Thursday, August 19, 2010

Highly Interactive Alphabet iPad App

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Pi'ikea St. has announced the release and immediate availability of Interactive Alphabet 1.0, their new children's learning game specifically for Apple's revolutionary iPad device. Interactive Alphabet takes alphabet learning for babies, toddlers, and pre-schoolers to the next level by offering a high level of interactivity with the letters of the alphabet.

Interactive Alphabet for iPad makes learning the alphabet a hand-on experience. The original artwork and characters draw them in, fun animation and sound effects peak their interest, and memorable unique interactions, such as eating the Apple, playing with the Squid, zipping the Zipper, and making music on the Xylophone keep them coming back for more. Each letter is softly spoken and the upbeat music and sound effects will have kids dancing, mimicking, and asking Mom or Dad if they can have their own iPad. Babies, toddlers, pre-schoolers, and even parents will have tons of fun with this great new app!

"We realized early on that kids were drawn to the iPad because of the ease of interaction (direct touch screen) and familiarity with their parents' iPods and iPhones", says co-founder Matt Smith. One of the surprises was that even younger children could interact with the iPad, as opposed to the iPod/iPhone. "The larger screen makes it easier for them", says co-founder Ben Lew. "It doesn't take as much dexterity if the app is designed with a focus to reach those younger kids".

Matt and Ben were inspired to collaborate across the country to build an iPad app that would be fun and playful and take advantage of the iPad's larger screen. After working on the app and creating a simple virtual version of ABC flash cards, Matt and Ben turned to their key user demographic (kids), to get some feedback. The feedback was good, and they could have submitted to the App Store, but they chose not to.

"We were happy that it was good, but we wanted to make something great", says co-founder Ben Lew. Matt and Ben went back to the drawing board to figure out a way to take the app from good to great. "Once we got out of the mindset of mimicking physical abc flash cards and opened our minds to the possibilities of what we could do different with an iPad app, we knew what we had to do. Thus was born the version of Interactive Alphabet we are releasing on the iTunes App Store."

Pricing and Availability:


Interactive Alphabet 1.0 is $2.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Education category.


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AT&T Mark the Spot App Updated With Retina Display, iPad Support

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AT&T has updated their Mark the Spot network feedback application with iPhone 4 Retina Display and iPad Support.

AT&T Mark the Spot is an application that provides customers a means to provide feedback on network user experience to AT&T.

Features
● Simplicity of operation
● Submit a report of call or data problems
● Submit a real time report capturing local GPS coordinates at time and place of event, or
● Submit a report after the fact when a customer is not at the place where the event occurred
● Submit optional additional comments about an event
● View nearby AT&T Wi-Fi locations
● Register to view news on upcoming and completed network updates related to submitted Mark The Spot reports (when these news items become available).
● Carousel menu allows access to Network News, Feedback and Tips and optimization techniques.

What's New In This Version:
● Improved graphics for the iPhone 4 Retina Display
● Several changes for improved stability
● Application now works on iPad.

You can download AT&T Mark the Spot from the App Store for free.














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IvySkin Adds Stunning Colors to iPhone 4

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After much anticipation, IvySkin has just revealed the new COLOR Reception Case for iPhone 4. Featuring an innovative overmold color design, that incorporates crisp colors into the polycarbonate shell of the Reception case.

The IvySkin Reception Case is a reception friendly way to guard and enhance the Apple iPhone 4. It is an ultra thin protection solution unlike any other in the market. Measuring in at a tiny 0.6mm thin, it is the world's thinnest iPhone 4 case.

This clever solution conceals the new iPhone 4's built-in antenna that captures more of the available wireless signal and clears the internal antenna of your new iPhone 4 in a crystal clear case. The result is a clear signal, especially in border areas - which translates to fewer dropped calls, wider coverage areas, and faster downloads when browsing through your cellular connection.

As the market pioneer in delivering enhanced Polycarbonate protection for digital devices, IvySkin continues to provide superior and cutting edge solution for the new iPhone 4. With the introduction of the world's first SmartCase for iPhone 3G/3GS, IvySkin continues to raise the bar. In the coming weeks, the all new Quattro4 and SmartCase will become available for the iPhone 4.

Pricing and Availability:
The Reception case Color now available in 10 bright colors to liven up the iPhone 4. Now available in Phantom Black, Avalanch white, USAred, USABlue, HotPink, Aqua, SpeedYellow, GoGreen, Pinkberry and Platinum Silver. The package includes both front and back scratch-free body armors in addition to the Polycarbonate shell that snaps on the back of the iPhone 4. SRP 19.99 (USD) now available online and at retail stores in the coming weeks. For additional information on this or other IvySkin products, contact PR representative Sara Cohan or 201-266-5555. Follow us on twitter for live social updates.







