Apple Releases Security Update 2007-005

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Date: Thursday, May 24th, 2007, 16:41
Category: News

On Thursday, Apple released Security Update 2007-005, an update designed to repair element of Mac OS X with a specific fix centered on the iChat instant message program.
According to Macworld News, the update specifically fixes a potential buffer overflow exploit in the UPnP IGD (Internet Gateway Device Standardized Device Control Protocol) code used for port mapping functions within the iChat program. If exploited, a user could trigger an overflow and cause applications to terminate as well as arbitrary code to be executed in addition to denial of services.
An additional vulnerability was discovered in the port mapping code used in home NAT gateways via Mac OS X’s dDNSResponder function. Once again, an outside user could trigger a similar overflow as the iChat bug and cause applications to terminate, arbitrary code to be executed and denial of services.
Additional fixes have been provided for the following system functions:
The update requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later to run and is available both through the Software Update feature or via Apple’s Support Downloads page.
If you’ve installed the update and have either positive or negative feedback about it, let us know.


Sony-Ericcson Joins WiMAX Forum

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Date: Thursday, May 24th, 2007, 12:22
Category: News

On Thursday, Sony-Ericsson announced that it has become part of the WiMAX Forum, a consortium of companies working on an updated wireless Internet protocol.
According to MacNN, no hardware updates or new products have been announced, but it’s likely that Sony-Ericsson will begin to upgrade their products to take advantage of faster speeds.
WiMAX, also known as both a 4G technology and 802.16e, offers multi-megabit connection rates over a wider terrain of areas where slower connection rates were necessary. The protocol also helps avoid data bottlenecks in situations where a large number of users accessed a given network.
Though still new as a protocol, telephone provider Sprint has announced that it will launch a WiMax network in the United States by mid-2008.


Sony/British Telecom to Beef Up PSP Communication Features

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Date: Thursday, May 24th, 2007, 08:26
Category: News

Stepping away from the iPhone for just a second, British Telecom and Sony Computer Entertainment have recently penned a four year contract to develop extra communications features for the Sony PSP.
The PSP, which debuted about two years ago, has shipped 24 million units across its global markets.
According to the British Telecom Group, Sony will pair with British Telecom to integrate video and voice products to the PSP in the near term. The two companies will work towards features that allow the PSP to enable calls and messages to PCs, land lines and cell phones.
If you have an opinion on this, let us know what you make of it.


iPhone Demand May Exceed Supply

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Date: Wednesday, May 23rd, 2007, 11:08
Category: News

A recent survey by the Channel Checkers research firm shows that demand for Apple’s upcoming iPhone may exceed the available supply when the device is released next month.
In a survey of 36 storers, 64% of outlets questioned replied that they had a waiting list while the remaining 36% would sell the iPhone on a first come, first serve basis. According to MacsimumNews, the average waiting list numbered about 25 people. In one case, an outlet in New York City reported that it currently had 1,979 people on iits waiting list. Another cited its waiting list as numbering in the thousands.
The report also stated that Apple’s iPhone manufacturer, HonHai, had experienced some part delays and that its initial 12 million unit run wouldn’t be available until mid-June.
Conventional wisdom says to call ahead and try to get your name on the list come June. And if you can’t snag one on opening day, there’ll be plenty more where it came from.
Still, out of curiosity, who’s planning on camping out for one and just how far are you willing to go to snag one on the first day it becomes available?


Intel to Stop Using Lead Components

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Date: Wednesday, May 23rd, 2007, 11:31
Category: News

On Tuesday, microprocessor giant Intel announced that its entire processor line would be lead-free from later this year on.
Beginning with the upcoming Penryn processor line, the company’s 45-nanometer chips will go lead-free. The 65-nanometer chips will follow suit later in 2007 according to Macworld News.
Though extremely useful as a manufacturing component thanks to its electrical and mechanical properties, lead remains a toxic metal and a point of contention between environmental groups and IT manufacturers.
In 2005, Intel announced that the company had invested US$100 million in the development of a lead alternative to used as solder for its chip line. The company stated that its goal at the time was to be lead-free by 2010 and the firm took its first steps towards this end by beginning to remove lead from its products in 2002. By 2004, the company had reduced its lead content to 0.02 grams of solder used for its chips.
Per Tuesday’s announcement, the company announced plans to replace its tin-lead solder component with an alloy consisting of tin, silver and copper. The change in materials should not affect performance or when upcoming products arrive to market.


