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May 13
Apple invests $1 billion in China’s Didi Chuxing

Apple has invested $1 billion in Chinese ride-hailing service Didi Chuxing, a move that Apple CEO Tim Cook said would help the company better understand the critical Chinese market, according to “Reuters” (http://tinyurl.com/gm23k6u). He said in an interview that he saw opportunities for Apple and Didi Chuxing to collaborate in the future.

"We are making the investment for a number of strategic reasons, including a chance to learn more about certain segments of the China market," Cook told “Reuters.” "Of course, we believe it will deliver a strong return for our invested capital over time as well.”

Didi Chuxing, formerly known as Didi Kuaidi, said in a statement that this was the single largest investment it has ever received. The company, which previously raised several billion dollars, dominates the ride-sharing market in China. The company said it completes more than 11 million rides a day...

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May 13
Stahl Labs releases new AI voice assistant for Mac OS X

Stahl Labs AB (http://stahltechnologies.com) has introduced Awa, a new AI voice assistant for Mac OS X. It’s designed to help you perform tasks like searching the web, opening apps and creating todos as well as more complex tasks using only your voice.

According to the folks at Stahl Labs, it’s like Apple’s Siri but for your Mac. Awa is based on a fully automated speech recognition and artificial intelligence engine that analyzes voice input in milliseconds, the company says.

"Our goal is to create the most intuitive assistant for Mac that understands what and when you need things done," says Joacim Sthl, founder of Awa. "The first version of Awa featuers the basic commands and integration you could expect from an Mac assistant. We are not stopping there, more features and commands is added daily."

Aww requires OS X Yosemite or El Capitan. It costs $0.99 and is available worldwide...

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May 13
Default Folder X for OS X sees improvements, bug fixes

St. Clair Software has announced Default Folder X 5.0.4 (http://www.stclairsoft.com/DefaultFolderX/index.html), an upgrade to the utility for Mac OS X. Default Folder X enhances the file dialogs in all Mac OS X applications.

It provides fast navigation to your files, convenient previews, integrated Spotlight tagging, and more. Default Folder X's custom keyboard shortcuts put your favorite and recent folders at your fingertips. With version 5.0.4 the toolbar can now be aligned with the top of file dialogs as well as the middle

You can now create and manage folder sets directly from Default Folder X's Folder Set menu. There's a new option to sort the menus for subfolders of recent folders by name instead of by date. Default Folder X now supports reduced transparency when it's turned on in System Preferences.

Compatibility issues with...

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May 13
Booq releases Slimsuit 13 sleeve

Booq (www.booqbags.com) has released the $40 Slimsuit 13, a slim profile sleeve for the 13-inch MacBook Air or 13-inch MacBook Pro.

At only 0.6 lbs, Slimsuit 13’s ultra-thin design makes for lightweight carrying with no extra bulk. The sleeve’s polyurethane exterior features a durable, all-welded design.

A zipperless magnetic closure allows carriers to quickly slide their laptop in or out of the sleeve. The exterior design protects laptops from everyday bumps and scratches, and the interior’s microfiber offers an added layer of protection, safeguarding MacBooks from scratches.  

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May 13
Tension Software announces CryptoEdit 2.1.1 for OS X

Tension Software has announced CryptoEdit 2.1.1 for Mac OS X.


The app lets you create and edit “encrypted by default” documents. It can manage TEXT, RTF and RTFD (with images) format. Version 2.1.1 is a maintenance upgrade.

CryptoEdit 2.1.1 requires Mac OS X 10.10 or higher. It costs $4.99 and is available at the Tension Software website (www.tensionsoftware.com).

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May 12
Spot Maps 1.3 for OS X scans your network for smart home devices

With the latest Spot Maps (www.equinux.com/spotmaps) Mac App by equinux, you can create interactive maps of your Smart Home. Version 1.3 scans your network for active Smart Home devices. The network map updates at the click of a button.

Spot Maps scans your network for active smart home devices such as Philips Hue Bridge, Apple’s HomeKit, Homeatic or Nest Cam as well as for computers (OS X, Windows und Linux), smartphones, and tablets (iOS, Android). The discovered devices can be positioned via drag-and-drop to create a map of your network plan. Spot Maps also comes with an extra set of device icons for Smart Home devices. It’s even possible to create a map for multistory buildings in a building or house for a clear overview of the entire network.

Spot Maps 1.3 is a free update for registered users.The cost is $33.99 for new users. Spot Mails is available at the equinux Online Store (...

