RealPlayer Cloud now integrated with Chromecast
RealNetworks' RealPlayer Cloud, a dual-purpose video player and cloud service, has announced its new partnership with Google's Chromecast. Consumers can now watch their personal video collection on their TV, by accessing content the RealPlayer Cloud app, to the TV, via the Chromecast dongle.
Integration optimized for native feel
Google has formally introduced Chrome Apps for OS X, enabling the web-coded apps to "behave and feel" like native software on Macs. Titles can be placed on the Dock or searched for by name in Spotlight, opening in separate Chrome windows that omit the search bar, tabs and other browser-specific features.
Tablets, smartphones gain free Spotify service, Led Zeppelin albums
Spotify has rolled out its free music streaming service to tablets and smartphones, just as speculated by reports last week, along with a number of other announcements. While the tablet version of the app will have a similar service to that of the free desktop version, smartphone users will be forced to use a new free "Shuffle" mode instead.
HandHold and CrossWay wallet iPhone cases for iPhone 5 and 5s released
Felix has released its latest phone cases for the iPhone 5 and 5s today: the HandHold, and the CrossWay. Both designed to be minimalist, the cases protect the phone as well as store thin items such as credit cards, a license, or cash.
In discussions with four more manufacturers for Ubuntu mobile OS
A smartphone running on Ubuntu Touch will be available in 2014, according to Canonical founder and product strategy leader Mark Shuttleworth. Canonical has signed an agreement with an unnamed manufacturer to have the Linux distribution put onto high-end smartphones, with other manufacturers also apparently in talks to do likewise.
Rdio opens service to another 20 countries, covers a total of 51
Rdio has expanded its reach to include 20 more markets, bringing its total coverage to 51 territories across six continents. The areas the streaming audio service now operates in include Argentina, Costa Rica, Venezuela, Panama, South Africa, Luxembourg, Liechtenstein, Monaco, and Hungary. It is not clear if Rdio will be offering a free account option alongside the subscription version in these countries, something users in the United States, Canada, and Australia already enjoy.
New version adds tighter OS X integration, Mavericks support
ProgeCAD has unveiled the new version of iCADMac 2014, an AutoCAD alternative tailored to OS X users. The software provides full compatibility with DWG files -- the CAD standard format recognized officially worldwide -- as well as a vast range of tools and features to enhance 2D design and 3D modeling. Additionally, drawings created with iCADMac can be visualised and edited on iOS devices in both the DWG and PDF file formats.
Amberlight released at introductory price on App Store
Escape Motions has announced the official release of Amberlight for Windows and Mac OS. Described as similar to fractal programs, Amberlight is equipped with original mathematics and an easy-to-use interface, and is intended to be accessible to beginner artists as well as useful for advanced users. Featuring unique math algorithms, Amberlight can produce complex visual patterns and gradients for one's images. The art tool can create high-resolution pictures for print media, and includes a high-performance renderer.
Updated DataMan Pro offers improved Smart Forecast, usage prediction
DataMan Pro, a data usage app for iOS, has released an updated version today. Version 8.3 of the app learns its user's usage trends, and can notify users how much they can use each day without surpassing a user-defined data cap. The new version also features an improved Smart Forecast, allowing users receive notifications on their usage based on trended information.
Firefox 26 brings click-to-play, MemShrink
Mozilla has announced the release of version 26.0 of its popular Firefox browser. The update adds a number of new features, and it is one of the more significant updates to the browser in some time. Chief among these updates is the ability to exert greater control over plug-ins and memory usage, including the ability to have plug-ins only begin playing when a user chooses directly to have them do so.
Microsoft-created social network gets its own mobile apps
Microsoft's own work-in-progress social network now has its own mobile apps, something the other large social networking sites have already implemented. Apps for Socl, the site opened for testing by Microsoft's Future Social Experiences Labs (FuSE Labs) this time last year, are now available to download on iOS, Android, and Windows Phone.
Five ways to read and watch beyond the storage of the iOS device itself
(This is the first of a new series to showcase apps the staff at MacNN and Electronista use and recommend) This house was an early adopter of iOS, seeing it on first-generation iPod Touches. At the time, it was more of a novelty than anything else -- and of little actual value to us other than as a slick interface to play back our iTunes music and the limited amount of video we owned. Fast-forward six years, and the house is now replete with iDevices and users, ranging from toddlers to senior citizens. As the years have passed, one of our principal uses of iOS is now as a media extender for remotely stored media and files: PDFs, music and video alike. Here are our five apps that make sharing, viewing and enjoying mixed media easier.
Amazon updates Cloud Drive Photos for iOS with video support
The Amazon Cloud Drive Photos app for iOS has received an update, bringing support for videos. Appearing on iOS months after Android, TechCrunch reports that the app allows for videos up to 2GB or 20 minutes in length to be uploaded, with the Cloud Photos Auto-Save also updated to allow existing videos on an iPhone or iPad to be automatically uploaded to the service. Other tweaks include a "large upload mode" that disables the iOS lock screen to let uploads finish, and an indicator in the Settings screen showing the usage of Cloud Drive by media.
