Foxconn chair cites crushing demand, possible delays for iPhone 5 units

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, November 7th, 2012, 08:49
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News

You know that iPhone 5 you ordered?

You may have to wait a little longer for it to be manufactured and ship.

Per Reuters, Crushing demand for the iPhone 5 has proven to be too much for Apple’s manufacturing partner, Foxconn, to handle, as it continues to struggle to produce the device.

Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou admitted on Wednesday that his company is finding it difficult to meet the significant demand for Apple’s iPhone 5. Foxconn is Apple’s primary partner for assembly of a number of its devices, including the iPhone.

“It’s not easy to make the iPhones,” Gou reportedly said. “We are falling short of meeting the huge demand.”

Sales of the iPhone 5 have been held back by limited supply since the device launched in September. Apple itself said the company has been “completely blown away” by consumer demand for the device.

In particular, the in-cell touch panel and aluminum chassis featured in the new design of the iPhone 5 are said to have posed quality control issues for both Apple and Foxconn. One unnamed source from Foxconn revealed in October that the iPhone 5 is “the most difficult device” the company has ever been tasked with assembling.

Rumors first surfaced a month ago that Foxconn had expanded production to a subsidiary known as Foxconn International Holdings in an effort to boost production. When asked about that rumor on Wednesday, Gou declined to comment.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Adium updated to 1.5.4

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, November 7th, 2012, 08:37
Category: News, Software

adiumducky.gif

Adium, the open source instant message chat client with support for multiple programs (including AOL Instant Messenger, ICQ, Jabber, MSN, Yahoo! Google Talk, Bonjour, etc.) has been updated to version 1.5.4.

The new version, a 22.7 megabyte download adds the following fixes and changes:

– Updated the included Growl SDK to 2.0, adding support for Notification Center on 10.8 if Growl is not installed. (#15867)

– Updated libotr to 3.2.1, fixing a security vulnerability.

– Updated libpurple to 2.10.6.

– Changed the default tab switching shortcuts for new users to Control-Tab/Control-Shift-Tab, to match Safari. (#16102)

– Improved disk usage: limit the tracking of the “last seen” time to contacts who are on your contact list.

– Fixed a problem where accepting a group chat invite on Sametime 8.5.1 would crash Adium. (Jonathan Rice and Jere Krischel) (#16114)

– Fixed a problem where accepting a group chat invite on HipChat’s XMPP server would crash Adium. (#16007)

– Fixed a problem preventing Adium from executing Applescripts when Gatekeeper is enabled.

– Added routines to make Secure Transport (on 10.8 and above) work around buggy TLS implementations in certain older XMPP servers. (#16081)

РUpdated translations: British English, Czech, Danish (#16196), Dutch (#16220), French (#16207), Italian (#16218), Norwegian (Bokm̴l) (#16219), Portuguese (Portugal) (#16211), Slovakian (#16194), Turkish.

Adium 1.5.4 is available for free and requires Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later and an Intel-based Mac to run.

If you’ve tried the new version and have any comments, let us know.

Google Chrome updated to 23.0.1271.64

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, November 7th, 2012, 08:53
Category: News, security, Software

google-chrome-logo

It’s the bug fixes that make a difference.

Late Tuesday, Google released a beta of version 23.0.1271.64 of its Chrome web browser. The update, a 56.5 megabyte download, adds the following fixes and changes:

– Medium CVE-2012-5127: Integer overflow leading to out-of-bounds read in WebP handling. Credit to Phil Turnbull.

– High CVE-2012-5116: Use-after-free in SVG filter handling. Credit to miaubiz.

– [Mac OS only] [149717] High CVE-2012-5118: Integer bounds check issue in GPU command buffers. Credit to miaubiz.

– High CVE-2012-5121: Use-after-free in video layout. Credit to Atte Kettunen of OUSPG.

– Low CVE-2012-5117: Inappropriate load of SVG subresource in img context. Credit to Felix Groebert of the Google Security Team.

– Medium CVE-2012-5119: Race condition in Pepper buffer handling. Credit to Fermin Serna of the Google Security Team.

– Medium CVE-2012-5122: Bad cast in input handling. Credit to Google Chrome Security Team (Inferno).

– Medium CVE-2012-5123: Out-of-bounds reads in Skia. Credit to Google Chrome Security Team (Inferno).

– High CVE-2012-5124: Memory corruption in texture handling. Credit to Al Patrick of the Chromium development community.

– Medium CVE-2012-5125: Use-after-free in extension tab handling. Credit to Alexander Potapenko of the Chromium development community.

– Medium CVE-2012-5126: Use-after-free in plug-in placeholder handling. Credit to Google Chrome Security Team (Inferno).

– High CVE-2012-5128: Bad write in v8. Credit to Google Chrome Security Team (Cris Neckar).

Google Chrome 23.0.1271.64 requires an Intel-based Mac with 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.

Analyst: ARM-based Macs “inevitable”, though still a ways off

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 6th, 2012, 09:24
Category: News, Processors

Apple’s future may be in the hands of ARM some day.

