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Jan 14
Apple App Store nears 10 billionth download

The Apple App Store is nearing its 10 billionth download, and Apple has a promotion that will give the person who downloads the 10 billionth application an US$10,000 gift card.

A counter at http://www.apple.com/itunes/10-billion-app-countdown/ counts down the sales to the 10 billionth app. The site says: "As of today, nearly 10 billion apps have been downloaded from the App Store worldwide. Which is almost as amazing as the apps themselves. So we want to say thanks. Download the 10 billionth app, and you could win an US$10,000 iTunes Gift Card. Just visit the App Store, and download what could be your best app yet."

| Read more »
Jan 14
Students at four Singapore schools getting iPads

Four schools in Singapore have begun giving iPads to students, reports "Reuters" (http://macte.ch/gm5md).

Nanyang Girls High School has spent approximately $100,000) to buy 150 iPads for 140 students and 10 teachers in a pilot project, the article says. Users connect to the Internet using the tablet, and download books and course material.

Seah Hui Yong, dean of admissions at Nanyang Girls school, told "Reuters" that the iPad was chosen because it complemented a new method of teaching under which students are given more freedom to learn themselves, instead of relying solely on the teacher in traditional classrooms.

Nanyang Girls is a secondary school, which means the youngest students are 12. Other schools in Singapore using the tablet include Tampines Secondary School, Nanhua Primary School and Dunman Secondary School.

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Jan 14
NewerTech introduces Pad Protector Leather Folio for the iPad

Newer Technology (http://www.newertech.com) has announced the Pad Protector, an US$24.95, lightweight leather folio/carrying case for the iPad. It's available in choice of red or black leather.

The Pad Protector features a leather cover that discreetly fastens with the use of high-powered slimline magnets. Inside, smooth suede leather provides a scratch-free environment for an iPad. A top loading, full-framed holder keeps the iPad in place while allowing complete access to all ports and controls.

A magnetized flap acts like a "kickstand," so the iPad can be positioned for optimum viewing and typing comfort. The Pad Protector weighs 7.8 ounces and includes a bonus screen protector.

| Read more »
Jan 14
WSJ: launch of 'The Daily' iPad mag delayed

News Corp and Apple Inc are delaying the launch of the media conglomerate's digital newspaper for the iPad, the "Wall Street Journal" (http://macte.ch/j3cIq) reports, citing "people familiar with the matter."

The tablet newspaper, dubbed "The Daily," was supposed to be unveiled next Wednesday. However, the two parties decided they need more time to test a subscription service, the "Journal" says.

News Corp confirmed the delay but declined to comment. And Apple had no comment.

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Jan 14
Apple releases Epson Printer Drivers 2.5.1

Apple has released Epson Printer Drivers 2.5.1 for Mac OS X 10.6 and higher. You can obtain the 837.73MB download by using the Software Updates component of Mac OS X's Systems Preferences app.

This update installs the latest software for your Epson printer or scanner. You can view a list of supported Epson models at http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3669#epson .

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Jan 14
Intel reports record year, fourth quarter

Intel (http://www.intel.com) has reported full-year revenue of US$43.6 billion, operating income of $15.9 billion, net income of $11.7 billion, and EPS [earnings per share] of $2.05 -- all records.

The company generated approximately $16.7 billion in cash from operations, paid cash dividends of $3.5 billion, and used $1.5 billion to repurchase 70 million shares of common stock. For the fourth-quarter, Intel posted revenue of $11.5 billion.

The company reported fourth-quarter operating income of $4.3 billion, net income of $3.4 billion, and EPS of 59 cents. Fourth-quarter revenue, operating income, net income, and EPS were also all records.

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Jan 14
Two billion FireWire ports shipped worldwide

FireWire, the computer, consumer electronics and industrial systems interface, reached the two billion ports milestone in 2010 and will continue its steady growth worldwide throughout 2011, the 1394 Trade Association (http://www.1394ta.org), of which Apple is a member.

The two billion FireWire ports shipped provide more than 1.2 billion consumer and computer products with reliable, versatile high-speed connections available from developers of FireWire silicon including Texas Instruments, LSI, and PLX Technology, among others, according to Max Bassler, chairman of the 1394 Trade Association. FireWire continues to be applied in a wide range of PCs, storage systems, new generations of set top boxes, industrial and factory automation equipment, and professional audio system, he adds.

The 1394 Trade Association estimates the total of 1394-equipped devices will increase again in 2011. The group foresees...

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Jan 14
DigiPower unveils new iPad accessories

Mizco International’s (http://www.mizco.com) DigiPower division has unveiled a new line of accessories for the iPad that feature cases and stands in a variety of design solutions.  
 