Screen video recording app from CyanogenMod team enters beta
The latest build of CyanogenMod brings Android 4.4 to a number of devices, including a number that have yet to receive the KitKat treatment. The team has also announced that it is adding automatic encryption of text messages to its builds, as well as introducing a new app that records a video of actions performed on the smartphone's display.
Metro apps could be used in floating desktop windows in next version
The next major Windows update could include the return of the Start Menu, according to new reports. "Threshold," the apparent codename for the Windows 8.1 follow-up, may include the smaller Start Button user interface last seen in Windows 7, as well as the ability to run Metro-style apps from within the desktop itself.
MailDeck e-mail client now available on iTunes for iPad
Released at the end of last week, Crono officially launched its email application MailDeck for iPad. The app offers effective email organization based on the relevant content the user receives. Featuring three view modes -- list, preview and decks -- users can choose to view email content by scrolling through multi-line preview, full-screen preview, or scanning through messages on small cards, with conversations stacked.
Rayman Origins to be released for Mac on December 12, 2013
Game and software maker Feral Interactive today announced that Rayman Origins will be released for Mac on Thursday, December 12. Rayman Origins has gamers play the role of Rayman, whose goal is to defend his homeland from a Livid Dead army throughout 60 levels. Players can jump, swim, sprint and hover in various environments, wielding a variety of fighting tactics.
Bluetooth speaker offers 30-foot range, water-resistance, two-hour charge
Accessory maker Zagg has released the latest iFrogz speaker, the Coda Pop Bluetooth. Able to play audio from a 30-foot range, the Coda Pop stands just two inches tall, 1.6 inches in diameter, and can play for up to two hours per charge.
Macgamestore.com offers four-game bundle of Aspyr Media's popular releases
The Mac Game Store has released its latest four-game bundle promotion, the Aspyr Greatest Hits Bundle. The deal is a compilation of Aspyr Media's most popular releases, such as Civilization V, BioShock Infinite, Borderlands 2, and Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, and offers a savings of over 67 percent compared to purchasing each game separately.
Epson adds printer support for Kindle Fire HD and HDX
Epson has announced its printing support for Kindle Fire Printing this week, offering an integrated wireless print function for Amazon's Kindle Fire HD and Fire HDX tablets. By adding the Kindle Fire tablets to its mobile printing capabilities, a wide range of Epson Connect-enabled printers can now print with tablets that run Amazon Fire OS 3.1.
BaseJump's software updated for Mavericks, including headphone detection
Twelve South has announced that its portable sound system, BassJump, has received a MacBook software update for OS X Mavericks compatibility. BassJump offers users additional audio speakers for one's MacBook, powered by a USB cable.
Users can now print complete lists of saved items
AgileBits is today releasing v4.1 of 1Password for Mac, its flagship software for storing logins, credit card numbers, and other sensitive data. One major addition is an improved browser plugin, which will now let people use the auto-save function to update existing passwords, instead of just store new ones. Items can now also be tagged from the auto-save panel.
Google Play Music update allows music caching to memory card
Google has updated its Google Play Music app for Android, introducing a wide array of track sharing options. The update also includes the ability to choose the storage location for cached or downloaded music, with Droid-Life noting that storing to the external SD card will free up the device's main storage, and a number of subtle user interface tweaks.
Scans, converts documents into numerous formats
ABBYY has released FineReader Pro, an OCR tool for the Mac. The software pulls images from cameras and dedicated scanners and converts the content into text files. During the import process, FineReader can apply pre-processing options to fix distortions; an Image Editor lets users manually correct elements like contrast, noise, motion blur, and split pages.
Timely app allows logged hours to be scheduled in advance
New time-tracking app Timely has been launched this week on iTunes. Aiming to minimize the effort involved with logging one's work for invoicing, Timely allows users to schedule and plan work while simultaneously logging the hours. Its layout is like a calendar, though simplified to not display time stamps.
Supports major cloud services
Boxcryptor has released an OS X client for its self-titled encryption software. The tool is used to encrypt files before uploading them to a cloud storage service, such as Dropbox, Google Drive, SkyDrive, Box, or SugarSync. Using Boxcryptor's apps for various platforms, including iOS and Android, the files can be decrypted and accessed elsewhere.
Skitch iOS update restores PDF reading, markup support, web capture
The iOS version of screen capture and markup app Skitch (free) has been updated, mostly restoring features that were previously removed. Users can now once again open and read PDFs in the program, as well as markup and re-save a PDF (the latter feature requires an Evernote Premium account, however). Crop mode has been removed and various bugs fixed, and web capture has been added back in. Evernote, which bought Skitch two years ago, has dealt with continuing criticism over the company's changes to the program, which was originally created to quickly capture, annotate and share screenshots. Evernote Premium accounts cost $5 per month or $45 per year.
