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Sep 21
Macs continue to lead in computer customer satisfaction

ustomer satisfaction with personal computers surged 4.0% to match the industry’s all-time high of 78 in the latest American Customer Satisfaction Index. And Mac users were the most satisfied of all.

Nearly all brands showed increases in satisfaction and no manufacturer declined. Lower prices, better service, and an emphasis on new, smaller systems and a variety of portable computers helped drive the improvement. However, Apple continued its dominance, leading the computer category by a wide margin for the seventh straight year.

Customer satisfaction with Apple’s computer products, including the iPad, rose 2% to an ACSI of 86 -- the highest score ever for Apple. The company now has a 9-point lead over its nearest competitor. No other company in the ACSI has as formidable a lead within its own industry.

Innovation and product diversification, along with strong customer service, have long been at the center of Apple’s success. At times, demand for Apple...

| Read more »
Sep 21
Germany: Apple, others must come up with data protection...

Germany's government has told Apple, Google and other providers of online map services to come up with their own guidelines on data protection by Dec. 7 or face new regulations on the market, reports "Total Telecom" (http://www.totaltele.com/view.aspx?C=3&ID=458750).



Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said after a meeting between German officials and Internet executives that they had one last chance to adopt voluntary measures or Berlin would draw up legislation to protect consumers. Representatives of the companies involved didn't attend the news conference.



The announcement came at the end of five hours of talks between de Maiziere, the federal justice and consumer protection ministers, data protection authorities and managers from firms specializing in online navigation services, according to "Total Telecom."

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Sep 21
Apple shares hit all time high

Apple shares rose to a 52-week high of US$283.78 on Monday. That was an all-time high during yesterday's trading, before Apple closed at $283.23.

As noted by "BusinessWeek" (http://macosg.me/2/vc), Apple's share price has been climbing steadily since the stock market lows of March 2009. Despite the fall in consumer spending during the recession, Apple has continued to sell more Macs, iPods and iPhones.

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Sep 21
'MacVoices' looks at data recovery

On the new "MacVoices" (http://www.macvoices.com), Gordon Bell talks about another level of data recovery, this time at The Data Rescue Center, another aspect of the
Prosoft Engineering empire.

Unlike the kinds of repairs and recoveries you can do at home with their software products, The Data Rescue Center is for those times when the hardware issues or damage is physical. Bell explains how and why they took data recovery to the next level, building clean rooms, hiring expert data recovery technicians and even introducing access to their services.

"MacVoices" is an Internet show and podcast that delivers in-depth discussions with the most influential people in the Mac industry, as well as "the individuals who are out there making it happen on the front lines of the global Apple community," according to host Chuck Joiner.

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Sep 21
Toshiba rolls out Canvio Basics portable hard drives

Toshiba (http://www.toshibastorage.com) has unveiled the newest addition to its Canvio line of portable hard drive solutions: the Canvio Basics portable hard drive family. It's available in 320GB, 500GB, or 750GB models with prices at US$79.99, $99.99 and $119.99, respectively.

The Canvio Basics sports a glossy black finish and soft, rounded edges. It has an internal shock sensor, ramp loading tchnology, and a three year limited warranty.

The Canvio Basics pocket-sized form factor not only makes it easy to carry, but also conforms to Toshiba’s environmental efforts to reduce the quantity of materials used in production, according to Manuel Camarena, product manager for consumer storage at Toshiba Storage Device Division. In addition, the Canvio Basics’ packaging is made from 100% recyclable materials.

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Sep 21
Currency Assistant for Mac OS X rings up version 3.1.3

MaBaSoft has released version 3.1.2 of Currency Assistant for Mac OS X. In the new version of the conversion calculator (http://www.mabasoft.net/products/currencyAssistant.htm), you can now automatically look for rates on the other web sites if they're temporarily unavailable on your favorite source. 

To automatically look for rates on the other web sites, select the "Try other sources if the rate isn't available on favorite web site" checkbox in the Rates Update pane of the Preferences window. The maximum precision of exchange rates has been increased in Currency Assistant. Rates can now have up to 12 significant digits. Also, rates updated from the IMF web site now have the same precision as the published rates.

Currency Assistant lets you convert between 174 world currencies (all major circulating currencies plus the 16 Eurozone legacy...

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Sep 21
TinkerTool tweaked for Snow Leopard, iTunes 10

TinkerTool 4.2, a new version of the utility for accessing hidden preference settings in Mac OS X, is now available. The update adds a preference to make Mac OS X 10.6 ("Snow Leopard") and iTunes 10 use the standard window title bar layout and horizontally aligned window buttons.

TinkerTool is an application that gives you access to additional preference settings Apple has built into Mac OS X. This allows to activate hidden features in the operating system and in some of the applications delivered with the system.

