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Mar 18
Private Contact 2.4 for Mac OS X adds simplified interface, more

Tension Software (http://pomola.com/products_privatecontact/privatecontact.html) has updated Private Contact, a native Cocoa software to manage an address book in an encrypted form in Mac OS X (10.4 and higher), to version 2.4. The upgrade boasts an improved main window layout, a simplified interface, improved category dialog, embedded PDF user guide and more.

With Private Contact informations inside documents, relative to various persons, can be read only by the Mac owner. In case of unauthorized access or theft of the Mac, the data inside Private Contact documents can’t be read without the proper master password.

Private Contact uses the powerful Blowfish algorithm to encrypt data. It's Universal Binary so runs natively on both PowerPC and Intel Macs.

Private Contact can be purchased for US$25. Version 2.4 is a free...

| Read more »
Mar 17
Switzerland is the country with the most Mac market share

Pingdom (http://www.royal.pingdom.com) -- a site that covers Internet and online technology -- has examined operating system market share from across the globe using StatCounter web metrics data to find out where Macs are the most popular. And the winner is .... Switzerland with 17.61%.

Pingdom says the top 10 countries in terms of Mac market share: Switzerland, Luxembourg (15.79%), the United States (15.36%), Iceland (15.18%), Canada (14.03%), Australia (13.94%), New Zealand (12.84%), Norway (12.14%), Denmark (11.71%) and Singapore (10.69%). Just outside the top 10 you find countries like Sweden, Japan, the United Kingdom, France, Belgium and Finland.

When it comes to market share in different world regions, North America comes in at number one (14.09%), closely followed by Oceania/Australia (13.71%), then Europe (6.23%) as a distant third. The Mac has less than 2% market share in Asia,...

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Mar 17
iPhone/iPod touch/iPad apps for March 17

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

Icon Games Entertainment has announced Family Games for the iPhone and iPad. The US$1.99 app offers different multiplayer modes and game variations to choose from. Gamers can challenge their friends and family members to a tournament of skill and luck in games ranging from Dots to Hangman.

CashMap App founder and inventor Dennis Williams has released his iPad personal budgeting app called CashMap. The $19.99 app shows consumers how managing their average daily balance enables them to pay off debt, lower their borrowing costs and visualize their financial picture over the coming years.

Digiarty has launched PetsWar 1.0 for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The $2.99 game charges players with assigning and matching an army of combat-ready pets to...

| Read more »
Mar 17
Real Software to donate 5% of sales to Japan relief efforts

Real Software will be donating 5% of the company’s total sales for the week of March 20-26 to the American Red Cross’ earthquake and tsunami relief fund for Japan. All of Real Software’s products including new licenses on its Desktop and Web Editions, renewals, upgrades and support plans will be applicable.  

“Allocating a portion of sales for our neighbors in Japan after this devastating disaster is one small way we can help,” says Geoff Perlman, founder and CEO of Real Software.  

Real Studio is a cross-platform software development tool suited to creating a wide range of applications, from utilities to enterprise-class applications. Real Studio Personal Edition for Mac, Windows or Linux is priced at US$99 and is geared for hobbyists and students. Real Studio Professional Edition, required for cross-platform (Mac OS X, Windows and Linux) compilation, is $299. Real Studio Web Edition is now available and priced at $599.

Real Studio Enterprise Edition, made...

| Read more »
Mar 17
Mac App Store now home to over 4,200 apps

In just ten weeks, the Mac App Store has seen its inventory of apps rise from around 1,000 to over 4,200, reports "InformationWeek" (http://macte.ch/GKjZc). It launched on Jan. 7.

The Mac App Store offers apps in Education, Games, Graphics & Design, Lifestyle, Productivity, Utilities and other categories. Users can browse new and noteworthy apps, find out what’s hot, see staff favorites, search categories and look up top charts for paid and free apps, as well as user ratings and reviews. The Mac App Store is available for Snow Leopard users through the Software Update as part of Mac OS X 10.6.6.