Apple/AT&T Contract Bans Apple’s Creation of CDMA Model iPhone

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Date: Wednesday, May 23rd, 2007, 07:35
Category: News

Despite being in a position to be one of the coolest technological releases of 2007, Apple’s iPhone, the contract between Apple and AT&T will change how the iPhone is developed. According to an article in USA Today, the contract created between the two companies provides AT&T with exclusive distribution rights of the iPhone for five years also bars Apple from developing a CDMA-network-compatible version of the device for this period of time.
The ban serves a strategic function in that is keeps AT&T customers from switching over to competitors Sprint or Verizon Wireless, which both use the CDMA network protocol. AT&T’s devices currently operate via the GSM network protocol.
AT&T currently claims about 62.2 million customers, whereas Verizon and Sprint claim 60.7 and 53.6 million customers, respectively.
Part of this was to definitely be expected and if you have any comments or ideas about this, let us know.


Apple Store Now Offering Refurbished Apple TV Units

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Date: Tuesday, May 22nd, 2007, 10:08
Category: News

The lads over at The Unofficial Apple Weblog have picked up on Apple’s recent addition of refurbished Apple TV units to the Apple Store.
The refurbished units are being sold for US$249 as opposed to the regular price of US$299 and include a year’s limited warranty, which can be upgraded to a three year warranty via a US$49 AppleCare protection plan.
Click here for full details and let us know what you think.


LightSnake iChat Headset Released

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Date: Tuesday, May 22nd, 2007, 08:41
Category: News

On Tuesday, SoundTech Professional Audio released its LightSnake iChat, a USB headset designed to work with voice and Voice Over Internet Protocol programs.
The LightSnake iChat features earbud-style headphones, a lapel clip with sound controls and a mic that can be positioned in front of a user’s mouth. A standard 1/8″ stereo plug allows the device to be connected to a regular set of headphones and the audio specifications are as follows:
-THD + N (-3dBr): -76.1 dB*SNR: 83.1 dB
-Dynamic Range: 81.6 dB
-Ear bud Frequency Response: 20Hz – 20 KHz
-Microphone Frequency R3sponse: 100Hz to 16 KHz
-Signal Input Range: 0 – 2.88 Vpp
-Signal Boost Gain: +20 dB
The LightSnake iChat is compatible with Mac OS 9.0.4 or later and retails for US$29.99.


Apple Posts MacBook/Pro Optical Drive Noise Samples

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Date: Tuesday, May 22nd, 2007, 08:08
Category: News

An article over at MacFixIt points out that Apple has posted a Knowledge Base article wherein the compay offers several sound clips as to noises a MacBook and MacBook Pro’s slot-loading optical drive can make. The clips cover activities such as waking from sleep, burning a disc, importing files into iTunes and insertion/ejection.
The Knowledge Base article offers a good basis of comparison between what noises your MacBook or MacBook Pro’s drive may be making and whatever you’re experiencing on your end. In the end, the drives are a little noisier than one might expect, especially given the activities they tend to go through.
Take a listen and if your laptop’s hard drive noises seem excessive, then it might be time to take the next step and take the unit in for AppleCare service.


Western Digital Releases Scorpio Notebook Drives

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Date: Monday, May 21st, 2007, 11:39
Category: News

On Monday, hard drive manufacturer Western Digital announced that the company has started shipping its 250 gigabyte Scorpio SATA drive for laptop systems.
According to Macworld News, the 2.5″ hard features a 12 millisecond seek time and spins at 5,400 RPM with a 1.5 gigabyte per second transfer rate and eight megabytes of cache built into the device. Additional bells and whistles include a ShockGuard firmware technology which works to protect the drive against bumps, an IntelliSeek feature which calculates the optimum seek speed of the read/write head actuator and a WhisperDrive feature designed to reduce noise and conserve power.
The drive also features perpendicular magnetic recording to stack data stored on the drive in a denser formation.
Western Digital is currently selling the Scorpio series in 40, 60, 80, 100, 120, 160, and 250 gigabyte capacities, the 250 gigabyte model retailing for US$199.99 while the other unit prices vary depending on capacity.