Early pre-orders now shipping as Apple confirms UPS tracking numbers, status
There are an indeterminate number -- possibly as high as a couple of million -- very early pre-order customers who are very excited today, having received confirmation from Apple that their order for the Apple Watch has shipped. Various forms of evidence, from emails from the company notifying buyers of the status change to UPS alerts with tracking numbers has confirmed that a number of customers who got in early should be receiving their Watch order on or about April 24, the original planned public debut day.
Pre-order buyers near major distribution centers may get their goodies a bit earlier than estimated
[Updated with Apple confirmation] In addition to reader reports of the first wave of Apple Watch pre-orders moving from "processing" to "preparing for shipment" -- a sign that the delivery will be taking place soon -- some customers who ordered non-Sport or other Apple Watch models who initially were given 6-8 week shipment windows have reported that their credit cards have been charged and their order status also changed to "preparing to ship," though the estimated delivery dates have not yet been amended. Those who have ordered custom Retina MacBook models are also reporting charges.
Related, FedEx limiting vacation time in October due to tech order
According to reports out of China, Apple has begun to dominate the supply chain both in shipping and manufacturing, squeezing out other companies. According to reports, major supply chain shipping companies including both FedEx and UPS have "incredibly high" volumes for the holiday quarter, just from Apple's logistics under the weight of a new product lineup.
February estimates remain for US buyers
Apple's shipping estimates for the new Mac Pro have been pushed to March for customers in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific markets. Spotted by MacRumors, the shipping setbacks suggest the company is still attempting to accommodate strong demand for its high-end desktop systems.
Second improvement in supply since mid-November debut
On the heels of significant improvements to Apple's iPhone 5s stock, the company has now listed its latest product, the Retina iPad mini, as shipping in 1-3 days in its North American and Asia Pacific stores. This is the second time Apple has been able to improve shipping delays; earlier this week saw the first improvement, from vague delays of 1-2 weeks to 3-5 days. The product was initially constrained due to issues with display yields, which were later resolved.
Top iPads and iPhones must be ordered early to ensure holiday delivery
Apple has now posted its deadline dates for online orders so that the company can guarantee delivery by Christmas Eve, and has announced free standard shipping on all online store orders during the holiday season. Customers who want a Retina iPad mini have the earliest deadline, with December 5 being the cut-off date. December 9 is the deadline for iPad Air models, iPhone 5s order must be in by December 12, and most other orders should be in by December 18.
Service to compete with eBay, Amazon
Google has announced that its same-day shipping program is now available to the general public in much of the Bay Area peninsula, from San Francisco to San Jose. The service, known as Google Shopping Express, had begun as a limited pilot program early this year.
Earliest deliveries set for December 18
Apple is starting to ship the first online orders of the updated 27-inch iMac, notes AppleInsider. Buyers say their systems are listed as shipping out of Shanghai, and scheduled to arrive on December 18. The customers add, moreover, that this is earlier than Apple was suggesting at the time the orders were initially paid for.
Sequoia, Earth Addresser
Hawkscope 0.4 (free) is a tool that allows users to access their hide drive contents from a dynamic menubar item. The update has added HTTP proxy authentication for update checks, features better handling of resources and smaller memory consumption, has added the possibility to use operating system icons if they are available and is now Java 5 compatible allowing it to run on Mac OS X 10.4 and up. [Download - 1.4MB]
MacBook Air delayed in US
Users ordering the new MacBook Air may be in for a small delay, with some shipment notifications indicating that the orders will ship in early November. AppleInsider reports that a user who purchased a CTO MacBook Air, with the 1.86GHz processor, 128GB solid state drive, and Mini DisplayPort to DVI adaptor, saw his order jump to November 5th for shipping. The customer is expected to receive the order by November 10th.
Image Moments 8
Digital Foci is now shipping the new "Image Moments 8" 8-inch screen digital photo frame. The device features LED Backlight Technology, 450MB of internal memory, and built-in memory card slots to let you display and share photos on its high-resolution digital LCD screen. It also features an Auto-Start feature, that will automatically start a photo slideshow. Hardware components include an 8-inch high-resolution SVGA (800x600) digital LCD screen with 500:1 contrast ratio and a proprietary Adapter Ring design that supports custom framing options The frame also features an interchangeable mat with 3 color selections; a hinged memory card door and an easel leg for alternating between landscape and portrait positioning. The device also features 450MB internal memory.
Memorex has begun shipping a new clock radio for various iPod models, includin the iPod Touch, Classic, nano and mini. The device, dubbed iWake, features a digital AM/FM radio, dual alarm function and a gradual volume increase for the alarm. There's also a clock backup capability that is invoked in the case of a power failure -- that function requires 2 "AAA" batteries (which aren't included). Other standard features include a snooze function. The iWake powers and charges any iPod with dock connector. The iWake clock radio is priced at $80.
Shades for iPod touch ship
ShadesCases has begun shipping its Shades cases for Apple's iPod touch. The new cases keep the same thin look as the originals, measuring just .4mm thin and weighting 0.5-ounces. The cases feature built-in clear screen protection that allow users to operate the multi-touch screen interface, and come in 10 different colors ranging from black to silver. Shades cases for iPod touch are priced from $17, and are designed to show the iPod's unique design without adding bulk or hindering usage.
TubeStick 2.5 ships
Equinux today began shipping TubeStick 2.5, the latest revision of its TV receiver designed for Mac owners that offers access to the TubeToGo Web service. TubeStick 2.5 allows users to watch as well as record live TV on a Mac simply by plugging into a USB port. The digital tuner features a sleek white exterior, and includes a digital receiver for DTT (DVB-T) signals. The device comes with a white antenna to match its exterior, and is among the smallest TV receivers in its class. TubeStick requires at least a G4 Mac running at 1GHz or faster with at least 512MB of memory. The device is priced at $60.
AVerVision CP300 camera
AVerMedia Technologies today began shipping its new AVerVision CP300 Interactive Portable Document Camera. The CP300 offers new network sharing capability, where users can access live images and control a document camera in any classroom or location on a school campus. "The ability to connect all document cameras in one campus together through the existing Local Area Network now provides the ability for multiple classrooms, or even the entire school to view and share live document camera lessons and demonstrations," the company said. Users can control annotation, image capture, video recording, zoom, and more by each classroom accessing the demonstration on the network. AVerMedia's CP300 is available for $800.
SlimKey Stand ships
Macessity today began shipping the SlimKey Stand, a slick steel stand powder-coated in aluminum color to match new iMacs and Apple displays. The stand provides a place to tuck away the keyboard, and can provide better ergonomics by raising the monitor up an additional inch. The stand also serves a a cooling platform for Apple's various notebooks, measuring 9-inches deep to create a sturdy structure that supports any size Apple display or iMac. Macessity's SlimKey Stand is priced at $40.
NWN 2 for Mac ships
Aspyr Media today began shipping Neverwinter Nights 2 for Mac in North America. The computer role-playing game set in the fantasy world of the Forgotten Realms, one of the popular campaign settings of Dungeons and Dragons, was licensed from Atari and developed for Mac by Aspyr Studios. "Rise from a peasant to a full-fledged hero as you defend the Realms against one of the greatest threats of the age!" The game is priced at $50, and requires Mac OS X 10.4.11 or later.
Reflect, Courier cases
Griffin Technology today began shipping its Reflect and Courier carrying cases for Apple's iPhone. The Reflect for iPhone features a sleek metallic finish that covers the perimeter of the multi-touch display. The hard polycarbonate shell protects the iPhone from bumps and scratches, while a matte black rubberized case back seals the device inside. The Courier is redesigned with a slimmer look, providing practical transportation and protection for an iPhone. Griffin's Reflect for iPhone is priced at $25, while the Courier is available for $35.
Aluminum 3G Nano case
RhinoSkin today began shipping a new aluminum hard case for the latest iPod nanos. The case is made from aluminum to guard against scratching, and fits both 4GB and 8GB Nanos while offering charge as well as playback capability without the need to remove the player. RhinoSkin's latest cover includes a clear, scratch-resistant, and shatterproof polycarbonate plastic front with a durable aluminum back.
Neverwinter Nights 2 ships
Aspyr is shipping the long-awaited sequel to Neverwinter Nights next week, a massive role-playing game based on the Forgotten Realms Dungeons and Dragons campaign setting. Players can completely configure their game experience, choosing from a variety of alignments, friends, and enemies, As well as classes and races. Starting as a fledgling peasant, players fight their way to become the hero of the realms. Neverwinter Nights 2 will be available for $50.
CloudBook good, not great
Everex' newly shipping CloudBook Mini features several niceties that make it unique from the Asus Eee PC, but other drawbacks prevent it from fully taking the micro PC's crown. Laptop Magazine writes that Mac OS-like gOS simplifies the device's functions, but ultimately slows the miniature laptop in terms of boot and application startup time. Initially, reviewer Mark Spoonauer said that the trackpad is small and cumbersome to use, but warmed to it in the end.