Per AppleInsider, Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu has gone on record as saying it’s “inevitable” that Apple will merge its Mac and iOS devices at some point, but such a change is not expected to happen for years.

Wu said in a note to investors on Tuesday that he believes it will take Apple some time to optimize its Mac OS X operating system for the ARM processors currently found in the iPad and iPhone.

Intel processors are currently much more powerful for running intensive Mac applications, as well as for development. But he believes that ARM processors will eventually become powerful enough to replace Intel chips.

In his view, making Apple’s entire product line based on custom-built ARM-based processors would simplify the architecture of its devices, and also help to create a more seamless experience for users.

Wu also noted that the Mac represents just 14 percent to 18 percent of Apple’s total revenue. In comparison, the iPhone accounts for between 45 and 50 percent of the company’s revenue, and the iPad is 20 to 25 percent.

Wu’s take was issued in response to a report that surfaced on Monday from Bloomberg, which indicated that Apple’s engineers are confident that the company’s A-series custom chip designs will one day be powerful enough to run the company’s desktop and laptop machines. ARM-based silicon in Apple devices is currently limited to iOS devices.

Monday’s report also suggested a change to ARM processors is not likely to take place “in the next few years.” But it also portrayed a shift to proprietary chip designs as an “inevitable” transition for the company in the future.

Apple is said to have a team dedicated to the project, with engineers working to design a lineup of machines that rely on a common chip design. Apple already employs this approach with its current lineup of iPhones, iPads and iPods.

A potential switch to ARM chips would pose a challenge to Intel, Wu said. He noted that Apples’ 11-inch MacBook Air gets four to five hours of battery life under heavy use, compared to 10 hours of battery life with an ARM-based iPad.

Reports suggesting Apple could power future Macs with ARM processors are not new. One recent story issued in October also said Apple has “deliberated” moving its lineup of Mac computers away from Intel processors, though such a change was said to not be “imminent.”

Apple has made headway in designing its own custom silicon for the iPhone and iPad. Earlier this year, rumors suggested Apple was looking to use its own ARM processors in upcoming iterations of the MacBook, especially in power-critical applications like the thin-and-light MacBook Air.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Election Day: Remember to vote for your Space Overlord

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 6th, 2012, 08:07
Category: Fun, News

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s now November 6th.

Which, of course, means that it’s up to you to vote for the best possible Space Overlord for your country.

Personally, I have chosen Zorgoth the Mighty, who has all the qualifications to make both a terrific AND cruel Space Overlord (unlike his opponents, many of whom lay slain at Zorgoth’s MIGHTY hands throughout the galaxy).

The other functional candidate for Space Overlord, Zantor (I scoff at his FEEBLE name) allowed nine star systems to be lost to the puny rebels in the last fortnight alone. Only ZORGOTH will crush those rebels, much less bargain SPACE TECHNOLOGY with them.

As such, you should vote ZORGOTH to his rightful position, as he has promised me no less than four space harems for my support and may extend his generosity to you as well as NOT CONQUER your planet.

But seriously, get on out and vote today if you can.

And remember to vote ZORGOTH.

Apple receives patent for “ionic wind generator”, may look to replace conventional fans in upcoming devices

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 6th, 2012, 08:10
Category: Hardware, News, Patents

applelogo_silver

This could turn into something interesting.

And, hey, if it works…there might be fewer dust bunnies in your computing devices.

Per the United States Patent and Trademark Office, Apple on Tuesday a patent for a cooling system that blows ionized air through an electronic device, controlling its path by creating electromagnetic fields that can be dynamically adjusted to direct cooling where it’s needed most.

Apple’s U.S. Patent No. 8,305,728 for “Methods and apparatus for cooling electronic devices,” describes a system in which the direction of ionized air moving through a computing device is deflected by either an electric or magnetic field. Currently, mechanical fans pull in air and push it through predetermined physical paths within a computer, usually over passive heat exchangers, and out through an exhaust port.

Driving the air in Apple’s system is the ionic wind generator, basically a solid-state air mover based on “corona discharge–an electrical discharge near a charged conductor caused by the ionization of the surrounding air.” The system is comprised of a corona electrode, a collector electrode and a high voltage power supply. When voltage is applied to electrodes, an electric field is created and causes particles in the surrounding air to take on a charge, or become ionized. An electric field propels the charged particles toward the collector electrode, which collide with other neutral particles as they move to create to generate “bulk air movement.”

As the ionized air moves through the device, it can be deflected or redirected by a “deflection field generator,” which can be a magnet or electromagnet. The magnitude of deflection is governed by the Lorentz force, or force on a charged particle from an electromagnetic field, which can be varied by the deflection field generator.

By employing standard issue heat sensors, the ion wind pump and deflection field generator system can direct cooling air to high temperature areas like the CPU or GPU.

The system also solves another problem associated with always-on mechanical fans, the so-called “no slip” condition at the “surface and the mean free stream velocity at the outer reaches from the surface” of a component. When such a condition arises, it creates a boundary layer of air over a component, making heat transfer more difficult. By modulating the rate of deflection, or time in which air flow passes over a component, the system creates eddy currents and turbulent flows to disturb the boundary layer.