Mac developers set the price for their apps, keep 70% of the sales revenue, are not charged for free apps and don't have to pay hosting, marketing or credit card fees. To find out more about developing for the Mac App Store visit developer.apple.com/programs/mac .

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Mar 17
iPhone tops J.D. Power rankings in customer satisfaction

Overall satisfaction with smartphones and traditional mobile phones is considerably higher among owners who use their devices for social media activity, compared with satisfaction among owners who do not access social media platforms on their phones, according to new studies by J.D. Power and Associates (http://www.JDPower.com). And the iPhone is tops in customer satisfaction.

For a fifth consecutive time, Apple ranks highest among manufacturers of smartphones in customer satisfaction with a score of 795 and performs particularly well in ease of operation, operating system, features and physical design. Motorola (763) and HTC (762) follow Apple in the smartphone rankings.

Sanyo ranks highest in overall wireless customer satisfaction with traditional handsets with a score of 715. Sanyo performs well in three factors: physical design, battery functionality and operation. LG (711) and Samsung (703)...

| Read more »
Mar 17
Credit Suisse sets Apple price target of $500 a share

Credit Suisse on Thursday launched analyst coverage of Apple with an outperform rating and a price target of US$500 a share, reports "MarketWatch" (http://macte.ch/9XqCp).

"We conclude that Apple should be able to deliver outsized revenue/earnings growth of 50%/46% over the next two years, which is significantly ahead of consensus expectations, given a sustained competitive advantage in software, hardware and services/apps ecosystem," analyst Kulbinder Garcha said in a note to clients.

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Mar 17
Some 2011 MacBook Pros not playing nice with iTunes Home Sharing

Some owners of Apple's 2011 MacBook Pros say they can't connect devices or maintain connections through iTunes Home Sharing.

A support thread (http://macte.ch/UGCse) in Apple's Discussion forums has received over 200 posts from owners of Apple's latest MacBook Pros reporting issues with iTunes Home Sharing. Several readers have also contacted "AppleInsider" (http://www.appleinsider.com) regarding the issue. According to forum user 'themacbear,' the new MacBook Pro was able to stream to a second-generation Apple TV at first, but then the Apple TV reported being unable to connect or would display the error message "There are no movies in this library."

Home Sharing in iTunes is designed to let you stream and transfer music, videos, and more with up to five other computers on your local network. Home Sharing is linked to a single...

| Read more »
Mar 17
Study: Android faster than the iPhone in loading web pages

The latest Android smartphone loaded Web pages 52% faster than iPhone 4 running iOS 4.3, according to thousands of independent field tests by Blaze Software -- as reported by "Computerworld" (http://macte.ch/OMA7d).

The web page load times were about a second apart for the two devices in a study that amassed 45,000 load tests in all. For Android 2.3 on the Google Nexus S smartphone using a version of Chrome, the median load time was 2.144 seconds, compared to 3.254 seconds for iPhone 4 on iOS 4.3 running a version of Safari, according to the study.

Blaze used Fortune 1,000 web sites for the tests, running the web page loading tests repeatedly over Wi-Fi and 3G wireless connections with nothing else running on the phones at the time, says "Computerworld." The Android phone was faster than the iPhone in loading 84% of the tested Web sites. "Android wasn't just faster overall, but rather provided a faster...

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Mar 17
Steve Jobs emails Apple staff in Japan

Apple CEO Steve Jobs is reported to have sent a message to Apple staff regarding the recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The contents of the email were posted to Chihouban.com (via Macotakara), and "MacRumors" (http://www.macrumors.com) also received a copy of it independently. The email was said to have been sent to all Apple employees and reads:

"To Our Team in Japan,

"We have all been following the unfolding disaster in Japan. Our hearts go out to you and your families, as well as all of your countrymen who have been touched by this tragedy.

"If you need time or resources to visit or care for your families, please see HR and we will help you. If you are aware of any supplies that are needed, please also tell HR and we will do what we can to arrange delivery.

"Again, our hearts go out to you during this unimaginable crisis.


"Please stay safe.


