Jordan Kahn

@JordanKahn

Senior Editor, 9to5Mac – 9to5Google – 9to5Toys

Contact Jordan with news tips and long-winded complaints at Jordan@9to5mac.com.  

Jordan writes about all things Apple as a senior editor for 9to5Mac. He also covers Google for 9to5Google.com and the latest gear and deals on 9to5Toys.com.

Send tips to: Jordan@9to5mac.com Twitter: @JordanKahn FB: https://www.facebook.com/makamachine SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/makamachine

Jordan Kahn's Recommended Gear

March 14, 2013

Kickoff- Chat and Tasks for Teams: Just launched on the App Store and Mac App Store, Kickoff is a new app from developer Michael Villar that aims to provide the ultimate solution for group chat on the Mac and iOS. Anyone that has attempted to use the group chat apps currently on the market know most come with a flawed experience at best. Most similar services also charge a monthly fee and often fees associated with the number of team members. With the limited time we’ve had with the app, Kickoff appears to be solving many of these problems with no reoccurring payments as well as no limits for file storage or team/user cap.

Other notable features include: A built-in group task manager, drag and drop uploading, Retina support, native keyboard gestures, and integration with quick look, Notification Center, Full-screen view, and dictation. The app is available for the one time cost of $27.99 on the Mac App Store and $6.99 for the iPhone.

CBS-iOS-app-screenshotCBS: Released on the App Store today, the official app from CBS offers full HD episodes of some of the network’s most popular shows including Catch NCIS, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, How I Met Your Mother, Survivor, Elementary, The Young and the Restless, and The Late Show with David Letterman. CBS said some shows will be available through the app 24 hours after they air while others will be “available 8 days after initial broadcast.” The app is available now for free on iPhone and iPad.

The Croods: Today Angry Birds developer Rovio has released the much teased “The Croods” iOS title that acts as an official tie-in for the upcoming animated Dreamworks film of the same name. The free game is available to download on the App Store now for iPhone and iPad.

Alfred 2.0: Available today in version 2.0, the latest update to this extremely popular productivity app brings a completely re-written experience that uses less than 15% of the previous version’s code. The result, according to the developers, is a much faster and easier to use experience that includes a new Workflows framework, new enhanced theme support, improvements to Contacts in search results, and much, much more. 

Paypal-here-for-iPadPayPal Here for iPad: Businesses taking advantage of PayPal’s recently launched ‘PayPal Here’ POS app and card reader will appreciate that the company has today decided to release an official iPad app for the service. The company made the official announcement on its blog noting that the app is initially available only in the US.

  • App designed specifically for the iPad
  • Ability to scan an item’s barcode for faster checkout
  • Wirelessly connect to a cash drawer and printer
  • Track sales activity in “Daily Summary” reporting

Deals:

iPad app, djay, temporarily $4.99 (Reg. $19.99)

iPhone & iPad game, Infinity Blade II, temporarily $2.99 (Reg. $6.99)

iPhone & iPad game, Grand Theft Auto 3, temporarily $1.99 (Reg. $4.99)

However unlikely—the United States Patent and Trademark office today published an Apple patent application that details a system of inductively charging an iPad through the Smart Cover. The idea is that rather than plugging in the iPad, the Smart Cover would include an inductive power transmitter that would allow it to pair with an inductive power transceiver embedded into the iPad. The result is the Smart Cover would become a wireless charging station, connecting to an external power source, and allowing you to power your iPad in various positions. Apple also explained that it could use “ambient power gathering devices, such as solar cells, can be used to gather ambient power (such as sunlight) to be stored internally in the flap for later inductive transfer.”

A method for wireless powering a tablet device, comprising: determining if a protective cover is in a closed configuration with respect to the tablet device; enabling a wireless power receiver circuit in the tablet device when it is determined that the protective cover is in the closed configuration with respect to the tablet device; and wirelessly receiving power from a wireless power transmitter associated with the protective cover.

Apple described the advanced Smart Cover as including multiple power transmitters to allow the iPad to charge even when using the case, for example, as a stand to prop up the device. Alternatively, the cover could continue charging the device when in the closed position or when an iPad is placed on top: expand full story

9to5toys 

When Apple first introduced its new iMacs that began shipping to customers in November and December of last year, it confirmed the new models would not include support for VESA mounts like earlier models. Users of previous generation iMacs were able to buy and install a mount using the Video Electronics Standards Association standard to attach the product to a wall or other surface. It looks like Apple has now finally come up with a solution for the new super-slim iMacs by offering a $40 built-to-order option that will replace the iMac’s stand with a built-in VESA mount adapter.

The iMac with Built-in VESA Mount Adapter is ready to pair with your favorite VESA-compatible wall mount, desk mount, or articulating arm(sold separately). This iMac doesn’t include a stand, so a mount is required. If you don’t already have a mount, you can purchase one when you configure your iMac.

iFun pointed us to the listing on Apple.com where Apple now lets you select all four models of the new iMac with the built-in mount. The option will run users an extra $40 on top of the regular iMac pricing, making the entry-level 21.5-inch model start at $1,339.

