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Feb 01
Apple rejects Sony's iPhone app

Apple has nixed Sony’s iPhone application, which would have let people buy and read e-books bought from the Sony Reader Store. For many, it's a disturbing development.

What's more, the company has told some applications developers, including Sony, that they can no longer sell content, like e-books, within their apps, or let customers have access to purchases they have made outside the Apple App Store, reports "The New York Times" (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/01/technology/01apple.html?_r=1). Apple told Sony that from now on, all in-app purchases would have to go through Apple, said Steve Haber, president of Sony’s digital reading division, told "The Times."

The move could affect companies like Amazon.com and others that sell e-book readers that compete with Apple’s iPad tablet and offer free mobile apps so customers can...

| Read more »
Feb 01
Beatles' 'LOVE' album, 'All Together Now...

The Beatles' "LOVE" album and "All Together Now," the feature-length documentary about the making of The Beatles LOVE by Cirque du Soleil, will make their worldwide digital debuts this month exclusively on the iTunes Store (http://www.itunes.com).  

Both titles are available for pre-order on iTunes starting today in most countries. "LOVE" will be released on iTunes worldwide Feb. 8 and "All Together Now" will follow soon after.

The "LOVE" album (US$12.99) includes exclusive, previously-unreleased "LOVE" versions of "The Fool on the Hill" and "Girl," and comes as an iTunes LP featuring an art gallery that blends images of the Beatles with colorful photos from the stage production.  "LOVE" will also be available to purchase and download as individual songs.

The "All Together Now" documentary ($12.99 HD) will be offered with iTunes Extras including the 84-minute film, three bonus featurettes and a...

| Read more »
Feb 01
Comcast, Time Warner's TV Everywhere agreement offers iOS...

Comcast Corp. (http://www.comcast.com) and Time Warner have signed a long-term agreement that provides Comcast digital cable customers with access to top-rated shows and movies from Turner Broadcasting System networks, including TNT, TBS, CNN, HLN, truTV, Turner Classic Movies, Cartoon Network and Adult Swim.

The content will appear shortly after initial airing at no additional cost to Comcast’s customers on http://www.XfinityTV.com, Comcast’s On Demand service, applicable Turner web sites and Xfinity and Turner branded iPad, iPhone and Android-based tablet and phone applications with plans for live streaming later this year.

Comcast digital cable customers will have access to current and library content from signature Turner shows On Demand and online, such as “The Closer,” “Men of a Certain Age,” “Southland,” “Conan,” “Lopez...

| Read more »
Feb 01
Screen enlarging utility zooms to the Mac App Store

Hubapps (http://hubapps.com) has released Zoom 1.0, a screen enlarging utility for Mac OS X, in the Mac App Store. It costs US$2.99 and is available in the Utilities category.

Zoom "goes beyond the essential functionality for improving visibility and legibility of small text and images, providing a superior experience in the form of a unique, hypnotically beautiful zoom mechanism which keeps 100% of the screen visible while also zooming," according to the folks at Hubapps.

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Feb 01
TopXNotes now available at the Mac App Store

Tropical Software's TopXNotes (http://www.tropic4.com/) note manager is now available at the Mac App Store. With the latest version (1.7) you can take your notes with you no matter which Apple touch device you're using.

TopXNotes now offers improved synchronization with iOS devices. Version 1.7 also includes other minor changes, improvements and enhancements. For example, a new, taller and customizable toolbar makes TopXNotes easier to use by putting the most frequently used tools at the user's fingertips.

The NoteOrganizer was also redesigned with a new striped background making it easier to focus on and select individual notes from the list. Note icons have also been redesigned and support for two-finger scrolling has been added.

TopXNotes 1.7 requires Mac OS X 10.6.6 or later. It costs US$39.99 and is available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Productivity category...

| Read more »
Feb 01
iWebTemplate adds five animated themes

In collaboration with iWebThemesPro and iPresentee, iWebTemplate (http://www.iwebtemplate.com/) has launched five new animated-with-Flash themes for iWeb, Apple's web site creation component of its iLife suite.

The new iWeb themes feature eight templates that include Flash animated and static backgrounds to choose from. All themes incorporate backgrounds and can be customized.

The new themes require Mac OS X 10.4.3 or later and iWeb 2.0 (iLife '08) or iWeb 3.0 (iLife '09 or iLife '11). Each new iWeb theme is available for US$9.99.

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Feb 01
Free public beta of Lo-Fi photo app for Mac OS X available

Wingnut is offering a free public beta test version of Lo-Fi, a retro photo effect application for Mac and Windows systems. It gives pictures the "funky look" of low end, toy cameras.

You can download Lo-Fi from http://www.lofiapp.com . It turns digital photos into retro handmade snapshots. You can mix a wide range of effects from the film world, such as grain, colorful cross processing, lens blur, light leaks, and frames. All these happy accidents of film photography combine to give each photo its own quirky personality, says Terence Tay, one of the creators of Lo-Fi.

It looks and behaves like a gizmo you are holding and playing with, he adds. Lo-Fi will sell for US$29 and run on Mac OS X 10.5 or higher.

| Read more »
Feb 01
Ntractive announces Elements CRM 3.0

Ntractive (http://www.ntractive.com) has updated Elements CRM, the company's Mac Customer Relationship Management solution, to version 3.0. New features include:

°  A revamped user interface;

° Speed improvements throughout the app;

° System workflow enhancements including sales and projects;

° The ability to create rules to filter your data and view what's important;

° Beefed-up credit card processing via improvements to integration with Authorize.net.;

° More integrations like Gowalla, Linkedin and a full Twitter app;

° Marketing workflow enhancements with Mail Merge and MailChimp integrations;

° Improved invoicing look and feel with more custom options;

° Acclivity AccountEdge and Intuit QuickBooks enhancements. 

Elements CRM 3.0 is available immediately. Small business pricing starts at US$24.95/user/month, and professional pricing...

| Read more »
Feb 01
PuzzleTiles 1.0.1 comes to the Mac App Store

Fat Apps has announced PuzzleTiles 1.0.1 (http://www.fat-apps.com/apps/puzzletiles-mac.html), their 15 tile sliding puzzle game for Mac OS X 10.6 and higher. It's available in the Mac App Store in the Gaming division for US$4.99.

Here's how the game is described; "PuzzleTiles is a simple yet addicting puzzle game in which you slide numbered tiles into the correct order, and try to beat your best time. PuzzleTiles features three built-in tile sets, with the ability to make a puzzle from any picture on your computer. It offers multiple difficulty levels, from easy to expert, and much more."

| Read more »
Feb 01
Apress publishes 'Beginning iPhone 4 Development'

"Beginning iPhone 4 Development," the latest book from Apress (http://www.apress.com), offers a soup-to-nuts course in iOS development. The authors of "Beginning iPhone 3 Development" for Cocoa Touch developers are back with the same material completely updated for iOS 4 and written from the ground up using the latest version of Apple’s Xcode 3.

Written by Dave Mark, Jack Nutting and Jeff LaMarche, "Beginning iPhone 4 Development" is 680 pages. It costs US$39.99 for the print edition and $27.99 for the ebook version.

| Read more »
Feb 01
Tune-Instructor for Mac OS X updated to version 3.2

Developer Tibor Andre has released Tune-Instructor 3.2 (http://www.tune-instructor.com/) for Mac OS X, an update of the app that provides a variety of options for organizing iTunes files, plus playback controls. The menu bar controller is always present and permits navigation and playback without opening iTunes.

Tune-Instructor allows custom editing of the ID3 tag, which contains all the metadata of an MP3 file, so that users can organize their song libraries, lyrics, artwork, files, and folders however they wish. Advanced audio players and ID3 editors are called taggers, and permit batch tagging other utility functions.

Tune-Instructor offers Search & Replace functionality across all the following categories: Name, Artist, Album, Album Artist, Composer, Show, Sort Name, Sort Artist, Sort Album, Sort Album Artist, Sort Composer, Sort Show, Genre, Comment, Grouping, Lyrics, and...

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Feb 01
QNAP debuts new Turbo NAS family

QNAP (http://www.qnap.com) has announced the TS-x12 line-up of Turbo NAS servers intended for the home and SOHO market segment.

The new models utilize the latest Marvell 1.2GHz processor and include 256MB of DDRII memory and Gigabit LAN ports, offering up to 8TB of networked storage. The TS-x12 series includes the 1-drive TS-112, 2-drive TS-212, and 4-drive TS-412.

The new TS-x12 models also improve the multimedia experience and capabilities for home users, says Tony Lu, product manager at QNAP. The built-in UPnP media server (TwonkyMedia) feature of the TS-x12 series supports numerous UPnP-compliant media players such as the Sony PS3 and Microsoft Xbox 360 gaming consoles. Users can even use their iPhone and Android phone to stream music and video or view digital photos stored on the NAS in real-time from anywhere with a Wi-Fi or 3G connection.

The TS-x12 series will be available starting in...

| Read more »
Feb 01
URL Extractor update offers internal improvements

Tension Software has released URL Extractor 3.2.2 (http://pomola.com/products_urlextractor/urlextractor.html). The new version offers internal improvements and bug fixes.

URL Extractor is a Mac OS X app for extracting emails address and generic URLs from files on the HD or directly from the web using a list of "starting" web addresses and working unattended after the startup. You can retrieve and start search from web pages using keywords from various international Google sites.

URL Extractor can extract thousands of URLs from the web starting from a single web page and using "cross navigation" and extraction. It requires Mac OS X 10.4 or higher and costs US$50. It's Universal Binary so runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel Macs. Version 3.2.2 is a free update for registered users of version 3.x.

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Jan 31
iPhone/iPod touch/iPad apps for Jan. 31

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

Mario Erceg has announced Loan Pro Calculator 1.0 for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. It's an US$4.99 annuity and interest calculator. Loan Pro Calculator supports linear and compound interest calculations for many different countries with various banking practices and laws. Users can have the app work out their equal annuity, equal principal and bullet payments, as well as capitalization of interest and the incorporation of grace periods in their loans.

Light Pillar has released Portal, a new web browser for the iPhone and iPod touch devices. The $1.99 app is designed to provide a clear, full screen view of the Internet.

Blue Wind has introduced Thief Lupin! 1.0, a free, one-button game for the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. The multi-level game is...

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Jan 31
PayPal hires seven-year Apple veteran

PayPal has hired Sarah Brody, a seven-year veteran of Apple, as vice president of Global Design, reports "All Things D" (http://macte.ch/d2D4r).

At PayPal, Brody will focus on improving the PayPal user experience and making sure that its payment platform is easy to use, the article adds. At Apple, Brody worked on the first iPhone and an early version of the iPod Nano. Some of her more recent design work can be seen on the homepages of Final Cut Studio, Logic Studio and Pro, says "All Things D."

| Read more »
Jan 31
26% of apps downloaded in 2010 were used just once

The market for phone and tablet apps is very competitive, with about 400,000 iPhone/iPad and 200,000 Android apps. The good news is that customers seem very willing to give new apps a try; it took only two weeks for 8th grader Robert Nay’s Bubble Ball to unseat Angry Birds.

The bad news is that 26% of the time customers never give the app a second try, according to Localytics. The research group studied thousands of iPhone, iPad, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone 7 apps using its real-time app analytics service.

For all new customers of an app in 2010, Localytics looked for the first time each customer used the app and whether or not there was any follow-on usage through Jan. 26, 2011. All one-time uses of apps were grouped into the quarter they occurred and calculated as a percentage of all new customers in the same quarter.

The resulting analysis shows that for customers using an app for the first time between January and March, about 22% of them never...

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Jan 31
Analyst: 65 million Phones to be sold this year

BMO Capital analyst Keith Bachman raised his estimate of iPhone sales based on the smartphone market outlook offered this morning by his colleague, Tim Long, reports "Barron's" (http://macte.ch/duEma).

Bachman sees 14.9 million iPhones being sold, up from a prior 14.6 million estimate, with gains at Verizon offset by churn at AT&T. For the fiscal year ending in September, Bachman sees 65 million iPhones being sold versus a prior view of 62 million. Bachman sees the higher number boosting revenue for Apple this year to US$97.1 billion, higher than he expected by $1.8 billion. He also raised his EPS [earnings per share] estimate to $22.30 from $21.60.

For fiscal 2012, Bachman now sees Apple selling 84.3 million iPhones, up from 79.1 million previously. He raised his revenue estimate $113.9 billion, up from $111 billion. His EPS estimate goes to $26.05 from $25.20.

| Read more »
Jan 31
AJA ships Ki Pro Mini portable flash disk recorder

AJA Video Systems (http://www.ajasystems.com) is now shipping the Ki Pro Mini, the smaller, lighter version of its portable tapeless recorder that captures to the Apple ProRes 422 codec directly from a camera. It has a manufacturer's suggested retail price of US$1,995.

With its miniature form factor and ability to mount to a range of digital cameras and accessories, Ki Pro Mini makes for the smallest camera and recorder package available for the capture of high-quality 10-bit 4:2:2 files that are immediately ready for editing, according to AJA President Nick Rashby. It bridges production and post, effectively eliminating log and capture, he adds. Key features include:

° 10-bit full-raster recording to Apple ProRes 422 SD and HD formats (including HQ, LT and Proxy);

° The ability to record SD/HD files from digital video cameras to Compact Flash (CF) cards;

° Mac OS X friendly...

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Jan 31
Intel identifies chipset design error, implementing a solution

Intel (http://www.intel.com) has discovered a design issue in a recently released support chip, the Intel 6 Series, code-named Cougar Point, and has implemented a silicon fix. In some cases, the Serial-ATA (SATA) ports within the chipsets may degrade over time, potentially impacting the performance or functionality of SATA-linked devices such as hard disk drives and DVD-drives.

The chipset is utilized in computers with Intel’s latest Second Generation Intel Core processors, code-named Sandy Bridge. Sandy Bridge is expected to start popping up in Macs soon.

Intel has stopped shipment of the affected support chip from its factories. The company says it has corrected the design issue, and has begun manufacturing a new version of the support chip which will resolve the issue. The Sandy Bridge microprocessor is unaffected and no other products are affected by this issue.

The company expects to begin...

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Jan 31
Intrexx is new Enterprise Portal software for Mac OS X

United Planet (http://www.unitedplanet.com), a developer of Enterprise Portal software in Europe, has introduced Intrexx for Mac OS X to enable companies to create and operate web-based business applications and Enterprise Portals for the Mac environment.
 
"No one can doubt the popularity of the iPhone and iPad in the business world. More and more companies are now also using Apple computers across the business, and not just in a marketing or design environment," says United Planet CEO Axel Wessendorf. "But whilst it is not surprising that business users are moving towards the Mac, given the world-renowned intuitiveness of its operating system, it could be suggested that it has been lacking powerful business software that will enable it to break into more mainstream business environments. We intend to bridge this gap with Intrexx for Mac OS X."
 
Mac users will now be able to...

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Jan 31
Active Storage announces metadata controller appliance for Xsan

Active Storage (http:/www.activestorage.com) has introduced ActiveSAN, a high-performance metadata controller appliance for Xsan and StorNext networks.

In November 2010 Apple announced it would discontinue its Xserve rack-mount server as of Jan. 31. Why? “Since its introduction in the fall of 2009, Mac mini with Snow Leopard Server has become Apple’s most popular server system," the company said.

“On the day that Apple has formally stopped selling Xserve, we have exciting news," CEO Alex Grossman. "Until now, Apple's Xserve was the metadata controller of choice for most Xsan installations, providing enterprise form factor and capabilities. Xsan users in high-pressure industries require datacenter-level quality products to manage their Metadata, but also demand the ease of use and setup of Xsan. Previously, that meant one thing: Xsan on an Xserve. But all that changes today -- with ActiveSAN.”

ActiveSAN is a server-based appliance that incorporates Active...

| Read more »
Jan 31
New app at the Mac Store helps prepare Federal Tax Returns

Taxsoftware.com (http://www.taxsoftware.com) says an application for six of the most often used 2010 federal tax returns is now available on the Mac App Store. The forms can be completed entirely on Macs.

The app for the 2010 tax year version of Form 1040 return includes most forms and schedules needed to prepare tax returns. Paid preparers must be registered with IRS and have an EFIN, a PTIN and an IRS E-services account. They must also be registered with a Taxsoftware.com Eservices account and have a digital ID.

All business forms include depreciation of up to 10 assets and the use of one vehicle for business. The app includes unlimited tax preparation and printing. There is an e-filing charge of US$4 for a Mac App 1040 and a $15 fee for any Mac App business return (1041, 1065, 1120, 1120S and 1099-MISC.)

| Read more »
Jan 31
No Gravity 1.0 game comes to the Mac

Realtech VR has released No Gravity 1.0 (http://www.nogravitythegame.com/mac/), a game originally released as a PSP game that's now on the Mac. It costs US$3.99, requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher and is available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store in the Games category.

The game pits the player against evil forces who have unleashed a mind-altering sickness across thousands of colonies. To help in the fight, each ship comes equipped with six weapons, everything from lasers to ion blasters.

Players have 31 mission levels to play, can choose from six different spaceships and two levels of difficulty. No Gravity requires OpenGL 2.0 or better.

| Read more »
Jan 31
WordCrasher update, now on the Mac App Store

Kevin Ng Games (http://kevinnggames.com) has announced WordCrasher 1.0.3, an update to his tactile word game that's now available on the Mac App Store.

WordCrasher offers a take on the word game genre; letter discs fall and collect on the screen as the player touches discs in sequence to make words. WordCrasher features realistic tactile physics, three difficulty settings, comes with new music and graphics designed for the Mac version and more. Version 1.0.3 adds game dictionaries in four new languages.

WordCrasher 1.0.3 is available worldwide through the Mac App Store. It normally costs $3.99, but is available for $0.99 price for a limited period. WordCrasher for the Mac App Store requires Mac OS X 10.6.6.

| Read more »
Jan 31
Canalys: Android now world's leading smartphone platform

The Canalys research group (http://www.canalys.com) has published its final fourth quarter (Q4 2010) global country-level smart phone market data, which revealed that Google’s Android has become the leading platform.

Shipments of Android-based smart phones reached 32.9 million, while devices running Nokia’s Symbian platform trailed slightly at 31.0 million worldwide. But Nokia did retain its position as the leading global smart phone vendor, with a share of 28%. Apple had 16% market share compared to 16.3% in Q4 2009. However, the number of iPhones shipped rose from 8.7 million to 16.2 million from Q4 2009 to Q4 2010.

The fourth quarter also saw the worldwide smart phone market continue to soar, with shipments of 101.2 million units representing year-on-year growth of 89%. The final quarter took shipments for the year to fractionally below 300 million units, with an annual growth rate of 80% over...

| Read more »
 
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