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Aug 12
Apple widens lead over Dell, HP in customer satisfaction

Apple continues to dominate in customer satisfaction with technical support, widening its lead over Dell and HP, according to the latest study on phone-based customer service quality conducted by Vocalabs (http://www.vocalabs.com).

Apple posted an eight percentage point gain in call satisfaction in the first half of 2010 compared to the second half of 2009, and a six percentage point improvement in agent satisfaction. Apple now leads Dell and HP by more than 20 percentage points on these key service metrics.

Apple customers remain the most satisfied among those surveyed. In telephone interviews conducted immediately following a tech support call during the first half of 2010, 66% of Apple customers said they were “Very Satisfied” with the company overall, compared to 44% of HP customers and 43% of Dell customers.

The National Customer Service Survey (NCSS) compares customer service quality...

| Read more »
Aug 12
UBM TechInsights confirms iPad was designed to use a gyroscope

UBM TechInsights (http://www.ubmtechinsights.com/?cid=PR_Bilski) -- a provider of information services, consulting, and management software for technology companies -- says it's confirmed, using advanced 3D x-ray microtomography signal tracing, that the initial board layout of the iPad was designed for a 3-axis digital gyroscope and that it was likely a different one than used in the iPhone 4.

When Apple released the iPhone 4, it contained the ST Microelectronics L3G4200D 3-axis digital gyroscope. UBM TechInsights Product Manager, Steve Bitton says, "It seemed strange that the iPad did not also include a gyroscope since many of the new applications that were being developed for the iPhone 4 would not function on the iPad."

During a comparative analysis with the iPhone 4, Bitton found an unpopulated spot on the board of the iPad next to the ST Micro STM33DH...

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Aug 12
Art Text update for Mac OS X adds Quick Look support

Developer Daniel Holtwiesche (http://www.ssl-danholt.de/english/24/24/181001/include.html) has updated Art Text -- a Mac OS X app for creating textual graphics, headings, logos, icons and more -- to version 2.3.1. Documents can now be previewed thanks to Quick Look support.

The upgrade brings over 100 new templates, 19 new layer blend modes and two more special layer merge options (subtract and intersect). Also, the performance of the Layer Content panel is improved, minor bugs related to export into GIF and JPEG were fixed, the problem with resizing and rotating several layers was solved, issues with Undo were solved, and there were other technical improvements.

Art Text costs approximately US$37. Version 2.3.1 is a free update for registered users.

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Aug 12
Ramjet releases RAM upgrades for 12-core Mac Pro

The new top-of-the-line Mac Pro, 12-core "Westmere" 2.66Ghz and 2.93Ghz uses RAM new to Apple machines. These DDR3-1333 ECC DIMMs are 25% faster than the memory used in the previous generation Mac Pro.

Ramjet offers kits (http://www.ramjet.com/macpro.asp#3rdGen) containing 2GB, 4GB, or 8GB modules, up to the system maximum of 64GB. The 32GB kit (8x 4GB modules) is priced at US$3,550 from Apple and can be had for $1379.99 at Ramjet. For the true power-user, Ramjet offers a mammoth 64GB kit, not even available from Apple, for $2,839.99.

Ramjet memory includes a lifetime warranty, and you can send your original RAM back to Ramjet for a rebate.

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Aug 12
Digital Video Expo coming Sept. 28-30

NewBay Media, a publisher of digital content creation media, says its 14th annual Digital Video Expo (http://www.dvexpo.com) will return to the Pasadena Convention Center on Sept. 28-30.

It will offer three days of intensive education, training and networking, as well as the opportunity to get their hands on the latest products and services from such industry innovators as Canon USA, Carl Zeiss, JVC, Litepanels, Marshall Electronics, Panasonic, Schneider Optics, Tiffen, Varizoom and Zacuto USA.

In addition to the exhibition on the show floor, highlights of this year’s Digital Video Expo include four conference tracks, free educational sessions, Apple Certification Training in Final Cut Pro 7, new training programs on Avid Media Composer and Adobe CS5, and targeted sessions on lighting, DSLR production and color management. In addition, the Expo will include a new conference, “Where 3D Meets Hollywood”...

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Aug 12
VinylStudio for the Mac spins to version 7.5.4

AlpineSoft has updated their vinyl-and-tape-to-CD-and-MP3 software, VinylStudio for the Mac, to version 7.5.4. The latest version adds support for WAV, MP3, FLAC, Ogg, AIFF, AAC, Apple Lossless and CAF formats.