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May 12
IK Multimedia releases VocaLive 3 for iPhone and iPad

IK Multimedia has announced VocaLive 3 (http://tinyurl.com/gqa7zac), an update to its vocal effects and production suite for the iPhone and iPad. 

VocaLive 3 features five vocal effects - Pitch Fix, Choir, Morph, De-esser, and Doubler, plus seven utility studio effects - Reverb, Delay, Parametric EQ, Compressor, Chorus, Phazer and Envelope Filter. Users can add up to four effects in the processor chain and use their iPhone or iPad to perform live or record with its integrated, expanded Recorder/DAW. VocaLive is designed for use with IK's extensive iRig line of digital and analog microphones, and audio interfaces, including: iRig Mic Studio, iRig Mic HD, iRig PRO and iRig Pro DUO.

New available features in VocaLive 3 include: IK's Mic Room microphone modeling technology, an integrated 4-track looper, and the ability to record up to eight audio tracks simultaneously, plus one additional effects...

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May 12
SuperHot launches on the Mac App Store

SuperHot, the runaway first-person shooter, is now available on the Mac App Store.

Here’s how the game is described: “Blurring the lines between cautious strategy and unbridled mayhem, SuperHot is the FPS in which time moves only when you move. No regenerating health bars. No conveniently placed ammo drops. It's just you, outnumbered and outgunned, grabbing the weapons of fallen enemies to shoot, slice, and maneuver through a hurricane of slow-motion bullets.”

SuperHot requires OS X 10.9 or later and is available for $22.99. You can save 10% during launch week on the Mac App Store. The game was developed by the SuperHot Team and published on the Mac App Store (http://tinyurl.com/hvmgbdl) by MacPlay.

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May 12
NetShade 7.0 for OS X adds IPv6 compatibility, more

Rayner Software has announced NetShade 7.0, an update to their Proxy and VPN utility app for Mac OS X.

The software offers Mac users the ability to change their computer's Internet address by routing through a dependable VPN or Proxy server. The app offers users a number of benefits, including anonymity, security, additional content access, and more. Version 7.0 brings IPv6 compatibility, a new user interface & backend helper tool, better VPN logging, and more.

NetShade requires Mac OS X 10.10 or higher. It’s free and is available for download from the Rayner Software website (http://www.raynersw.com). Subscription rates are $19 per year for Proxy Service Only, and $49 per year for Proxy and VPN Service.

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May 12
QuarkXPress 2016 will ship May 24

Quark Software says QuarkXPress 2016, the next new version of QuarkXPress, will ship on May 24. Starting on that day, the new version will officially be available to purchase and pre-orders will be fulfilled.

QuarkXPress 2016 builds on the performance and stability of version 2015 and adds new such new features as:

° The ability to create and export HTML5 publications. Now designers will be able to create HTML5 Publications within QuarkXPress that can be previewed locally and displayed on all modern desktop, tablet and mobile browsers.

° The ability to convert PDF, Illustrator and EPS Files to native QuarkXPress Objects. Users can import PDF, Illustrator and EPS files and convert them to native, editable objects.

° The ability to copy and paste objects from Illustrator, PowerPoint and other apps to QuarkXPress.

If you buy QuarkXPress 2015 now, you can get QuarkXPress 2016 free. Customers who purchase a new full license of QuarkXPress 2015 or...

| Read more »
May 12
Tension Software updates AutoMailer for OS X to version 2.4

Tension Software (www.tensionsoftware.com) has updated AutoMailer for Mac OS X to version 2.4.


The app allows you to send personalized emails to multiple addresses, in text or web format, each merged with data from an internal database. You can prepare and send an unlimited quantity of emails with a single click. Version 2.4 provides an improved mail send engine and enhanced asynchronous operations.


AutoMailer requires Mac OS X 10.10 or higher. It costs $20 and is available at the product website and the Mac App Store.

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May 11
Suite for Pixelmatr now available at the Mac App Store

Montibus has rolled out Suite for Pixelmator 1.0 for Mac OS X. It features more than 1,500 new brushes, shapes, gradients and styles for the image editing app.

The add-ons support Pixelmator's custom palettes. Categories and subcategories are designed to make it simple to find an item you need from the collection.

Suite for Pixelmator 1.0 costs $19.99 and is available worldwide exclusively through the Mac App Store (http://tinyurl.com/hmqucea) in the Graphic & Design category. The app requires Mac OS X 10.9 or later and, of course, Pixelmator.