TinkerTool is available for free and can be downloaded here (http://www.bresink.com/osx/TinkerTool.html). TinkerTool is Universal Binary so runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel Macs. It requires Mac OS X 10.4 or higher.

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Sep 21
Playrix launches Fishdom: Spooky Splash for Mac

Playrix Entertainment has launched Fishdom: Spooky Splash for Mac OS 10.4 and higher (http://www.playrix.com/games/mac/fishdom-spooky-splash.html). It costs US$19.95; a demo is available for download.

Here's how the game is described: "Fishdom: Spooky Splash challenges players to complete tile-swapping levels and earn cash to create a Halloween-themed spooky aquarium of their own design. Players need to build up their spooky aquarium and create the eerie atmosphere of an underwater haunted house with witches, vampires and ghosts in it. While completing match-3 levels, they earn cash to buy exotic tropical fish and Halloween-themed ornaments."

Features in Fishdom: Spooky Splash include: almost 100 themed fishies and accessories; an unlimited number of tanks to create and design; and a bonus screensaver.

| Read more »
Sep 21
Panasonic releases LUMIX GH2 digital camera

Panasonic (http://www.panasonic.com) has announced the LUMIX DMC-GH2, a hybrid touch-control camera featuring full High Definition (HD) video recording and compatibility with an interchangeable 3D lens.

Compatible with the Micro Four Thirds System standard, the LUMIX GH2 is newly designed with an easy-to-hold grip and includes a refined image processing engine and sensor, full HD video recording, and the ability to take 3D photos with Panasonic's new interchangeable 3D lens.

A dedicated button on the top of the camera lets users record videos while shooting photos (up to 14 megapixels) without changing any extra settings. The LUMIX GH2 can now record full HD 1920 x 1080 videos in 60i, doubling the sensor output from 25p/24p to 50p/60p. The camera also supports 1080/24p native mode at 24 Mbps, the highest in AVCHD format.

The LUMIX GH2 will be available in black and silver models in early...

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Sep 21
Chinon releases iPod docking station with TV tuner

Chinon USA (http://www.chinonusa.com) has introduced the US$199 AVi portable iPod docking/charging station complete with a seven-inch TFT LCD monitor, ATSC digital TV tuner, and audio.

Dock an iPod into its top, and the AVi expands iTunes movies, music videos, and TV shows on its widescreen (16:9) LCD screen. Plus, it plays iTunes music and standard MP3 music files on its 2.5W dual speakers. Need video streaming off the Internet? Plug in an iPod touch with Wi-Fi to watch YouTube, Hulu or full-length Netflix movies.

In addition, users can showcase their iPod-stored digital photos on the LCD, turning the AVi into a digital photo frame. The AVi simultaneously plays and charges the iPod so you don't have to worry about running down the battery.

With the Chinon AVi, you can also watch your favorite TV programs anywhere, any time, in your backyard or on the go. Inside the AVi box users will...

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Sep 21
iHome releases iP3 for the iPhone, iPod

iHome has introduced the US$199 iP3 Speaker System for iPod/iPhone (http://www.ihomeaudio.com/iP3).The newest addition to the Studio Series collection, the iP3 sports Bongiovi Acoustics’ Digital Power Station (DPS) technology, a minimalist design, and component video output for playback of iPhone/iPod videos on TV.
 
The iP3 Speaker System for iPod/iPhone allows users to dock, charge and play their music and video. It's equipped with a 50-watt, class D amplifier and two 3.5-inch coaxial neodymium speakers.

Bongiovi Acoustics DPS technology was developed by a team of audio engineers and is a chip-based algorithm, custom-tuned to each product.

| Read more »
Sep 21
Playback Media Server gets new NGINX engine

Yazsoft has introduced Playback Media Server 1.7 (http://www.yazsoft.com/products/playback/information/), an update of their zero configuration media server for Mac OS X 10.5 and higher. The upgrade sports a new NGINX engine.

Playback can share media stored in folders or even make entire disks available to a Playstation 3 or Xbox 360. No configuration is required. By default, it will share almost any content on the users system. And Playback automatically integrates with iTunes, iPhoto, and Aperture. Users can share all content from these applications transparently or choose specific playlists and albums.

Those who like to tinker will appreciate Playback's built-in Access Control List (ACL) and bandwidth throttling. The ACL allows users to control which devices have access to their media. Bandwidth throttling limits the transfer rate from...

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Sep 21
moveAddict for Snow Leopard gets faster, lighter

Kapeli has announced moveAddict 2.0 (http://kapeli.com/moveaddict), an update of the Mac OS X app that offers the capability to cut and paste files (with merging folders as a bonus) to the Finder. feature to Mac's Finder. It works with the usual keyboard shortcuts for cut and paste.

