This week has been rather quiet in the MacNN forums, however members continue to discuss and debate a wide range of topics. Earlier this week Mac Elite "And.reg" started a thread discussing bugs and weird issues that need to be fixed in Yosemite before it becomes a public release this fall. Yesterday "chasg" was trying to determine why their iMac wasn't booting from an external disk and turned to the forums looking for advice.
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At Apple's online store today save on refurbished Mac mini and iMac models starting as low as $849. The refurbished Mac mini with OS X Server, a 2.3GHz Intel quad-core i7 processor, 4GB of RAM and dual 1TB hard drives has been cut by $150 to $849. Priced at $1,059 is the refurbished Mac mini with a 2.6GHz Intel quad-core i7 processor, 8GB of RAM and 1TB Fusion Drive.
A variety of US businesses including Apple, IBM, and Coca-Cola have agreed to sign on to an Obama administration initiative dubbed SupplierPay. The program is a private-sector mirror of QuickPay, a federal effort to ensure that smaller contractors are paid within 15 days of issuing an invoice. Under SupplierPay, private firms are expected to pay smaller parts suppliers quickly.
5 minutes ago | Posted in: computers, peripherals, upgrades/storage, Apple
Right now at Dell.com get the Dell Multifunction Color Laser Printer on sale for the reduced price of $175. That's a 50 percent discount from the list price of $350, and the lowest price we have seen on this printer by about $85. This printer has built in scanning and copying functions as well as the ability to print directly from Android mobile devices or share the printer over a small network with built-in Ethernet. It is compatible with Windows and Mac and is backed by a one year limited hardware warranty and one year Advanced Exchange Service.
19 minutes ago | Posted in iOS apps
Angry Birds Star Wars is a physics based puzzle game where players must help the Rebel Birds take down the evil Imperial Pigs. Version 1.6 introduces an all new chapter where players begin as a either a young Jedi or apprentice Sith. The chapter includes 30 new levels total, split evenly across Bird Side and Pork Side stories.
Minecraft Pocket Edition is a portable version of the popular survival game that gives players to create a range of tools and items with the proper materials. The v0.9 update brings over several features from the PC version, including infinite worlds, better caves, wolves, new blocks, and additional biome types. A new “interaction” button has also been added, and a number of bugs have been addressed.
Instacast is a podcast management app that can be used to track, download, and listen to podcasts. Within the app users can find all of their podcast subscriptions and organize episodes into lists for sequential playback. The latest release adds a podcast info header to the subscription episode list, as well as the ability to automatically delete media files via Cloud Sync. Other changes include an improved sidebar layout, better support for the latest iOS versions, and a fix for a problem with partially loaded images.
Waze is a community-based mapping and navigation app that can help users find the best route to their destination based on traffic data added by other users. Version 3.8 makes it easier to keep up with friends and family, by way of new options for finding friends and for sharing drives, making calls, and sending messages. Locations shared between friends are also now saved on a user’s profile for future navigation, and a redesigned ETA screen includes a friends display for quickly sharing a drive.
YouTube is the official iOS client for accessing Google’s video sharing website. Through the app users can search for videos, access their “watch later” list, and subscribe to all of their favorite channels. In v2.7.1 users can now upload videos to YouTube in one simple step.
State-run China Central Television has called iOS 7's Frequent Locations function a "national security concern" in a noon broadcast, according to the Wall Street Journal. The report quoted researchers as saying that people with access to the underlying data could get a glimpse of the broader Chinese situation, or "even state secrets." Electronic security has become a sensitive topic for the Chinese government in the wake of leaks from Edward Snowden, revealing that the NSA is spying on Chinese leaders, and that American businesses have willingly or unwillingly provided the NSA with access to demanded data.
5 hours ago | Posted in: industry
The battle between Verizon and Netflix over connectivity continues, with Verizon completely refusing to accept any of the blame for slow streams. The latest feud installment involves a Verizon blog post claiming its network operations team found no congestion on the Verizon network in a recent review, laying the blame squarely at Netflix's connection decisions instead of with itself.
5 hours ago | Posted in: gadgets
There is a term in product development called "Minimum Viable Product," used to refer to products that are designed only to be sufficient for getting feedback or market testing a concept. Enter the LG G Watch. It is like a blank canvas that represents the minimum requirements to showcase Google's nascent Android Wear mobile platform. However, at $199, it represents a relatively affordable entry point into the world of wearable devices for early adopters who want to see whether Android Wear could be the next big thing.
