Archive for September, 2010

iOS 4.2 Beta 2 and iTunes 10.1 Beta Ready for Developers

iOS developers rejoice. A new round of iOS and iTunes beta software is ready for download.

If you’re a developer, head on down to the iOS Dev Center and pick yourself up these new betas while they’re still fresh. If you’re a regular Joe and/or Jane we recommend you avoid these betas unless you’re looking for a week of tears and frustration.

 

Follow this article’s author, Roberto Baldwin, on Twitter.


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Goldman Sachs Analysts Speculate on Next iPad

Not a day goes by without another salacious Apple rumor making the rounds on the internet. This time, a team of analysts from Goldman Sachs are claiming that their sources have all the information about Apple’s second-generation iPad next spring that will feature a camera, Mini USB port and a lighter design.

Analysts Henry King and Kevin Lu also say that the 7″ iPad is not at all finalized and it’s unlikely that it will be launched ahead of the next iPad update.

Normally, we’d be harping on these sources for even starting the rumors, but we have to admit that this is very plausible. Apple released the iPad during the spring time (Easter weekend of this year, to be exact), so it’s only natural that the company would release an update a year later.

However, we’re still a little unsure about this Mini USB thing. It’s not like Apple to break the barriers of proprietary, and it’s almost doubtful that the company would switch to Mini USB out of the blue. After all, the company makes a profit off of licensing fees associated with their own custom connection hardware.


Follow this article’s author, Florence Ion, on Twitter.

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Remote 2.0 Now Available in App Store

We can’t think of a better way to start our morning than by hearing the news that a much needed and much anticipated update to Apple’s free Remote app for iOS has finally been made available in the App Store. You may recall that a while back, we let you in on the fact that the first iteration of Remote was built by a single developer, which may well have attributed to why it’s taken so darn long for an update to crop up. No matter whether the 2.0 version of the application was built by the same fellow or a million-strong code monkey army, we couldn’t be happier to see this update make the scene.

It appears that no matter what iOS device you choose to install it on–iPad, iPhone or iPod touch–Remote 2.0’s got something new that you’re going to dig. With the update to the software, we’re not only reciving support for the iPhone and iPod touch’s high resolution displays, but also the ability to run the app on an iPad utilizing all of the tablet’s screen real estate. A clean, crisp user interface! Yes! More than this, Remote 2.0 offers the ability to access any Shared Libraries you may have added to iTunes, as well as total control over an AppleTV, allowing users to tweak features like AirPlay with a few taps and swipes.

If you’re interested, Remote 2.0 can be accessed via the iTunes Store by following this handy link.

Follow this article’s author, Seamus Bellamy on Twitter.

 


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RIM's Answer To The iPad? The PlayBook

playbook

(Image courtesy of CNNMoney)

Well, one and all, Research in Motion has pulled the wool off their entry into the tablet pool, at a developer conference on Monday, according to CNNMoney.  Their tablet will feature a 7-inch screen, Flash-capable video and a front and rear high-definition camera.  But will it be enough to take down the iPad?

“Every successful professional has a great PlayBook,” said Mike Lazaridis, co-chief executive of Research in Motion, at the BlackBerry Developer conference in San Francisco.

As mentioned above, the device will sport a 7-inch screen, Flash-capable video as well as a front and rear high-def camera.  It’s also quite thin, coming in at 9.7 millimeters, and weighs a mere .9 pounds.  But lo and behold, Lazaridis was not able to name a price just yet.

For the time being, the PlayBook is planning to be released in 2011 and will only be able to connect to the Internet via Wi-Fi.  But RIM is planning on offering up 3G and 4G versions down the road.

RIM’s goal is “to offer an uncompromised Web experience,” said Lazaridis.

The PlayBook will also maintain a 1 GHz dual-core processor and 1 GB of RAM.  It’ll be compatible with HDMI video output, Bluetooth and microHDMI and microUSB.

Curiously though, PlayBook users won’t see RIM’s hot off the presses BlackBerry 6 operating system.  In place of that, will be a new operating system via QNX Software Systems, who RIM scooped earlier on in the year.

At the conference, a QNX rep said that the PlayBook will offer up “just a great gaming experience.”

Lazaridis added on that the BlackBerry Messenger system will be “opened as a social platform for applications,” but didn’t give much information beyond that.  He also commented that in-app payments as well as a BlackBerry advertising service will “generate revenue immediately.”

So there you have it readers!  What’s your take?  Will it be enough to warrant your dollars?  Or will the iPad still reign supreme?  Feel free to leave your tablet prognostications below!

Follow this article’s author, Matthew Tilmann on Twitter

 

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iPad Street Musician Dons Headband, Earns Money

Usually street musicians play a ragged guitar, tambourine, or accordion. This musician decided to forgo the usual pawn-shop purchased instrument and headed on down to the local Apple Store.

The First iPad Street Musician? from Alex Shpil on Vimeo.

 

According to the Alex Shpil, who shot the video, the musician is playing the sitar on the iPad. It looks like she earned a buck while playing. 500 more songs and it all evens out.

Thanks to Kas for showing us this video.

 

Follow this article’s author, Roberto Baldwin, on Twitter.


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HP Not Trying To Emulate Apple

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(Image courtesy of somethingburning.com)

Seems like everybody wants to either beat or be Apple these days in the tech world.  But HP’s Todd Bradley, a possible successor to outgoing CEO Mark Huard, would prefer that you believe HP isn’t trying to go that route.

