Apple releases Flash Storage Firmware Update 1.1 for mid-2012 MacBook Air, launches replacement program for affected drives

Screen Shot 2013-10-17 at 7.30.04 PM

Apple has released a firmware update for the mid-2012 MacBook Air. The update attempts to resolve an issue that affects 64 GB and 128 GB models sold between June 2012 and June 2013. Apple says that the problem could lead to data loss. As this is a serious issue, the company has agreed to replace any affected drives that are unable to be updated. If the update installer detects that your drive is one of the models needing to be replaced, it will direct you to a page on Apple’s website that will allow you to obtain a replacement …  Read more

Coming from Apple in 2014: 12-inch Retina MacBook, sharper iPad, cheaper iMac?

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According to typically-reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities, Apple has a slew of new products in the works for 2014. The analyst has summarized his expectations for these new products in a new research note, and has also reaffirmed some of his previous claims for products in Apple’s pipeline for the rest of Fall 2013…

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Questionable analyst roundup: 10M home automation iWatches? 12-inch MacBook Air and much more

Home automation image: insideci.co.uk

Home automation image: insideci.co.uk

There are a couple of analyst rumors doing the rounds at present that are best described as … questionable.

First, we have Brian White claim (via VentureBeat) that the key focus of the long-rumored iWatch is as a control for home automation systems.

As an Apple supplier, our contact offered insight into the “iWatch” and described this potential new device as much more than an extension of your iPhone but as a multi-purpose gateway in allowing consumers to control their home (i.e., heating/cooling, lights, audio, video, etc.)

You may recall that Mr White is a man who likes his remotes: he predicted back in April that the Apple HDTV (which he always claims is going to be released in the next quarter or two) would be controlled by an iRing …  Read more

Apple releases OS X Mountain Lion 10.8.5 with Mail, WiFi, screensaver fixes

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Following an extensive period of betas for developers, Apple has publicly released OS X 10.8.5. The update is available from the Mac App Store Software’s Update section and is recommended for all users on OS X Mountain Lion 10.8.4.

The OS X Mountain Lion v10.8.5 Update is recommended for all OS X Mountain Lion users. It improves the stability, compatibility, and security of your Mac. This update:

  • Fixes an issue that may prevent Mail from displaying messages
  • Improves AFP file transfer performance over 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • Resolves an issue that may prevent a screen saver from starting automatically
  • Improves Xsan reliability
  • Improves reliability when transferring large files over Ethernet
  • Improves performance when authenticating to an Open Directory server
  • Addresses an issue that prevented a smart card from unlocking preference panes in System Preferences
  • Contains the improvements included in MacBook Air (Mid 2013) Software Update 1.0

The build number for the public release is 12F37, which is a single build over the most recent beta. Apple has also issued RAW Camera Compatibility updates and a new version of Safari. Later next month, Apple will release OS X 10.9 Mavericks.

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Best Buy slashes new Mac prices w/extra savings for students; Haswell Airs start at $849

From 9to5toys.com:

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Best Buy is having a significant College Student sale this week on MacBook Airs, Retina/Pros and iMacs and Students or anyone with a .edu email address get another $100 off the sale prices signing up here. For instance, the entry level Haswell MacBook Air is now $949 and another $100 drops it down to $849, the lowest price we’ve seen by $100.

Haswell MacBook Air prices:

  • MacBook Air – 11.6″ Display/4GB Memory/128GB Flash Storage:$949.99-$100 students=$849.99 ($150 off)
  • MacBook Air – 11.6″ Display/4GB Memory/256GB Flash Storage:$1139.99-$100 students=$1039.99 ($170 off)
  • MacBook Air – 13.3″ Display/4GB Memory/128GB Flash Storage:$1,044.99-$100 students=$944.99 ($155 off)
  • MacBook Air – 13.3″ Display/4GB Memory/256GB Flash Storage:$1,234.99-$100 students=$1134.99 ($165 off)

Retina MacBook Pro prices:

iMac Prices save $100 across the board and another $100 for students = $200 savings starting at $1100

The MacBook Student $100 off promotion starts today, and will end July 27. Read more

Boston University files lawsuit against Apple for patent infringement

Boston_University_seal.svgAccording to a report from the BostonHerald, Boston University is the latest to sue Apple for patent infringement claiming several Apple products use technology covered by its 1997 patent for highly insulating monocrystalline gallium nitride thin films. The university filed a lawsuit with the U.S. District Court of Massachusetts yesterday listing Apple’s iPhone 5, iPad, and MacBook Air as infringing devices.

“Defendant’s acts of infringement have caused and will continue to cause substantial and irreparable damage to the University,” BU alleges in its complaint.

The highly technical patent, which can be viewed on the USPTO’s website, was originally awarded in 1997 and lists computer engineering professor Theodore D. Moustakas as its inventor. BostonHerald notes that the university has also used the patent in cases against Samsung and Amazon, and “plans to illustrate that at least one other company pays a licensing fee to use the component in question” during its case with Apple: Read more