Saturday, March 5, 2011

Is Best Buy going to iPad for Easy Pay?

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The rumor at Forbes is that Best Buy is going to buy each of its employees in its 1100 US locations an iPad as part of its Connected Store program. That in itself is significant, if true. Best Buy has sold the iPad since its inception last year and the program would not only sell lots of iPads to Best Buy, but it would also give the Apple tablets much more exposure in a more and more crowded tablet space.

A source with knowledge of corporate mobile device deployments tells Forbes that one of the country’s top 10 largest retailers expects to distribute iPads to each of its on-floor sales associates. This retailer, the source adds, operates 1,100 stores across the U.S. As the country’s largest electronics retailer — as well as a retailer that currently operates around 1,100 stores in the U.S. — Best Buy is a natural match.
It would be even more interesting is if Best Buy used those iPads as Easy Pay systems like those of GAP and of course Apple Stores. iPads have been showing up as Payment systems all over the place in the year since its launch so it seems like a great idea to us!







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Sony Granted Access to the IP Address of Anyone That Visited Geohot.com

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A judge has ordered Geohot's host to provide Sony with the IP addresses of everyone who visited Geohot.com.

Sony has also won subpoena to retrieve Geohot's Twitter history, the personal information of anyone who visited or commented on Geohot's blog and anyone who access Geohot's private video on YouTube.

Sony is suing Geohot for jailbreaking the PS3 in a case which will set precedence for customer rights in the future.

Learn More





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a. The Bluehost Subpoena
This subpoena to Bluehost, the content server for Mr. Hotz's website at , seeks the identity of those who have downloaded the circumvention devices from Mr. Hotz's website. SCEA has a good faith basis to obtain this information because it is relevant to whether the Court has jurisdiction over Mr. Hotz. SCEA needs to determine how rampant the access to and use of these circumvention devices has been in California in order to rebut Mr. Hotz's suggestion that his illicit conduct was not aimed at the forum state. Not only is this information relevant to SCEA's opposition to the Motion to Dismiss, but it also relates to a "core claim" insofar as the trafficking provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act ("DMCA") – which SCEA alleges Mr. Hotz has violated – pertain directly to evidence of a defendant's distribution of a circumvention device to other persons. Finally, the identity of those who have downloaded the circumvention devices from cannot be discovered from any entity except the site's web content host, Bluehost.

b. The Twitter Subpoena
This subpoena seeks "Tweets" published by Mr. Hotz, many of which SCEA believes relate directly to his hacking of the PS3 System.5 SCEA has a good faith basis to obtain this information because it is relevant to whether the Court has jurisdiction over Mr. Hotz. SCEA seeks to determine whether Mr. Hotz was directing any of his Tweets regarding his hacking of the PS3 System at persons residing in California, and to what extent Mr. Hotz used Twitter to discuss the hacking efforts targeted in this lawsuit. Further, as Mr. Hotz has attempted to shirk responsibility for some of these Tweets because SCEA could not produce original copies of the Tweets posted under Mr. Hotz's account, it is particularly important at this phase of jurisdictional discovery that SCEA be able to access this material. Again, not only does this information relate directly to SCEA's opposition to the Motion to Dismiss, but it relates to a "core claim" insofar as the information sought will reveal important facts about Mr. Hotz's hacking efforts. Finally, SCEA does not believe these Tweets can be discovered from any entity other than Twitter itself. Importantly, this information is not available to SCEA through any other avenue or medium.

c. The Google Blogspot Subpoena
This subpoena seeks to discover information relating to a specific Blogspot account that is owned by Mr. Hotz, , and information regarding persons who also posted content to that website in the form of blog comments. SCEA has a good faith basis to obtain this information because it is relevant to whether the Court has jurisdiction over Mr. Hotz. SCEA seeks to determine whether Mr. Hotz discussed his hacking of the PS3 System with persons in California through his blog. Again, not only does this information relate directly to SCEA's opposition to the Motion to Dismiss, but it relates to a "core claim" insofar as the information sought will reveal important facts about Mr. Hotz's hacking efforts. Finally, information regarding persons who posted content at cannot be discovered from any entity except Google.

