Electronista

Thursday, October 30

Giveaway: Trick or Treat! Win 1 of 3 Wicked Audio Deuce earbuds!

With the witching hour upon us we have a most wicked prize up for grabs. The Wicked Audio Deuce earbuds. Gather around while we tell the spooky tale of three wicked little sets of earbuds that lost their way and ended up being captured by MacNN staff to send off to live with strangers. Pretty scary stuff for those earbuds, but it's another treat for our readers. ...

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Kodak PixPro SP360 action cam records 360-degree video

Kodak has introduced an action camera that can take 360-degree photographs and video. The PixPro SP360 has a domed lens located on the top, allowing its imaging sensor to take pictures or capture video from all angles surrounding the camera, allowing for 1080p video to be recorded showing the front, rear, and side views from wherever it is mounted. ...

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Briefly: BookArc Stand for Mac Pro, Spotify for iPad updated

Twelve South has announced the release of the BookArc Pro, a chrome-plated desktop stand designed for Mac Pro. Designed in the shape of an arc, the stand allows the compact computer to fit in spaces with half the height available, making it suitable for fitting into gear racks and studio shelves. The BookArc is composed is heavy gauge steel, which has been machined into a curve shape and coated with a chrome finish. ...

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Giveaway: Trick or Treat! Win a Kaebo Lightning to USB cable!

As many observe in this country, tomorrow is Halloween, and as such MacNN has a bag of treats to give away to our readers. We are going to be handing out prizes to lucky little ghosts and ghouls who participate. Keep an eye out for the selection of treats that we have to offer for the rest of today and tomorrow. Beware, some of the items we list will be tricks! First up we have 3 JunoPower Kaebo Lightning cable conne...

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Grocery chain Meijer bucks CurrentC, accepts NFC mobile wallets [u]

[Updated with MCX clarification] Rather than disable its NFC-compatible terminals and stop taking Apple Pay (or Google Wallet, or Softcard) mobile payments after a period of compatibility, grocery chain Meijer has said it has "no plans" to stop accepting NFC-compatible systems in its stores -- despite being a member of MCX's CurrentC program, which contractually bars competing systems. The CurrentC system, which does...

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MPAA, national theater association take a stand against wearables

Wearing Google Glass in any movie theater in the United States could soon mean a visit from law enforcement thanks to the efforts of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) and National Association of Theatre Owners. The organizations released a joint statement this week announcing that wearable devices are now added to official anti-piracy polices....

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Seth Rogen tapped to play Steve Wozniak in upcoming Jobs biopic

Actor Seth Rogen has been cast to star as Steve Wozniak in Sony's upcoming Steve Jobs biopic, sources tell Variety. Rogen is best known for his comedy roles, starring in movies like Neighbors and This is the End, but he has also appeared in dramas such as 50/50. The sources add that Jessica Chastain is under consideration for the movie as well, but what role she might play is unknown....

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Briefly: Microsoft OneNote iOS update, Flipboard 3.0

Microsoft has released updates for its OneNote client, available for both iPhone and iPad. Considered a "digital notebook", OneNote documents can be shared with others and across devices. Adding support for new iOS 8 features, users can now password-protect sections of documents directly from mobile devices. Touch ID unlocking is now enabled for owners of iPhone 5s or newer, and users can insert files from a preferre...

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Pangu iOS 8.1 jailbreak gets Cydia, will get English within 24 hours

The Pangu iOS 8.1 jailbreak tool is now being bundled with Cydia, and will get an English translation within 24 hours, its developers say. Cydia is commonly used to simplify jailbreaking, partly by offering an easy way to install unapproved apps. When the Pangu code was released earlier this month, it was only in Chinese and in a rudimentary form intended for developers....

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Epson to release V800, V850 Pro photo scanners in November

Epson is gearing up to release two new professional level photo scanners in November with the Perfection V800 Photo and Perfection V850 Pro. The scanners offer a number of scanning options, allowing users to scan photos and negatives--including 35mm slides, medium format and film strips--with the help of height adjustable film holders....

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Judge orders GT Advanced bankruptcy document unsealed

The New Hampshire judge overseeing GT Advanced's bankruptcy, Henry Boroff, has ordered the unsealing of an affidavit explaining reasons for the sapphire supplier's Chapter 11 filing. Apple has fought to keep the document private, claiming it could harm not only its reputation but its relationship with other suppliers. Inside GT's COO -- Daniel Squiller -- chronicles attempts to meet Apple demand, claiming that the la...

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Microsoft Band officially launches, available to buy now for $200

Microsoft has officially announced its fitness tracker, the day after images leaked via companion apps. The Microsoft Band is able to track the wearer's vital signs and physical activities, with some included sensors not typically included in such devices, with it also providing a number of smartwatch-style interactions using its customizable display. ...