The US$29.99 Coffee Clutch does away with the clutter, providing iPad stand and case functionality in a single package. It's designed to hold the iPad at the optimal angle for watching movies, viewing photos or surfing the web. When on the go, you can grab the built in handle or attach the included strap to carry it like a shoulder bag.
 
The $29.99 DigiPower E-Z Rest for iPad works in portrait or landscape mode for use on a desk, or just lounging on the couch. The fold-flat stand lets you transport the Apple tablet, and with its slide-in contoured design the iPad is cradled and protected whether at home or on the go.  
 
The $29.99 Universal Charging Dock will charge your iPad, iPhone or iPod.  Its...

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Jan 14
NAMM: Solid State Logic intros X-Rack Stereo Dynamics Module

Solid State Logic (http://www.solidstatelogic.com) has introduced the X-Rack Stereo Dynamics Module at this week's Winter NAMM show.

The new X-Rack Module delivers the same sonic signature as the channel strip processing of SSL’s large format Duality console and the mono X-Rack SuperAnalogue Dynamics Module in a stereo configuration. The module is intended for stereo tracking or stem mixing and further extends the availability of SSL’s sonic heritage to studios of all sizes, says Niall Feldman, director of new products for Solid State Logic.

The X-Rack Stereo Dynamics Module is a stereo version of the SuperAnalogue Dynamics Module. Featuring Compressor/Limiter and Expander/Gate circuits, the Stereo Dynamics Module provides the familiar SSL level control tools for both recording and mixing applications.

The Compressor section can switch between a gentle Soft Knee (Over Easy)...

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Jan 14
NAMM: Powersoft M Series power amplifiers shipping

Powersoft (http://www.powersoft-audio.com) -- a manufacturer of green design power amplifiers -- announced at this week's Winter NAMM 2011 that the M Series line of power amplifiers is now shipping to distributors.

The M Series consists of five new models that include two 4-channel and three 2-channel versions. M Series amplifiers come in a one-rack-unit chassis, 14.1-inch in depth and weighing just over 16 pounds.

The M50Q and M28Q are 4-channel models, delivering up to 1,250W/ch into 4 ohms. The M30D, M20D and M14D offer 2-channels each with a maximum output of 1,500W/ch at 4 ohms. The entire range reaches down to 360W/ch into 8 ohms, resulting in greater flexibility for a wide range of applications, according to Claudio Lastrucci, Powersoft’s managing director.

The M Series features Powersoft’s plug-in DSP module. When installed and preset to meet the needs of a particular...

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Jan 14
NAMM: Aviom introduces prepackaged digital snakes

Aviom (http://www.aviom.com), a developer of the A-Net audio transport protocol is introducing prepackaged Pro16 digital snakes in a variety of configurations that are tailored for a range of applications and ensemble sizes.

While Aviom -- displaying at this week's Winter NAMM show -- is best known for its industry standard personal mixing system, the company has also been a leader in distributing audio over Cat-5. Both its Pro16 Series of digital snake components. They're solutions for creating digital audio systems for houses of worship, schools, theaters, sound companies, studios, and broadcast companies. Contact the company for pricing options.

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Jan 14
NAMM: True1 Connector debuts

Neutrik USA (http://www.neutrik.com) -- a manufacturer of professional audio, video, data and industrial connectors -- has announced the U.S. debut of its powerCon True1 AC power connector at Winter NAMM.

The lockable, extremely robust system of single-phase connectors is among the first of its kind to feature IEC 60320 breaking capacity, designed for 16 A, 250 V. This makes it suitable for concerts and similarly staged productions where the electrical equipment is often confined to a small area, making safety a top priority.
 
A complete system, including inlet and outlet couplers for easy daisy chaining of equipment, the powerCon True1 also provides for high-density requirements with a duplex chassis connector combining an inlet and outlet coupler. Thanks to its high-breaking capacity, performance crew workers and other production professionals can connect large amounts of electrical equipment...

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Jan 14
NAMM: Auralex introduces new diffusor series

At this week's Winter NAMM show, Auralex Acoustics (http://www.auralex.com) has released its first line of acoustical products made from 100% eco-friendly bamboo, the Sustain Bamboo Sound Diffusor Series.

The new line -- which consists of the WavePrism, WaveLens, QuadraTec, Peak Pyramid Diffusor and KeyPacs, retains the longevity and acoustical qualities Auralex is known for with green and acoustical properties of natural bamboo -- says Eric Smith, founder and president of Auralex Acoustics. The Auralex WavePrism eliminates flutter echoes and other acoustical anomalies without removing acoustical energy from the space, he says.
 
Auralex WaveLens’ open-boxed design scatters and redirects acoustical energy. The WaveLens can be beneficial in numerous applications as it can create a “large sound” in a small room, as it can optimize existing absorption panels by redirecting the sound energy,...