"Steve and the entire Executive Team...

| Read more »
Mar 17
Western Digital introduces 6TB storage system

Western Digital has introduced its My Book Studio Edition II dual-drive storage system with 6TB of storage. The new capacity provides users 33% more storage than the previous capacity, while maintaining the same footprint.

Combining its extended 6TB storage capacity and compatibility with Apple's Time Machine, the new My Book Studio Edition II drive becomes an instant storage solution for a variety of professions including art and design, photography, legal and medical, and a host of other small businesses, according to the folks at WD. The system offers a quad interface: eSATA, FireWire 800, FireWire 400 and USB 2.0.

The My Studio Edition II sports WD GreenPower Technology that consumes approximately one-third less power than standard dual-drive external storage systems and convection cooling architecture and power-saving mode and designed without a fan to run quietly. It's user serviceability, enabling you to open the enclosure and replace the drive inside.

...

| Read more »
Mar 17
'New York Times' launches digital subscriptions

"The New York Times" is launching digital subscriptions, which will affect some users of its award-winning website, NYTimes.com, and its applications for smartphones and tablets.

The subscription plan allows for free access to a set amount of content across digital platforms. When the monthly reading limit is reached, users who aren't already home delivery subscribers will be asked to become digital subscribers.

Digital subscriptions will be available in the United States and globally on March 28. "The Times" is launching digital subscriptions in the Canadian market beginning today in order to fine-tune the customer experience prior to the global launch.

For non-home delivery subscribers, the basic package -- NYTimes.com plus Smartphone App -- will start at $15 every four weeks. The NYTimes.com plus Smartphone App package is currently available for purchase by users in Canada. On March 28, the global launch, "The Times" will offer three digital subscription...

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Mar 17
Divine Wind expansion pack blows onto the Mac

Virtual Programming (http://www.vpltd.com) has released Divine Wind for Mac OS X 10.6 or higher. It's the fourth expansion pack for the strategy game Europa Unversalis III and costs US$14.95.

Here's how Divine Wind is described: "Players travel to medieval Japan and assume the role of one of four major daimyos vying for influence with the Emperor and control over the Shogunate. A new graphical style brings the action to life on a detailed map packed with many new provinces, including internal Chinese factions that must be managed to keep the Mandate of Heaven.

"Divine Wind also features dozens of new culture-specific building types, giving players greater control over province development, along with enhanced diplomacy functions offering more options for alliances and peace negotiations. In addition, trade development is more realistic and allows players to control strategic resources that grant bonuses....

| Read more »
Mar 17
AssistiveWare, LVI join forces on Mac OS X

AssistiveWare (http://www.assistiveware.com) has partnered with LVI Low Vision International to deliver enhanced access to Mac OS X for people with vision impairments.

The result of this collaboration is MagniLink iMax, a magnification and screen reader for Mac OS X, which serves as a companion to LVI's MagniLink Student portable video magnifier. The software provides magnification, image enhancement and pointer settings as well as screen reading with high-quality speech output.

With the inclusion of the Infovox iVox Text-To-Speech voices by Acapela Group, MagniLink iMax comes with automatic language identification in the screen reader mode and also includes ConvenienceWare GhostReader, an application for reading selected text and documents, which extends the built-in text-to-speech features of Mac OS X.

GhostReader contains shortcut keys for access to the text, and the user can...

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Mar 17
Power Utility for Mac OS X updated to version 1.0.1

Tension Software has updated Power Utility (http://macte.ch/n7oLK) for Mac OS X 10.6.6 or higher to version 1.0.1. It's a maintenance update of the US$5.99 app that's only available at the Mac App Store.

Power Utility is an application that lets your Mac, when unattended, to restart, shut down, sleep or log out. It bases all functions on specific conditions or on time schedules you establish.

For example, you can start a download of a big file via Safari in the evening, and Power Utility will watch the download and will shutdown your Mac in the night when the download via Safari (or other browsers) is finished. Or you could have your Mac shutdown an Friday at 10 p.m.

