Tag - Santa Rosa
HP without fanfare today introduced the 550, the newest generation of its entry-level pro notebooks. The refresh is based on Intel's earlier Santa Rosa platform but skews performance higher than often expected in the class, with a 1.73GHz Celeron dual-core available as an option and unusual 1.4GHz and 1.6GHz Core 2 Duo chips sitting at the top end. A 1.73GHz single-core Celeron is still an option for low-demand users.
Owners of Santa Rosa-based MacBook Pros are suffering from video failures, reports claim. Victims say that the problem arises after waking or rebooting a Pro, at which point the computer may suddenly stop displaying video, whether on its native LCD or an attached monitor. Debugging is said to have revealed that the issue is with misidentified graphics chipsets -- rather than acknowledging their dedicated GeForce 8600M GT cards, Pros may be treating them as integrated X3100 chipsets.
The 3.06GHz processor and fellow chips in Apple's new iMacs are part of a special run of Intel's existing technology rather than an early introduction of Centrino 2 technology, Intel has confirmed with Electronista. Although the processors match the same core clock rates and 1,066MHz system bus speeds as those for the upcoming platform, the processors are now known to be unlisted speed grades that include special support for the faster bus speeds (up from 800MHz).
Apple has second-generation iPod Nanos and several versions of the Santa Rosa-powered MacBook Pros on clearance in the online store. The silver 2GB iPod nano can store upwards of 500 songs, and is capable of displaying pictures, but not video content, as is the case with the third generation Nano. The iPod nanos come with Apple earphones and a USB dock cable, and are currently available from the online store for $100.
Intel is planning to ramp down production of its now-old Core 2 processors quickly to make room for Centrino 2, notebook manufacturers say. Rather than gradually shut down production of the old chips, the semiconductor firm intends to make the new, faster platform the dominant platform virtually on launch. While its current platform (nicknamed Santa Rosa) is expected to make up about 60 percent of all notebook platform sales for the first quarter of the year, that number will plunge to about 35 percent during the spring as Centrino 2 and its accompanying processors reach the market.
Details have surfaced about the final specs and pricing of Intel's first small form factor Montevina platform processors for notebooks that point to the first likely upgrade for the MacBook Air as well as for future ultraportables, say notebook builders. The slip confirms earlier claims and points to two low voltage processors that are now known to be the most likely candidates for the upgrade. The 1.6GHz Core 2 Duo SL9300 and the 1.86GHz SL9400 will be close in clock speed to the existing 1.6GHz and 1.8GHz processors but should still boost performance while reducing the power draw.
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WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu
Fifth Hong Kong store to open June 30
The 46th official Apple store in what the company calls the "Greater China" region will open at 10AM local time in Hong Kong's New Town Plaza in the Sha Tin district on Thursday, June 30, according to a new page on Apple's retail website. Despite slowing growth due to economic turmoil in China, the country is still Apple's fastest-growing market. The new story will be the fifth for Hong Kong, a lucrative market for Apple thanks to the high concentration of wealth there and a thriving "gray" market. Normal store hours for the new store will be 10AM to 10PM every day. http://apple.co/291diaT
Apple Music bug bites very short songs
There appears to be a reproducible bug in the current version of iTunes -- version 12.4.1, running on OS X 10.11.5, both the current non-beta versions of the respective software -- that causes a streamed song to become "stuck" in endless buffering if the streamed item just before this happened was 60 seconds or less in length. The problem appears to stem from code in iTunes that signals the next track to start downloading one minute before the currently-playing track is done, and thus songs shorter than one minute don't trigger the download. Locally-stored music is unaffected by the bug, and the problem does not appear to exist in either the macOS Sierra developer beta or versions of iTunes earlier than 12.4, and does not affect the iOS Music app at all. http://bit.ly/291cN0l
Walmart Pay expands to 15 states
Walmart, one of the key progenitors of the failed CurrentC mobile payment system that was distinguished from Apple Pay by its ability to collect and share customer financial and buying data among its participants, has expanded the soft rollout of its alternative solution "Walmart Pay" to an additional 15 US states following a pilot program in Arkansas and Texas last month. Walmart continues to resist adding Apple Pay. The system, built into the Walmart app for iOS and Android, works with a complicated system of the camera scanning a purchase code at the register, then generating a QR code which is then scanned by the register. The system is available now in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington, DC. http://apple.co/28SqZfu
Amazon refreshes entry-level Kindle
Amazon has added a new Kindle to its ebook reader range, one that is thinner and lighter than the previous entry-level model. Offering a six-inch 167-dpi touchscreen display, a doubled 4GB of storage, and an option for a white casing, the new model also adds in the ability to export highlights and notes to an email account as a PDF. Two versions of the all-new Kindle are available, priced at $80 including "Special Offers" and $100 without. http://amzn.to/28Q4c3R