With version 2.0, moveAddict has been completely rewritten to make it faster and more lightweight than before. The Finder is now used to move the files, which means that users will see the usual Finder progress indicator dialog while transferring files, as well as be able to undo and stop transfers.

A notification window and Finder file labels provide feedback at every stage. Original data remains untouched until the move gets safely registered by the Finder. What's more, moveAddict doesn't modify the Mac system in any way, it is just a small (5 MB) application.

moveAddict requires Mac OS X 10.6 ("Snow...

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Sep 21
Seagate debuts 1.5TB portable external drive

Seagate (http://www.seagate.com) has launched what it says is the world’s first 1.5TB, 2.5-inch portable external drive. Available immediately, the new 1.5TB FreeAgent GoFlex comes in black and has a suggested retail price of US$249.99.

With 1.5TB of capacity people can now store and carry up to 60 HD movies, 750 video games, thousands of photos or tens of thousands hours of digital music, says Darcy Clarkson, vice president of Global Retail Sales and Marketing for Seagate. Shipping now in the United States and rolling out globally later this year, all 1.5TB GoFlex ultra-portable drives will ship with a USB 3.0 interface cable, accelerating the transfer speed of a drive up to 10x when connected to a USB 3.0 port, when compared to a USB 2.0 port. Unfortunately it will only run at USB 2.0 speeds on the Mac since it doesn't yet support USB 3.0.

Each drive includes an NTFS driver for Mac, which allows...

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Sep 21
Adobe announces Photoshop Elements 9

Adobe (http://www.adobe.com) has announced Adobe Photoshop Elements 9 software for Mac OS X and Windows systems. It's the latest version of the consumer photo-editing software to organize, edit, create and share photos.

"The Content Aware Fill technology introduced with Photoshop CS5 is one of our most exciting innovations ever, so we're thrilled to be able to make it accessible to photo and video enthusiasts in this latest Elements release," says Kevin Connor, vice president of product management for Digital Imaging at Adobe.

The content intelligence in the Spot Healing Brush analyzes what's in the image and de-clutters or repairs photos (like removing tourists from a crowded scene or an obstruction, such as a telephone pole) with a swipe of a brush, filling in the background. The same content intelligence synthesizes missing pixel information to create a panorama from multiple photos, without leaving...

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Sep 21
Wolfram Research, Nvidia team up for integrated GPU programming...

Wolfram Research (http://www.wolfram.com) has announced a technical collaboration with NVidia (http://www.nvidia.com) to integrate GPU acceleration into Mathematica 8.

Combining Mathematica's programming ease-of-use with the computational speed of the GPU-equipped hardware dramatically increases application performance and user productivity across industry, research, and education, according to Tom Wickham-Jones, Wolfram Research's director of Kernel Technology. He adds that Nvidia's GPU architecture can transform Mathematica's computing, modeling, simulation, and visualization performance, boosting
speed by up to a factor of 100.

Mathematica's CUDA GPU programming features along with its built-in examples for common application areas, such as image processing, medical imaging, statistics, and finance. Mathematica's CUDA...

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Sep 21
Bookends for Mac OS X updated to version 11.0.9

Sonny Software has released Bookends 11.0.9, a Mac-only full-featured bibliography/reference and information management application for professionals and students. You can now perform an Autocomplete Paper using CrossRef as a source of the reference metadata. You can also import multiple text files with one drag and drop.

A free evaluation copy of Bookends 11.0.9 can be downloaded from the Sonny Software web site (http://www.sonnysoftware.com). All features are enabled in the evaluation copy except that databases are limited to a maximum of 50 references. Once purchased, Sonny Software will supply a registration number that will "unlock" the evaluation version and remove this restriction.

Bookends 11.0.9 retails for US$99 ($69 for students), but is a free update for registered users of version 11.x. Group discounts and site licenses are also available.

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Sep 21
MailTags update is compatible with Mail 4.4

Indev Software has updated MailTags (http://www.indev.ca/MailTags.html), a tool that adds the ability to tag email messages for organization work flows and sophisticated searches to the Mac OS X Mail app, to version 2.5. The new version is compatible with Mail 4.4.

MailTags is shareware with a 21-day trial period. Registration is US$29.95, though version 2.5 is a free update for registered users of version 2.x. Educational and volume discounts are available.

MailTags is Universal Binary so runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel Macs. It requires Mac OS X 10.4.7 or higher.

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Sep 21
Purify for Mac OS X adds support for Email compass 1.1.0 changes

Hendrickson Software Components (http://www.hendricom.com) has released Purify 2.3.0, an update of the tool for filtering email and tracing and reporting spam, which uses the Purify Lexical Analysis Tool (PLAT). It adds support for Email compass 1.1.0 changes.