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May 11
Corel debuts AfterShot Pro 3

Corel has debuted AfterShot Pro 3 (www.AfterShotPro.com) for Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux. The new version of the photo editing and organization software adds a highlight recovery algorithm, watermarking, layer-based blemish correction, as well as dynamic update abilities that enable new camera RAW profiles to be supported faster than ever. 

AfterShot Pro 3 enables photographers to organize thousands, cull from hundreds, and perfect a single photo, according to Greg Wood, senior director of Photo Products at Corel. The software provides access to a variety of plug-ins and add-ons direct from the community. Suggested retail pricing is $79.99; existing registered users can purchase for the upgrade price of $59.99. A 30-day demo is available for download. 

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May 11
Observer for OS X adds support for more sites

QotoQot (https://qotoqot.com/) has announced Qbserve 1.2, an update to its automatic private time tracker for Mac OS X.

The app “knows” productivity rates for thousands of sites and apps and has the ability to differentiate between chats in Skype, Slack, and Telegram, YouTube videos, and subreddits. All the tracked information is stored privately on the user's machine. Features include flexible tracking settings, dynamic dock & menu bar icons, detailed feedback charts, alerts for goals, and reminders.

Version 1.2 supports over 300 new sites and app bundles for automatic lookup. It also adds support for recognizing Slack teams and Telegram chats as separate activities.

Observe requires Mac OS X Yosemite or El Capitan. It costs $30 (until June 30; after that the price rises to $40).

| Read more »
May 11
EarthDesk 7 adds earthquakes and other real-time data

Xeric Design (http://www.xericdesign.com) has released EarthDesk 7, an update to its real-time dynamic desktop map for Mac OS X.

The app replaces your static desktop with an image of the Earth showing current sun, moon and city illumination, as well as real-time cloud coverage. A data subscription offers additional real-time information including earthquakes and named storms, allowing you to visualize hurricanes and other real-time events on your Mac.

EarthDesk 7 provides improved support for multiple screens and Retina displays. There are new positioning options including centering on a specific latitude/longitude or real-time data such as the location of the most recent earthquake. City labels now support multiple colors and different screens can show different sets of data. There’s a new city database with support for adding, editing and removing of cities. In version 7 presets are...

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May 11
Gemini for OS X revved to version 2

MacPaw's Gemini, a Mac-only duplicate finder and cleaner, has been upgraded to version 2. According to CEO Oleksandr Kosovan, here’s a list of the changes….

The app spots similar files in addition to identical duplicates: “similiars" aren’t 100% identical files, like duplicates, but they have so little difference that a user might consider some of them redundant.

The app tells the differences between files by more than 10 parameters; it analyzes file names, creation and modification dates, extensions, locations to ensure accuracy and precision in results.

The update works with iTunes and Photos libraries: Gemini 2 helps get rid of unnecessary retakes of the same picture or different formats of the same song.

Version 2 applies Smart Selection algorithm and becomes self-learning from a user. Smart Selection algorithm remembers rules for files removal, learns and applies the experience to next sessions.

Gemini 2 accurately selects duplicates for...

| Read more »
May 10
Apple updates iWork apps for OS X, iOS

Apple's iWork apps (Pages, Numbers, and Keynote for OS X and iOS have been updated with bug fixes and stability improvements.

Pages for Mac has been updated to version 5.6.2, while Keynote for Mac is 6.6.2, and Numbers for Mac is updated to version 3.6.2. All are available at the Mac App Store.

The iOS versions of Keynote and Numbers are all now at version 2.6.2. They’re available at the Apple App Store.

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May 10
Artboard for OS X gets tabbed interface, more

Mapdiva has updated Artboard, its drawing software for Mac OS X, to version 2.0.

The software allows you to create vector drawings. Version 2 sports a tabbed interface, a Select tool for editing objects, smart drawing tools, a more powerful styles editor, enhanced workflows, editable clip art & styles, and more.

To celebrate its launch, Artboard 2 is on sale through May for 40% off ($29.99 compared to $49.99). A demo version isis available for download at the product website (https://www.mapdiva.com/).

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May 10
FileMake, Inc., launches FileMaker 15 platform

FileMaker, Inc. has released FileMaker 15 (http://www.filemaker.com/products/). The company says the upgraded platform improves upon the fundamentals of custom app development with new features in five key areas: mobility, automation/integration, ease of use, security and performance. 

