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Feb 28
Survey: one third of U.S. and U.K. adults are mobile phone...

PopCap Games, which makes casual video games, has announced the results of a new survey that found large increases in overall usage and frequency of mobile game playing among U.S. and U.K. adults.

The survey, conducted by Information Solutions Group, also found that among mobile phone gamers, the mobile phone is now the primary gaming device of choice, leapfrogging video game consoles and personal computers in less than two years. Further, “smartphone” owners (the fastest-growing mobile segment) are by far the most avid consumers of mobile phone games. These and other purchase and consumption trends identified in the survey suggest significant growth in the mobile games sector will continue for the foreseeable future.
 
Overall, more than half (52%) of the 2,425 survey respondents said they had played a game on a mobile phone at some time in the past; 73% of U.K. respondents said they had played a mobile phone game at least once, compared to 44% of U.S....

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Feb 28
'AppleInsider': Apple's Joint Venture aimed at...

During a series of store-wide meetings on Sunday, Apple prepped its retail employees for a March 2 launch of Joint Venture, a new technical support plan targeted at small businesses, according to "AppleInsider" (http://www.appleinsider.com).

The plan will cost about US$500 a year and will be made available to businesses when purchasing a new Mac. Up to five systems will be covered by the plan, though additional systems may be added for $99 a year, says "AppleInsider."

The article says customers enrolled in the plan will receive priority service at the Genius Bar and gain access to an exclusive Apple Genius-manned technical support number at the corporate office. During repairs that take longer than 24 hours to complete, customers may be eligible to borrow 15-inch MacBook Pros with iWork and Microsoft Office preinstalled, says "AppleInsider."

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Feb 28
Rumors claim Ive wants to move back to England

Take this one with a big grain of salt, but the rumor mill is abuzz that British-born Apple design guru, Jonathan Ive, is bumping heads with Apple, may resign and move back to the UK.

According to various reports in publications such as the "Mail Online" (http://macte.ch/SzoWL) Ive and his wife Heather, who met while they were studying at Newcastle Polytechnic, are said to want to educate their twins in England. He still visits the institution in the northeast to give masterclasses, giving up part of his three weeks' annual leave, the article says.

A friend of the family told "The Sunday Times" that "Unfortunately he is just too valuable to Apple and they told him in no uncertain terms that if he headed back to England he would not be able to sustain his position with them." Apple told "The Times" it was "speculation" to say that Ive wanted to live in England.

Of course, he has the money to do it...

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Feb 28
Tenth annual Las Vegas FCPUG SuperMeet announced

The Final Cut Pro User Group Network has announced the Tenth Annual Las Vegas SuperMeet, scheduled to take place on Tuesday, April 12, in the Event Center at the Bally's Hotel in Las Vegas.

The Las Vegas FCPUG SuperMeet will celebrate the Tenth Anniversary of SuperMeets and promises to be the single largest gathering of Final Cut Studio, Adobe and Avid editors, gurus and digital filmmakers during the 2011 NAB Show. Doors will open at 4:30 pm with the SuperMeet Digital Showcase, featuring over 35 software and hardware developers. Presentations will begin at 7 pm and continue until 11 pm. Tickets are on sale online for the early bird price of $10 each plus ticket fee (early bird pricing ends March 15) and $10 for students with valid student ID.

To purchase tickets and for complete details on the SuperMeet including driving and shuttle transportation, as well as a current list of raffle prizes, visit the SuperMeet web site (...

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Feb 28
Intel announces solid state drive line-up

Intel (http://www.intel.com) has announced the next in a line of new solid-state drives (SSD): the Intel Solid-State Drive 510 Series. The new Intel SSD 510 features SATA 6Gbps performance to take full advantage of Intel’s transition to higher speed SATA bus interfaces on the recently introduced second generation Intel Core processor-based platforms (used in the new MacBook Pros announced last week).

Supporting data transfers of up to 500MB/second, the Intel SSD 510 doubles the sequential read speeds, and at up to 315MB/s more than triples the sequential write speeds of Intel’s current 3Gbps SSDs. This makes it ideal for demanding gamers, media creators, performance-intensive workstation users and any technology enthusiast, says Pete Hazen, director of marketing for Intel’s NAND Solutions Group.

