IK Multimedia has started shipping SampleTank 3, an upgraded version of its "groove workstation" for Mac and Windows users. The main addition is a redesigned interface, newly streamlined into three pages: Play, Mix, and Edit. The first allows for performance, layering, and adjustments, while Mix handles effects and processing. Edit enables more in-depth sound control, including access to 10 filters.
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Every computer with a microphone or headphone port has one -- a digital to analog converter (DAC). There are nearly as many chipsets and DAC models as there are models of laptop, and as many opinions on the efficacy of various implementations. of Cambridge Audio has a USB one to supplement its line -- the DacMagic XS. Does the little device do as it promises and actually boost the listening quality of digitally encoded music? Read our review and see.
As promised earlier this week, Apple has begun seeding the first public beta of OS X Yosemite. Access is limited to the first million people entered into the OS X Beta Program. That requires having both an Apple ID and a Mac running OS X Mavericks.
3 hours ago | Posted in: gadgets, iPhone apps, mobile phones, iPad apps
Oyster, an e-book subscription service, has announced its launch of new web and mobile web readers. The expansion marks its second new platform in the past month (with the first launch specifically for Android users in June). Pages in the web reader will scroll smoothly from top to bottom, with five reader themes to select from. Oyster is partnered with over 1600 publishers, and offers access to a diverse library for $10 per month.
Although Apple's iPad is still the leading tablet globally, the company is continuing to lose marketshare, according to new IDC data. Year-over-year, Apple's June-quarter tablet share fell from 33 to 26.9 percent, based on shipments of 13.3 million iPads this quarter versus 14.6 million in Q2 2013. The company's next closest competitor, Samsung, saw its share slip from 18.8 percent to 17.2.
5 hours ago | Posted in: Apple
Apple will open its next Chinese store in the city of Wuxi on August 2nd, at 10AM, according to an official listing. The outlet will be based at the Wuxi Hang Lung Plaza, and operate from 10AM to 10PM every day. Wuxi is on the east coast in the cluster of cities near Shanghai, which already has several Apple Stores.
5 hours ago | Posted in: software, iPhone apps
Google is adding a new option to the Google Maps app for Android and iOS, providing suggestions for nearby locations to visit when traveling. The new "Explore" button, appearing on the apps this week, will offer up a variety of restaurants and coffee shops in the immediate and surrounding area, as well as other potential activities for the user to try out.
Swatch has quickly denied a report that it's working with Apple on iWatch-related projects, according to Reuters. A spokeswoman for the company claims that the report is unfounded, and that the only involvement Swatch has with phone makers is supplying various components, such as integrated circuits. Apple's iWatch is expected to ship in the fall.
7 hours ago | Posted in: troubleshooting, software, developer, Apple
Apple is distributing new developer betas of Safari 7.1 for OS X Mavericks and Safari 6.2 for OS X Mountain Lion. In release notes for both, the company is asking developers to test AutoFill, extension compatibility, and "general website compatibility." The updates' main feature though will be WebGL, making it possible to run 3D content without third-party plugins.
Little Snitch is an internet traffic monitoring and management utility. The software informs a user when a program attempts to establish an outgoing internet connection and provides options for allowing or denying the connection. The latest release has removed a leftover Network Monitor logging message, as well as improved OpenVPN, AFP, and SMB support. In addition, the Network Monitor should now display the correct TCP connection state.
Output Factory automates the process of printing and exporting from Adobe InDesign. Users can export as single pages with variable file names, update modified links on the fly, preflight InDesign files before output, and more. In v1.5.6 the export to ePub Fixed Layout option is now supported by InDesign CC 2014.
CyberDuck is an open source FTP and SFTP (SSH Secure File Transfer) browser licensed under the GPL. The application features integration with external editors, as well as support for many Mac OS X system technologies such as Spotlight, Bonjour, the Keychain, and AppleScript. Version 4.5 now allows users to connect to Windows Azure Blob storage, and includes a new SSH//SFTP protocol implementation. In addition, the update now supports TLS mutual authentication with client certificate.
Together is a tool for storing, previewing, editing and searching a variety of files. Most items can be dragged to Together's main window or Shelf for quick access. Version 3.2 lets users share iCloud libraries with the iOS versions of Together, and also makes a number of improvements to the tag browser, item list and Shelf. In addition, the software now automatically repairs libraries overwritten by Dropbox, preventing "File cannot be opened" errors.