The FileMaker Platform provides the essentials for creating a custom app that fits an organization’s business needs. It works on Mac OS X, iPads, iPhones, Windows, and the web. According to Ann Monroe of FileMaker, Inc., new features of the FileMaker 15 Platform include: 

Mobility: Touch ID support enables developers to securely access their custom apps with the touch of a finger. 3D Touch support enables quick access to specific apps. New app extensions offer content customization and cloud-based file sharing. iBeacon support offers location-based data from the custom app and FileMaker WebDirect...

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May 10
LinkOptimizer 4.9.60 for InDesign improves image preview handling

Zevrix Solutions has released LinkOptimizer 4.9.60, a maintenance update to its workflow automation solution for Adobe InDesign.

The app allows users to automatically reduce the size of InDesign picture links and speed up processing by eliminating excess image data, performing essential image adjustments and converting image formats. Version 4.9.60 addresses several issues related to image preview handling and link list management.

LinkOptimizer can be purchased from Zevrix website (www.zevrix.com) for $259.95 (there’s a “lite” version for $179.95). A demo is available for download. The update is free for LinkOptimizer 4.x users and $130 to upgrade from previous versions. LinkOptimizer requires Mac OS X 10.6-10.11 and Adobe InDesign and Photoshop CS3-CC 2015.

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May 09
Genius Pack releases a backpack with an integrated suiter

Genius Pack has released the Travel Backpack with Integrated Suiter, which the company says is the world’s first backpack with a place for hanging garments. I
 
Features include an umbrella pop-out, space-saving compartments for personal items and a quick-access side pocket with audio port for smartphones, earbuds and other devices. There are also integrated laptop and tablet compartments and tech organization pockets.
 
The Travel Backpack with Integrated Suiter features Genius Pack’s built-in Laundry Compression Technology (LCT) that’s designed to keep dirty clothes separate from clean clothes.

The Travel Backpack with Integrated Suiter from Genius Pack is available in two-tone matte black. It measures 20” x 11” x 8” with a 25-liter capacity, yet weighs only 2.2 pounds. It retails for $168. It is available at http://tinyurl.com/hohuf2k.

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May 09
HoudahSpot for OS X turns 10, gets grid view refinements

Houdah Software has released HoudahSpot 4.2, an update to the file search tool for Mac OS X.

This release marks the 10th anniversary of HoudahSpot and brings refinements to the grid view, the file tagging interface and filter options. The utility combines file search with a customizable results display, search templates, preview of text matches and more.

HoudahSpot requires Mac OS X Yosemite or El Capitan. It costs $29for a single-user license. A demo is available for download (). Upgrade from previous versions start at $17.

| Read more »
May 09
Twocanoes Software releases SD Clone 2 for SD card cloning on...

Twocanoes Software has launched SD Clone 2.2 (http://twocanoes.com/products/mac/sd-clone), an update of its tool to clone SD cards on the Mac.

It clones up to eight SD cards simultaneously from a single image file or SD card. SD Clone shrinks and expands the image as needed to fit your data on any size card. The app supports the Raspbian Raspberry Pi operating system, Linux and other operating systems.

SD Clone supports a variety of flash memory cards and formats, including SD and micro SD cards. Version 2.2 offers speed and other improvements.

SD Clone requires Mac OS X 10.9 or higher and costs $99.99. A demo is available for download.

| Read more »
May 09
VidConvert 1.6.5 for OS X adds H.265 support

Reggie Ashworth has announced VidConvert 1.6.5 (http://www.reggieashworth.com/vidconvert), an update to his video converter for Mac OS X.

It’s a video converter designed to make converting your videos simple and easy. VidConvert will convert just about any type of video into one of many popular formats. You can create videos for your iPhone or iPad, for your Mac or TV, or formats such as DivX and MPEG. Version 1.6.5 introduces H.265 support, a higher max bitrate, and a number of fixes and improvements.

VidConvert requires Mac OS X 10.7 or later. It costs $7.99 for a single user license. A demo which creates three-minute samples is available.

| Read more »
May 09
Mac Shutdown upgraded to version 4.0

Tension Software (www.tensionsoftware.com) has upgraded Mac Shutdown to version 4.0.

The utility can use “Soft Shutdown” and “Hard Shutdown” to power down your Mac. Soft Shutdown is issued at the Finder level and tells all running apps to quit before shutting down the Mac. The Hard shutdown and can shut down an app that doesn’t want to quit before rebooting the Mac.

Mac Shutdown 4.0 requires Mac OS X 10.10 or higher and costs $12. It’s available at the Tension Software website.

| Read more »
 
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