Finally, the ionized air exits the device through a vent that is in the path of the ionic pump’s normal air flow.

Interestingly, the invention notes that the system is not limited to large desktops and laptops, but in mobile devices such as cell phones and media players as well.

Although such ion wind pump technologies are used in specialized industrial and laboratory settings, a solution has not yet been presented in a consumer device. Apple has shown that it is actively looking to solve issues related to cooling internal components, including noise reduction as seen with the asymmetrical fans in both MacBook Pro with Retina display models, however it is unknown if the company will implement the solid state generator any time soon.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

CrossOver updated to 11.3

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 6th, 2012, 08:57
Category: News, Software

CrossOver, the popular virtualization program from CodeWeavers, has been updated to version 11.3. The new version, a 69.8 megabyte download, is available as a demo, offers the following fixes and changes:

Complete translations for:
– Czech.

– Spanish.

– Japanese.

– Polish.

– Portuguese (Brazil).

– Chinese (China).

– Fix for font rendering in Civ IV.

CrossOver 11.3 retails for US$59.95 and requires Mac OS X 10.5 and or later and an Intel-based Mac to install and run.

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

Apple web site search reveals possible unlocked iPhone 5 units en route

Posted by:
Date: Monday, November 5th, 2012, 10:17
Category: iPhone, News, Rumor

This is kind of interesting.

With the U.S. Online Apple Store still showing carrier-specific iPhone 5 delivery dates of three to four weeks, a quick search on Apple’s website may have revealed the pricing of factory unlocked units expected to hit stores later this year.

Per AppleInsider, the alleged unlocked units are anything but official and could merely be placeholders in Apple’s database, however the prices are consistent with identical models being sold in Canada where all iPhones are unlocked.

While not listed anywhere else on the site, a query for “iPhone 5 factory unlocked” in the Apple.com search bar reveals “Apple Store Results” as seen above. The units are priced at US$649 for the 16GB version, US$749 for the 32GB model, and US$849 for the 64GB iteration. While not present in the screenshot, all prices for both GSM and CDMA models can be found by adding the storage size to the search. For example, the price of unlocked 32GB GSM and CDMA iPhone 5s are found by searching for “iPhone 5 factory unlocked 32GB.”

It is unclear how long the purported iPhone 5 search results have been on Apple’s website, but a report in September showed an Online Apple Store iPhone comparison page that revealed the prices of unlocked versions bound for the U.S. and Canada. The prices quoted in that report are in line with the search results found on Apple’s U.S. website.

Currently, Apple does not offer factory unlocked versions of its latest handset in the U.S., however the CDMA version sold by Verizon was found to be compatible with the GSM networks of AT&T and T-Mobile. A subsequent report noted that the AT&T version can be unlocked to operate on T-Mobile’s network via an iTunes reset and nano-SIM card replacement.

Apple is expected to introduce unlocked versions of the iPhone 5 when its worldwide rollout is completed and supply of the handset normalizes.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Opera 12.10.1650 public beta goes live, now available for download

Posted by:
Date: Monday, November 5th, 2012, 10:45
Category: News, Software

operalogo

On Monday, Opera Software released a public beta of version 12.10.1650 of its web browser. The new version, a 20.1 megabyte download via MacUpdate, boasts the following fixes and changes:

– Multiple bug fixes.

Opera 12.10.1615 is available for free and requires an Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.5 or later to install and run.

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

Warranty firm performs “drop tests” on iPad mini, third-gen iPad, Nexus 7, comes up with winner

Posted by:
Date: Monday, November 5th, 2012, 07:35
Category: Hardware, iPad, News

You can feel confident dropping your brand new iPad mini.

But you probably shouldn’t go dropping your iPad mini.

Per a series of informal tests performed by third-party electronics warranty firm Square Trade, Apple’s new iPad mini outperformed both Google’s Nexus 7 and the third-generation iPad.

A total of three tests were performed by protection plan provider Square Trade, two using a specialized apparatus that dropped the three tablets from a height of four feet, and one where the devices were simply dunked in a container of water for ten seconds.

Unlike other tests, the iPad mini experiment utilized a machine to drop the tablets at the same time under similar conditions. In the two tests, the devices were dropped on their corners and front faceplate. The iPad mini fared the best out of the three for the corner drop, suffering only minor aesthetic damage with no screen cracks, while the edge of the Nexus 7’s display showed some trauma and the full-size iPad suffered major cracks from the point of impact.

Up next was the face-down test, in which the Nexus saw slight fissures in its display glass, while the screens of the iPad mini and third-gen iPad were significantly fractured. The test did not attempt to turn the devices on after they were dropped.

Finally, the tablets were turned on and submerged in water for ten seconds, after which they were taken out and inspected. The iPad mini appeared to function normally, while the 9.7-inch iPad’s home button malfunctioned and seemed to respond sluggishly to touch input. It is unclear how the Nexus performed as the device was quickly glossed over as it had started a reboot during the process, and was declared “unresponsive” by the tester.

Taking all three drops into consideration, the firm gave the nod to the iPad mini.

Since a picture’s worth a thousand words, let us know what you make of the video: