compact system camera with a large 3.7-inch, 1,152k-dot touchscreen on the back. The NX2000 Smart Camera, using the same 20.3-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor as the NX300 shown earlier this year, uses the WVGA-resolution screen for navigation, replacing most of the buttons and controls usually seen on the back of a camera.
Sony 'Honami' could pack 16 or 20-megapixel sensor
A new rumor has Sony set to ramp up the smartphone camera battle in the second half of 2013 with a smartphone featuring either a 16 or 20-megapixel sensor. The sensor is also said to be one of the largest to feature on a smartphone at 1/1.6-inches and will be an Exmor RS stacked sensor type paired with a Cybershot G glass lens. It is expected to appear on the sequel to the Xperia Z, which is reportedly codenamed ‘Honami.’
Patents for image sharing, wireless camera networking pass to Apple
A number of patents owned by Kodak have been transferred into Apple's name, according to recent filings at the US Patent and Trademark Office. The patents form part of Apple's haul from the photography firm, and covers a number of different camera-related actions, including the display and sharing of digital images, as well as sharing images over a network wirelessly.
Nokia aiming to bring Lytro-style tech to Lumia smartphones
Nokia is said to be planning an investment in Pelican Imaging as it seeks to further enhance the capabilities of its smartphone cameras. Based in California, Pelican Imaging is startup developing a Lytro-style camera technology that uses an array of small ‘plenoptic’ cameras in a single module to take images with multiple focal points. As the video embedded below highlights, the technology allows a smartphone user to take a photo and refocus the image on different focal points after the shot is taken.
Multitouch drawing aid provides wide viewing angles, loses weight
Wacom has revised its Cintiq 22HD display-based input device to include touch controls. The Cintiq 22HD touch, much like the larger Cintiq 24HD touch, introduces multitouch to the stylus-based drawing surface, allowing artists and designers to use gestures for rotating canvases, zooming and panning their work.
Desktop 3D printer offers color, 25-micron accuracy, simple setup
A new 3D printer from botObjects is said to be the first in the world to perform full color 3D prints on a desktop. The ProDesk3D aims to improve existing 3D printing products aimed at end users, such as the MakerBot range of devices, by offering a desktop printer that is touted to combine high accuracy with a mature physical design, as well as simplifying the 3D printing process.
Rest of World release of curved HDTV expected within months
LG is putting curved OLED televisions on sale earlier than first thought. The electronics producer is opening up its 55-inch EA9800 to pre-orders in Korea today, with shipments in the country expected in June. The HDTV's release outside of Korea will apparently be announced in the coming months, along with regional pricing.
Compact camera includes high-speed video recording, 8x zoom
Fujifilm has shipped a new compact camera in its FinePix range. The FinePix JZ700 has a 14-megapixel CMOS sensor instead of a CCD sensor used in previous FinePix JZ models, said to help with low-light situations, paired with an 8x optical zoom lens that has a 35mm-equivalent focal length of 24mm wide-angle to 192mm telephoto.
Samsung has made significant improvements to the GS4 AMOLED display
DisplayMate has run an in depth analysis on the new Super AMOLED 5-inch 1080p display in the Samsung Galaxy S4 giving its seal of approval. According to the site, the quality of AMOLED displays is starting to “challenge the best performance of the best LCDs.” Compared to the display in the superseded Galaxy S III, the new Galaxy S4 display is said to be better calibrated and brighter.
Points out that iPhone is world's most-used camera
A new TV ad for Apple's iPhone has debuted, a departure from the recent short "showcase" ads that highlighted apps -- instead spending a full minute extolling the virtues of the iPhone's use as a camera through gorgeous vignettes of people taking pictures. As pointed out at the end of the spot, "every day, more photos are taken with the iPhone than any other camera." In addition to seeing people taking pictures, the ad also subtly highlights the ease-of-use in editing and sharing pictures, and harks back to some earlier Apple ads.
LG reassures investors with plans for first flexible OLED smartphone
LG is said to be planning its first flexible OLED smartphone for a Q4 release this year, reports the Wall Street Journal [sub. req.]. The company made the indication at its Q1 conference call, where it revealed that its net profits plunged 91 percent from the same period in 2012. The displays are not only curved, but are also shatter proof, which should help to address a long standing issue for smartphone owners who have inadvertently dropped their devices.
Panasonic adds Wi-Fi, NFC connectivity to cameras
Panasonic has revealed a pair of new cameras in the Lumix line. The Lumix DMC-LF1 is a 12-megapixel compact camera with built-in Wi-Fi and NFC, while the Lumix DMC-G6 is a 16-megapixel Micro Four Thirds shooter capable of a high-speed burst mode at 7 frames per second, and a half-second booting time.
High end optics coupled with Exmor R CMOS, BIONS hardware
The DEV-50V digital binocular set unveiled on Tuesday is the second generation of digital binoculars from Sony, newly redesigned to deliver an improved user experience. In addition to observational capabilities with autofocus, image stabilization and flexible zoom capability, the DEV-50V can record full AVCHD 2.0 video with stereo sound or snap 20.4-megapixel still photos with enhanced low-light capability.
Camera smallest, lightest camera to sport a 30x optical zoom
Sony today introduced the Cyber-shot HX50V, a powerful new compact-form camera featuring 30x optical zoom coupled with a 20.4MP Exmor R CMOS image sensor. The device measures 4.4 inches wide, by 2.6 inches high, and 1.2 inches thick with a weight of 9.6 ounces, making it the smallest and lightest camera with 30x optical zoom capability, according to the company.