VinylStudio is a software solution for digitizing vinyl LPs and tapes. It records your records and tapes, splits those recordings into tracks, removes scratches, tape hiss and more and burns both audio and MP3 CDs and DVDs. You can also play your recordings on your computer. VinylStudio can look up track listings over the Internet and copy tracks to your iPod or MP3 player.

VinylStudio comes with audio cleanup filters to remove clicks, crackles, tape hiss and more. All you need is a turntable (or USB turntable) hooked up to your Mac, or you can record cassettes using any cassette player. VinylStudio includes instructions on how to connect up your turntable and will take you through the entire process of digitizing your music step-by-step.

VinylStudio...

| Read more »
Aug 11
Apple TV to become the iTV?

Back before Apple officially debuted the AppleTV, it was widely speculated that it would be dubbed iTV. Well, according to "endgadget" (http://www.engadget.com/2010/08/11/upcoming-apple-tv-loses-1080p-playbac...) Apple is renaming its "hobby" to ... yep ... iTV to bring more in line with "its current iOfferings" and making some major changes.

The article says Apple is planning an US$99 version of the Apple TV/iTV that will be similarly sized and packed with internals akin to that of the iPhone 4 (A4 CPU, 16GB of flash storage), and will introduce new iTunes streaming services the box could take advantage of. But, per "engadget," there's also a change that I certainly hope isn't really coming.

"Apparently the box won't be capable of handling (or enabled to handle) 1080i or...

| Read more »
Aug 11
iPhone/iPod/iPad apps for Aug. 11

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/).

FourthFrame Technologies has announced a new iPad app for managing project risk: SG Risk Log (US$5.99) expands the Simple Genius Apps suite to the domain of risk management.

XMG Studio has released Cannon Cadets 1.0, a $1.99 space age iPhone game. In the physics-based game, you join Rocketboy and his intrepid team of Space Cadets as they venture through 80 illustrated mind twisting levels on four unique planets, four playable characters, and more.

iStoryTime has introduced Danny the Dragon Meets Jimmy, an iPhone and iPad app for deaf children. It's a vivid audio-visual presentation that includes a sign-language interpretation. iStoryTime books are available globally for $0.99-$2.99 in the Apple App Store in 80 countries.

Chegg.com,...

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Aug 11
Apple updates iOS

Apple has updated iOS for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. The new versions are designed to fix a vulnerability in the way Safari handles PDF files on the idevices.

The updates should also disable the web-based JailbreakMe service. The new versions are iOS 4.0.2 for the iPhone and iPod touch and iOS 3.2.2 for the iPad.

| Read more »
Aug 11
ProofPront introduces the iPhone Recovery Stick

ProofPront has released the US$197.95 iPhone Recovery Stick (http://www.proofpronto.com/iphone-recovery-stick.html), a new product that allows access to deleted text messages, call logs, contacts, appointments, internet history and other data from the iPhone.

It combines hardware and software, purportedly enabling the same forensic technology used by law enforcement agencies around the world to be employed by parents, spouses and business owners with little to no data recovery expertise. To recover data from an iPhone, unfortunately, you'll unfortunately have to connect the phone to a USB port on a Windows computer, then plug the iPhone Recovery Stick into a second USB port.

Once the program is started, the recovery process can take from 15 minutes up to several hours, depending on the amount of data on the phone. The user can then view,...

| Read more »
Aug 11
Ilium Software releases eWallet for Mac OS X

Ilium Software has released eWallet (http://www.iliumsoft.com/ewalletmac), an US$19.95 password manager for Mac OS X. Many of the features that customers know and trust from eWallet for Windows are included in eWallet for Mac, but with a interface just for Mac owners, according to the folks at Iliumn.

With Ilium Software's SyncPro technology, eWallet for Mac syncs with a user's iPhone, iPad or iPod touch via WiFi. Wallet files can also be synced with other computers on the same network and external storage devices like USB thumb drives.

All current eWallet 7 for Windows PC owners can use the Mac OS X version at no additional cost. New customers can purchase eWallet for US$19.95 from Ilium Software's online store. For one price, customers can use eWallet on their Mac, as well as any Windows Mobile device, BlackBerry, or Windows PC they own. eWallet 7 also includes access to...

| Read more »
Aug 11
e-zy.net releases WLAN outdoor wireless base station

e-zy.net (http://www.e-zy.net) has released the EZBase 2.4GHz or 5GHz wireless base station or client system, with 15 hours of integrated battery backup. Real world throughput is purportedly up to 25Mb per second and useable range is up to 20 miles with customer supplied antenna.