Following a flurry of claims -- most of them from dubious Far East sources -- about enormous advance orders for the iPhone 6 or "localized haptic feedback" or robots building the iPhone and endless parts leaks (or could some of them be 3D printer fabrications?), a new photo has emerged purporting to show the LCD and home button bracket for the forthcoming 4.7-inch iPhone 6. The photo comes from a Taiwanese enthusiast site.
Apple on Thursday seeded new betas of Safari for OS X Mavericks (10.9.x) and OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.x), number as versions 7.1 and 6.2 respectively, that feature a new build of WebKit with a number of improved and new features. The betas, once released to the public, will help bring the Safari used with those versions closer to the expected updated Safari that will ship with OS X 10.10 Yosemite in the fall. Among the improvements are Web-GL powered 3D rendering, support for IndexedDB for web applications and more.
Following an emergency patch issued by Adobe yesterday for a vulnerability in Flash Player and Adobe AIR that the company deemed "critical" for users to upgrade to, Apple is now blocking all un-upgraded versions of the plug-in in Safari, though the warning dialog will take users to the Flash Installer page where they can obtain the patched version. Users of OS X 10.6 and higher must be running version 184.108.40.206 in order for the Flash plug-in to work normally. Windows and Linux users are also affected by the flaw.
11 hours ago | Posted in: iPhone apps
LinkedIn, the social platform for professional networking, has released a redesigned version of its LinkedIn Contacts app for iOS. LinkedIn Connected offers users relevant updates about people in their networks, and notifications about job changes, birthdays, and more. The revamp includes the same features as the previous release, with a focus on relationships. LinkedIn Connected is free to download.
15 hours ago | Posted in: industry, accessories, iPhone apps, mobile phones, Apple
A new report from ABI Research suggests that as many as a third of all new vehicles sold by 2019 could be compatible with Apple's CarPlay techology, right alongside competitors such as Android Auto and potentially other systems. Just now hitting the market, Apple's CarPlay system works with automakers' built-in infotainment systems, cooperatively overriding the vehicle's native interface when users plug in a Lightning-compatible iPhone or other iOS device (Android Auto works in the same manner, but for selected premium Android phones).
The popular translation app iTranslate, previously for iOS devices only, arrived on the Mac on Thursday with the release of iTranslate for the Mac on the Mac App Store. The program, which is accessed from the menubar when running, offers instant translation with support for over 80 languages. Users simply input or paste text and the program provides a translation into the desired language. It also feature voice output so that users can hear the correct pronunciation of a word or phrase.
IK Multimedia has announced that it is now shipping the iRig MIDI 2, a portable MIDI interface with Lightning and USB connectivity for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, as well as Mac and PC. The device is equipped with three standard-sized female MIDI DIN sockets -- IN, OUT and THRU -- which allow for full MIDI functionality and connectivity with any MIDI-enabled device, such as a keyboard, hardware synthesizer and more. Its two blue LED lights provide monitoring of the MIDI data passing through the In and Out sockets.
IBM announced today that it is re-committing itself to the computer landscape, as the company intends to spend $3 billion on research into future chip technologies. Over the next five years, Big Blue will invest in two "broad research and early stage development programs" in search of an innovation in the field. The shift in strategy comes at a time when the company was rumored to be selling off its chip manufacturing business.
17 hours ago | Posted in: education, enterprise, Apple
Apple's Volume Purchase Program is coming to 16 more locations in the near future, according to pages on the company's Business and Education sites. Most of the new regions are in Europe, including Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, and Switzerland. Also joining in are Hong Kong, Mexico, Singapore, Taiwan, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates.
18 hours ago | Posted in: iPod, iPhone, iPhone apps, iPad, iPad apps
Major League Baseball is entering into a second phase of iBeacon deployments at stadiums. Beginning this is project for the 2014 All-Star Game, which is being hosted at Target Field in Minneapolis. People with a supporting iPhone and the latest version of At the Ballpark will get extra content, including interactive material, when visiting nine different exhibits in the stadium. iBeacons are already in use at 28 other ballparks, but mostly for check-ins and discounts.
19 hours ago | Posted in: iPhone apps
MonkeyParking has temporarily halted its service in San Francisco, just one day before a deadline set by the City Attorney. The parking app, which allows drivers to sell their spot to others, was sent a cease-and-desist by the city late last month, with City Attorney Dennis Herrera threatening a lawsuit if it did not cease operations before July 11th.