Tweetbot for Mac is a desktop Twitter client that offers support for multiple timelines, multiple windows and columns, Mountain Lion's Notification Center, and Retina displays. An issue with images being upscaled in the full-size image view has been resolved with this update, along with an issue related to Flickr image previews. Other problems related to OS X 10.7 and the editing list descriptions have also been fixed.
14 hours ago | Posted in: accessories
Booq has announced the release of its newest laptop backpack offering this week: the Cobra pack. Comprised of a 1680 denier ballistic nylon exterior with a water-repellent coating, items within the pack are protected from weather conditions, and its quilted inner lining prevents damage during transport. The bag's main compartment features two open pockets and a slip pocket that offers easy access to something like a magazine or book while travelling. Its zippered mesh window pocket keeps passports, tickets and important items accessible, and its separate zippered padded laptop compartment can accommodate a 15- to 17-inch laptop. A second zippered back pocket can hold a tablet.
16 hours ago | Posted in: peripherals, gadgets, Apple
Though Swatch is perhaps best-known these days for pooh-poohing the idea that Apple's forthcoming "iWatch" health device would "be a revolution," a new rumor from anonymous sources claims that the Swiss watchmaker may be among other watch firms working with Apple to bring the "iWatch" technologies to a wide range of co-branded devices for different markets. While such collaborations would be unusual for Apple normally, the company has been opening itself up to more partnerships lately.
Despite some disappointments in Apple's latest quarterly earnings report, analysts appear to be satisfied that the company's overall financial picture is in order, particularly on the strength of rising margins and strong developing market sales. The stock closed up $2.47 on Tuesday (an increase of 2.61 percent) to close at $97.19, not far from its 52-week high. On Tuesday, RBC Capital Markets raised its year-end target price to $110, joining Barclays and Morgan Stanley in predicting the company would hit an all-time high this year.
21 hours ago | Posted in: iPhone, enterprise, developer, Apple
A new report is claiming that Apple is accelerating its plans for a grand "digital wallet" mobile payments system, which could even be ready to debut in the same time frame as the expected "iPhone 6." The company is said to be in talks with Visa to create a partnership agreement that would allow consumers to pay for goods and services using only their iPhone, leveraging the "secure enclave" portion of the A7 chip and Touch ID to create what would be expected to be a seamless mobile payment system.
21 hours ago | Posted in: gaming
It turns out that winning an early access to game isn't enough to satisfy every fan as mobile developer Gameloft recently learned. In a contest that gave fans access to Modern Combat 5: Blackout before its expected July 24 release date, one of the lucky winners decided to crack the game and upload it for distribution. Afterward, thousands of players turned up in the game before its release on Android, iOS and Windows 8 devices.
Griffin Technology has announced the release of a new rugged case for use with iPad Air. The Survivor Slim aims to deliver protection for all conditions, featuring a shatter-resistant shell and silicone bumper for absorbing the shock of a drop. Its accompanying screen shield prevents scratches and smudges, and the flexible button covers deflect dust, dirt, and rain from entering vulnerable places on the tablet.
Facebook released its quarterly earnings for the second quarter of 2014, showing a large increase year-over-year. Revenues topped out at $2.9 billion, a staggering $1.1 billion, or 61 percent, increase from 2013. The revenue jump is due largely to advertising revenue and an increase in daily and monthly active users.
Communications giant AT&T has released its quarterly earnings report for its second quarter of the fiscal year. AT&T's consolidated revenues totaled $32.6 billion, up 1.6 percent versus the year-earlier period. Compared with results for the second quarter of 2013, operating expenses were $27.0 billion versus $26.0 billion; operating income was $5.6 billion versus $6.1 billion; and operating income margin was 17.2 percent versus 19.1 percent.
23 hours ago | Posted in: industry
In a public notice to Internet service providers, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reminded business that they cannot lie to consumers about the services they offer. The notice informs business and the general public that "every provider of broadband Internet access in the United States" is subject to the Open Internet Transparency Rule.
