Monthly Archives: October 2010

Jobs: No USB3 at this time

External hard drives have become truly massive; Western Digital, Seagate and others now sell 3TB drives, and Drobo allows up to 16TB of storage to be used in some models.

However, while many of these external storage devices support Firewire or eSATA, many are limited to relatively slow USB2 connections. Some Macs are also limited to USB2, such as the Macbook Air, leaving users stuck with a connection that can only push 30MB/s in an ideal situation. Mac users frequently report even lower speeds while running Mac OS X compared to the same machine running Windows.

While many users can get by with the slower USB2 connection, the bottleneck becomes apparent when large files need to be moved on or off the external drive, or when the user wishes to move all of their files from one drive to another; moving 3TB over a USB2 connection can take almost 2 days. Read more

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White iPhone not coming until 2011

We know some of you were hoping to get your hands on a white iPhone 4 soon, but unfortunately you’re going to be disappointed for a little while longer; an Apple representative has told Reuters that the white iPhone is not coming until spring 2011.

Rumors of manufacturing problems with the white iPhone model have been making the rounds on tech blogs for a few weeks, but it appears that whatever is causing the delay has become significant enough that Apple has pushed the release date well into 2011.

Due to Apple’s annual release schedule for new iPhone hardware, some pundits have voiced concern that there may not even be a white iPhone 4, since the iPhone 5 would be due out only a few months later at WWDC 2011. Read more

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Macbook Air no longer ships with Adobe Flash

Adobe Flash

Adobe Flash

Early reviewers of Apple’s recently overhauled Macbook Air portable computer line have noticed that Apple no longer ships Adobe’s Flash runtime with the operating system preloaded on those machines.

While Apple has been quite vocal about their contempt for Adobe Flash, going so far as to completely exclude it from all mobile iOS devices, until now they have preinstalled the plugin on each new Mac, ensuring that webpages and all the content on them will “just work” in most cases.

Apple’s reason for excluding Flash on the new Macbook Air may have something to do with battery life; Flash is known to cause significant performance problems, and in prior Macbook Air models, Flash was frequently accused of being the root cause of overheating and sudden shutdown issues. Read more

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Posted in 3rd Party Software, Apple Software | Tagged , | 2 Responses

Apple deprecates Java

Java logo

Java logo

In a note accompanying the Java platform update released yesterday, Apple has announced that in future versions of Mac OS X, they no longer intend to maintain their Java runtime with the same level of attention as they have in the past, and they may not ship Java as part of the operating system at all.

However, as Apple shipped Java runtimes in both Leopard and Snow Leopard, they will continue to support the Java releases on those platforms during their respective lifecycles.

The Java runtime that is available in Mac OS X is maintained by Apple itself, and is a port of Sun/Oracle’s official Java runtime, with extra class libraries included for integrating with Cocoa and the native graphical display system. Read more

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iLife ’11 now available

Apple announced the next major release of iLife today, including a few welcome enhancements and a shift toward user interface elements that are very strongly influenced by iOS.

iPhoto was demonstrated first, and Phil Schiller was on stage to show of some of the new features, including a full screen interface that any iPhone or iPad user would recognize as using the same “tab bar” common to the iOS device family as well as iPad style photo albums:

iPhone '11

iPhoto '11, credit: Engadget

Major new features include the ability to pull photos from Flickr, post photos to Facebook and see comments from friends, email photos directly from iPhoto, as well as new full screen faces and places views. Also added is the ability to make letterpress cards right from the application, no word yet on how much this costs. Read more

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Mac OS X 10.7 “Lion” announced, will include Mac App Store

Today, the next major version of Mac OS X was announced and a few key features were demonstrated on stage.

The biggest announcement of course is the Mac App Store, which will allow developers to sell software to Mac users in a curated environment much like the iOS App Store. The App Store will be included in 10.7 “Lion” but will be available for Snow Leopard in 90 days.

With some clear design inspiration from iOS, the next version of Mac OS X also includes some iPad-like functionality. For instance, Apple wants to emphasize full screen applications, and has included some UI elements that are directly taken from iOS such as the “tab bar” that iPhone and iPad users will be familiar with. Read more

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Mac App Store coming in January with some strange restrictions

Mac App Store

Mac App Store

Apple is looking to extend the wild success of the iOS App Store with one specifically built for Mac OS X applications.

The Mac App store will be a separate application that resembles iTunes in many ways, but functionally it will be similar to the App Store on iOS; users will browse the store for Mac applications, which can be free or paid, pay for them using their iTunes account, and the application will then be downloaded and automatically added to the Dock.

Applications sold through the Mac App Store will also function similar in some ways to iPad applications; they will automatically save configuration and user information, and will save state and “pause” when closed. Users can then reopen the application at a later time and pick up where they left off. Read more

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Posted in Apple Software | Tagged | 1 Response

FaceTime comes to the Mac

Facetime for Mac

Facetime for Mac

Apple used todays Media Event to announce FaceTime for Mac OS X, allowing interoperability with “19 million other devices” that support the video calling system. The new software is available only for Macs running OS X 10.6.4, and is available today as a beta from Apple’s website.

