The Danger of DRM

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Date: Sunday, November 12th, 2006, 23:46
Category: Opinion


The market for digital music was repressed for nearly a decade prior to the arrival of Apple’s iPod. Here’s why digital music languished for so long, how Apple was able to build a digital business, and why rivals are struggling to turn back the clock and return digital downloads into a legal black hole of onerous restrictions.
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Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RDM

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The Digg Fraud Campaign Behind Zune

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Date: Saturday, November 11th, 2006, 23:35
Category: Opinion

The problem with the anonymous Internet is that services like Digg fail to exercise any of the accountability of traditional news sources, and are happy to be used to spread false information if it results in ad clicks. That’s something that Apple has the power to change, but who knows when?
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Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RDM

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Apple’s Adventures in Retail

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Date: Saturday, November 11th, 2006, 19:27
Category: Opinion

Along with producing its own unique software, Apple’s retail efforts are largely overlooked as a major component of the company’s recent success.
Here’s how Apple got started in a rotten economic climate ripe with naysayers. Read More…
Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RDM

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Strike 3: Why Zune will Bomb this Winter

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Date: Friday, November 10th, 2006, 23:30
Category: Opinion

The Microsoft iPod-Killer Myth already outlined why Microsoft’s overall online media strategy has tanked so far, but the Zune faces three additional strikes this winter that will prevent it from making any headway in its goal to unseat the iPod.
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Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RDM

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Apple Releases Updated Core 2 Duo-Powered MacBooks

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Date: Wednesday, November 8th, 2006, 09:45
Category: MacBook

Following last week’s insistence on Apple’s part that UK online retailer play.com remove their pre-order page for Apple’s upcoming Core 2 Duo-based MacBook line, Apple has unveiled the anticpated new laptops. The Apple Store web site is currently being updated as of this writing, typically a sign of a major product introduction to market.
The new MacBooks, still available in white and black colors, will be priced at $1,099, $1,299 and $1,499 respectively depending on features. The units, which run at 1.83 GHz and 2.0 GHz configurations, feature 13″ glossy widescreen displays capable of a 1280 x 800 resolution, a 667 MHz front side bus, an Intel GMA 950 graphics unit, built-in iSight video camera, built-in AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth 2.0+EDR, two USB 2.0 ports, one FireWire 400 port, one audio line in port, one audio line-out port, Apple Remote and MagSafe power adapter.
The low-end 1.83 GHz configuration will feature 512 MB of RAM, a 60 GB hard drive and Combo drive (DVD-ROM/CD-RW). The 2.0 GHz models will feature 1 GB of RAM, a 6x SuperDrive with dual-layer burn support and 120 GB hard drive. All MacBook models can be expanded up to 2 GB of RAM provided the user installs matched pairs.
Apple executives have claimed the new units are up to 25% faster and will help with key holiday-focused tasks such as photo work (iPhoto rated 25% faster), digital editing (iMovie rates 20% faster) and web publishing (iWeb rated 27% faster).
The new MacBooks are scheduled for release on Monday, November 13th and will be available for pre-order through Apple’s online store, typically within a few hours based on past product releases.
Contributed by: By Chris Barylick

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My Dream PDA Moves a Step Closer

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Date: Wednesday, November 8th, 2006, 08:00
Category: PDA