62 percent off refurbished LaCie 1TB Little Big Disk and more
This week, eCost.com has reduced the price on the refurbished LaCie 1TB Little Big Disk external hard drive with Thunderbolt from $450 down to $170, a savings of $280. That's about $180 less than buying this hard drive brand new anywhere else. This hard drive features 1TB of storage space in a compact, lightweight form factor with Thunderbolt connectivity that can be used to play, edit and acquire multiple uncompressed A/V streams directly from the drive regardless of the resolution of the content. A limited warranty is included from LaCie.
AppShopper Social launched
Following a removal from the App Store last September, AppShopper has returned with a new social-based app discovery tool. Dubbed AppShopper Social, the all new app contains the core Wish List functionality from the original software, but introduces new social discovery features. The app's main view consists of a Friend Stream that provides users with a stream of items that friends have added to their personal Wish List of My Apps lists. Other features such as Push Notifications for updates and price changes and app searching have also returned with AppShopper Social, while the What's New and Top 200 lists have been temporarily removed.
Slight increase in Netflix profits next quarter, continued shift away from DVD
Netflix has announced its quarterly earnings report for the first part of 2013. The company reports having added over three million streaming members, bringing the company's total to more than 36 million worldwide. The company continues to see profits in the US offsetting losses elsewhere, with a $131 million profit in the US and a $77 million loss internationally. DVD rentals continue to earn well, with it bringing in $113 million profit for the company in the US. After all expenses, including payback of debt, the company earned five cents per share.
Apple update adds support for four new Fuji cameras
Just after updating both Aperture and iPhoto with various bug fixes, Apple has issued an update for its Digital Camera Raw Compatibility plug-in, which supplements both programs with additional support for Raw files produced by various cameras. The program, now at version 4.05, adds support for four new cameras, all from Fuji: the Fujifilm X20, X100S, X-E1 and X-Pro1. The download is 6MB in size and requires either 10.7.5 or higher for OS X Lion and 10.8.3 or higher for OS X Mountain Lion.
More promised at Adobe MAX conference
Adobe has posted a brief teaser video for an upcoming Photoshop feature, Shake Reduction. The option will allow people to globally or selectively reduce the blur created by factors like camera shake and/or slow shutter speeds. Adobe hasn't said when the technology will be integrated into Photoshop, but as with other recent changes, it will probably be offered to Creative Cloud subscribers first.
Curved screen to eliminate image distortion to viewer
LG has confirmed it will be placing a curved OLED TV on sale by the end of the year. The EA9800 TV, measuring 55 inches and first shown off at CES earlier this year, will be part of the first curved releases, with other larger televisions planned to be shipped at around the same time, though the exact shipping dates are unknown.
App allows for easy layout and sharing of visually-oriented stories
A new app for digital content presentation called Stampsy (free) has debuted for the iPad, with the goal of giving users easy-to-use tools to help them arrange and integrate visual images and text into cohesive "digital experiences" that can be shared on the web. Pictures can be imported from a photo library or Dropbox and combined with text and layout tools, making the ability to post a visually-interesting, creative effort online more expressive that is seen in template-driven methods such as Tumblr or blogs.
Photo Stream, Facebook, Nikon P7700 Raw issues addressed
On Tuesday amidst a slew of small updates, Apple has posted new versions of its photo-management and editing software programs iPhoto (now at version 9.4.3) and Aperture (now at v3.4.4). Both are designed to address an handful of specific issues in each program, along with the usual stability and performance improvements. Both also require OS X 10.7.5 (for Lion users) or 10.8.2 (for Mountain Lion users) as a minimum. Apart from that, the two updates address entirely different areas to resolve known issues.
Better 'HDR' photography, low-light photos, aperture
A new report from Vietnam claims that a Saigon company will be making the new camera module for the "iPhone 5S" rumored to appear sometime this summer, and that it will be much improved from the well-regarded 8MP module found in the iPhone 4S and 5. The new camera is said by the site -- which has proven itself accurate in the past -- to boost the resolution to 12 megapixels, and feature a large f/2.4 fixed aperture and backside illuminated sensor for better low-light shooting.
Sale pending regulatory, bankruptcy approval; could get a better offer
Eastman Kodak has reached a preliminary agreement with Brother Industries for the sale of certain assets of its document image scanning business, for a cash purchase price of approximately $210 million. Kodak’s Document Imaging business provides a comprehensive portfolio of scanners, capture software and services to enterprise customers, and the resultant IP transfer and customer database supplements Brother's existing product lineup.
Adds Advanced Healing Brush, other new tools
Adobe has posted the first public beta of Lightroom 5, an upcoming upgrade of its photo workflow software. The software adds several new features to Lightroom, such as an Advanced Healing Brush, designed to smooth over unwanted objects and blemishes. A new Upright tool meanwhile analyzes and image and automatically aligns objects at bad angles, such as buildings and horizons.
Widescreen display capable of replacing two monitors
AOC has unveiled a new monitor aimed at providing the experience of two monitors in one display. The 29-inch Q2963PM IPS monitor has an aspect ratio of 21:9, providing a cinematic view with its WHFD 2560x1080-resolution screen, and can be used to view two separate inputs on the same screen, as well as from a single source.