The Intel SSD 510 Series uses proven Intel 34-nanometer NAND flash memory to deliver best-in-class sequential...

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Feb 28
Gameloft to develop four new games using Unreal Engine 3

Gameloft (http://www.gameloft.com), a developer and publisher of digital and online games, has announced a long-term, multi-platform licensing agreement with Epic Games, that enables Gameloft to incorporate Unreal Engine 3 in four new games, two to be released in 2011 and two in 2012.

“Gameloft is very pleased to partner with Epic, especially with their ability to stay ahead of the curve and continually place the best game engine technology in developers’ hands at any given point in time,” says Julien Fournials, vice president of production, Gameloft. “Using Unreal Engine 3 allows us to push game visuals with remarkable lighting and high-fidelity environments. We are confident that players will enjoy the games powered by Unreal Engine 3.”

Under the agreement, Gameloft plans to release games on multiple mobile and downloadable platforms, including iOS, Android, PlayStation Network and set-top boxes...

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Feb 28
Thursby releases PKard for Mac

Thursby Software Systems (http://www.thursby.com) has released PKard for Mac, software to meet the needs of US Department of Defense (DoD) Mac users for remote or home access to secure government websites using Common Access Cards (CAC) smart cards.

Smart cards are a defensive line for the DoD and Civilian Federal agencies against terrorist attacks, espionage and cyber threats mandated by Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12, or HSPD-12. PKard is short for “Public Key Card” and is pronounced “P card."

PKard supports Mac OS X 10.5 and 10.5. All US Government CAC smart cards are supported via Thursby’s own Tokend driver technology for access, including next generation cards such as the “Oberthur ID One 128 v5.5” and “Gemalto TOP DL GX4 144K.”

PKard is a simpler home/remote version of Thursby’s enterprise ADmitMac PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) line of software that secures directly...

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Feb 28
GeBE-FLASH for iOS released

GeBE Elektronik und Feinwerktechnik GmbH have released the GeBE-Flash for iOS (http://www.oem-printer.com/gpt-4378-flash_ios). It's a mobile thermal printer designed for use with iPhones, iPods, or iPads.

The GeBE printer ships with an on-board Bluetooth interface that lets users print using an Apple device. Important data can purportedly be put on paper within seconds, even in situations where a standard WLAN infrastructure is missing, or where a line of sight for infrared transmission is blocked.

"The new printer can be used in a number of situations, a high-end boutique that wants to enhance their customer service by equipping sales associates with the ability to print receipts and eliminate lines, to the municipal parking clerk that wants to increase their accuracy rate by taking a high resolution picture with their Apple device and printing the...

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Feb 28
Mac Photo Recovery adds support HD Video recovery

AppleXsoft, aprovider of data recovery software and services, has released version 3.5.2 of Mac Photo Recovery (http://www.applexsoft.com/mac-photo-recovery-for-digital-media.html), a Mac photo recovery solution for digital media devices.

The software recovers lost, formatted, or deleted images, photo documents, video, audio, music or other files form Memory Sticks, SD Cards, SmartMedia, iPod, CompactFlash, MMC, xD Cards, digital cameras or removable media, etc. The new version supports a number of HD Video file formats for recovery.

Mac Photo Recovery lets you recover lost or deleted HD video files in formats like AVCHD (.mts, .m2ts), HD AVI, H.264/AVC, HD MPEG4 TS, HD MPEG2 TS, HD WMV, HD Quick Time, HD WMV videos. You simply need to connect the external storage media to your Mac, and make sure that the memory...

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Feb 28
New WebConnector plug-in integrates the web into Daylite

OSXpert Limited has announced WebConnector 1.0 (http://www.daylite.biz/plugins/webconnector/) for Daylite. It embeds a context-sensitive web browser into the Daylite contact manager, CRM and business productivity tool.

It's now possible to perform context-sensitive web researches within Daylite, monitor individual websites, blogs and social media profiles of contacts, like on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and check current communication details of contacts on the web to keep the Daylite database current.

There are two editions of WebConnector. WebConnector Basic is free to use and offers web-based search functions for finding information about Daylite contacts and organizations, e.g. in social networks. It includes Google Maps address localization and routing too. More Web services will be added in the future.

WebConnector Extended requires an US$24....

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Feb 28
Jumsoft adds templates to the Mac App Store

Jumsoft (http://www.jumsoft.com) says two more of its template applications are now available at the Mac App Store. With one or two clicks, users can open their preferred templates in Pages or Keynote, or save all templates in any location on their hard drive.

Jumsoft Templates for Pages is a collection of 100 templates for structuring and styling any text documents created with Apple's Pages. Themes for Keynote features 15 designs to create presentations. Both applications feature preview screens.

Jumsoft's Templates for Pages and Themes for Keynote are available for US$18.99 each from at the Mac App Store. Both applications work with iWork '08 or later.

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Feb 28
Chronos announces SOHO Notes 9, SOHO Organizer 9

Chronos has released SOHO Notes 9 and SOHO Organizer 9, upgrades to these two productivity software products.

According to Robert McCullough, vice president of Development at Chronos, "SOHO Organizer 9 takes advantage of the cloud by letting users easily share contacts and calendars using open standards like CardDAV and CalDAV. SOHO Notes' new Widescreen View and Tag Explorer make managing lots of notes easier than ever."

SOHO Notes 9 offers the following new features: a widescreen view, bookmarklets, a tag explorer, geo-tagged note support, the ability to edit externally attached tasks, improved NoteLife syncing and more. SOHO Organizer 9 offers the following new features: CardDAV support for contact sharing, one-step MobileMe calendar setup, nested smart groups for contacts, calendar groups, week view scrolling options (by day/week), a duplicate checker, offline support for CardDAV & CalDAV, automatic postal code lookups, the ability to archive events &...

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Feb 28
Free Mahjong In Poculis 4.0 released for Mac OS X

In Poculis (http://www.in-poculis.com/) has released Mahjong In Poculis 4.0, an update to their free solitaire game for Mac OS X and Windows. The upgrade adds 180 new layouts and a new presentation.

Mahjong In Poculis is a memory game where players have to select identical tiles to make them disappear. The game features 300 layouts and six scenarios, including Christmas, Halloween, Asian and Easter.

Mahjong In Poculis 4.0 boasts Child, Standard and Expert modes. It purportedly takes 150 hours to finish the game in Expert mode

Mahjong In Poculis 4.0 requires Mac OS X 10.4 or higher. It's Universal Binary so runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel Macs.

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Feb 28
WriteRoom 2.5 available in Mac App Store

WriteRoom 2.5 is now available in the Mac App Store. For a limited time you can get it for US$4.99. It will switch back to $24.99 on Feb 27.

WriteRoom is a full screen writing environment. It's designed to let you focus on writing. It requires Mac OS X 10.5 or higher or iPhone OS 3.0 or later.

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Feb 28
'MUG Event Calendar': CodeWeavers, Boinx Software

Two special visits from software developers highlight this week’s "MUG Event Calendar."

Jon Parshall of CodeWeavers will show off the latest version of CrossOver at a California group, and Bastian Wolfle of Boinx Software will demonstrate FotoMagic to a Colorado group. Gary “MacMan” Barker will speak to an Australian group, and the Mac App Store will be the featured topic at groups in Ohio and Michigan. Other topics to be presented this week include iTunes, utilities, MobileMe and DropBox, AppleTV, Skype, cloud computing and more.

"The MUG Event Calendar" can be found at The MUG Center (http://www.mugcenter.com), an online resource for Mac User Groups. MUGs are good places for making new friends in the Mac community, improving your computing skills, finding solutions to technical problems, and perhaps locating a good deal on used hardware. For more info on MUGs, and to find the location of the one...

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Feb 26
Verizon CEO says iPhone sales not disappointing

Verizon Wireless CEO Daniel S. Mead told "The Wall Street Journal" (http://macte.ch/9UJ7z) that the company sold more iPhone 4s during its initial launch than any other product in the carrier's history, countering reports of disappointing sales.

Compared to the usually large crowds that have greeted previous launches of the iPhone, the Verizon iPhone launch saw modest crowds at some high-profile locations in major cities. However, Mead says that's because most of the sales were online (about 60%).

At peak sales times the CEO said the iPhone brought 100 times more orders than usual to the Verizon Wireless website but didn't give specific numbers. Mead said it wouldn't release iPhone sales figures until the company's next earnings release.

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Feb 25
Mac OS X Lion to lead to 'Retina displays' for Macs?

A high-DPI mode for resolution independence has purportedly been in development at Apple for a long time and may be coming at long last with Mac OS X Lion.

"CrunchGear" (http://macte.ch/Gy1gW) says this would "be a step towards resolution independence, a UI holy grail in which UI elements are the same size for users across all resolutions -- so whether you’re looking at an icon on an iPhone, MacBook Air, or Cinema Display, they’re all exactly the same size."

Resolution independence refers to an operating system's ability to scale objects on the screen, so that if you're running a super-high resolution display, your icons and text don't continuously shrink. A 512 x 512 pixel image might be two inches across on a 20-inch display running at 1680 x 1050. Resolution independence relies more on vector-based text and graphics than fixed-resolution bitmaps.

The developer build of Lion released this week...

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Feb 25
iPhone/iPod touch/iPad apps for Feb. 25

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

Crawl Space Games has announced Float, a balloon game for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The US$0.99 app "captures fun childhood memories of batting balloons in the air and trying to keep them off the floor."

ComboApp has released Paint Me 3D: Airplanes 1.0 for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Created to encourage children's artistic development, the $0.99 app offers young users the chance to color in 3D airplane characters. A variety of pre-drawn 3D airplane outlines are available for coloring.

Tidal Pool Software has introduced QuickBuy 1.0 for the iPhone and iPod touch. It's a free, location-based shopping utility that finds products from local retailers. QuickBuy displays product information along with current prices and inventory from...

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Feb 25
'Consumer Reports' doesn't recommend Verizon...

The Verizon iPhone 4 has a problem that could cause the phone to drop calls, or be unable to place calls, in weak signal conditions, "Consumer Reports" says (http://macte.ch/HSWwl).

"Consumer Reports" engineers say they've found in lab tests that the problem is similar to the one we confirmed in July with the AT&T version of Apple's newest smart phone. It can occur when you hold either version of the phone in a specific but quite natural way in which a gap in the phone's external casing is covered.

However, the phone performs superbly in most other respects, and using the iPhone 4 with a case can alleviate the problem, says "Consumer Reports." Still, "CR" says: "We are not including the Verizon iPhone 4 in our list of recommended smart phones, despite its high ranking in our Ratings. Although Apple no longer offers a free case to buyers of the iPhone 4, as it did for a time after the problem was...

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Feb 25
Apple among top brands in charitable e-commerce

BiddingForGood, a charitable e-commerce platform connecting consumers and marketers to thousands of nonprofit auctions, has announced the top performing brands and categories on its platform. Apple is on the list.

Some of the other top brands on BiddingForGood include Starbucks, Marriott Family, and PF Changs. These brands have helped the company reach over $105 million in merchandise sales supporting non-profits and schools across the U.S.

“Charity malls are becoming increasingly popular in the specialty e-commerce space, but they typically give less than 15% back to causes, whereas BiddingForGood gives 91% of merchandise sales back to causes and offers a unique way for businesses to become involved in a socially responsible program," says CEO Jon Carson.

BiddingForGood is a charitable e-commerce company that connects fundraisers, shoppers and businesses. Online auctions powered by BiddingForGood have generated over $100 million for non-profit organizations...

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Feb 25
Security experts reviewing Mac OS X Lion

"CNET" (http://macte.ch/d8CxN) is reporting that Apple is letting security experts review Mac OS X Lion. A developer preview of the next major version of the operating system was released yesterday.

"I wanted to let you know that I've requested that you be invited to the prerelease seed of Mac OS X Lion, and you should receive an invitation soon," said a letter sent by Apple to an unknown number of security researchers, according to "CNET." "As you have reported Mac OS X security issues in the past, I thought that you might be interested in taking a look at this. It contains several improvements in the area of security countermeasures."

Dino Dai Zovi and several other researchers tweeted about being invited to try out the prerelease version of the new Mac OS. "This looks to be a step in the direction of opening up a bit and inviting more dialogue with external researchers," Dai Zovi told "CNET." "I won'...

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Feb 25
Ronald Sugar 'most popular' Apple board member

According to the SEC Form 8-K filed on Thursday -- as reported by "Fortune" (http://macte.ch/DKoGo), Apple CEO Steve Jobs was re-elected to the company's board of directors with nearly 3.5 million fewer votes than Ronald D. Sugar.

Sugar is the the former CEO of Northrop Grumman (NOC) who was selected in November to fill one of the seats on Apple's board left vacant by the death of  Jerry York last March and the forced departure of Google's (GOOG) Eric Schmidt in 2009.

Sugar served as Chairman and CEO at Northrop Grumman Corp. from 2003 until his retirement in 2010. Previous to Northrop, he held executive positions at Litton Industries and TRW, where he served as chief financial officer.

He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a fellow of both the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the Royal Aeronautical Society. He is a director of Chevron Corporation, Amgen...

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Feb 25
South Korea's SK Telecom to carry the iPhone 4

SK Telecom, South Korea's top mobile carrier, will release the iPhone 4 in the local market in March, ending the exclusive distribution by its rival wireless operator, KT Corp., reports "Asia One Digital" (http://macte.ch/5gtm2), quoting an unnamed "industry source."

"Negotiations between SK Telecom and Apple are in the final stage," says the source. "As the negotiations are going smoothly, it is virtually decided that SK Telecom will launch the iPhone."

SK Telecom declined to comment. KT Corp., the country's No. 2 mobile carrier, introduced the iPhone in the domestic market in November 2009.

| Read more »
Feb 25
iFixIt tears down the new MacBook Pro

iFixIt has torn down the new MacBook Pro, looking at the Thunderbolt port and more. This is what they found:

"Thunderbolt -- or the Thunderport, as we started calling it around iFixit -- is the latest evolutionary change from the folks at 1 Infinite Loop. We were super-excited to try out the port itself, but had to first peek at it from the inside.

The Thunderbolt port (we keep wanting to type "Thunderport" -- it just feels so natural) has its own controller IC. The IC is quite prominent on the logic board, being the fourth-largest chip after the CPU, GPU, and logic board controller. We'll have to wait until a company like Chipworks places an SEM on the puppy to see what's *really* inside, but we believe the chip's footprint is a testament to the potential of this port.

"The MacBook Pro earned a very respectable 7 out of 10 repairability score. This revision allows you to disconnect the battery without removing it from the laptop. It's a nice design choice...

| Read more »
Feb 25
OWC announces memory upgrades for new MacBook Pros

Other World Computing (http://www.macsales.com) is offeringOWC 4GB and 8GB DDR3 1333MHz Memory Upgrades for the new MacBook Pro 13", 15", and 17" models announced by Apple on Thursday.

The OWC 8GB Memory Upgrade Kit offers owners of the newest MacBook Pro models savings of up 55% versus the factory installed 8GB option, as well as an option for 6GB of total memory not available from the factory. Upgrade options are:

° OWC 4GB DDR3 1333MHz Memory Module -- US$59.99 or as low as $46.99 after OWC offered factory memory trade-in rebate. This replaces an existing 2GB module for 6GB of total memory and isn't available as factory memory upgrade option.

° OWC 8GB DDR3 1333MHz Memory Kit (2 x 4GB matched memory modules) -- $114.99 or as low as $89.99 after OWC offered factory memory trade-in rebate. This replaces both existing 2GB modules for 8GB of total memory.


OWC Memory upgrades are...

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