htc-p3300.jpgFor many years ‘convergence’ has been a buzzword bandied about by pundits in the computer industry, and by just about anyone who has ever thought ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if I could carry just one compact, easy-to-use, stable, attractive, sturdy, cool device that allowed me to store my contact details, manage my diary, browse the web, ‘phone, ‘skype’, text and email my friends, capture images and video, control my hifi, navigate my car, listen to my music collection…’
It’s not JUST me who has thought that is it?
Oh, OK.
Well, anyway, back in April I blogged on this, using the, then soon-to-be-released Mio A710 as an example of how close we were to a device that fulfilled these requirements.
The main areas where the Mio fell short was flaky software/hardware implementation, no built-in WiFi, and just a little bit too much bulk (150g).
HTC are a Taiwan-based smartphone/PDA designer/manufacturer. Up until recently they have produced phones that mobile networks put their own badges on. However, recently HTC have started marketing a number of ‘own-badged’ products.
The soon-to-be-released HTC P3300 is their most advanced offering to date, boasting:
- Windows Mobile 5 (eek!)
- 320 x 240 pixel colour screen
- Quad Band GPRS/EDGE
- GPS
- FM Radio
- MicroSD smart card
- 2.0 megapixel camera
- Bluetooth 2.0
- WiFi
All in a 58x108x16mm (not much bigger than this picture), 127g package.
Early reports indicate that the HTC P3300 is less than perfect. The camera is average, the processor a little slow, the screen not bright enough in direct sunlight, nobody seems to like the ‘rollerball’ pointer device… and did I mention it runs Windows? Not something I’d be willing to part with £450.00 for.
But the important thing is that this is not a ‘concept machine’. It IS possible to put all the components that I want into a box that is light enough to carry around in my shirt pocket. Now, imagine if Jonathan Ives’ team worked their magic on this thing. Shoved one of those new Samsung 640 x 480 pixel lcd panels on it. Enclosed it all in a drop-dead gorgeous casing. Shaved a few grammes and millimetres off it. Added a couple of memory slots. Finish it off with a decent operating system and Bluetooth earbuds. Now that is a product that would have me parting with (over) half a grand.
Ah well, that’s me dreaming…
but Christmas IS coming.
Contributed by: Brett Jordan

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Apple’s Retail Challenge

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Date: Tuesday, November 7th, 2006, 22:32
Category: Opinion

For Apple to make any progress in selling Macs, it would need to figure out how to do retail itself. To get started, Apple took a few pointers from Dell. As Steve Jobs said: “We’re coming after you, buddy!”
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Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RDM

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Marketing Macs in a PC World

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Date: Monday, November 6th, 2006, 09:00
Category: Opinion

An accidental discovery was key to Apple’s recovery but it wasn’t the only way the new Apple revitalized its Mac platform. Another contributing factor involved learning how to effectively sell its products.
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Contributed by: Daniel Eran, RDM

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Scrybe: it could be very good indeed

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Date: Friday, November 3rd, 2006, 11:00
Category: News

scrybe-300.jpgScrybe is causing a lot of buzz on the web right now. Little is known about it, except that, based on its promotional video, it is an attractive and intuitive online (and offline) organiser that works on PCs and Macs.
If you’ve got 10 minutes, it is worth a look. In the words of one of the many quotes featured on their site:
“Either these guys have pulled of a marketing hoax that is complete and beautiful, or they have created an app that will be the first in the wave of ‘solve everything beautifully and elegantly once and for all’.”

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MainMenu Makes Mac Maintenance Manageable

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Date: Wednesday, November 1st, 2006, 00:00
Category: Software

SantaSoftware has released MainMenu. The blurb on the homepage reads:
Don’t have time to run all the various tools and scripts to keep your Mac running smoothly? MainMenu makes these tasks quick and easy, right from your menu bar.
Rebuilding your Spotlight library for faster searching, repairing permissions, cleaning caches to improve application performance, and even more advanced settings — such as enabling and disabling the Dashboard — are no more than two clicks away.
MainMenu is full of powerful maintenance tools to keep your Mac running like new, within a slick, simple interface.
It doesn’t do anything that can’t already be achieved using freeware utilities, but it does bring a lot of useful functions under one easy-to-find/easy-to-navigate menu. I’ve been using it for a while now, and it does all the above functions, along with a number of others that I usually have to use a separate utility for, including ‘force empty trash’.
And it is free. Thank you Santa Software for my early Christmas present.
Contributed by: Brett Jordan

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