If it's running in the background, Power Utility jumps in the Mac OS X dock to alert you of the upcoming action. After a fast setup, the window shows you the action to be performed, when and how much time remaining to the event,...

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Mar 17
Date Time Calc is date calculating utility for Mac OS X

Date Time Calc (http://www.pomola.com/products_datetimecalc/datetimecalc.html) is a new Mac OS X utility for calculating future and past dates using a given time interval from an assigned date. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.6, costs US$2.99 and is only available at the Mac App Store.

This app is intended for users needing to calculate expected dates after a specific number of days as in a typical business use. An example of periods often used in business: 15, 30, 60, 90, 120 or 150 days.

The dates can be selected using standard calendar controls. The time interval is expressed in days or in a more precise way also using hours, minutes and seconds. A PDf user guide is embedded in the app.

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Mar 17
Scott Kelby is top-selling US photography book author for 2010

Scott Kelby has been recognized as the top-selling photography book author in the U.S. for 2010, according to research based on Nielsen BookScan data.

Kelby’s best-selling photography books include The Digital Photography Book (volumes 1, 2, and 3), which feature hundreds of photographic tips for aspiring photographers, and Photo Recipes Live: Behind the Scenes: Your Guide to Today's Most Popular Lighting Techniques. In addition to Photo Recipes Live: Behind the Scenes, Part 2: Your Guide to Today’s Most Popular Lighting Techniques, Peachpit/New Riders published four other Kelby titles last year: The Adobe Photoshop CS5 Book for Digital Photographers; The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 Book for Digital Photographers; The iPhone Book (Covers iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS), 4th Edition; and The Photoshop Elements 9 Book for Digital Photographers.

In 2010, Peachpit and Kelby released the first app based on one of his books: Scott Kelby’s Photo Recipes Live iApp: Behind the...

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Mar 17
'YML' looks at the iPad 2 -- and Bon Jovi

The new "Your Mac Life" episode looks at the iPad 2, Jon Bon Jovi's iTunes comments and more.

You can listen in this and every Wednesday evening from 5:30 to 8 pm (Pacific). Live video is on Your Mac Life! You can watch the show live at http://yml.macosg.com/ -- or you can listen in to the plain old audio feed at http://www.yourmaclifeshow.com/QT/stream.mov .

You can join one of the two Chat Rooms that run during the live show -- on the live video site or on the dedicated IRC Server at irc.chat-solutions.org in the #yourmaclife Channel.

| Read more »
Mar 16
iPhone/iPod touch/iPad apps for March 16

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

Adobe has announced Adobe Photoshop Express 2.0 software for iOS devices. Available as a free download, Photoshop Express 2.0 introduces a new Adobe Camera Pack for in-app purchase (US$3.99). This Camera Pack includes Reduce Noise, Self Timer and Auto Review features.

Ivanovich Games has released Operation Wow 1.0, their new multi-touch shooter for iPhone and iPad. In the app -- $1.99 for the iPhone and $2.99 for the iPad -- you fight in order to complete the missions and be congratulated by the President. Operation Wow features a story mode with six different stages, including Base Camp, Jungle, Warehouse, Village, Rescue and Airport, as well as three difficulty levels and Game Center support.

iLifeTouch has introduced Finger Alarm 1.0 for the Mac...

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Mar 16
Apple stock down after JMP Securities downgrade

Apple's stock is off by US$10, or 3%, thanks in part to this morning's downgrade from JMP. That's more than twice what the NASDAQ is off.

Apple was downgraded by JMP Securities this morning from "market outperform to market perform." The research group says, "a notable deceleration in its primary manufacturing partner Hon Hai." Hon Hai sales growth is decelerating, suggesting Apple's business could follow.
(Hon Hai is the parent of Foxconn, Apple's notorious manufacturer.)

What's more, JMP thinks iPhone sales could just be in line with expectations this year. It also sees iPad sales eating into Mac sales (though I've seen no evidence that this is happening.).