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Jan 14
InvisiblelSHIELD available for the Verizon iPhone

ZAGG (http://www.ZAGG.com) says will continue its invisibleSHIELD and ZAGGskins protection for the iPhone 4 when the Apple smartphone is released to Verizon customers beginning on Feb. 10.


The invisibleSHIELD is ZAGG's patent-pending, "indestructible film" that protects evices all from bumps, scratches, and dings. ZAGGskins are customized images and designs fused with the invisibleSHIELD to provide personalized protection.

The invisibleSHIELD, ZAGGsparq, ZAGGsmartbuds and ZAGGskins for the iPhone are available online at the ZAGG web site. The company is shipping the invisibleSHIELD to its retail partners.

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Jan 14
iHub update boasts Android/Mac syncing

Nova media (http://www.novamedia.de) has updated iHub Basic for Mac OS X to version 2.13, a free upgrade for registered users. The US$29.95 software syncs contacts and calendars automatically and wirelessly between Macs, iPhones, iPads and iPod touches in any local network.

The new version supports synchronizing contacts and calendars between Macs and Android devices. The necessary sync client for Android can be downloaded from the Android marketplace for free.

The software installs on a Mac and shares selected calendars, contacts and address book groups. Other Macs and iOS devices on the same network can access and edit any shared data. iHub Basic doesn't require any additional client software as it uses the open standards CalDAV and CardDAV which are supported by default by Mac OS X and iOS.

"Thanks to iHub Basic, there is no need to store sensitive on any far-away cloud service," says...

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Jan 14
HoudahGeo 2.8 improves error handling during export, more

Houdah Software (http://www.houdah.com/) has updated HoudahGeo, a geocoding solution for the Mac, to version 2.8. The new version brings improved error handling to the publishing options of the software.

HoudahGeo costs US$30 for a single-user license for new users. Version 2.8 is a free update for registered users. HoudahGeo requires Mac OS X 10.4.8 or higher.

| Read more »
Jan 14
Jumsoft adds five themes to its Keynote collection

Jumsoft (http://www.jumsoft.com) has expanded its collection design themes for Keynote, the presentation component of Apple's US$79 iWork suite. The five new themes include up to 50 master slides, a mix of bullet text and photo-oriented layouts.

The Keynote Themes line includes 15 themes. The five new ones range from the clear-cut Highlight to the colorful Rapture Light and the soft Warm & Fuzzy.

The themes include up to 50 master slides -- a mix of bullet text and photo-oriented layouts. The layouts have custom bullets, matching tables, and easily readable charts. All photo slides feature media placeholders to crop a placed image into a custom shape. The complimentary Bullets folder includes a set of 15 extra bullet designs, which can be used to further customize any of the themes for a specific case.

The Jumsoft themes require iWork '08 or later. Each theme costs US$19.

| Read more »
Jan 14
Syncro Soft releases Oxygen XML Editor, Oxygen XML Author 12.1

Syncro Soft (http://www.oxygenxml.com) has released version 12.1 of its Oxygen XML Editor and XML Author, which contains a set of tools supporting all the XML related technologies.

The upgrade adds new features to the Author editing mode like the smart paste action that automatically converts content from Office suite applications or from a web browser to DITA, DocBook or TEI, improves the XML authoring in areas like reference management, change tracking, CSS rendering support and extends the application programming interface to incorporate feedback from partners which integrate Oxygen  with CMSs or other applications.

On the XML development side the new version introduces the Quick Assist helper to facilitate access to search and refactoring actions plus a number of improvements to the XSLT and XQuery debuggers and to the Relax NG schema editor.

The integrated Subversion client and XML...

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Jan 14
iWeb Themes Park releases five new themes

iWeb Themes Park (http://www.iwebthemespark.com) has released new themes -- Music Player, Puzzle, Silhouette, Starting Point and Winter Sports -- for iWeb, the presentation component of Apple's iLife suite.

Here's how the themes are described: "Winter Sports theme is relevant for everyone who likes activities on the snow. Music Player and Puzzle themes are colorful and help to represent different lifestyles. Starting Point theme can be a key for starting and presenting your small business. Silhouette theme is perfect to express the ideas of educational, environmental or other organizations."

To use iWeb Themes from iWeb Themes Park requires iWeb from iLife '08, iLife '09 or iLife '11.
The iWeb Themes Box of 90 themes is priced at US$47.77. Ten iWeb Themes in a Combo Package can be purchased for $29.99. Each template is available for $11.99 or $12.99. Using the coupon code “...

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Jan 14
Virtual Programming offers Majesty 2 expansion pack

Virtual Programming (http://www.vpltd.com) has released Monster Kingdom, the final chapter in the Majesty 2 expansion trilogy for Mac OS X. It requires Mac OS X 10.6.3 or higher and costs US$14.95.