During the event, Jobs referred to FaceTime as the “first video calling on mobile devices”, which of course is not true, but we have no doubt it is the first built in video calling system that people will actually use, particularly if they can communicate with people back at home using Macs and potentially other desktop or laptop computers.

Though FaceTime for Mac beta is a separate application, much of the core functionality is shipped inside the .App bundle as Frameworks which will likely be included in a future Mac OS X update as system wide frameworks. Read more

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Redesigned Macbook Air unveiled

Macbook Air

Twins

Macbook Air got a complete overhaul today; gone are the slow storage options, the single screen size and the flip out door for ports, in their place we have 2 new models with updated specs and lower prices.

Before we get to the specs though, Jobs made an interesting statement during the presentation, he called the new Air “the future of notebooks”. We could write that off as marketing speak, however an even stronger statement is now prominently displayed on the Macbook Air product page, which you can see below:

Next Generation of Macbooks

Next Generation of Macbooks

The Next Generation of Macbooks. It’s hard to take that any other way so we’ll just say it, Apple plans to replace the white macbook line with these new Air devices at some point in the near future. Read more

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October 20th Apple Event preview

Steve Jobs will once again take to the stage tomorrow, Wednesday October 20th at the “Town Hall” on Apple’s Infinite Loop campus in Cupertino, California to unveil a new round of products and technology previews with his infamous headline-grabbing presentation style. What will be announced? Grapevine consensus appears to have a firm grasp of the big picture, but as to the details….

With a few notable exceptions (the small number of people working on certain projects within Mac OS X 10.7 “Lion,” internal code name ‘Barolo,’ force us to sit on details of those projects until after the Event when even if those projects aren’t mentioned during the Event, they will be known to a wider group within Infinite Loop and leaks can no longer be tied so easily to our sources), what we’ve been told by some of our oldest and most reliable contacts in Cupertino comports very closely with the grapevine’s consensus of what to expect tomorrow:

*Mac OS X 10.7 “Lion” as hinted by Apple’s logo for the Event:

Apple's Back to the Mac October 20th Apple Event logo

….Lion is a collection of long-standing projects, many of them held back from the Leopard and Snow Leopard development cycles because they were too ambitious and too out of sync with Apple’s priorities at the time to make the cut for those releases. Read more

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Verizon, AT&T to begin selling iPads

Apple has announced that both AT&T and Verizon Wireless will begin selling the iPad in their respective retail stores, starting on October 28th.

AT&T will be selling the 3G model at the standard price points of $629 for the 16GB version, $729 for the 32GB version, and $829 for the 64GB version. Because the iPad 3G service provided by AT&T is prepaid with no contract, there is no discount for purchasing the device directly from AT&T.

While the 3G iPad is still a GSM device, Verizon Wireless plans to offer bundles containing the Wi-Fi iPad together with a Novatel Mi-Fi 3G router, which will provide users with the same mobile connectivity that AT&T iPad users currently enjoy. Price points will match the 3G model but will include the Novatel Mi-Fi router and a special service plan offering 1GB of data transfer for $20 per month ($20 per 1GB overage), 3GB for $35 or 5GB for $50 (both $10 per 1GB overage). Read more

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Apple schedules Mac-focused Media Event October 20th

Back to the Mac.

Apple has sent out press invitations for a Media Event one week from today on October 20th that will be focused on the Mac, to be held at 10AM in Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino.

As is typical for Apple, they have included a clue in the promotional image, a Lion peaking out from behind a tilted Apple logo. Taking that in combination with the tagline for the event, “Back to the Mac.”, it’s likely that Apple will at least offer a preview of Mac OS X 10.7 codenamed “Lion”, though a release is probably still months away.

Apple’s notebook lineup is also due for a refresh, particularly the Macbook Air which has been neglected for quite some time, and has been the subject of rumors concerning a potential shrink from the 13.3″ form factor down to a netbook-like 11″ screen. Read more

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iPhone (un)officially coming to Verizon by years end

Verizon iPhone

Unicorn

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple and Verizon have worked out a deal that will bring the iPhone to the largest mobile network in the U.S. sometime before the end of 2010.

Citing the omniscient “people familiar with the matter”, WSJ’s Yukari Iwatani Kane And Ting-I Tsai boldly proclaim that “AT&T Inc. is about to lose its lock on the iPhone”, something the tech press has been claiming repeatedly for the last 12-18 months as a Verizon iPhone was said to be “just around the corner”.

This year, the WSJ has been stoking the CDMA iPhone flames every few weeks, with rumors of Pegatron Technology Corp. being trusted with production for the new device, or Qualcomm chips being used to provide the CDMA connectivity. Read more

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