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Advanced High Dynamic Range Photography for iPhone

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Pictional has announced the release of TrueHDR 1.1, an update to TrueHDR that brings major improvements in high dynamic range (HDR) photography to the iPhone. With the new release, users can easily create full-resolution HDR images on both the iPhone 4 and the iPhone 3GS. Users can also easily share their HDR photos via Facebook, Twitter, and email.

TrueHDR is designed to address the issue that cameras can only capture a limited range of brightness in a single photo. In other words, when people take photos of a scene that has a large range from bright to dark, they often have to choose between the bright areas and the dark areas - if a picture is appropriately exposed for the bright areas (e.g., a sunny sky with clouds), then the dark areas (e.g., a person standing in the shade under a tree) often become gray or black blobs with no details. Vice versa, if a picture is correctly exposed for the dark areas, the bright areas get washed out and look like white haze.

TrueHDR allows users to take two photos on an iPhone 4 or iPhone 3GS with the in-app camera, tapping on a bright area to adjust exposure for the first image and tapping on a dark area to adjust exposure for the second image. TrueHDR uses sophisticated computational techniques to automatically align and merge the original images, and then optimize the resulting image for display. It also allows users to select a pair of saved images previously taken under different exposure settings, and merge them into one HDR image.

TrueHDR employs state-of-the-art image merging algorithms that draw inspiration from human visual perception, producing images that show high dynamic range yet are natural-looking. As a result, TrueHDR results are often much closer to what users' eyes originally saw, and rarely suffer from banding (a.k.a. "halo") artifacts that have come to be associated with HDR pictures.

In the new release of TrueHDR, new memory management techniques now allow for beautiful HDR results at the full (native) resolutions of the iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS cameras. The algorithm for aligning images has also been improved to better handle hand movement during the course of a user taking multiple photos, leading to even higher quality results and greater ease of use.

The new release of TrueHDR also includes an improved user interface, an option for auto-saving original pre-HDR photos, support for quick app switching which allows user to pick up right from where they left off when returning to TrueHDR, and support for creating HDR images with the iPhone 4's front camera.

Feature highlights:
* Now supports full resolution, including iPhone 4 camera (front and back)
* Improved user interface, including support for iPhone 4 retina display
* New sharing features (Facebook, Twitter, email)
* Better image alignment, and more natural-looking results
* Auto-saving option for original pre-HDR photos
* Supports quick app switching - pick up from where you left off when you return

Supported Languages:
* US English and Chinese

Pricing and Availability:
TrueHDR 1.1 is $1.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Photography category.




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Valve Says Apple Graphics Update Boosts Frame Rates by Up to 120%

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Valve has announced that Apple's latest Snow Leopard Graphics Update has boosted performance dramatically for gamers with frame rate improvements of 15% to 120%.

Changes in their code alongside the graphics update have resulted in the removal of a variety of software bottlenecks.

We are seeing dramatic performance improvements on iMac (Late 2009 and Mid 2010), Mac mini (Early 2009 and Mid 2010), Mac Pro (Early 2009), MacBook (Early 2009 and Mid 2010) and MacBook Pro (15-inch, Mid 2010) and MacBook Pro (17-inch, Mid 2010) models. Depending on the game, video settings and the hardware, we have measured frame rate improvements from 15% to 120% on these systems. On older systems, we are generally already operating at the limits of the hardware, so it is not obvious that any significant performance improvements can be achieved in the future.


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Simplifly Creation of Text Expansions With Presets

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Ergonis Software has announced the release and immediate availability of Typinator 4.1, a new version of their popular text expander. The new version allows to define set-specific presets for abbreviation options and speeds up the newly introduced QuickSearch function as well as the import of text files.

Typinator 4.1 also improves the installation and upgrade experience by allowing to skip one particular version in the automatic update check and by displaying a more prominent warning when a new version is not covered by the current license. Furthermore, the new release solves a problem with composing Gmail messages in Firefox and improves compatibility with certain 3rd party apps like Mail, aMSN, Kindle for Mac, and others.

"The new presets simplify the interactive creation of new abbreviations and save you quite a few clicks when the abbreviations within a set share the same options. Just define the most likely options as the default options, and Typinator automatically applies them to newly created abbreviations whenever possible," said Gunther Blaschek, CTO of Ergonis Software.

