As reported yesterday, the sixth developer beta for OS X 10.11 El Capitan has given way to a fourth public beta, available to pre-registered testers who signed up through the Appleseed program. Both of the recent betas, which share the build number 15A244d, are said to have very minor tweaks and under-the-hood fixes, including a new General icon in System Preferences, and at least one new wallpaper. Some notable flaws remain unaddressed, however.
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46 minutes ago | Posted in: software
App development has taken off in the last few years, making it increasingly difficult to stay on top of all the latest versions. To help all of you out, we here at MacNN are dedicated to sorting through new update releases, and highlighting some of the important ones, as well as showcasing apps that we find to be interesting. Today, we look at revisions to RapidWeaver, Napkin, Adobe Photoshop CC, Cocktail, Monosnap, Net Monitor, and iBackup.
1 hour ago | Posted in: computers, upgrades/storage, networking
Sony has strongly advised against upgrading its computer line previously built for Windows 8 or 8.1 to Windows 10. In a service advisory for its users, the company states that "there is a risk of software/driver corruption" and warns users that "if you do not wait for our test results before proceeding with the upgrade, some of the hardware or features on your Vaio computer may no longer work as intended." The company also has provided a new venue for ordering recovery disks, not normally included with the computer.
Another 43 US banks and credit unions are now supporting Apple Pay, according to the iPhone maker's partner website, with the total number of partners now at 465. The list does not include two new banks, HSBC and First Direct, that have recently activated support for Apple Pay with their systems, bringing the total of major UK bank chains to nine. Currently it is expected that the next country to gain Apple Pay support will be Canada, though negotiations with Chinese institutions continue.
2 hours ago | Posted in: networking, mobile phones, Apple
In a rare refusal, Apple has shot down rumors that it is developing its own mobile service. In a terse statement, the company said in response to a Business Insider report yesterday that "We have not discussed nor do we have any plans to launch a (mobile virtual network operator)."
2 hours ago | Posted in: software, iPhone apps, iPad apps
As of July 15, if you use the free version of Evernote you can no longer email into it: you can't forward an email to store in your Evernote account, you can't use any apps that save into Evernote via mail. As of July 27, Evernote has a new CEO, as the company's co-founder Phil Libin has stepped to the left to allow ex-Google manager Chris O'Neill to take the helm. The two things are (possibly) unrelated but they come from the same place: Evernote needs to make some cash.
3 hours ago | Posted in: software, iPhone apps, iPad apps
You do need a To Do manager but does the world need another one? Swipes has been around longer than it seems from its name: alongside the new Swipes 1.0 for OS X there is Swipes 2.4 for iOS and it's been progressively developed over the last couple of years. Now it's come to the Mac and brings with it the same minimalist, visual, attractive system for entering tasks and staying on top of them.
3 hours ago | Posted in: security
A zero-day exploit revealed last month for only OS X Yosemite has been found in "the wild." The exploit is being seen in an adware installer, and modifies the "sudoers" UNIX file that determines who has root permission for the system, and during the installation process, can give root permission to an arbitrary process without needing a password.
3 hours ago | Posted in: security
Security researchers have come up with a way to turn the Square Reader into a tool for stealing data from credit cards. A group of recent graduates of Boston University will be speaking out about how they can modify the smartphone accessory, used to facilitate card payments via Square's service, to allow any other app to intercept the data and use the card owner's payment information for other, presumably illegal, uses.
4 hours ago | Posted in: gadgets
Every day, alongside our regular Daily Deals, we are showcasing some of the offers available on our own MacNN Deals page. Today's collection of discounted items to help you power your devices, including a pair of high-capacity battery packs for portable charging, and a supersized surge protector to maximize the number of items on charge when at home.
4 hours ago | Posted in: enterprise, upgrades/storage
Storage company Seagate and Micron Technology have released the first product from the strategic alliance the pair forged in February. Available today for enterprise customers is the 1200.2 Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) Solid State Drive (SSD) available in up to 4TB in a 2.5-inch size.
5 hours ago | Posted in: upgrades/storage
HighPoint has debuted its next generation USB Host-to-Device storage and connectivity product lines, featuring 10Gb/s transfer speeds. The latest RocketU PCIe host adapter provides a USB 3.1 upgrade for any Mac or PC platform with PCIe slots. Additionally, the company's performance-oriented dual-bay USB 3.1 RocketStor 3100 Series Drive Docks support any industry standard 3.5- or 2.5-inch SATA hard drive or SSD, including the latest 8TB models, and provide USB 3.1 connectivity via USB Type-B and Type-C ports, depending on model.
5 hours ago | Posted in: Apple
Australian carrier Telstra is offering free subscriptions for Apple Music to its customers. Subscribers acquiring the iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus from the company on a 12-month or 24-month Go Mobile plan will be able to use the Apple-powered music streaming service for one year without paying a separate subscription, with the carrier's marketing suggesting it will be implementing carrier billing of Apple Music once the free period is over.