“The main feature of this base station, which sets it apart from any other product available on the market today, is its ability to provide 24/7 operation in areas where AC power is not 100% reliable ” says e-zy.net CEO Scott Parsons. “In addition to providing battery backup, the power system filters the power to the electronics so it is less susceptible to power line surges and spikes generated by nearby lightning strikes or other grid fluctuations. This increases the inherent operational reliability of the system.”

The new EZBase-2 and EZBase-5 are 250mW transmit power systems that comply with 802.11abg industry standards for...

| Read more »
Aug 11
Next iPad to include a three-axis gyroscope?

Apple apparently tested a three-axis gyroscope from InvenSense in its iPad, but probably plans to use a similar device from STMicroelectronics in a future version of the tablet, according to an analysis by UBM TechInsights, reports "EE Times" (http://macosg.me/2/ot).

The Apple iPhone 4 was the company's first smartphone to uses a three-axis gyroscope, specifically the L3G4200D from STMicroelectronics. When paired with the accelerometer, it makes iPhone 4 capable of advanced motion sensing such as user acceleration, full 3D attitude, and rotation rate. In other words, per Apple, it means more motion gestures and greater precision for an even better gaming experience.

“It seemed strange at the time that a product like the iPad would have been designed to not include a gyroscope but an iPhone 4 that was being designed at around the same time would,” says Steve Bitton, a product manager at UBM TechInsights...

| Read more »
Aug 11
Microsoft releases Office for Mac update

Microsoft has released the Office 2008 for Mac 12.2.6 Update (http://macosg.me/2/ou) that applies to: Office 2008; Office 2008 Home and Student Edition; Office 2008 Special Media Edition; Word 2008; Excel 2008; PowerPoint 2008; Entourage 2008; Office 2008 for Mac Business Edition.

According to Microsoft's Macintosh Business Unit, the update improves compatibility and stability. For example, It includes fixes for vulnerabilities that an attacker can use to overwrite the contents of your computer's memory with malicious code.

| Read more »
Aug 11
Massachusetts school system going with iPads

The North Adams [Massachusetts] Public Schools are hoping the iPad will entice at-risk students to improve their grades and graduate on time, reports the "North Adams Transcript" (http://macosg.me/2/oq). The school district is piloting a new program aimed at helping students earn credits for classes they’ve failed through learning modules specifically created for the Apple tablet.

"It’s designed for those students who failed a class by a few points," Drury High School Principal Amy Meehan said Tuesday during the district’s School Committee meeting. "Right now we’re targeting freshmen and sophomores who have failed by one marking period. Instead of attending traditional summer school, they’re able to do a module, which is the equivalent of one marking period, and replace that marking period’s grade with a passing grade."

She said the program not only helps the student recover the missing graduation...

| Read more »
Aug 11
Apple offers educational discounts for iOS apps in bulks

Apple has announced out a new initiative offering discounts for schools that buy iOS apps for the iPhone, iPod touch or iPad in bulk.

"We're pleased to announce the App Store Volume Purchase Program. Education institutions in the United States now have a new way to purchase your apps in volume for distribution to their students and faculty," Apple says. "You can also elect to offer special education pricing on your app when purchased in volume."

| Read more »
Aug 11
Apple Japan to replace overheating iPod nanos

Apple Japan says it will replace any iPod nano that overheats, an improvement over an earlier offer to only replace faulty batteries, reports "Reuters" (http://macosg.me/2/ol).

The concession came after Japan's trade ministry put Apple under scrutiny, ordering it to publish an "easy to understand" statement on its web site explaining how users of the devices could receive replacement batteries and obtain advice. Six incidents involving the 2005 model nano catching fire while being charged have been reported to the Ministry of Economy since 2008. And there were purportedly an additional 21 cases involving incidents where the players overheated and emitted smoke since 2005.

| Read more »
Aug 11
iAdapt C30 extends MiniDisplay Port-equipped Macs to 30-inch...

Kanex has launched the US$99 Kanex iAdapt C30 (http://kanexlive.com/products/iAdaptC30.html), a MiniDisplay Port to Dual-Link DVI-D adapter. It extends MiniDisplay Port equipped Macs to 30-inch displays, such as the Apple Cinema Display.