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Hands On: Jagged Alliance -- Flashback (OS X, Windows)

Kickstarter has helped to revive many favorites of the past, including Reading Rainbow, Veronica Mars, and even the Jagged Alliance turn based strategy series. Jagged Alliance: Flashback was funded on Kickstarter by developers Full Control back in May of 2013, promising to create a tactical RPG that Jagged Alliance fans new and old would enjoy....

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Apple reverses course, decides to allow apps with calculator widgets

In another sudden turnaround, Apple has reversed a decision to block apps with calculator widgets from the App Store. An Apple spokesperson says that PCalc and other similar apps will be permitted in the store without changes. It's suggested that the company simply hadn't anticipated the possibility of widgets serving as calculators, hence reviewers being confused as to whether they can give the greenlight....

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Best Buy to offer gift cards with iPad Air, MacBook Air on Nov. 8th

As a part of November 8th promotional event, the US branch of Best Buy will be giving away gift cards with purchases of an iPad Air or MacBook Air. Buyers of a first- or second-generation iPad Air will get a $50 card; card value jumps to $100 when buying a MacBook. Shoppers must go to "select" retail outlets to qualify....

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Hands On: WaterField Outback Slip Case for iPad Air 2

iPad cases are built not only to suit a wide range of uses but a wide range of incomes, and both of those factors come into play with one of WaterField's first products for the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3, the Outback Slip Case. On a functional level it's relatively straightforward: it's a cushioned sleeve that you slide an iPad into. WaterField makes four variants, split between the Air and the Mini, and whether you ...

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Apple CEO Tim Cook comes out as gay in new essay

Apple CEO Tim Cook has come out as gay in a new essay written for Bloomberg Businessweek. Although the fact has been widely known for some time, Cook has never before stated it publicly. He says that he is "proud to be gay," but admits that it "wasn't an easy choice" to come out. "Privacy remains important to me, and I'd like to hold on to a small amount of it," the essay reads later on. "I've made Apple my life's wo...

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Hands On: Pandemic 2.5 (iOS)

How many games actually allow a player to play as something truly terrible? Sure, there are a lot of games that let players choose the "wrong" choice, but where are the games that let you wreak total havoc? Pandemic 2.5, the successor to the popular flash game Pandemic 2, will. This devious little gem allows players to create a custom disease from the ground up, which serves to help them eradicate the human race. The...

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Apple, Samsung still tops in smartphone market, but Xiaomi rising fast

A new report from IDC again places Apple and Samsung at the top of the heap for smartphone manufacturers as it has for years now -- but there is nonetheless notable change in the air. Samsung saw a significant drop in shipments for its smartphones, dropping 8.5 percent from the year-ago quarter. Apple, in second place, saw a 16.1 percent increase in shipments. Though Samsung was dominant with 78.1 million units shipp...

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Wednesday, October 29

Microsoft Band fitness tracker leaks through companion apps

Microsoft's rumored wearable device has appeared earlier than expected, leaked within a companion app on the Mac App Store. The Microsoft Band is, as rumored, a device with a thin display similar to the Samsung Gear Fit, with the accompanying app screenshots showing it will apparently be capable of a similar level of monitoring of the user's actions as other fitness trackers. ...

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Hands On: PicTrove 2 Pro (iOS)

PicTrove 2 Pro is an app that has taken the time-intensive act of image-searching on the web and streamlined it. Users are able to search multiple websites, including Google, Bing, Flickr, Pinterest, and more all at once, and compare them side-by-side. Tapping and swiping through allows a user to browse images one at a time from a specific search site. There is also the ability to refine searches per site, allowing a...

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GT Advanced CEO tells court Apple contracts were 'unsustainable'

Daniel Squiller, the COO of GT Advanced Technologies who was among those slowly selling off his holdings in company over the course of 2014, has told the bankruptcy court that the company lost $461 million before it finally filed for bankruptcy, which he characterized as a last-resort measure to get out of "unsustainable" contracts with Apple. Squiller painted a picture that claimed that GT Advanced assumed all the r...

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CurrentC CEO, COO field questions about data breach, Apple Pay block

CurrentC governing company Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX) held a conference call a bit earlier today. The company's lead executives took turns defending the company against some claims related to fines for merchants abandoning CurrentC, and also tried to explain away the email data breach it had suffered. ...

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Logitech debuts new Type+, Ultrathin, Keys-To-Go keyboards for iPads

Logitech has announced a trio of new iPad keyboard accessories, beginning with updates of its Type+ and Ultrathin cases for the iPad Air 2. The Type+ is a thin folio design, with features such as automatic wake/sleep magnets for both an iPad and the keyboard itself. It costs $100, and comes in black, blue, green, or purple, with extra "synthetic" versions of the first two colors....