Typinator is a powerful, yet elegantly simple solution that works across all applications. It detects specific sequences of typed characters and automatically replaces them with text snippets, graphics, URLs, dates and special characters.

For business users, Typinator leads to a layer of operational consistency and productivity across heterogeneous applications. A standard customer service response, a signature image on an email, a clause in a contract - each of these can be inserted in any application with just a couple of keystrokes. For technical users, Typinator automates typing of code and the implementation of documentation standards.

Availability and Ordering:
Typinator can be purchased securely on the Ergonis Software website. The upgrade to Typinator 4.1 is free for all customers who purchased Typinator in the last 2 years. For information about purchases, including enterprise licenses, volume discounts, and upgrade pricing offers, see the company's web site. Typinator 4.1 is a recommended update for everyone running on Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard). Visit Ergonis Software's website to learn more about the changes in this release and to download and try the new version.




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Tumbleroo Lets You Browse Tumblr on the iPad

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Tumbleroo is the first application for browsing Tumblr on the iPad.

Tumbleroo brings a native feel to your Tumblr adventures that you'll love. Big colorful photos, full-screen videos, and all the liking and reblogging you can handle.

Full Dashboard
Following your favorite blogs is what makes Tumblr so great. With Tumbleroo, your dashboard comes to life on the iPad with text, link, chat, question, photo, audio and video post support. A built-in browser let's you explore links outside the dashboard.

Liking and Reblogging
Share the love by liking or reblogging posts from your dashboard with a single tap, or reblog posts and add your own comments while maintaing full attribution to the original posters. Tumbleroo also lets you email posts and browse a list of all your liked posts.

Create Posts
Tumbleroo lets you easily create your own text, link, quote, photo, audio and video posts. Simply tap to add a new post, paste a link to the source material, and write your comment.

Advanced Features
Have several blogs? Choose which one to post to and at what time. Post to and browse your queue, create private posts, and choose whether or not to send your posts to Twitter.

You can purchase Tumbleroo from the App Store for $4.99.














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Verizon to Allow Customers to Watch Live TV on iPad

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Verizon has announced that soon FiOS subscribers will be able to watch live TV on their iPads but only from inside their home, according to newteevee.

Verizon CIO Shaygan Kheradpir says the tech work for making the streams available to iPad users is already done. The company is now in discussions to make sure content providers are comfortable with subscribers having the ability to watch TV on another device.

There will be certain limitations at the launch of the app. At first, subscribers with an iPad will only be able to watch linear programming within their own home, which allows Verizon to authenticate and make certain that the users have access to whatever content they have paid for.

It's expected that Verizon will launch their application early next year.




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Snappy Camera App Gets Updated With iOS 4 Support

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Snappy, an iPhone camera app that launches quickly by pressing the status bar, has been updated with iOS 4 support.

Never miss a photo opportunity again! Snappy is a camera app for the iPhone that launches and is ready to take pictures in one second, without having to exit your currently running application. Snappy is also accessible directly from your lock screen. Simply tap and hold the status bar (the bar at the top of the screen with AT&T logo, signal bars, battery, etc) to launch and you are immediately ready to take pictures; compare that to the five to six seconds it takes to exit a running application and launch the native camera app.

What's New In Version 2.2
● 4.x compatibility
● Fixes a licensing conflict (all OSes) that arose from new versions of other programs.
● New snap on launch feature.
● Temporarily no albumview on 4.x.

Snappy can be purchased from the Cydia Store for $1.99


















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VUnlock Lets You Unlock Your iPhone Screen Using the Volume Buttons

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VUnlock lets you unlock your iPhone's screen using the Volume Buttons instead of the Slide to Unlock gesture.

The tweak is authored by niufenfen and can be downloaded free from the BigBoss Cydia repository.




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Yahoo Launches Yahoo Mail WebApp for iPad

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Yahoo has launched an HTML5 version of Yahoo Mail specifically designed for the iPad.

If you’ve used our recently launched HTML5 mobile Web mail for iPhone you’ll feel right at home. We’ve kept all the things users love about our new mobile Web mail experience, while also optimizing for the gorgeous large screen of the iPad.

Features:
● Faster and more reliable: If you’re offline, Yahoo! Mail uses local caching capabilities to help you access and search your messages even without an Internet connection.
● Smart: You can find and organize your messages using Full Search, personal folders and Smart Folders with messages from your most important contacts and optimized views for photos and file attachments.
● Feature Rich: View rich photo attachments in their full form, or as previews directly in the inbox view. Also includes a dual-pane view to make reading and organizing a breeze.