Dual-Link DVI-D purportedly offers a higher-quality image than standard DVI due to the nature of the digital format. The current 30-inch displays on the market supports a maximum resolution of 2560x1600.
 

| Read more »
Aug 11
Doxie gets CloudApp integration

The software for Doxie (http://www.getdoxie.com), a paper scanner that scans directly to the cloud, is now shipping, has been updated to version 1.3. It adds integration with the CloudApp fille sharing service.

Mac users can install CloudApp's free menu bar app to share files and links right from the desktop. On both Mac and PC, you can send scans to CloudApp right from Doxie's Cloud menu for sharing of docs and photos.

Designed for home and small businesses, Doxis is an US$129 portable scanner is for scanning, sharing, and organizing paper and photos.

| Read more »
Aug 11
USB Fever releases new iPhone, iPod, iPad products

USB Fever has released three new products for the iPhone, iPod and iPad. The US$26.99 Bamboo Made case for iPhone 4G (http://www.usbfever.com/index_eproduct_view.php?products_id=1977) is a case made of read bamboo for the Apple smartphone.

The Custom-made In-Car Headrest Mount for iPhone 4G (http://www.usbfever.com/index_eproduct_view.php?products_id=1974) is a $16.99 device that attaches to the front seat head rest of a vehicle. The Extra Long Dock to USB Charging Cable for iPhone/iPod/iPad (http://www.usbfever.com/...

| Read more »
Aug 11
Raidon releases J4-4S-SB3 storage device

Raidon Technology (http://www.RAIDON.com.tw) has launched J4-4S-SB3, which offers four bays of SSD and HDD external storage with USB 3.0 (which, for some reason, Apple isn't yet offering on the Mac) and eSATA connectivity.


The J4-4S-SB3 measures 10 x 14 x 7 inches. 10(W) x 14(D) x 7(H) cm from the quality metallic casing with ultra quiet ball bearing fan. This compact device also supports JBOD and port multiplier functions to provide management to four drives via one single cable connected to your computer.

In addition, it is "worriless" for data loss from unintentional fierce vibrations when collocating SSD, which also gives an excellent data transfer rate for performance enhancement, according to the folks at Raidon. Contact the company for pricing options.

| Read more »
Aug 11
Security Case, Vanity Plate for iPad now bundled

NewPCgadgets has combined their Security Case for the iPad with their stainless steel Vanity Plate into a single package. The Security Case sports black leather construction with a two digit combination lock and three position adjusable stand.

The Vanity Plate for the iPad is a stainless steel engraved name plate that secures to any iPad case to offer a custom look while providing contact information if your iPad is ever misplaced. The Vanity Plate can be customized with up to two lines of text.

As a special promtion through Aug. 31, if you order the Security Case for the iPad you get the custom Vanity Plate at no additional cost. This is a savings of US$12.95 off their regular retail price of $44.95. You can order it at http://newpcgadgets.com/products/iPad-securitycase/index.html. .

| Read more »
Aug 11
KeynoteStage launches with new Keynote themes

Elia Network and iPresentee have teamed up for KeynoteStage (http://www.keynotestage.com/), which has been developed to provide Keynote themes for Apples Keynote presentation application.

KeynoteStage contains 145 themes contained in three categories: Keynote Themes, Keynote Themes for iPad and Keynote Motion Themes. Each individual Keynote Theme is priced from US$5.

| Read more »
Aug 11
iVideo for Mac OS X adds Quick Look support, more

iVideo (http://ivideoapp.com/), a movie organizing and sharing app for Mac OS X (10.3 and higher) has been updated to version 4.5 The new version adds Quick Look support, faster importing and more.

iVideo lets you create one place for your movies -- whether they be in separate folders, external hard drives and CDs, or even online -- and then share them. A demo is available for download. Registration is US$20 for a single user license; discounts are available for multiple licenses. Version 4.5 is a free update for registered users.

| Read more »
Aug 11
KeySearch is new Safari extension

Matt Swain has written a Safari extension called KeySearch that adds a new way of searching the Internet to Apple's web browser. It uses short keywords to allow you to search any site you want from the toolbar.

So you might type "map New York to LA" to search Google maps, or "wiki mac os x" to search Wikipedia. It comes with a selection of ready-made keywords, and you can add your own for any search engine you want. You can check it out at http://www.macosxtips.co.uk/keysearch/ .

| Read more »
 
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