Thursday, March 10, 2011

Evidence Found in iOS 4.3 Reveals iPhone 5 Will Get Dual Core A5 Processor

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Evidence found in the iOS 4.3 firmware just released today reveals that the iPhone 5 will likely get the same A5 dual core processor used in the iPad 2.

@chronic found that the A5 processor is called S5L8940.

iPad2,1 (K93AP) = WiFi. iPad2,2 (K94AP) = GSM. iPad2,3 (K95AP) = CDMA. all run on the S5L8940 proc.

@FilippoBiga then posted the image below showing that the iPhone 5 (N94AP) kernelcache.release file contains references to this same S5L8940 processor.

Here’s the proof, iPhone 5 will run on the S5L8940 (A5 dual core processor) too!

It's not much of a stretch to believe that the iPhone 5 will use the A5 processor just like the iPhone 4 used the A4 processor after its debut in the iPad; however, now there is some evidence to support the assumption.




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Rovio narrowly escapes bankruptcy with Angry Birds

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Interesting note from a Wired UK story on Rovio: The company was almost in bankruptcy prior to releasing their Angry Birds app in the App Store. They had been making meager earnings selling apps through the mobile carriers and for other companies. One App for app store and now they are $50 million in the black with a lucrative franchise on their hands.



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Remove Almost Anything From Photos, Invisibly

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Adva-Soft has announced TouchRetouch 2.1 for iOS, an update to their remarkable photo app that allows the user to remove almost anything from a photo, without leaving the slightest visual cue that the photo has been retouched. Employing the latest multiple-patch content fill algorithms, the app can remove people or objects and replace them with a convincing, seamless rendering of the surrounding background. The app also features an advanced clone stamp tool for advanced retouching. Both automatic and manual retouching modes are available. The automatic retouching works perfectly for photos with relatively small objects to be removed and/or a fairly uniform background. The manual retouching (clone stamp tool) allows the user to remove relatively large objects and/or fill complex, patterned backgrounds.

Just a few ideas what TouchRetouch could be used for:
* Remove spots from sky or other backgrounds
* Remove wires from your picture
* Remove banners from the buildings
* Remove human-made objects from nature views (e.g., bridges, buildings, tents, ships etc.)
* Remove your shadow from self-made picture
* Remove people from the photo
* Remove ghosts and flare
* Remove surface breaks
* Smooth and retouch the face
* Create funny pictures (e.g., remove the bicycle from under the cyclist)

Before TouchRetouch release, object removing technique was only available for PC users. Now, for just $0.99 (USD) any iOS user can get a window on the world of advanced, automatic, digital photo retouching.

Originally introduced in May 2010, TouchRetouch 2.1 is a mature app that functions smoothly and offers various convenience features. Significantly, the app is capable of working with large, high-resolution photos, in excess of iPhone 4's 2592 x 1936 maximum. Also, the app can provide a 1:1 display of all the pixels in any part of the photo, an aid in delicate, manual retouching. Whenever displaying a photo, scaled to fit the screen or not, the app has an inset window that shows what is directly under the user's fingertip, permitting any desired level of accuracy, even on the small iPhone display. The app includes user settings, textual localized help, built-in video tutorials, both portrait and landscape modes support, direct connectivity with both Adva-Soft tech support and online user forum, and in-app sharing of photos via e-mail, Facebook, Flickr, Picasa, and Twitter.

Feature Highlights:
* Unlimited Undo/Redo actions
* Smart background image recovery techniques
* No distortions in final image
* Easy to use interface
* Original resolution images support
* In-app video tutorials, and localized text instructions
* Finger move hint
* Application settings
* Advanced clone stamp tool
* Both portrait and landscape modes support
* Flickr, Facebook, Picasa, Twitter direct sharing
* iOS 4 multitasking support
* Optimized algorithm for large-scale pictures
* Brilliantly clear 1:1 image viewer for all iDevices

"TouchRetouch has become extremely successful, and it has many uses," stated Co-Founder Roman Kutelmakh. "People use it to make their photos more artistic by removing wires or signs; some make amusing trick photos of people in mid air; photographers use it to remove blemishes from portraits. If you need fast, simple results, automatic retouching works perfectly. And if you want to do advanced, detailed retouching, clone stamp tool is available."

