Apple releases OS X 10.8.3 to the public with Mac App Store camera gift card redemption, Boot Camp improvements & fixes

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Following the release of OS X Mountain 10.8.3 build 12D78 to developers earlier this week, Apple today released 10.8.3 to the public with a number of new features and enhancements. One of the more notable new features is the ability to redeem iTunes gift cards using the Mac’s built-in camera within the Mac App Store. It’s a feature that Apple originally introduced with iTunes 11 in November.

Other improvements in today’s release include support for install Windows 8 in Boot Camp and Boot Camp support for Mac’s using 3TB hard drives. Users had previously been using workarounds to utilize Boot Camp on Macs with hard drives larger than the utility’s old 2.2TB limit.

The release also includes Safari 6.0.3 and audio related fixes for Logic Pro and 2011 iMacs:

-The ability to redeem iTunes gift cards in the Mac App Store using Mac’s built-in camera
-Boot Camp support for installing Windows 8
-Boot Camp support for Macs with a 3TB hard drive
-A Fix for an issue that could cause a file URL to quit apps unexpectedly
-A fix for an issue that may cause Logic Pro to become unresponsive when using certain plug-ins
-A fix for an issue that causes audio to stutter on 2011 iMacs
-Includes Safari 6.0.3

Apple seeds OS X 10.8.3 build 12D43 to developers

Screen Shot 2012-12-18 at 4.12.52 PMShortly after releasing iOS 6.0.2 to the masses this afternoon, Apple seeded build 12D43 of OS X 10.8.3 to developers. The folks in Cupertino have not listed any new features or known issues, but they asked developers to focus on AirPlay, AirPort, Game Center, Graphics Drivers, and Safari. The last pre-release build was released on Dec. 5. You can check today’s release out on the developer center, while the full release note is below:

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2012 Mac Mini users are unable to update to OS X 10.8.2, after update was pulled by Apple on Friday

A flurry of users on Twitter and CNET report that the newest Mac Mini released last month is unable to update to the latest version of OS X Mountain Lion, 10.8.2. The update is unavailable through the App Store’s Software Update feature after Apple pulled it for an unknown reason on Friday. Additionally, users received an error when trying to install the update manually through the manual installer made available by Apple. OS X displays an error message of  “Error: OS X Update can’t be installed on this disk. This volume does not meet the requirements for this update.” Customers on the Apple Support Communities also voiced their concern.

The cause of the error is unclear, but what is clear is that for some reason a special version of OS X 10.8.2 is required for the Mac Mini (like the one that was pulled on Friday). Apple doesn’t explain why a special version is needed—perhaps it boils down to the new Fusion Drive that is also set to ship with the new iMac later this month—or why it pulled the update from the App Store on Friday. The best option for 2012 Mac Mini owners now is to stick it out on 10.8.1, because as Twitter user Gerald explained it, the update still didn’t work “after 5 hours and 4 reinstalls.”

There is no word on when the new version of OS X 10.8.2 will be released for Mac Mini owners or if they’ll have to stick it out until 10.8.3. We reported on Friday that Apple will soon release a build of 10.8.3 to early testers soon, and the Cupertino, Calif.-based company will provide new information about the 10.8.3 build during the week of Nov. 26.

Update: Additionally, we learned the update has also been pulled for the 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro and latest iMac…suffering the same issue as the Mac Mini.

Update 2: Apple has released a supplemental update to address the issue.

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NYTimes for iPad, Facebook Messenger, Aperture, Printer Pro for iPhone, FX Photo Studio, more

NYTimes for iPad version 2.5.3: The New York Times has updated its iPad app today with optimizations for the new iPad’s smaller display:

- Optimized for the iPad Mini

Facebook Messenger version 2.02: On top of “other improvements and bug fixes,” Facebook has added the ability to give feedback about its iOS Messenger app from within settings:

What’s New in Version 2.0.2
- Visit your settings to give feedback about the app
- Other improvements and bug fixes

FX Photo Studio version 2.6:

- MacBook Pro Retina display support
- Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion compatibility
- New look
- Overall memory usage and performance improvements
- Color processing improvements
- Enhanced adjustment for all filters
- Bug fixes

Aperture 3.4.3:

-Addresses an issue that could cause a licensed copy of Aperture to prompt for a serial number with each launch

iDisplay Mini: A new iPhone and iPod touch only version of the app that allows you to use your iOS device as a second screen for Mac or PC is out today. Instead of getting the $5 universal app, you can get this iPhone only version for 99 cents.

Shazam version 2.8.0: Read more

Parallels 8 updated with USB 3.0 support, Windows 8 tablet gestures, more

Parallels introduced a big update today for Parallels Desktop 8 for Mac. It includes new features for Windows 8 users, full USB 3.0 support, and improved Retina display settings. On top of support for Windows 8 tablet gestures, Parallels is including a Windows 8 tile that allows users to access shared Mac apps. According to Parallels, the update also includes faster USB 3.0 performance, an increased limit for virtual machines running large apps, and “Smooth transitions when entering and exiting Coherence mode”:

Now Mac users can enjoy new features including Windows 8 tablet gestures and use a Windows 8 interface tile to access shared Mac apps.  These updates, plus the already deep Parallels Desktop 8 integration of Mac OS X and Windows 8, enable people to also use Mountain Lion’s Dictation feature in Windows applications, add Windows apps to Launchpad and the Mac Dock, enjoy brilliant Retina display resolution for Windows apps and more – making Parallels Desktop 8 an ideal way to run Windows 8 on a Mac without rebooting. Read more

Clear, Pinterest, Jingu Friends, Square Wallet, Fantastical for iPhone, iDisplay, more

News:

Pay with Square at Starbucks: We already knew Starbucks was signed up to bring Square payments to 7,000 of its stores via the newly renamed “Square Wallet” app. Starbucks just confirmed in a press release that starting today it will officially begin accepting Square payments via a scanned QR.

Fantastical for iPhone: Those familiar with the Mac OS X desktop version of the Fantastical app will be pleased to know developers Flexbits have announced an iPhone version is in the works and coming soon. The Mac version is a slick, menu bar item calendar app for access to reminders and calendar functions, but also has support for iCal, BusyCal, Entourage, Outlook, iCloud, Google Calendar or Yahoo! Calendar. You can sign up to find out when it becomes available here.

New app releases:

Clear for Mac: We knew it was coming and today the Mac App Store version of the popular Clear to do app for iPhone officially makes its way to the Mac.

Jingu Friends:Originally available as a BlackBerry app with more than a million downloads since May 2011 and 3.5 million messages sent monthly, the developers of the Jingu Friends app have released an iOS version of the app today on the App Store. The app allows you to discover new people to chat with through a lounge environment that “immediately drops you into a global conversation stream where you can listen or participate.” From there you can find out more about the messaging apps participants use:

All messages posted on Jingu Friends are public, but users can take their conversations private through seamless integration into smartphone messaging apps like BBM, Hookt, WhatsApp and Kik.

Dragon’s Lair: The classic arcade game already made its way to iPhone and iPad earlier this year, and now the Mac version is available on the Mac App Store for $9.99 now.

FreshBooks for iPad: FreshBooks is coming to the iPad today with version 1.1 introducing a universal app that now supports both iPhone and iPad.

FreshBooks – The Fastest Way To Track Time, Organize Expenses & Invoice Your Clients, Anytime, Anywhere.

Updates: 

Pinterest version 2.1: Pinterest is introducing a new feature today that allows users to create up to three secret boards to share with friends and family. In a blog post, Pinterest explained how to use the new feature: “go to your profile, tap on the Boards tab, and scroll down to the bottom until you see a button that says Create a Secret Board.”

• Block or report other users
• Create up to 3 secret boards
• Edit boards from your device

Clear version 1.2: Clear for iPhone gets a big update today that brings iCloud support, the ability to share quotes on Twitter and Facebook, quick list switching, and more: Read more