d. The YouTube Subpoena
This subpoena seeks to discover information regarding all persons who currently have access to a "private video" uploaded by Mr. Hotz demonstrating his use of the circumvention devices on the PS3 System, and those who posted comments in response to the video. Mr. Hotz posted the video for public viewing on January 7, 2011. Since that time, the video became "private." Pursuant to the TRO entered on January 27, 2011 (and the subsequent Preliminary Injunction), Mr. Hotz is prohibited from publishing or posting any circumvention devices or instructions on how to use them, and cannot assist, facilitate or encourage others to engage in the unlawful activity enjoined by the Court. (See Docket Nos. 50 and 87). Therefore, SCEA must be able to discover what persons, if any, are still able to access the "private" video after the TRO went into effect in order to ascertain whether Mr. Hotz continues to share this "private" video regarding his hacking of the PS3 System with persons in California and determine whether Mr. Hotz has violated the TRO and Preliminary Injunction.6 SCEA has a good faith basis to obtain this information because it is relevant to whether the Court has jurisdiction over Mr. Hotz. Again, not only does this information relate directly to SCEA's opposition to Mr. Hotz's Motion to Dismiss, but it relates to a "core claim" insofar as the information sought will reveal important facts about the intent behind Mr. Hotz's hacking efforts and whether Mr. Hotz is in violation of the TRO by continuing to offer the video. Finally, information regarding persons who have access to the "private" video that Mr. Hotz uploaded cannot be discovered from any entity except YouTube.7
The EFF also challenges the YouTube subpoena under the Video Protection Privacy Act, 18 U.S.C. § 2710 ("the VPPA") and the Stored Communications Act, 18 U.S.C. § 2701 et seq. ("the SCA"). Contrary to the EFF's assertions, neither the VPPA nor the SCA prohibit the issuance of the third party subpoena to YouTube. The VPPA does not mandate a per se prohibition on disclosure of "personally identifiable information" as the EFF implies. In fact, nothing in the YouTube subpoena prevents YouTube from providing notice of this action to user, nor does the subpoena deprive users of the opportunity to "appear and contest the claim" as required under the VPPA. See 18 U.S.C. § 2710(b)(2)(F). To the extent that the VPPA requires SCEA to provide notice to users directly, SCEA is unable to do so until the subpoena issues as it does not presently know the identity of these users. Thus, the YouTube subpoena does not violate the VPPA. Nor does the YouTube subpoena violate the SCA. Nothing in the YouTube subpoena prevents YouTube from first obtaining the "lawful consent of the...subscriber..." for disclosure of information regarding persons who have access to the "private video" that Mr. Hotz uploaded on YouTube before providing such information in response to the subpoena. See 18 U.S.C. § 2702(b)(3).


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Secret Firmware Update Lets Late '08 MacBooks Use 8GB of RAM

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OWC has discovered that a 'secret' firmware update has enabled access to 8GB of RAM on late '08 MacBooks.

In late 2009, an EFI Firmware Update was released to address the buzzing noises coming from the optical drive. However, it seems that somewhere along the line, Apple changed this update without notating it anywhere.

Whether any other elements were affected by this change is undetermined, but it did change memory addressing; with the later version of the update installed, you could address a full 8GB in Snow Leopard. Unfortunately, Software Update doesn’t show this version as being different from the previous one, so users wouldn’t be notified if they had already updated their firmware to the older version.

This discovery applies to the following MacBook models:
● MacBook 13.3" 2.0GHz and 2.4GHz
● MacBook Pro 15" 2.4GHz (All)
● MacBook Pro 15" 2.53GHz model w/ExpressCard Slot (Late 2008)
● MacBook Pro 15" 2.8GHz model w/ExpressCard Slot (Late 2008)

Check your BootROM version in System Profiler and make sure its MBP51.007E.B05 for MacBook Pros and MB51.007D.B03 for MacBooks.

If your BootROM doesn't make the numbers above, download and install the "secretly" updated firmware from here:
● MacBook Pros (MacBookPro5,1): MacBook Pro EFI Firmware Update 1.8
● MacBooks (MacBook5,1): MacBook EFI Firmware Update 1.4

Finally, make sure you are on Snow Leopard 10.6.6 then upgrade your RAM to 8GB. I'll be doing this first thing tomorrow morning!




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uTorrent for Mac Adds Scheduler, Web and RSS Support

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uTorrent has released a beta version of uTorrent for Mac 1.5 which brings long awaited features including Web and RSS support.

We've also added some hidden preferences for advanced users, which contain almost all the advanced settings from the Windows client. Press Cmd + Opt + , to access them.

Changes in 1.5.0:
● Added uTorrent Web support
● Added WebUI support
● Added RSS support
● Added Scheduler
● UI updates
● Added additional preference settings
● Fixed support for secure trackers
● Improved rate limiting

You can download the beta from here.






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Samsung to Rethink New Tablets After Seeing iPad 2

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Samsung says it will have to make improvements to its upcoming tablets after seeing Apple unveil the iPad 2 this week, according to yonhapnews.

Lee Don-joo, executive vice president of Samsung's mobile division, said that Apple has presented new challenges for the South Korean company with a thinner mobile gadget that is priced the same as its predecessor.

The iPad is 8.8-millimeters thick, significantly thinner than Samsung's latest 10.9-millimeter tablet announced last month.

"We will have to improve the parts that are inadequate," Lee told Yonhap News Agency. "Apple made it very thin."

Samsung also notes it will have to reconsider pricing of its future tablets. The 7-inch Galaxy Tab was priced at almost $900; whereas, the iPad starts at $499 and tops out at $829.

"The 10-inch (tablet) was to be priced higher than the 7-inch (tablet) but we will have to think that over," Lee said.




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iPhone Personal Hotspot Only Supports Three Wi-Fi Devices

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Apple reveals that its Personal Hotspot feature for the iPhone 4 will only support three Wi-Fi devices. You can get an additional two devices if you use both Bluetooth and USB.

On the road, in an airport, at the park — now you can bring Wi-Fi with you wherever you go. Download iOS 4.3 on your iPhone 4, and the next time you find yourself without access to Wi-Fi but in 3G territory, enable Personal Hotspot and share your cellular data connection with your Mac, PC, iPad, or other Wi-Fi-capable device. You can share your connection with up to five devices at once over Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and USB — with up to three of those connections using Wi-Fi. Every connection is password protected and secure. And it’s power friendly, too. iPhone detects when your Personal Hotspot is no longer in use and turns it off to save battery life.




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Banned iPad 2 Promo

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Another video spoof of Apple's iPad 2 promo video has been posted by JLE and Waterline Pictures.

Check it out below...





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