Here's how it's described: "One King to Rule Them All: Those words launch Monster Kingdom, the final chapter in the Majesty 2 expansion trilogy for Mac OS X. Players defeated all manner of threats to their kingdom in previous adventures, but now they face the theft of the Crown of Ardania by the High Priests. With only their trusted advisor to guide them, players embark on the Exiles of Fate campaign to regain the throne, relying on unlikely allies along the way."

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Jan 14
iPresentee offers new Keynote themes

iPresentee (http://www.ipresentee.com/) has released Keynote Themes 8.0, to be used with Keynote, the presentation component of Apple's US$79 iWork package.

Offering over 80 themes to choose from Keynote Themes are stylized templates with coordinated designs. This new release includes 10 new themes: Cloverleaf, Dew Drops, Paperclips, Crayon, Splash of Ink, Color Block, Water Drops, Color Spectrum, Yellow Art and Color Curves.

Each Keynote Theme is available in standard or HD formats. These new Keynote Themes has from 18 to 23 different master slide layouts. Creating a presentation using new Keynote themes is exactly the same as creating a presentation using the usual themes; users can add, edit, and format text. They can add photos or movies and use Keynote's transitions and special effects.

Keynote Themes 8.0 requires Mac OS X 10.4.3or later and iWork '08 or iWork '09. It may be...

| Read more »
Jan 13
iPhone/iPod/iPad apps for Jan. 13

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

955 Dreams has announced The History of Jazz, an interactive timeline for the iPad. The US$9.99 app features the legends of Jazz and provides an understanding of the various genres in Jazz complete with album previews and detailed biographies for each artist.

Oceanhouse Media has released two new omBooks on the App Store: "The Berenstain Bears Do Their Best" for $2.99 and "Little Critter's The New Baby" for $1.99. The former tells the story of Papa Bear helping Brother and Sister Bear make their very own kite. The latter has Little Critter getting used to a new baby sister.

Power App has introduced SysMoni 1.0 for the iPhone and iPod touch. The $0.99 app provides complete activity, system, and hardware monitoring. Similar in function to the Mac OS X...

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Jan 13
Apple posts double digit Mac sales gains

Apple bucked the U.S. trend last quarter by posting double-digit Mac sales gains. Still, the Mac dropped to the fifth spot in U.S. computer sales during the final quarter of 2010 as strong sales to businesses by rivals pushed it two places down the list.

Both IDC and Gartner had Apple in the No. 5 position for the fourth quarter, behind Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Acer and Toshiba. According to the IDC research group, Apple sold over 6.5 million Macs in the US in fiscal year 2010 for 8.8% market share. The compares to over 5.6 million Mac shipments in 2009 for 7.8% market share -- a growth of 18.4%.

According to Gartner, Apple sold 1.9 million Mac desktops and laptops during the fourth quarter to snare 9.7% of the U.S. market. IDC listed U.S. Mac sales at 1.7 million, giving Apple an 8.7% share. Apple beat the U.S. industry average growth rate by huge margins. Only once since 2003 has the Mac not grown in year-over-year sales faster than the industry average. For the...

| Read more »
Jan 13
Survey: Verizon iPhone will have 'major impact' on US...

With the Verizon iPhone release now set for early February, the ChangeWave research group (http://www.changewave.com) recently surveyed 4,050 consumers on their impressions and future plans regarding their wireless providers, including customer satisfaction, loyalty and demand trends going forward. The survey focused on the impact of a Verizon iPhone on the U.S. wireless service providers -- and found the impact would be major.

First, ChangeWave asked survey respondents how likely they were to change their wireless service provider in the next 90 days. A total of 10% said they plan on switching providers -- two points higher than a previous ChangeWave survey in September and the highest churn level of the past 18 months.

Only 4% of Verizon’s customers plan to switch in the next 90 days. In comparison, 10% of Sprint/Nextel’s customers say they plan to switch, as do 15% of both T-Mobile’s and AT...

| Read more »
Jan 13
Nevosoft announces two new game titles on the Mac App Store

Nevosoft (http://nevosoft.com/) has released two titles on the Mac App Store: Laura Jones and the Gate of Good and Evil and Laura Jones and the Secret Legacy of Nikola Tesla. These adventure games -- whic cost US$4.99 each -- offer a mixture of hidden object searches, inventory-based puzzles and mini-games.

Certain parts of the screen can be zoomed in on, and occasionally you will also get spot-the-difference puzzles, or have to move objects aside to uncover the item you are seeking. They require Mac OS X 10.6 or higher and

Here's how the games are described: "The first game starts when Laura Jones gets a letter about a powerful ancient talisman. The universe Evil is trying to possess sacred powers and Laura saves the world from fatal destruction. The sequel's story begins when Laura heads to Europe and discovers a letter from the famous 20th century inventor Nikola Tesla. The note provides clues to the...

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