We've written about the validity of the iPad as a musical outlet before, but quite a few of the music production apps available for the iPad tend to fall into one of two groups: they're either so simple they're more like toys, or so complicated that they're only for professionals. The app that we're going to talk about today, however, is a nice middle-ground -- a feature-packed, yet user-friendly app called Firo.
5 hours ago | Posted in: digital imaging
Under its new EcoTank brand, Epson today unveiled five new all-in-one color printers featuring large ink reservoirs -- what Epson defines as the Supertank category -- that come loaded and ready for up to two years of prints without replacing the ink. Epson claims that When comparing EcoTank to a traditional printer, the ink included with the EcoTank is equivalent to about 20 sets of ink cartridges, depending on the model.
6 hours ago | Posted in: iPod, iPhone, accessories, iPad
We're the first to admit that we are not easy on cables. It's not unheard of them to end up in the bottom of our laptop bag, bunched up and crushed together. We also might have a slight problem with being able to put our iPhones and iPads down long enough for them to charge fully, which often leads to the ends becoming crimped, which eventually leads to wire breakage, which eventually leads to the death of a poor, defenseless cable. Sound familiar? That's why Griffin decided to make their Premium Braided Lightning Cable, to give us serial cable-breakers something that can live up to the abuse.
The Amazon Echo, the network-connected speaker hosting the retailer's Alexa assistant, has gone on sale through a third-party store for the first time. Staples is offering the cylindrical speaker through its website to all customers priced at $180, the same as Amazon. So far, it can only be acquired through the Staples website, with delivery to local stores available as a shipping option, though there is still the potential to sell it from stores directly.
8 hours ago | Posted in: education, troubleshooting, software
If it wasn't for our new books (have we mentioned them?), this would be a strangely all-Microsoft episode of The MacNN Podcast, but luckily the Redmond giant turns out software for both Macs and Windows (who knew?), so we've set up this episode to be fun to listen to while you wait for your approval notice from Microsoft that you may obtain your copy of WindOwS X -- sorry, Windows 10. We also talk cool software, including (yes) Microsoft Excel.
Apple's appetite for property is increasing, with a report claiming it has acquired real estate in North San Jose that it could potentially use for even more office space. The purchase, closed last week according to recently published public records, means Apple now owns approximately 43 acres of undeveloped land in the area, with the deal for 2347 North First St. said to have cost the company slightly more than $138 million to acquire.
If you've been following our Wednesday Pointers column over the last nine weeks, you'll know that the column on that day was devoted to documenting the process of writing a book, and then turning that manuscript into a real, buyable, out-in-the-world e-book and paperback. That book, William Gallagher's The Blank Screen: Blogging, is now available -- and an e-book version of the columns has also been created.
21 hours ago | Posted in: troubleshooting, software, developer, Apple
Exactly one week after the last developer beta of OS X 10.11 El Capitan, Apple has issued another update to the forthcoming OS X upgrade, which is scheduled to appear this fall, and likely to debut some time in September. The previous beta, 15A235d, did not list any significant changes or fixes, but focused primarily on small UI tweaks and bug fixes. The new beta, build 15A244d, is likely to have followed the same path.
23 hours ago | Posted in: gadgets, iPhone apps, iPad apps
One of the greatest things about smartphones and Bluetooth-enabled tablets is the sheer amount of crazy gadgets that go along with them. You can control lights, air conditioners, cameras and more, all from your iPhone or iPad -- but what about things that are designed for fun? What about Bluetooth-enabled toys? Today, we're here to tell you about one of the most fun gadgets we've had a chance to look at, Griffin's Helo TC Chopper.
23 hours ago | Posted in: computers, security, troubleshooting, developer, Apple
A new exploit has been developed that could threaten Mac security by leveraging vulnerabilities in firmware rather than software, making the worm nearly impossible to remove. While sounding more ominous than any threat since the original firmware-based Thunderstrike (which was limited to a proof-of-concept with no reported attacks), leading security experts say this new threat is also very low-risk.
Mon August 3, 2015 | Posted in: computers, peripherals, gadgets, software, digital imaging, upgrades/storage
Welcome to Daily Deals, the post where the staff of MacNN searches online retailers for offers, bundles, sales, and discounts on hardware, software, games, and gadgets for you, the discerning reader. The old deals from last week have been wiped from the list completely, with the new deals for this week including the Amazon Fire TV Stick for $25, a 24-inch Dell monitor for $185, and a massive selection of Duracell batteries from Woot.
Following a hiatus from his own music career since 1999's 2001, Apple music executive Andre Young -- better known to the world as rapper, producer, radio host and entrepreneur Dr. Dre -- will release his new album, Compton: A Soundtrack by Dr. Dre, as an exclusive to be streamed on Apple Music, and sold digitally on iTunes. Dre has also exclusively allowed the streaming of his first solo album, 1992's The Chronic, on Apple Music.
Siri may one day answer phone calls and transcribe voicemail messages for its users, a report claims, a feature that could end up being more important than the introduction of Visual Voicemail. Employees at Apple are allegedly testing a service which will listen to voicemail messages, transcribe them into text-based versions, and then have them delivered to the user's iPhone, allowing for the content of the message to be quickly understood by the user, without needing to listen to the voicemail at all.
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