In fact, as noted by "Business Insider" (http://macte.ch/zkC2E), most analysts on Wall Street think Apple is buy. Also, the theory that slow growth at manufacturer Foxconn could be a bad sign for Apple has been called out by...

| Read more »
Mar 16
Mariner Introduces StoryMill 4 writing software

Mariner Software has released StoryMill 4 for Mac OS X, an update of the software for writing a story or novel. Mariner President Michael Wray says there are several new features in StoryMill 4 that every writer will appreciate, including:

° Snapshots -- the writer can capture a snapshot of any scene or chapter in order to make changes and refer back to that snapshot at any time, comparing new and old versions;

° Novel View -- a story can be viewed and printed in its entirety;

° Redesigned Timeline View -- supporting timelines ranging from minutes to centuries, the new timeline view also offers navigation tools for developing the flow of your story.

StoryMill 4 also now offers a trash feature just like the Mac OS X Finder. The software requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher.

StoryMill costs US$49.95 and is available for trial as a download only from the Mariner Software website (...

| Read more »
Mar 16
Zediva introduces Mac compatible online movie rental service

Zediva (http://www.zediva.com/splash/) is providing a new way for people to watch the latest popular movies online. And it's Mac compatible.

For about the price of a cup of coffee, Zediva users have the ability to instantly watch movies as soon as they become available on DVD. Now movie aficionados can watch many movies as much as 90-180 days (or more) before they could with some other movie rental services, and at prices as much as 60-80% lower than many satellite and cable providers, Venky Srinivasan, founder and CEO of Zediva.

As a special promotion, Zediva is offering all new users two free movies just for signing up before March 31(one offer per household, restrictions apply). Using technology two years in the making, Zediva enables customers to remotely rent a DVD and a DVD player located at Zediva's Silicon Valley data center.

The rental DVD can be watched instantly on a...

| Read more »
Mar 16
FileMaker updates entire Bento product line

FileMaker Inc. (http://www.filemaker.com), a wholly owned subsidiary of Apple, has shipped Bento 4 for Mac, now available on the Mac App Store, and Bento 1.1 for iPhone, and Bento 1.1 for iPad.

New features include the ability to print labels, export libraries with data, automatically add geographical locations to records and lock down forms, says Ryan Rosenberg, vice president of marketing and services for FileMaker, Inc. For the first time with version 4, you can export Bento libraries populated with data and share these with other users.

Sending a complete library to another Bento user is as easy as emailing a file. You can also share your ideas with the world by sending your custom Bento templates directly to the Bento Template Exchange from within Bento 4. The Bento Template Exchange features over 800 free downloadable templates.

Rosenberg says Bento 4 is faster and easier to use....

| Read more »
Mar 16
Gumdrop announces new iPad 2 cases

Gumdrop (http://www.gumdrop.com) has announced the Drop Series for the iPad 2, which cradle the Apple tablet with reinforced rubber corners and a grippy rubber exterior, with fully covered port cutouts, says CEO Tim Hickman.

The highlight of the design is the snap-on, replaceable screen protector, which allows users to enjoy the touch screen and replace the cover if it gets worn, he adds. Available in four colors, the Drop Series iPad 2 case retails for US$59.95 and is set for release in May.

| Read more »
Mar 16
FrameLoader released on the Mac App Store

Nova media has released FrameLoader for Mac OS X 10.6.6 (or higher) in the Mac App Store. The US$11.99 app synchronizes photos, music and movie files on a Mac with digital picture frames, SD cards and USB memory sticks.  

FrameLoader will convert pictures, music and videos automatically into a format that can be displayed by the selected digital picture frame. To display media files on a TV or other devices, the app can synchronize media files with an SD card and USB memory stick.

To select the media contents, FrameLoader displays a list of iPhoto albums and iTunes playlists. They can be checked or unchecked to be synced. Custom media files can be dragged and dropped into FrameLoader and selected accordingly.

A click of the sync button starts the synchronization process and an activity monitor displays the details of the process. A demo version of FrameLoader is available at nova media's website (...

| Read more »
 
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