To access Yahoo Mail on your iPad simply open up Safari and head over to http://mail.yahoo.com.


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Justin Long Uses a Jailbroken iPhone on Jimmy Kimmel

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Justin Long shows off a series of funny SMS messages during his appearance on Jimmy Kimmel using a jailbroken iPhone.

It's unclear whether Long, the actor who appeared as 'Mac' in the Get a Mac commercials, is a jailbreaker himself or whether the show's producer jailbroke his phone so it could be displayed to the audience.

At the 7:04 mark you will notice Cydia and the TVOutTuner apps on his Springboard.

Video will be up shortly

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HBO Go is Coming to the iPad

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In six months, HBO Go will be available to channel subscribers at no additional cost and it will stream to mobile devices including the iPad, according to HBO Co-President Eric Kessler.

Bloomberg notes that HBO Go, which provides 800 hours a month of the channel’s movies and TV shows, has agreements to offer online programming to customers who get pay-TV service through Comcast Corp. and Verizon Communication Inc.’s FiOS.

Netflix has been trying to make a deal with HBO to stream their content; however, it's unlikely this will happen.

“There is value in exclusivity,” Kessler said in an interview. Consumers “are willing to pay a premium for high quality, exclusive content,” he said.




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iPad Pinky Thief Orders Hit on His Victim

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The suspect who allegedly grabbed an iPad from a man at Cherry Creek mall has now been charged with trying to arrange the murder of his victim.

Brandon Darnell Smith, 21, is in jail after stealing a newly purchased iPad from Bill Jordan. The bag holding Jordan's new iPad was wrapped around his hand when Smith allegedly grabbed the bag, tearing off the skin from the pinky finger of Jordan’s left hand. According to a probable cause statement, a letter was sent by Smith in which he attempted to arrange Jordan’s murder. The letter was intercepted by authorities at the Denver Justice Center.

In the letter, Smith identifies Jordan and his home address, telling the person the following:

"YOU GET THIS DONE! AND I GO ON ANYTHING I'll rob a bank if you want me too. Just do this for your boy and I got you for sure. You know how we do it."

Smith points out that Jordan's address is included and says, "That's the address, so handle it A.S.A.P."

He concludes by saying, "I really need this otherwise it's a wrap!! If you do this, case is dropped."




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Google Chrome Web Store Looks a Lot Like the App Store

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At GDC Europe, Google advocates Mark DeLoura and Michael Mahemoff talked about the company's upcoming app store for Chrome.

According to 1up, the store is set to launch this October and aims to become a proper marketplace for browser games -- one that solves a lot of the issues of games on the web today, from discovery to monetization.

Notice how similar it looks to the App Store?







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Apple Awarded Patents for Slide to Unlock and Popping Keyboard

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Today, Apple was awarded with patents for the Slide to Unlock and the pop out keyboard character features of its iPhone, according to TUAW.

Three years ago, Apple filed for patents on two features that iPhone, iPod touch and iPad users see every day -- the Slide to Unlock feature of the Lock screen and the pop-up letters that appear when you're typing on the iPhone keyboard. The United States Patent and Trademark Office has today awarded Apple a series of two patents titled "Animated graphical user interface for a display screen or portion thereof " that provide Apple with patent protection for the animated unlock screen and keyboard.

The patents are numbered D621849 and D621848.







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Antenna Expert Says iPhone 4 Antenna Won't Be Redesigned

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Spencer Webb, President of AntennaSys, says the iPhone 4 antenna can't be fixed by a coating and it's unlikely Apple will redesign the antenna for Verizon, according to ComputerWorld.

"I've called Apple's antenna design 'bold' and 'risky,' but they won't change it [for a CDMA-based phone]", Webb says. "The antenna design is architecturally fixed in the design, and it would take them a while to make whatever the next design is."

Interestingly Webb also notes that applying a non-conductive coating is not a viable solution since it can't be thick enough.

"There's no coating that's thick enough to make a difference," he said. "It's all about getting the lossy conductor, the human, away from the iPhone." It's less about the material that separates skin from the steel band than it is about the thickness of that material. Scotch tape, for instance, is worthless, as is electrical tape unless several layers are applied.

This contradicts a post-doctoral biochemistry fellow at a leading American university who says that an electrically insulating organic hydrophobic layer atop the bare metal would solve reception issues.

However, Webb does believe they will address the issues somehow. "You can bet your bippy that they're going to be addressing this issue somehow," said Webb. "They want to be the smartest guys on the planet, which is what comes from adversity like this."




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- Posted using my iPhone 4