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Calculator widgets for iOS 8 suddenly blocked from App Store

Apple has forced the developer of PCalc, James Thomson, to remove an iOS 8 Notification Center widget that let people do calculations without opening the app. The decision is an apparently sudden reversal, given that the app was previously approved with the widget intact. PCalc has been featured in several sections of the App Store, such as "Great Apps and Games for iOS 8," and even "Extend Your Apps," which focuses ...

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Apple in talks to bring iPhone to Iran

Apple is talking to Iranian distributors about the possibility of selling the iPhone in the country, sources tell the Wall Street Journal. Senior Apple executives have reportedly met with the distributors at the former party's London headquarters. If the iPhone does become available in Iran, it will be through premium resellers, rather than Apple itself, which has no direct footprint to speak of. "Over a dozen" Apple...

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Hands On: PluralEyes 3.5 (OS X, Windows)

DSLR shooters often have a troublesome workflow when trying to put together videos recorded with the dual-purpose cameras. While many consumers might look to a dedicated camcorder to produce a short film or conduct an interview, DSLR cameras provide the necessary technology needing only an external audio recorder to do the job. But how do users bring video and audio together? In the past, filmmakers entered into a ti...

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T-Mobile opens up iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3 orders

Following up on earlier promises, the US branch of ...

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CurrentC payment system customer emails stolen

Contactless payment platform CurrentC has fallen victim to user information theft. Merchants Consumer Exchange (MCX), The company behind the mobile payment system is informing beta users of the service that "that unauthorized third parties obtained the e-mail addresses of some of you." The company claims no other data has been stolen, but the theft calls into question the data security of the not fully operational pa...

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Briefly: Xtreem's Atom RC Drone; new Cooler Master mouse, keyboard

Xtreem, a range of remote controlled toys designed by Swann, has announced the release of its new Atom RC Mini Drone. Focused on precise maneuverability, the drone uses an infrared signal to communicate with its joystick remote control, which offers eight-way multi-dimensional movement, and heights of up to 100 feet in the air. The helicopter's Li-poly battery provides up to four minutes of continuous flight time, an...

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Hands On: ColorSnapper (OS X)

Visually creative professionals have long been in favor of using OS X to get their job done, in part because of simple, included utilities, like DigitalColor Meter. This utility allows users to magnify screen contents and copy the RGB pixel components, suited for those who seek a specific hue for their own design project - web, graphic or otherwise. This included tool is great, but for those who seek a more integrati...

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CurrentC partners banned from supporting Apple Pay, other rivals [u]

(Updated with news of CurrentC hack) Retailers partnering with MCX on the upcoming CurrentC mobile payment system are contractually obligated to use CurrentC exclusively, according to the New York Times. Several of the retailers say that if they break their contracts, there are steep fines in place. This will block several popular payment platforms, namely Apple Pay, Softcard, and Google Wallet....

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Verizon testing FiOS bundles with year of Netflix in NYC area

Surprisingly given the public animosity between the two companies, Verizon has begun offering a year of video streaming service Netflix to some of its new customers. Customers who sign up for FiOS Internet and television bundles in the immediate vicinity of New York City are being offered the deal. Packages including a year of Netflix start at $80 a month and include a free year of Netflix....

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Apple spreads iAd to 70 more countries around the globe

The iAd network is now available in another 70 countries, bringing the total up to 95, according to an Apple announcement to developers. The company hasn't identified which regions are new except for Australia, but says the remainder are spread across the Americas, Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. The change should increase the potential reach of existing iAd campaigns and enable new ones....

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Hands On: Dragonbox Algebra 12+ (iOS)

Educational Apps aren't in short supply, and most parents with iPads, iPods, and iPhones likely have the devices filled filled to the brim with the latest and greatest miracle apps that promise to teach their children all sorts of things. However, to stumble across an app that is truly engaging and capable of teaching children skills that directly translate into the classroom is somewhat of a rarity. That being said,...

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LG shipping 31-inch Digital Cinema 4K Monitor to US this week

LG has introduced another high-resolution monitor to its computer display range, one which is able to display a higher-than-Ultra HD image. The Digital Cinema 4K monitor offers a resolution of 4096x2160, higher than the 3840x2160 resolution of a standard 4K television or display, all packed into a screen measuring 31 inches diagonally. ...

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Hands On: Terminology 3 for iOS

Pocket dictionaries are actually pretty useful, when you think about it. Sometimes you run across a word in conversation or in an article that you don't recognize, and being able to define it on the fly makes your life much easier. Maybe you're a writer and suffer from same-word-syndrome, where you repeatedly use the same descriptor over and over. A pocket dictionary can help break the cycle by suggesting synonyms. E...

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