Using an English dictionary, and an algorithm that examines the content of an email using 5 parts of speech, the PLAT will examine the email message content to determine what words it considers "meaningful" in the message. This is a far more accurate way to apply a statistics based filter to email message content, according to the folks at Hendrickson.

Purity can be used as a stand-alone product. However, it was designed to scale, so that it can support a workgroup from a central computer. Purify's filtering features will also be integrated into an upcoming hsc product, an information manager called "Compass" (Spring '08).

Versions...

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Sep 20
iPhone rolling out in several countries this month

The iPhone 4 will be launched in South Africa on Wednesday, Sept. 22, by both the Vodacom Group and the MTN Group. reports Fin24. Other countries poised to get the iPhone 4 soon according to "Edible Apple (http://www.edibleapple.com/china-israel-thailand-and-slew-of-other-count...) include:


° Israel will get the iPhone 4 on Sept. 24 via Orange, Pelephone, and Cellcome.

° The Phillippines will get the iPhone 4 on Sept. 26 via Globe Telecoms.

° Turkey will get the iPhone 4 on Sept. 24 via Turkcell and Vodafone Turkey.

° Thailand will get the iPhone 4 on Sept. 24.

° Croatia will get the iPhone 4 on Sept. 24 via T-Mobile,

° The UAE (United Arabs Emirates) will get the...

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Sep 20
Survey: 23% of AT&T iPhone customers would go Verizon if...

"Silicon Alley Insider" (http://www.businessinsider.com/iphone-att-credit-suisee-2010-9?utm_sourc...) notes that a new survey from Credit Suisse says 63% of iPhone owners will stick with AT&T, even if it loses the exclusive right to sell the Apple smartphone.

So where would AT&T iPhone owners go if they had a choice? Approximately 23% will join Verizon, while 3% will go to Sprint, and 2% will go to T-Mobile, says Credit Suisse.

| Read more »
Sep 20
iPhone users more likely than Android, Blackberry users to pay...

iPhone users download almost twice as many apps from its App Store as those who go to the Android Market or BlackBerry App World Store, according to a report by consumer measurement firm Nielsen.

What's more, Apple App Store customers seem more open to paying for their apps, reports "InformationWeek" (http://www.informationweek.com/news/software/web_services/showArticle.jh...). The study found that for every two free apps they download, they generally pay for one. Android Market and BlackBerry App World customers, on the other hand, download more than 3.5 free apps for every one they buy. Least likely to convert from a free trial version of an app to a full, paid version are BlackBerry users, Nielsen's recently...

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Sep 20
Apple/Rovi deal points toward future Apple TVs -- and an Apple...

On Monday it was announced that Apple made a deal with a company called Rovi that could potentially see the firm's TV listings guide make its way to the Apple TV, according to Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster.

Per a filing with the US Security and Exchange commission, Rovi Corp. -- a company that specializes in digital entertainment services -- has entered into a multi-year agreement with Apple whereby Apple shall license intellectual property from Rovi.  The specific terms of the license agreement are confidential.

According to claims at the Rovi web site:

° Approximately 111 million subscribers and 91 million CE devices worldwide use their guidance technology.

° The Rovi content protection technology is on approximately nine billion DVDs and Blu-ray discs.

° More than 500 million devices are enabled with their protection technology.

° Rovi has active advertising rights in place with approximately 121 million guides worldwide.

° ...

| Read more »
Sep 20
Macsimum Poll: which iPod will you buy?


Recently, Apple revamped its iPod line-up. In this week's poll, we want to know which model (if any) you plan to buy. The poll can be found at the right hand side of our home page, below the Macsimum Opinion column.

In our last poll, we asked if you planned on buying the new Apple TV. Fifty-nine percent of you said "yes," and 41% said "no."

| Read more »
Sep 20
iPhone/iPod/iPad apps for Sept. 20

Here are the latest iPhone/iPod touch/iPod/iPad apps announced. You can find 'em at the Apple App Store (http://www.itunes.com/appstore/).

Andrew & Alexa has announced Ruler, an US$0.99 iPhone/iPod touch innovation of the universal tool. While conventional rulers involve mentally discerning measurements from small markings, using Ruler is just a matter of aligning the pointer, according to the folks at Andrew & Alexa.

Sulaba Inc has released Autograph It 1.0 for the iPhone and iPod touch. You no longer have to scramble for a piece of paper, pen and a camera, or buy any over-priced autograph books at the store for getting an autograph. The $1.99 app gives you an option to capture voice, hand written signature and picture of your favorite personality, all at once. You can also email it to your yourself for backup or share it with friends and family through FaceBook.

In...

| Read more »
 
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