Effort to release a Steve Jobs action figure halted by pressure from lawyers, family

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Date: Tuesday, January 17th, 2012, 03:52
Category: News

Not to start your day on a down note…but a Steve Jobs action figure won’t be hitting the shelves any time soon.

Per The Unofficial Apple Weblog, Tandy Cheung of In Icons Productions has announced that the product is no more on the company website saying the item won’t be sold now or in the future. “Unfortunately we have received immense pressure from the lawyers of Apple and Steve Jobs’ family,” he notes.

Cheung originally claimed he wasn’t going to be pressured to take the action figure off the market. The legal issues are murky, with some experts claiming selling a likeness of Jobs is legal, and others claiming a sale could be blocked in some countries or jurisdictions.

The Jobs action figure was selling for US US$99, and there is quite a lot of other less realistic Jobs memorabilia on eBay.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Happy Martin Luther King Day from the PowerPage

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Date: Monday, January 16th, 2012, 07:23
Category: Announcement

It’s Monday, it’s chilly outside and it’s Martin Luther King Day.

With that in mind, enjoy the rest of the long weekend, geek out a bit with your mobile devices and we’ll be back tomorrow with spiffy updates, news posts and everything to keep you informed as to cool new Mac stuff in 2012.

Apple patent describes using 3D interface for iPhone

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Date: Friday, January 13th, 2012, 08:57
Category: iPhone, News, Patents

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This could definitely qualify as “nifty”.

Per AppleInsider, an Apple patent filing submitted in July of 2010 and made public this week by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), details a new iPhone interface concept in which the user relies on motion controls to interact with a 3D environment. However, this is not 3D in the sense of images springing off the screen; the patent filing refers to it as 3D images built with polygons.

According to the patent application, the interface “uses orientation data from onboard sensors, like a gyroscope and compass, to navigate the system.” A picture accompanying the patent filing shows a virtual room that the user could look around in by moving their device; a “snap to” feature would allow the user to automatically switch to a specific view through a preset action, such as shaking the iPhone.

Cool stuff if it comes to fruition.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Apple delays iPhone 4S China retail launch as result of unruly lines, crowds

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Date: Friday, January 13th, 2012, 05:42
Category: iPhone, News

It never hurts to keep a crowd under control.

Per AllThingsD, after an unruly crowd disrupted the release of Apple’s iPhone 4S at its flagship location in Beijing, Apple has decided to postpone the sale of its best-selling handset at its official retail locations in China, though the device will still be available through its carrier partner and authorized resellers, albeit the company has confirmed that it will delay sales of the iPhone 4S at retail locations in Beijing and Shanghai.

“The demand for iPhone 4S has been incredible, and our stores in China have already sold out,” an Apple spokesperson told the publication. “Unfortunately we were unable to open our store at Sanlitun due to the large crowd, and to ensure the safety of our customers and employees, iPhone will not available in our retail stores in Beijing and Shanghai for the time being. Customers can still order iPhone through the Apple Online Store, or buy at China Unicom and other authorized resellers.”

Apple retail staff at the Sanlitun Apple Store in Beijing put signs out Friday afternoon with a note saying, “This store will not be selling the iPhone in the recent future.”

Apple had previously announced that the iPhone 4S would go on sale at its Sanlitun retail store in Beijing at 7AM local time (6PM Eastern), but altercations between scalpers and line-waiters have allegedly delayed the launch. As of 8AM, the store had yet to open.

The imminent launch of Apple’s latest handset in China had attracted thousands of customers outside the company’s five stores throughout the country. Security barricades had originally been set up to manage the crowd at the Sanlitun store earlier in the week, but they were taken down sometime on Thursday night or Friday morning.

Remnants of the crowd outside Sanlitun Apple Store in Beijing early on Friday, Jan. 13.

One journalist on location in Beijing claimed that Apple had canceled the launch because fights had broken out during the night, while some crowd members claimed Apple would take orders for the iPhone 4S at the store on Friday without distributing the devices.

Groups of professional line-waiters and scalpers could be seen congregating outside the store early Friday. As the 7AM launch time came and went without Apple opening its doors, a number of them became disgruntled. Shouts of “Open the door!” rang periodically rang throughout the crowd. At one point, a group of unhappy line-waiters left shouting profanities at Apple. Several individuals were forcefully escorted away by security officials, though it was not immediately clear why they were being removed.

It was reported on Friday that some angry customers pelted the Apple Store with eggs after it was revealed that the device would not go on sale. According to the publication, the Apple Store in the Pudong district of Shanghai opened an hour early and has begun selling the iPhone 4S.

The 16GB iPhone 4S is selling for 4,988RMB (US$790) on Apple China’s online store, while the 32GB and 64GB models sell for 5,888RMB and 6,788RMB, respectively. Estimated shipping time is currently two weeks. China Unicom is also offering iPhone 4S for free with a multi-year contract on plans starting at 286RMB (US$45).

The well-organized secondary market in Beijing has led to conflicts at the Sanlitun store in the past. Last year, the release of the iPad 2 and white iPhone 4 was marred by an incident that resulted in a broken glass door and several injuries.

In addition to China, Apple is scheduled to launch the iPhone 4S in 21 more countries on Friday.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Skype updated to version 5.5.0.2069

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Date: Friday, January 13th, 2012, 04:01
Category: News, Software

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On Thursday, version 5.5.0.2069 of the Skype VoIP application was released as a public beta). The new version, a 23.2 megabyte download, offers the following fixes and changes:

– Improved Call UI.

– Accept incoming call with video.

– Improvements in quality and stabilization.

