Some surprises we might see at WWDC 2013 next week

(Preparations for Apple’s 2013 WWDC developer conference / Image via Nick)

There’s a lot we already know about what we’ll be seeing next week at WWDC– we’ve already brought you exclusive details on iOS 7, OS X 10.9, a MacBook refresh, Apple’s new Radio service, and much more. What else might we see Apple show off next week? Below are a couple of our best predictions based on what we think Apple is most likely to show off as well as few things we’ve been hearing: Read more

Apple updates iPhoto and Aperture for Mac with Photo Stream improvements, bug fixes, Safari and Java

Screen Shot 2013-04-16 at 4.42.19 PM

Today, Apple has released software updates for the Mac version of iPhoto and for Aperture. The updates both focus on bug fixes and improvements.

Notably, both apps were given improvements and fixes for Photo Stream integration. iPhoto now has easier image deleting and exporting from Photo Stream, while Aperture has a bug fix related to Shared Photo Streams.

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Safari and Java were also updated with improved security (release notes below). Notably, the new update introduces controls to specify which websites can use Java – something that should help prevent malicious websites from exploiting the never-ending stream of Java exploits.

Full release notes below:

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Review: Adobe Photoshop Elements 11 and Premiere Elements 11

Adobe recently announced the latest Mac versions of Photoshop Elements 11 and Premiere Elements 11, and I had a brief opportunity to glance at some of their shiny, new add-ons. Version 11 of both programs notably boast new looks, new experiences, new features, and new functions; but more importantly, they effectively tout prosumer video- and photo-editing solutions for the average consumer.

For those unaware, Adobe Photoshop Elements essentially provides iPhoto users with a Photoshop or Aperture-ish editing experience without the hefty price tag; and similarly, Premiere Elements gives iMovie users the more pocket-friendly bells and whistles of Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro X.

Go below for the full review.

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Twig: the most versatile iPhone charging cord/tripod hits Kickstarter

Apple’s medium-length, white docking cable is widely known for its, how would one say, cumbersome functionality when attached to iDevices.

It comes in every iPhone, iPad, iWhatever box, and it is in desperate need of an update. Sure, reports show the next iPhone will sport a mini-dock connector, so maybe a new charging solution is already around the corner. But, in the meantime, third-party firms are thankfully developing interesting alternatives. Twig, for instance, is a newly launched Kickstarter project that certainly caught our eye.

Jason Hilbourne created a docking cable—err thing—that lacks a cord, can fit into a pocket, bends like Gumby, and sports a variety of color options. No tangle, no mess, and no headache. Oh, and the best part is that this little doohickey also doubles as a tripod. Go watch the video on the Kickstarter page to see how Hilbourne developed the product before deciding upon the last iteration. Those who are interested can get Twig at the $18 contribution level.

In related Kickstarter/docking cable news, Dave Hakkens has developed the Plugbook. Yes, it is in the shape of a book, so it can hide between other books. However, 10 feet of cable hides inside. Interesting, eh?

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Report: Apple’s iOS 6 Maps app with 3D mapping gets rendered [Photos]


This is an almost entirely correct render of the new Maps app.

BGR just posted a few images of Apple’s iOS 6 Maps app with 3D mapping that 9to5Mac first revealed earlier this month.

Their “trusted source” released these screenshots, which give subsequent validity to the claims that Apple has worked on an in-house mapping solution for years now. Apple is reportedly testing its 3D technology in build 10A314 of iOS 6. The renderings are largely accurate, from what we heard, but the bookmarks icon does not show the border that we saw. Also, the 3D icon only exists on the iPad version (it is actually below the curl on the iPhone, because it is too easy to accidentally press.) We hope to have our own screenshots shortly.

Our sources were the first to indicate Apple will drop Google Maps in iOS for a new Maps app with an Apple backend. 9to5Mac further said the app’s design would be very similar to Google Maps on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, but a “much cleaner, faster, and more reliable experience.” Today’s report adds validity to our initial reporting, while speculating the app’s color scheme will be more silver than blue.

Many versions of iOS 6 have floated around Apple’s campus recently, which suggest the company is on track for a mid-June unveiling at this year’s World Wide Developers Conference. The new Maps app and its 3D mode is likely a major feature of iOS 6, but we previously noted that anyone anticipating major home screen changes or Android-style widgets will find disappointment. However, Apple is set to unveil an upgraded iCloud service at WWDC with new sharing and commenting features for photos and video syncing capabilities that resemble the Video Stream feature we told you about last year.

Another screenshot follows:

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PhotoBeamer: Imaging tech company Scalado introduces first iOS app; beam photos to any browser

You may not be familiar with the name Scalado, but there is a good chance you have used one of its imagining technologies without even knowing it. The company’s photo applications helped power camera and image apps for over 10 years, and they are currently baked in to 1.5 billion phones (adding about 500 million mobile phones every year). Most recently, we revealed Scalado’s Rewind technology is integrated into BB10’s camera app, and Scalado is introducing its first iOS app today called “PhotoBeamer“, which we have tested over the past month.

While it usually works directly with OEMs, the company recently released its first app directly to users late last month as an Android-only photo viewer called “Scalado Album“. The new iOS app, PhotoBeamer, serves to quickly and wirelessly display photos stored on your iOS device to any display with a web browser.

We already have a ton of third-party apps for transferring and viewing photos from iOS devices to a bigger screen. Even Apple’s own Photo Stream feature makes things easy for accessing photos on your other iOS devices and almost as easy on your Mac, and iPhoto’s beam feature allows for wireless sharing of images between iOS devices. Getting images to our other devices is not a problem, but PhotoBeamer’s zero-configuration, no registration, and extremely snappy, patented imaging tech might make it your go-to app.

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iPhoto for iPhone and iPad available now for $4.99, iMovie & GarageBand updates live

Apple demoed quite an impressive iPhoto app today during the new iPad unveiling, and the app is now officially live on the App Store for $4.99 [iTunes]. In case you did not know, the app is a universal download for both iPhone and iPad. You can grab iPhoto for iOS now (iTunes link). Apple also boasted updated versions of iMovie and GarageBand today that you can already get on the App Store here and here for $4.99 each (free update for current owners). The updated GarageBand app features a Note Editor, Smart Strings orchestra feature, and Jam Sessions for realtime playing and recording with up to three other iOS devices.  You can read our full break down of the new iPhoto app here.

In addition Apple updated iBooks Author today to “take advantage of the Retina display on the new iPad” and did the same for the iTunes U app. The updates also include the usual stability and performance improvements.

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Apple launches gestures-heavy iPhoto for iPad, can tell you weather in images. Available today for $4.99

In what many might call a long overdue move, Apple finally ported the photo management application iPhoto to iPad. The release of the software completes a trio of the most important iLife apps that are now available on the iPad: iMovie, GarageBand, and now iPhoto. The app supports images up to 19-megapixels. It also sports many familiar and popular features, including the auto-enhance tool, social sharing through Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, email, and more.

The iPhoto app is aimed at people who “want to do more with your photos.” One aspect immediately becomes clear: iPhoto for iPad is gestures-heavy (per an extensive live demo Apple’s Chief Architect for Photo and Video Randy Ubillos gave on stage).

You can use the new bezel gesture —a first for an Apple-made iPad app— to swipe from the left side of the screen to look at other images in the album. From there, just tap on an image to bring the editing interface up. When you want to bring in the thumbnail view, just swipe from the side again.

Another cool feature: Double-tapping a single image tells iPhoto to scan your entire library and compare all the images to find the ones that look similar. You can also beam photos between devices over-the-air, tap a specific area to adjust it, touch, and drag to brighten or tweak saturation, and more.

However, when it comes down to heavy image editing, the iPhoto app does not disappoint. For example, brush palettes include tools such as red-eye, saturation, and lighten. Other notables include sharpen, soften, darken, and a general repair tool. Meanwhile, the effects gallery includes black and white, vignette, tilt-shift, watercolor, and more.

More information is available below.

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Snow Leopard supplies run short in Australia/NZ. Lion coming soon?

We’re getting tips from our retail friends in the South Pacific that Snow Leopard boxes are running short and the channel inventory is drying up.  Apple resellers are literally unable to ge their hands on stock of Snow Leopard boxes.

Even Apple’s website is showing a week’s wait in both Australia and New Zealand.  These types of sporadic delays, which are frequently temporary, are usually an indication that the supply channel is changing and the boxes are no longer being made.

Obviously, this could point to an upcoming Lion release as early as next month at Apple’s WWDC, if not sooner.  The latest build, Lion Preview 3,  has been largely stable and there have been signs that Apple could even demonstrate Lion in Apple Stores next week as part of their Apple Store 2.0 initiative.

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Mac App Store Downloads Top One Million in First Day

CUPERTINO, California—January 7, 2011—Apple today announced that over one million apps have been downloaded from the Mac App Store in the first day. With more than 1,000 free and paid apps, the Mac App Store brings the revolutionary App Store experience to the Mac, so you can find great new apps, buy them using your iTunes account, download and install them in just one step.

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