Wed July 23, 2014 | Posted in: Graphics/Web Design, iPad, iPad apps
Savage Interactive has released v2.1 of Procreate, its professional-level illustration app for the iPad. The update is a major one, adding a number of new features, most significantly ColorDrop. Users can now simply drag and drop a color to a location to fill; before dropping, continuing to hold will bring up fill threshold controls.
Wed July 23, 2014 | Posted in: computers, digital imaging, Apple
OS X Yosemite -- which is going into public beta tomorrow -- should eventually ship in late October, sources claim. The present plan is reportedly to keep releasing new developer betas every two to three weeks through September 29th. Work should then shift to a gold master build, due October 10th. Final details, including a launch date, may be announced at Apple's October media event.
Apple's spending on research and development jumped 36 percent year-over-year in the June quarter to $1.6 billion, according to the company's latest 8-K filing with the SEC. That brings the company's R&D totals for fiscal 2014 so far to $4.36 billion, 32 percent more than it spent during the same timeframe in 2013. The pacing of R&D has also accelerated throughout 2014.
Apple is "tentatively" scheduling a press event for mid-September to reveal the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and final launch details of iOS 8, sources say. The people add that the second and third weeks of September are the most likely target, but that uncertainties about manufacturing timetables are a factor. The 5.5-inch iPhone may also be shown at the event, but that has likewise yet to be decided.
Wed July 23, 2014 | Posted in: iPhone, industry, digital imaging
Sony has announced plans to invest 35 billion yen, or about $345 million, on scaling up production of image sensors for phones and tablets. Manufacturing of stacked CMOS sensors will increase at two factories in the southern Japanese island of Kyushu; meanwhile, the company is planning to complete work on a factory in northwestern Japan that it bought from Renesas. The hope is to boost wafer output 13 percent to 68,000 per month by August 2015, moving towards a longer-term target of 75,000, itself just a mid-term goal.
Instapaper is a tool for saving web pages for later offline reading. Optimized for readability on iOS devices, the software saves most webpages as text only and includes options for changing fonts, text sizes, line spacing, and margins. Version 5.2.1 includes an option delete confirmation, as well as fixes for share sheet clipping on the iPad and and a missing “Shake for Random” row in Advanced Settings.
Hootsuite is a social media management app that can help users share and schedule posts for multiple accounts simultaneously. The latest release includes an all new Compose and Profile Picker interface, which includes the ability to mark social networks as favorites so that they are selected by default when composing new messages. A new image viewer is also included, allowing users to view images in full screen and easily share them with others.
Dropbox provides users with access to all of the files that have been stored in their cloud-storage account. Furthermore, users can select favorite files that can be viewed even when no internet connection is available. Support for animated GIFs has been added in this release, along with various other minor bug fixes and improvements.
ReplayCam can be used to access the maximum frame-rate an iOS device is capable of for creating slow motion replay videos. While recording users just need to tap and hold the replay button and the last three seconds of the video will be replayed in slow motion. The latest release addresses a number of reported bugs.
Fliptastic is a tool for creating slideshows that can be shared on Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube. Several bugs have been addressed with this release, including one related to Add Text alignment issues. A number of crashes have also been resolved and the overall stability of the Instagram photo selector has been improved.
The first public beta of OS X Yosemite will be made available on Thursday, July 24, Apple has revealed in a meeting with The Loop's Jim Dalrymple. The public release will be the same code seeded to developers on Monday. To get it, people must sign up for the OS X Beta Program, which is limited to the first million participants.
In another step to address concerns of possible backdoors in iOS, Apple has published a newdocument explaining what three services are intended to do. The first, com.apple.mobile.pcapd, is said to support "diagnostic packet capture from an iOS device to a trusted computer," something useful for "troubleshooting and diagnosing issues with apps on the device as well as enterprise VPN connections." Another, com.apple.mobile.file_relay, "supports limited copying of diagnostic data from a device."
Apple CEO Tim Cook disclosed during Tuesday's conference call with analysts that Apple had acquired 30 companies and/or their talent over the course of the past nine months, back to the beginning of the fiscal year which began last October. Of these, less than half have been publicly revealed -- though a few of the higher-profile buyouts, such as the record-setting Beats Electronics and Music deal, have made headlines. On the topic of the latter company, Cook shared a bit more detail on the thinking behind it.
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