Equinux ships iSale 5
Equinux today began shipping the fifth generation of its online auction management software, iSale 5. The application allows Mac users to create as well as manage online eBay auctions, and features a template editor that allows supports customization of the included 222 templates. iSale 5 simplifies the search for product information and pictures, according to the company, and can display running auctions on the Facebook platform. iSale 5 is priced at $40, and requires Mac OS X 10.5 or later. Upgrades are free for users who purchased iSale after December 15th of 2007, and are priced at $20 for all other customers.
Entry MacBook Air ships
Users who pre-ordered the entry-level MacBook Air are reportedly getting shipping notices regarding their machines, and are being told that they can expect to receive them on February 1st. This is mere days over the two-week estimate Steve Jobs gave at the Macworld Expo keynote, while users who ordered the upscale model will wait until February 6th. Current shipping times are listed at two to three weeks on the Apple web store.
FirmTek eSATA enclosure
FirmTek has unveiled the SeriTek/5PM SATA enclosure with Port Multiplier technology. The storage device houses up to five hot-swappable drives, each with transfer rates as high as 3Gbps for total aggregate performance beyond 220MB/sec with one cable. When configured with three additional SeriTek/5PM enclosures -- for a total of 20 drives -- RAID 0 performance can exceed 700MB/sec. FirmTek's new SeriTek/5PM SATA enclosure is already shipping for $550, with optional host adapter bundles available from $610-$700.
Morph Age 4.0 debuts
Creaceed today began shipping its Hydra 1.0 HDR photography software for Mac, and unveiled a major upgrade to its Morph Age application for morphing as well as warping images and movies. Hydra aims to give the human eye perception to photographs by creating high dynamic range (HDR) images from a series of standard photographs, either from DSLRs or traditional point-and-shoot cameras. Hydra is priced at $60, but is available for an introductory price of $40 until the end of January. Hydra requires Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard to run.
QuickCRC dev app ships
Excel Software has begun shipping QuickCRC, a Universal Binary application designed for responsibility-driven design of object-oriented software using CRC cards. The new application runs three times faster on new Intel-based Macs, according to Excel, handling up to 10,000 CRC cards with all design information in memory. Editing changes are instantly reflected throughout the model, ensuring every name and relationship reference is always accurate. QuickCRC is priced at $300 for a single-user license, and requires Mac OS X 10.1 or later.
Hydra to ship at Macworld
Creaceed today unveiled Hydra, a new application that aims to ease the process of creating HDR photographs on Mac systems. Hydra is designed to give human eye perception to photography by creating high dynamic range (HDR) images from a series of regular photographs, either from DSLRs or traditional point-and-shoot cameras. Hydra is priced at $60, but will be available for an introductory price of $40 until the end of January after the application begins shipping during Macworld on January 14th. Hydra requires Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard to run.
Axiotron ships Modbook
Axiotron has begun shipping its Modbook tablet Mac, a modified MacBook with a built-in Wacom digitized pen-sensitive liquid crystal display. The only Mac-based tablet on the market won the Best of Show award at Macworld Expo 2007 after debuting at the event. The Modbook features a 2.0GHz or 2.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, Inkwell handwriting recognition software, a 24x DVD combo or 8x DVD SuperDrive, GPS support, and Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard. Modbooks start at $2,300 and include a 1-year warranty.
Quicky gets tougher case
QuickerTek has announced that its Quicky Mac wireless booster is now shipping with a stronger case, answering customer requests to make the device more rugged. The Quicky expands the wireless reception of any MacBook, iBook, or PowerBook from Apple's built-in 30mW AirPort card to 500mW. The device is priced at $225 and comes with a 1-year warranty on parts and labor.
Titan Clear iPhone case
GizMac Accessories has begun shipping its Titan Clear iPhone case with a holster. The case is designed protecting the cellular handset via a clear polycarbonate shell while still allowing the iPhone's appearance to show through. Each case ships with a thin film screen protector, while built-in retractable horizontal and vertical kickstands can adjust the angles of the iPhone for optimum hands-free viewing. GizMac's Titan Clear iPhone case with holster is priced at $35.
Apple shipping times
With Christmas fast approaching, Apple has provided many specials for its wide variety of products, with details posted in the Apple online store. In order to make sure that customers receive product by Christmas, a minimum purchase date last is available through the online store portal. Dates range from December 13th to the 19th for standard orders, and December 20th to the 21st for overnight shipped goods. Some computer configurations could add some delay, and may not result in a Christmas delivery.