Apple noted that it isn’t including its traditional iMac stand with these models, and users will have to purchase a desk or wall mount separately.

The VESA iMacs are now shipping in 7 to 10 days in the U.S. (compared to ‘within 24 hours’ for the other models) and seem to be available on Apple Stores worldwide wherever iMacs are currently sold.

expand full story

March 13, 2013

we_are_huntedAccording to a report from CNET, Twitter might be preparing to launch a new standalone iOS music app as early as the end of this month. The report cites “a person familiar with the matter” and claimed Twitter would use technology it acquired through its purchase of music discovery service We Are Hunted to provide a music service dubbed “Twitter Music.” CNET says the service will provide customized content suggestions based on who users follow on Twitter. It would also apparently integrate with SoundCloud and carry Twitter branding unlike the company’s recently launched video sharing app Vine:

Twitter Music suggests artists and songs to listen to based on a variety of signals, and is personalized based on which accounts a user follows on Twitter. Songs are streamed to the app via SoundCloud.

The report provided a breakdown of how the app works, explaining that it will offer suggested songs and artists based on Twitter followers, links to songs people are listening to through the hashtag #NowPlaying, and popular and emerging tracks for trending and newly popular artists: expand full story

Tim-Cook-apologyReuters reports that U.S. District Judge Denise Cote in Manhattan has granted a request from the Justice Department today that will force Apple CEO Tim Cook into giving a four hour deposition related to the high profile ebook price-fixing lawsuit.

The government had argued Cook likely had relevant information about Apple’s entry into the e-books market. It also said Cook likely had conversations related to e-books with former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, who died in 2011.

Apple had fought the request, calling his testimony “cumulative and duplicative” since the government had already deposed 11 other executives at the iPad maker.

U.S. District Judge Denise Cote cited the death of Steve Jobs as the main reason behind the decision:

“Because of that loss, I think the government is entitled to take testimony from high-level executives within Apple about topics relevant to the government case,” as well as to counter Apple’s defense arguments, she said.

Apple is now the only defendant in the case filed in April 2012 as the 4 other publishers originally accused in the lawsuit, including Pearson, Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, and HarperCollins, have already reached settlements. Reuters reports that a trial is slated for later this year in June and, while the government isn’t seeking damages, will seek a ruling that “Apple violated antitrust law and an order blocking it from engaging in similar conduct expand full story

9to5google 

After it began selling Apple accessories including Apple TV, Airports, and more through its online store last month, Staples now appears to be gearing up to possibly sell other Apple products including iPhone, iPad and Macs. While we already knew that the company was planning on bringing the accessories to its brick and mortar locations, today MacRumors posted the internal document above showing Staples is also training sales staff on the iPhone, iPad, and MacBooks.

The training materials have a completion date of March 26 or 27, and with Staples already confirming plans to bring Apple TV and other products to stores by early next month, it’s a possibility other iOS devices and MacBooks could be included in the roll out. We’ll keep you updated if we get official word from the company.  expand full story

News: With a heavy focus on its new Creative Cloud subscriptions lately (currently 60% off), TechHive confirmed with Adobe yesterday that it is cutting off physical, boxed sales of its Creative Suite apps.

As Adobe continues to focus on delivering world-class innovation through Creative Cloud and digital fulfillment, we will be phasing out shrink-wrapped, boxed versions of Creative Suite and Acrobat products.”

Readdle-CalendarGoogle Shopper version 3.2: Google has updated its Google Shopper app for iOS today with new features including a new category result page, larger product images in a new slideshow mode, as well as “improvements to search locale detection, stability, and performance.”

Calendars by Readdle: Readdle has rebranded its paid Calendars app to “Calendars+” today in order to make room for a brand new free app that takes over the “Calendars by Readdle” name. The new free app features a UI and features similar to Readdle’s previous Calendars app, which the company tells us now has over 500,000 users.

Calendars lets you manage events both online and offline. Thanks to the unique interface you can move events simply with Drag & Drop, navigate quickly between dates, change event time and reminders rapidly with custom keyboards. Calendars supports everything you can find in Google Calendar: appointments, SMS reminders and more. Sync is really fast and your information is always up to date.

Roku version 2.1.2: The app that allows you to control your Roku from your iPhone gets official support for the Roku 3 player today:

• Support for Roku 3 player • Minor fixes

Snapguide version 1.1.3: New photo editing features, search filters, and more:

– Introducing photo editing features! When creating a guide, you can now rotate and enhance images. – Easily find guides you have liked. You can now filter liked guides by topics such as Food, Arts and Crafts and more! – Bug Fixes.

Cubasis version 1.2: A massive update today for Steinberg’s iPad version of Cubase brings a ton of new features and fixes: expand full story

electrek 

Breathometer-device-and-appAvailable to preorder through a new project on crowd funding site Indiegogo, Breathometer, Inc. today announced what it claims is the “World’s First Smartphone Breathalyzer”. While we have seen other solutions in the past, the Breathometer is a smaller, thumb drive sized device that connects to your iPhone’s 3.5mm audio jack and provides reliable, real-time blood alcohol readings.

The company said it already has a working prototype but is counting on raising its $25,000 funding goal in order to kick the Breathometer into full production. It also plans to implement additional features in a companion app before the Breathometer’s launch, such as a “a push of a button cab service.”

Breathometer is the next generation breathalyzer that provides an accurate BAC measurement that enables smarter decisions… By using Breathometer, you now have the ability to help prevent accidents. We’re also building some other amazing features like a push of a button cab service.

Early bird pledgers will be able to get a Breathometer when it ships (by January 2014) for just $20, while bids ranging from $50 to $500 will get you a unit as early as July of this year in addition to some bonus gifts.

CEO and founder of Breathometer had this to say about the announcement: expand full story

9to5toys 

March 12, 2013

Research firm IDC is out with an updated 2013 forecast for worldwide tablet shipments today and, on top of increasing its prediction from 172.4 million units to 190.9 million for the year, claimed Android tablets would continue to grow and cut into Apple’s market share. IDC said Android will capture 48.8-percent of the tablet market by operating system by the end of the year, while Apple is estimated to take home 46 percent. That’s down from 51 percent of the market for Apple in 2012 and just 41.5-percent for Android in IDC’s previous forecast. IDC estimated tablets in the 8 inches and below category will continue to grow and expects Windows tablets to increase from 1 percent to 7.4-percent by 2017 at the expense of iOS and Android:

expand full story

iPhone-5S-Colors

In January, Jeffries analyst Peter Misek claimed iPhone 5S production was slated for March with an expected June or July launch date for the device. Today, Misek has issued a note to clients (via Street Insider) and cut his price target for Apple from $500 to $420. He also claimed iPhone 5S could be delayed to September due to supplier issues with new casing colors. While noting that Apple will likely miss guidance with slow sales after the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S4 launch, Misek compared Apple to BlackBerry and HTC: “Historically when handset makers fall out of favor (e.g., the RAZR, BBRY, HTC) they fall faster/further than expected.”

He also said the rumored low-cost iPhone could sell for as high as $450 due to higher-end specs than initially anticipated:

The firm’s checks indicate Apple’s suppliers are having problems with the new casing colors leading to a push out from Jun to Jul-Sep after Apple hoped to pull forward the update. Checks also indicate pricing of the low-cost iPhone will be $350-$450 as some of the specs are higher-end than we expected (e.g., 4″ incell retina display, same app processor as the 5S). The main difference is the housing (plastic vs. aluminum). They estimate mid-40%s GM for the 5S and low 30%s for the low-cost.

Several analysts, including Misek, previously predicted the low-cost iPhone would sell for between $250 and $350.

As for the fingerprint technology that we have heard many rumors about, Misek said Apple could include the tech in both the iPhone 5S and iPhone 6 (with the latter launching in CQ1): expand full story

9to5google 

Vimeo On Demand: After launching a brand new iPhone app in November and rolling out its Tip Jar feature in September, Vimeo is today officially launching its new Vimeo On Demand ‘self-distribution service’ that allows Vimeo PRO creators to sell content directly to their audience. Vimeo said content creators will keep a 90 percent share after transactions fees and will also be able to “choose their price; select country-by-country availability; customize their page design; and offer content on Vimeo, their own website, or both.” Purchased videos will be available to users across all devices that support Vimeo. Previously, Vimeo had a preview of the service available on its website that offered a selection of movies for $5.00.

“What used to be a confusing and labor-intensive process is now open and simple with Vimeo On Demand,” said Blake Whitman, Vice President of Creative Development. “We always strive to provide our community and visitors with the best experience possible, and this opens up a new world of viewable content and support for creators. We are proud of this first phase of Vimeo On Demand, and we’re already working on another suite of creator-focused features to release in the near future.”

Rdio-iPhone-app-Mar-2013Rdio version 2.1.3: Internet radio streaming service Rdio has been updated with a refreshed UI that brings brand new album/playlist views on the iPhone, as well as larger album art, the ability to see friends who have listened recently, and much more.

– New album/playlist views on iPhone.  Shows large album art, friends who have listened recently, and more. – Various bug fixes and UI improvements.

Tumblr version 3.3: A nice update to the Tumblr iOS app today brings a bunch of new features including a brand new camera, the ability to create photo sets right from within the app, and a few other UI enhancements and usability features:

– Brand new camera! – Create photosets straight from the app – Double-tap posts to like! – Tap the avatar in your profile to change it – Link posts: Copy or enter a URL and we’ll fetch the title!

Apple Store version 2.5: Apple’s Apple Store app for browsing the Apple online store, scheduling appointments and much more was updated today with new delivery options and an easier experience for checking if products are available for local pickup:

 – New delivery options make it even more convenient to get your Apple products.  Choose different shipping options for different items in an order. – An even easier way to see if the product you want is available for pickup at your favorite Apple Retail Store (U.S. only).

Plague Inc. version 1.5.2: expand full story

March 11, 2013

electrek 

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