Language Support
* English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish

Pricing and Availability:
TouchRetouch 2.1 is $0.99 (USD) and available worldwide through the App Store in the Photography category. A free demo version that leaves a watermark on the photo is also available. Review copies are available upon request.



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Before you buy that iPad 2 3G… (LTE Mifi)

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We’ve just heard that a Verizon 4G LTE Mifi just went through the FCC. It isn’t going to give you GPS (And won’t be cheap) but it might be another option for your extra-Wifi Connectivity needs. Usually devices take around a month to get from FCC to store shelves.

Just thought you’d like to know.


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In-App Purchases Now Require Password Reentry

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Apple has announced that iOS 4.3 requires reentry of your password to make in-app purchases, according to the Washington Post.

Parents had complained to the The Post that in the 15-minute period after an app was downloaded, children were buying sometimes hundreds of dollars of purchases on games such as Smurfs’ Village and Tap Zoo — popular iTunes games that are also among the highest-grossing programs for in-app purchases.

"We are proud to have industry-leading parental controls with iOS," said Trudy Muller, a spokeswoman for Apple. "With iOS 4.3, in addition to a password being required to purchase an app on the App Store, a reentry of your password is now required when making an in-app purchase."

Last month the FTC said it will investigate Apple In-App Purchases after U.S. legislator Rep. Ed Markey sent a letter expressing his concern over unintentional purchases made by children.




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MacBook Air, Safari 5.0.4 pwned at hacking contest in five seconds

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Why is it that Apple’s otherwise excellent Safari browser seems to be more prone to vulnerabilities than rival offerings from Microsoft, Google and Mozilla? Ever since security whiz Charlie Miller in 2008 broke into the MacBook Air in two minutes through Safari, the browser has been the subject of intense criticism for its various security weaknesses. Well, Safari just got pwned again at yesterday’s HP TippingPoint-sponsored hacking challenge at the CanSecWest security conference in Vancouver, British Columbia.

This time, the bragging rights belong to the French security firm Vupen which won a cool $15,000 and a MacBook Air for beating its perks in pwning Apple’s browser. It took the team just a few seconds to exploit an unpatched Safari vulnerability. “We pwned Apple Safari on Mac OS X (x64) at pwn2own in 5 seconds,” they tweeted.

Just a few minutes before the contest, Apple released Safari 5.0.4 alongside iOS 4.3. Vupen said the release fixed 62 vulnerabilities, breaking “some exploits but not all.” In addition to Safari, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 8 was also hacked pretty quickly. The contest rules required that browsers be frozen to certain version numbers – Safari 5.0.3, Chrome 9, Internet Explorer 8 and Firefox 3.6 – although that didn’t preclude researchers from trying to hack the latest browser releases. Here’s to hoping that Apple will get a Safari fix out soon.



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Apple Releases Xcode 4 in the Mac App Store

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Apple has released Xcode 4 as a free download for registered developers and as a $4.99 download in the Mac App Store.

Xcode 4 has been streamlined to help you write better apps. It has unified user interface design, coding, testing, and debugging all within a single window. The Xcode IDE analyzes the details of your project to identify mistakes in both syntax and logic, it can even help fix your code for you.

Xcode 4 runs on Mac OS X Snow Leopard and includes the Xcode IDE, Instruments, iOS Simulator, the latest Mac OS X and iOS SDKs, and hundreds of powerful features:

Innovative tools to help you create great apps
- Interface Builder is fully integrated as a design canvas within the Xcode IDE
- The Assistant shows files related to what you're editing, such as the header, superclass, or controller
- The Version editor shows a live source code comparison through Git or Subversion history
- Live Issues display errors as you type, and Fix-it can correct the mistakes for you
- Apple LLVM compiler now includes full support for C++, in addition to C and Objective-C
- The new LLDB debugging engine is faster and more memory-efficient than GDB
- Instruments adds System Trace and new iOS instruments including OpenGL ES