20 hours ago | Posted in: iPhone, accessories, iPhone apps
Misfit, the creator of the Shine wearable activity tracker, has announced a partnership with Beddit enabling sleep tracking in the official Misfit apps for iOS and Android. Rather than relying on the Shine, there is now a Misfit/Beddit-branded sleep monitor. The device is placed on a mattress, and tracks breathing, heart rate, restlessness, snoring, and ambient sound. The apps analyze this data over a seven-day period, and can also use it to trigger an alarm during a light sleep phase, ensuring a more refreshed feeling.
According to a US Federal Trade Commission report filed today, Amazon has billed parents and other account holders for millions of dollars in unauthorized in-app charges incurred by children. The FTC's lawsuit seeks a court order requiring refunds for consumers for the unauthorized charges, and permanently banning the company from billing parents and other account holders for in-app charges that have been made without their consent.
22 hours ago | Posted in: peripherals, software, Apple
Apple has released iTunes 11.3 for Mac and Windows users. The main addition is support for iTunes Extras associated with HD movies, granting access to things like galleries, commentaries, behind-the-scenes clips, and short films. Not every movie has Extras, since these require special formatting on the part of content creators, but even previously-purchased titles can get Extras for free if they're added later.
23 hours ago | Posted in: iPhone
Apple has placed orders for a massive 68 million in initial iPhone 6 units -- roughly twice what it ordered for the iPhone 5, according to Taiwan's Business Weekly. Mass production is slated to begin later this month. It's uncertain, though, if the paper is referring solely to the rumored 4.7-inch iPhone -- the device most commonly tagged with the "iPhone 6" name -- or the supposed 5.5-inch iPhone as well, in which case the 68 million figure would make more sense. In either scenario, Apple is likely keen to avoid the supply shortages that plagued the iPhone 5 and 5s.
TSMC has begun shipping Apple A-series processors out for assembly, according to the Wall Street Journal. Production is said to have begun on 20nm fabrication lines in the first quarter, but shipments have only started happening more recently. Despite TSMC's involvement, the firm is expected to split orders with Samsung, which has traditionally produced every A-series chip.
ExpanDrive builds cloud storage into any application by allowing the online storage account to act like a USB drive plugged into the Mac. Version 4.1.2 increases the background write size to files of 600MB, and will now set S3 mime-types based on extension. The alignment of non-Retina icons have also been fixed, and connection error messages have been improved.
MacFamilyTree is a genealogy program that can help users discover and visualize their family history. The software also features a number of built in reports and charts, and allows users share genealogical data using the GEDCOM standard. Uploading issues related to FamilySearch have been resolved in this update, along with problems exporting PDF files. In addition, the person context option in the edit section should now work as expected.
Tinderbox is a tool for storing and organizing notes, plans, and ideas. The software allows users to make a visual map of all their notes, with support for linking similar ideas together. The latest release features a new icon, a variety of fixes, and several minor improvements.
Feeder is a utility for creating, editing, and publishing RSS and iTunes podcast feeds. A problem where SFTP authentication errors would not be reported has been resolved with this update. An issue that resulted in Feeder attempting to save an enclosure upload that no longer exists has also been fixed.
OmniOutliner is a tool for collecting, creating, and organizing information. The v4.1 update introduces new colored toolbar icons, as well as the ability to create links to rows for quickly navigating between sections. OmniOutliner 4.1.1 corrects a couple technical issues for the Mac App Store.
Thu July 10, 2014 | Posted in: Apple
The European Court of Justice has issued a decision granting Apple an EU trademark on the layout of its retail stores. The ruling (PDF) states that "the representation of the layout of a retail store, by a design alone, without indicating the size or the proportions, may be registered as a trade mark for services," giving the trademark scope enough to cover all of Apple's locations.
Thu July 10, 2014 | Posted in: industry, security, iPhone apps
The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) has escalated the conflict between it and ride-sharing service Lyft. A warning by the TLC, issued yesterday, reminds residents that while the service is indeed opening on Friday and will be offering free rides for two weeks to new subscribers, that the service is unlicensed to operate, and un-investigated drivers may pose a danger to riders.
Thu July 10, 2014 | Posted in: iPhone, security, mobile phones
Security-focused communications firm Silent Circle today announced the expansion of Out-Circle Calling (OCC). The expansion allows for encrypted hybrid calling, which enables Silent Circle members to make and receive encrypted, private voice calls through the company's Silent Phone service to non-Silent Circle subscribers in 79 total countries.
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