Despite nothing being official, Bradley sure sounds like he’s being groomed for the CEO position.  He was asked whether he thought it was ethically wrong to charge so much for ink and responded, “ask me next year, if I take the [CEO] position.”  He also confirmed that HP would not be licensing webOS to other companies, and then was also quick to say “emulating Apple is not part of our strategy.” 

Bradley also made the promise that HP would sell 15 million webOS-based printers in the next year, and that tablets would blossom into a billion market within the next few years — which is an industry that HP is wanting to enter in a “big way.”  What “big way” that’ll be, only time’ll tell, but could be something to keep an eye on!

via Endgadget

Follow this article’s author, Matthew Tilmann on Twitter

 

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Valve Announces new Left 4 Dead DLC, Oct 5 Mac Release

This morning, Valve announced a new add-on for its immersive, co-op zombie killing game, Left 4 Dead. “The Sacrifice” is due for release on October 5 and will continue to chronicle the struggle between the remaining Left 4 Dead survivors as they make their way to the South. “The Sacrifice” will also introduce a new style of finale gameplay called “Sacrificial Gameplay”, where the players can device who will give their life so that other may live.

Hidden within this news is the announcement that this DLC will be available for Mac users, after all:

The DLC “The Sacrifice” will be available for the XBOX 360, PC, and Mac on October 5th. It will include the new Campaign “The Sacrifice” and the Left 4 Dead 1 campaign, “No Mercy”. In both campaigns you will be able to play as the Left 4 Dead 1 Survivors but you will be using Left 4 Dead 2 weapons and items against Left 4 Dead 2 monsters!

You can’t have DLC for a game without the game being available for the platform.

Hooray! Finally, no more waiting to partake in a little bit of zombie killing.

We’re waiting on confirmation from Valve, just in case the release date is a mistake. Fingers crossed.

Follow this article’s author, Florence Ion, on Twitter.

 

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Apple Patents a Haldheld Device that Works with Your Hands

Apple has really been racking up the patents lately, haven’t they? Most of the time, they don’t really amount to much, but the thrill of anticipation for Apple’s next generation product is pretty much spearheaded by these black-and-white blueprints that make their rounds on  the internet.

Case in point: Apple has patented a “handheld device” that uses capacitive sensors to recognize who you are based on the way you hold the device. The device would adjust itself based on the way your fingers are situated and your grip. The device might also be able to generate buttons right on to the chasis (we’re visualizing that it’s like the way that Android phones have buttons that fade in and out), depending on which hand you’ve got it in. There’s not much else beyond that, but the idea is that there is no on orientation for a handheld device, and it gives the mantra that you’re “holding it wrong” a whole new meaning.

Anyway, all these patents are just teasers for a better device in the end. So hold on to your horses and don’t start salivating just yet–the patent is still a patent, after all.

Follow this article’s author, Florence Ion, on Twitter.

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iPhone 4 Selling Out in China

iPhone 4 demand in China
(Image courtesy of The Wall Street Journal)

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: Apple releases a new iPhone model and the demand almost immediately overwhelms the actual supply. This time, however, the location isn’t the U.S. but rather China, where the device went on sale over the weekend and crowds swarmed in to get one.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting on what looks to be a boffo iPhone 4 launch in China, particularly when compared to last year’s initial launch of the iPhone 3GS sans Wi-Fi. Carrier China Unicom appears to have quickly sold out of their initial shipment of iPhone 4 units, but says that more are on the way soon.

Saturday marked the official launch of the new handset, and China Unicom had received more than 200,000 iPhone 4 preorders prior to launch, with another 40,000 customers coming out on launch day to get the device and a bundled service plan. It took China Unicom six weeks to sell only 100,000 handsets after the previous model launched last October.

The iPhone is exclusive to China Unicom, who could use the leg up to fend off competitors China Mobile Ltd. and China Telecom Corp. as the trio rush to beef up their 3G subscriber base — and the more expensive devices and data plans required to use the service.

Apple claims that more iPhone 4 units are on the way to Chinese customers, especially as the company narrows the gap between release dates internationally. It took Apple 28 months to introduce an iPhone in China after the original debuted in the U.S. in 2007, but the iPhone 4 arrives only three months after its introduction here — and only five months for the newer iPad, which went on sale in China earlier this month.

The iPhone 4 launch also capitalized on the opening of two new Apple Stores in the country, and plans to ramp up to 25 such stores by the end of 2011.

Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter

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U.S. Kindle Store Offers 700,000 E-books

Amazon just hit the Android digital shelves with an update to the app for that platform. Apart from adding voice search and Wikipedia, there was also a nice big fat number hidden in their release documents. 700,000 to be exact.

Straight from TechCrunch, we find that Amazon has been cranking out the ebook titles, adding 30,000 in the last three weeks alone. The current figure is 200,000 more titles than than the Kindle store sported in April, with no end to growth in sight.

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If there is any edge that Amazon has over its competitors (apart from the easy reading in direct sunlight that it has over the iPad), it’s numbers. As in a deep well of titles and how many Kindles are out there in the market. Sure, Barnes & Noble claims over 1 million titles, but Nooks aren’t in as many hands. iPads are flying off the shelves, but it’s almost de rigeur to add the Kindle app to your device. Kindle also shows up on Mac and Windows laptops and desktops.

If there’s any long-term hope for Amazon’s Kindle, it’s to keep itself on as many platforms as possible and to keep up this kind of growth. The device itself may eventually die, but as we all know, the device isn’t where the ebook profits are; it’s the title sales. Especially with e-books overtaking paper book sales.

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