Skype 5.5.0.2069 is available for free and requires Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later to install and run.

If you’ve tried the new version and have any feedback to offer, please let us know.

Target announces 25 Apple “Store-Within-a-Store” locations in 2012

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Date: Thursday, January 12th, 2012, 15:38
Category: News, retail

With any luck, this’ll work out better than the infamous Apple “Store Within a Store” locations at CompUSA during the 90s…

Per the New York Times, Target on Thursday confirmed that it plans to open 25 specialty stores dedicated to Apple products inside 25 of its existing retail locations.

The concept is called “The Shops at Target,” and the dedicated Apple ministores coming to 25 Target locations will not be alone. The Minneapolis-based retailer has also partnered with Boston’s Polka Dog Bakery and Miami’s The Webster, among others, for its specialty shops.

Target has been selling Apple products for years, including the iPad, iPhone, and Apple’s iPod lineup. Target does not currently offer any of Apple’s Mac lineup, however, while Best Buy’s Apple stores do sell Mac products.

The new Target mini-stores could pave the way for more products, like Macs or AirPort wireless routers, to become available. However, there has been no indication that the Apple stores at Target will offer a product selection as wide as Best Buy currently does.

“Stores-within-a-store, with dedicated floor space and signs and shelves designed by a brand, have been a popular strategy for a while,” author Stephanie Clifford wrote for the Times. “Department stores have long had small boutiques for designers like Ralph Lauren or Chanel. J.C. Penney, a Target competitor, has made its stores-within-a-store — for Sephora, Call It Spring, MNG by Mango and other brands — a centerpiece of its strategy.”

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Google releases Picasa 3.9.2.539 update

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Date: Thursday, January 12th, 2012, 11:07
Category: News, Software

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On Friday, software giant Google released Picasa 3.9.2.539, the latest version of its photo organization program for the Mac. Once installed, Picasa imports (without moving or copying) photos from the iPhoto library as well as other folders and external hard drives on your Mac. The program also includes assorted editing tools for straightening, text generation, red eye removal, collage creation and Photoshop-like effects and adjustments. The new version, a 33.1 megabyte download, offers the following fixes and changes:

– Fixed various crashes.

– Fixed an issue with users not being able to log in.

– Fixed some issues with nametags and contacts.

Picasa 3.9.2.539 requires Mac OS X 10.5 or later to install and run.

If you’ve tried the new version and have any feedback to offer, please let us know in the comments.

XtremeMac announces Tango TT dock/speaker accessory at CES

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Date: Thursday, January 12th, 2012, 03:51
Category: Accessory, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, News

This could prove nifty.

Over at CES, accessory maker XtremeMac has announced the Tango TT, a new speaker dock for iOS devices. Per iPodNN, the dock is unusual in featuring a sliding back, which can raise or lower a device for viewing at different vertical angles. It also features a flexible dock connector, which lets iOS devices (including iPads) sit in the dock in portrait or landscape orientations.

The speakers in the dock are multi-directional, and additionally support input from non-iOS devices through a line-in jack. At launch, a remote app and a photo frame app will be available to enhance use. The Tango TT is due to ship sometime this summer, but no pricing has been announced.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

QuarkXPress 9.2 update released

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Date: Wednesday, January 11th, 2012, 11:30
Category: News, Software

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Oddly enough, QuarkXPress is receiving fairly favorable reviews these days.

And if your life revolves around it, this may help a bit.

On Wednesday, software developer Quark released version 9.2 of its QuarkXPress design application. The 1.03 gigabyte update, which can be downloaded here, adds the following fixes and changes:

– Create a new project specifically for ePUB.

– Add sound, video and hyperlinks to an ePUB e-book.

– Create new articles, visually crop pictures, and split text components in a reflow article.

– New Actions for iPad apps allow you to build buttons that control other media elements such as sound and video.

– iOS 5 Newsstand support.

– New Box From Clipping path command turns complex clipping paths into objects.

– And more….

QuarkXPress 9.2 requires Mac OS X 10.5.8 later to install and run and retails for US$799.00 for the full version.

If you’ve tried the new version and have any feedback to offer, please let us know in the comments.

Adobe Reader, Adobe Reader Pro updated to 10.1.2

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Date: Wednesday, January 11th, 2012, 07:59
Category: News, Software

On Wednesday, Adobe released version 10.1.2 of its Adobe Reader application. The update, which can also be snagged through the Adobe Update Utility, adds the following fixes and changes:

– On printing a PDF file to a PCL printer via Acrobat or Reader, the italic output in the printout is not correct.

– Mouseover events in interactive PDF form fields do not work properly (Applicable only to Acrobat/Reader10.1.1).

– 3D PDFs may crash when viewed in VMWare.

– Policy protected file keeps incrementing *.DAT file in …Acrobat10.0Security and results in Reader X crashing when closing the file.

– When converting a webpage having a scrollable inline frame only the visible content is converted and content seen on scrolling down is dropped.

– Form submission performance is slow with ZCI on Reader 10.1.

– Product view generated in Catia hides some elements when converted to prw/pdf.

– Repeatedly opening and closing PDFs in one browser session may cause a freeze or crash.

– Form goes into unresponsive state when signing form.

– Fixed critical security vulnerabilities in Versions 10.1.1 and earlier.

– Improved stability.

– Support for Mac OS X 10.7.2.

– Web Capture for Firefox 7 and later.

Acrobat Reader 10.1.2 and Acrobat Pro requires an Intel-based processor and Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later to install and run.

If you’ve tried the new versions and noticed any differences, please let us know what you think.