Streamlined interface that is faster and easier to use
- Design your interface side by side with the backing source code
- Create connections from your GUI design directly to the related source code
- Use tabs to organize your workspace, or double-click to open files in a new window
- Schemes let you customize exactly how your app will build, run, profile, and deploy
- Debugging and console views slide in without disturbing your place in the editor

Professional editor keeps you focused on your code
- Click the Jump Bar at the top of the editor to instantly go to another file
- View message bubbles to see errors, warnings, and other issues right beside the code
- Use the ribbon on the left of the editor to fold your code, or highlight scope

Embedded Apple LLVM technology finds and fixes bugs for you
- Analyzer travels countless code paths looking for logical errors before they become bugs
- Live Issues underlines coding mistakes as you type with no need to build first
- Fix-it can confidently correct mistakes for you with just a keystroke
- Code completion for C, C++, and Objective-C is incredibly fast and accurate

Instruments for visual performance analysis
- Compare CPU, disk, memory, and OpenGL performance as graphical tracks over time
- Identify performance bottlenecks then dive deep into the code to uncover the cause
- Monitor your app directly, or sample the entire system, with very little overhead

To test or deploy applications on an iOS device you must be a member of Apple's iOS Developer Program. To submit your Mac or iOS apps to the App Store you must be a member of the Mac or iOS Developer Program. Some features may require Internet access.

You can purchase Xcode 4 from the Mac App Store for $4.99.
















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iPad 2 personalized setup, 1 AM PT online orders, GarageBand and iMovie available today for $4.99 ea

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Apple pushed a press release this morning reminding us that iPad 2 will go on sale tomorrow (almost forgot!). For those of us ordering online on the East Coast, we now have to change our alarms from 3am to 4am to make the purchase. That’s awesome Apple (Grrr).

Some other clarifications contained within:

GarageBand and iMovie for iPad go on sale today for $4.99 each
Online orders now begin at 1 a.m. PT (not 12:00 that Apple reps had previously been reporting)
Every customer who buys an iPad 2 at an Apple retail store will be offered free Personal Setup service (That should keep lines moving briskly)
Apple Store opens iPad 2 sales at 5PM (be prepared to wait while people get their iPad 2′s set up)
5 p.m. will also be for AT&T, Best Buy, Target, Verizon Wireless, Walmart and select Apple Authorized Resellers
iPad 2 will be available in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK on March 25; and in many more countries around the world in the coming months. Further international availability and pricing will be announced at a later date.
Full press release below:

iPad 2 Arrives Tomorrow
CUPERTINO, California—March 10, 2011—Apple® today announced that iPad™ 2, the next generation of its magical device for browsing the web, reading and sending email, enjoying photos, watching videos, listening to music, playing games, reading ebooks and much more, will be available tomorrow at 5 p.m. local time at all 236 Apple retail stores in the US and through the Apple Store® (www.apple.com) beginning at 1 a.m. PT. Every customer who buys an iPad 2 at an Apple retail store will be offered free Personal Setup service, helping them customize their iPad 2 by setting up email, loading new apps from the App Store℠ and more, so they’ll be up and running with their new iPad 2 before they leave the store. iPad 2 will also be available beginning at 5 p.m. local time at AT&T, Best Buy, Target, Verizon Wireless, Walmart and select Apple Authorized Resellers.

iPad 2 features an entirely new design that is 33 percent thinner and up to 15 percent lighter than the original iPad, while maintaining the same stunning 9.7-inch LED-backlit LCD screen. iPad 2 features Apple’s new dual-core A5 processor for blazing fast performance and stunning graphics and now includes two cameras, a front-facing VGA camera for FaceTime® and Photo Booth®, and a rear-facing camera that captures 720p HD video, bringing the innovative FaceTime feature to iPad users for the first time. Though it is thinner, lighter, faster and packed with new features, iPad 2 still delivers up to 10 hours of battery life* that users have come to expect. iPad 2 is available in black or white, features models that run on AT&T’s and Verizon’s 3G networks, and introduces the innovative iPad 2 Smart Cover in a range of vibrant polyurethane and rich leather colors.

Pricing & Availability
iPad 2 with Wi-Fi will be available in the US on March 11 for a suggested retail price of $499 for the 16GB model, $599 for the 32GB model, $699 for the 64GB model. iPad 2 with Wi-Fi + 3G will be available for a suggested retail price of $629 for the 16GB model, $729 for the 32GB model and $829 for the 64GB model. iPad 2 with Wi-Fi + 3G compatible with the Verizon network will be available in the US only for a suggested retail price of $629 for the 16GB model, $729 for the 32GB model and $829 for the 64GB model.

iMovie® and GarageBand® for iPad apps are available today for $4.99 each from the App Store on iPad or www.itunes.com/appstore. The Smart Cover is available in a range of colors in vibrant polyurethane for $39 or rich leather for $69.

iPad 2 will be available in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK on March 25; and in many more countries around the world in the coming months. Further international availability and pricing will be announced at a later date.

*Battery life depends on device settings, usage and other factors. Actual results vary.

Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork, and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple is reinventing the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and has recently introduced its magical iPad which is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices.




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Apple iPad 2 Reviews Go Live

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Apple has lifted the embargo on Apple iPad 2 reviews as they begin to go live on various sites. We have compiled reviews from various blogs.

Engadget
For owners of the previous generation, we don't think Apple's put a fire under you to upgrade. Unless you absolutely need cameras on your tablet, you've still got a solid piece of gear that reaps plenty of the benefits of the latest OS and apps. For those of you who haven't yet made the leap, feel free to take a deep breath and dive in -- the iPad 2 is as good as it gets right now. And it's really quite good.

MacWorld
For Apple’s competitors in the tablet-device market, the iPad 2 is a bucket of water to the face. After more than a year of struggling to catch up to the original iPad, here’s a new model that addresses many of the iPad’s deficiencies, dramatically improves its speed, and doesn’t cede any ground on price, features, or battery life. The iPad 2 raises the bar Apple set a year ago—and it’s time for the rest of the industry to scramble again to catch up.

AllThingsD/WSJ
As new contenders move into the field, Apple isn’t likely to keep its 90% share of the booming tablet market. But the iPad 2 moves the goal posts, by being slimmer and lighter, boosting speed and power, and holding its price advantages, available apps and battery life. As of now, I can comfortably recommend it as the best tablet for average consumers.

New York Times
My friends, I'm telling you: just that much improvement in thinness, weight and speed transforms the experience. We're not talking about a laptop or a TV, where you don't notice its thickness while in use. This is a tablet. You are almost always holding it. Thin and light are unbelievably important for comfort and the overall delight. So are rounded edges, which the first iPad didn't have.

SlashGear
For everyone else, though, Apple has put together a superbly capable, class-shaping tablet, which can now legitimately take on not only other slates but lighter ereaders such as Amazon’s Kindle. The iPad 2 benefits from Apple’s cohesive hardware and software development together with the vast third-party developer support of the App Store, consistent and simple to use in equal measure. Apple’s vision of the post-PC world isn’t quite here yet – the iPad 2 still works best with, and at times demands, integration with a “proper” computer – but when it comes to tablets the iPad 2 maintains its position at the vanguard of the market.

USA Today
Pros: Thinner and lighter design. Fast with souped-up graphics. Front and rear cameras for FaceTime video chat and other uses. By far the most apps. Excellent battery life. Nice screen. Software iOS 4.3 lets you stream over home network. Video "mirroring" (with accessories).
Cons: No Adobe Flash support means some Web videos won't play. Requires accessories for HDMI, USB and SD. AirPlay feature sometimes hiccupped.

The Daily
That all depends on what you’re doing with your iPad now. Cameras and speed aside, the iPad 2 isn’t drastically different than what you have in your hands. It’s just a much sleeker and sexier version of it.

TechCrunch
For existing iPad owners, things are a bit murkier. If you have the disposable income, it’s a no-brainer to upgrade. Again, this is everything you like about the iPad 1, but better. But if you just bought an iPad 1, or you don’t want to drop another several hundred dollars, it’s not like the iPad 1 will be out of date anytime soon. Sure, it may feel like older technology to the touch, but again, it largely looks and acts the same. My advice is just don’t visit an Apple Store or play with a friend’s iPad 2, or you’ll be tempted.





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Google Now Lets You Block Sites From Your Search Results

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Google today announced a new feature that lets you block sites from your search results.

You've probably had the experience where you've clicked a result and it wasn't quite what you were looking for. Many times you'll head right back to Google. Perhaps the result just wasn't quite right, but sometimes you may dislike the site in general, whether it's offensive, pornographic or of generally low quality. For times like these, you'll start seeing a new option to block particular domains from your future search results. Now when you click a result and then return to Google, you'll find a new link next to "Cached" that reads "Block all example.com results."

How It Works:
Once you click the link to "Block all example.com results" you'll get a confirmation message, as well as the option to undo your choice. You'll see the link whether or not you're signed in, but the domains you block are connected with your Google Account, so you'll need to sign in before you can confirm a block.

Once you've blocked a domain, you won't see it in your future search results. The next time you're searching and a blocked page would have appeared, you'll see a message telling you results have been blocked, making it easy to manage your personal list of blocked sites. This message will appear at the top or bottom of the results page depending on the relevance of the blocked pages.

You can see a list of your blocked sites in a new settings page, which you can access by visiting your Search Settings or clicking on the "Manage blocked sites" link that appears when you block a domain. On the settings page you can find details about the sites you've blocked, block new sites, or unblock sites if you've changed your mind.

The new feature is rolling out today and tomorrow on google.com in English for people using Chrome 9+, IE8+ and Firefox 3.5+, and will be expanding to new regions, languages and browsers soon.













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The Apple SuperMondo TrackPad Thingy (Early 2010)

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Sometimes developers find some pretty funny stuff. This was apparently the prototype name for Apple’s Magic Trackpad. I’ll be honest: I like SuperMondo better than Magic.





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Apple to Begin White iPhone Production This Month, Start Shipping Next Month?

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Apple is reportedly set to begin production of the white iPhone 4 this month with shipping to start next month, according to an AppleInsider report.

Manufacturers will initiate production of the GSM-based iPhone 4 version in white enclosures and begin dispatching them to Apple ahead of general availability planned for next month, Concord Securities Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo told AppleInsider. Apple has made changes the "film material to solve the full-lamination problem that [was] the reason why white iPhones [were] delayed," he added. The handset was first scheduled to debut last June. Kuo did not provide a timeframe for a white CDMA-based iPhone.




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AppleTV Update Brings Live MLB and NBA Games

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Today's iOS 4.3 update brings a surprise addition to the AppleTV - Live MLB and NBA games.

We haven't found a promotional page for the NBA streaming yet; however, MLB is already advertising the service.

Enjoy select Spring Training games and a full slate of regular season games on Apple TV.

Regular Season features include:
• HD Quality (where available)
• LIVE and archived games
• Home and away broadcasts*
• Quick navigation to run scoring plays or a particular at bat

On your Apple TV, sign in with the username and password associated with your MLB.TV subscription. Don't have an MLB.TV subscription? Click the "Buy MLB.TV Now" button to catch all the 2011 MLB action.

Changelog:
● MLB.TV: Watch live and on-demand Major League Baseball games, access stats, scores and standings.
● NBA: See scores and more, plus League Pass Broadband subscribers get live and archived games.
● AirPlay for apps: Use AirPlay to wirelessly stream video from apps and Safari on your iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
● Netflix Dolby Digital 5.1: Enjoy Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound when watching Netflix movies and TV shows
● New slideshow themes: View photos with the new Scrapbook, Photo Mobile, and Holiday Mobile slideshow themes.
● Improved on-screen keyboard: Search and enter names and passwords more easily with the redesigned on-screen keyboard.


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