MacUpdate's Winter app bundle offers a $400 value for $40
Mac-only software directory MacUpdate has released its latest app bundle for the winter holiday season. Containing 10 apps (with an addition two bonus apps for early buyers), the bundle is worth nearly $400 and sells for $39, a 90 percent savings. The Winter Bundle consists of primarily of productivity and office utility apps.
Workers prepped to deal with update's changes
Apple is now seeding the latest build of OS X 10.9.1 -- 13B40 -- to AppleCare workers, a report says. The code reached developers Tuesday night, but its distribution to AppleCare is believed to be more significant, since it implies that the software is close enough to completion that AppleCare workers can start familiarizing themselves. A finished update might therefore reach the public within the next week or two.
Remote record expanded to include on-demand programming
British broadcaster Sky has made a number of updates to its online services. The Sky+ app for iOS and Android has received some usability updates, Sky Go for Android now has a version specifically made for tablets, and its Sky Store streaming rentals service has been opened up to all of the UK, including those not subscribing to Sky's satellite TV offering.
Tasks, expenses among new categories
Fanurio has released a major update of its self-named time-tracking software, v3.0. The new software expands tracking beyond strict billing purposes; users can for instance create tasks and follow their progress, and record expenses, which can be tallied at actual cost or with a markup. Trip tracking includes options for distance and time, and product tracking can be used to bill for goods and services that don't fall under tasks or expenses.
More fixes for GMail integration in Mail, Smart Folders, VoiceOver
Just less than two weeks after the second OS X 10.9.1 beta was released, Apple has made a third available, this time with build number 13B40. The new release offers further advances on GMail integration in Mail and Smart Folders, both mentioned as areas of improvement in the second developer beta. Developers are still asked to focus on Mail, along with Safari, graphics drivers for various video cards and chipsets, and VoiceOver -- the same areas of attention as the previous beta.
Dashboard widget also gets maintenance update
Apple has updated its Remote Desktop software for client machines, along with the Remote Desktop Dashboard widget for administrators. Version 3.7.1 of the client software is said to address "several issues related to overall reliability, usability and compatibility," providing support for OS X Mavericks, automatic copy-and-paste between local and remote computers, and improved support for multiple displays, among other enhancements.
Ember offers image file organization, sync via iCloud
RealMac Software has launched its latest app for iOS, imaging organizer Ember (formerly known as LittleSnapper). Allowing users to collect images and organize them into projects, the compiled library can be synced via iCloud for accessing on a Mac, iPhone or iPad.
Design gets shareable themes, drag-and-drop data
Having leaked it yesterday, today Apple-owned FileMaker has formally announced FileMaker 13, the next major edition of its database creation software. One of the major additions is WebDirect, an HTML5-based method of publishing databases to the web without special programming. When developing iOS frontends, users can now generate them in a single step, and add things like slide controls, popovers, gesture controls, custom keyboards, and barcode capture functions.
Natural-media software works with photo-editing apps or as standalone
Photo-manipulation software maker Alien Skin has debuted a new version of its natural-media tool Snap Art, now at version 4.0. The update features a redesigned user interface and significant improvements in speed, and now requires OS X Mountain Lion or later for Mac and Windows 7 or newer for Windows users. The program, which can turn photographs into drawings or paintings emulating human artists in a wide variety of styles and media, is available as a stand-alone application or as a photo-editor plug-in.
Mac, PC, iOS, Android versions all available to qualified institutions
After a reveal in October, Microsoft has launched the Student Advantage program, giving free access to Microsoft Office software. The Student Advantage program is an initiative by Microsoft that gives attendees of schools and universities that have site licenses for Office 365 access to current software Office releases. Office 2011 is provided for Mac students, with a version of Office 2013 available for Windows users.
TomTom's GPS watches' new MySports mobile app, offering easy data upload
TomTom, a GPS gadget producer, has announced its latest software release to compliment its GPS watches. TomTom MySports offers flexibility to runners, cyclists and swimmers in respects to their interactions with their performance data. Users of the Sports Watch can upload and access their key performance information to the app without needing to connect to a computer.
Free upgrade spurs quick adoption
Mavericks is already the predominant version of OS X in use by the public, according to November tracking data from Net Applications. During that month, Mavericks' share rose from 0.84 percent to 2.42 percent of the Mac's total global share of 7.55 percent. Mountain Lion's share, meanwhile, plummeted from 3.31 percent to 1.85, while Lion dipped from 1.56 percent to 1.34. Leopard and Snow Leopard, already marginal platforms, dropped only slightly, slipping from 0.33 and 1.6 percent to 0.32 and 1.53 percent, respectively.
YouTube joins Netflix, Hulu Plus on handheld Nintendo game console
The Nintendo 3DS is now able to play videos from YouTube. A new app download available from the 3DS eShop for North America and Europe lets users view shows on the handheld Nintendo game console, though despite the capability of the 3DS to show glasses-free 3D imagery on one of its screens, the app will not support 3D videos from the service.
Feature additions go unmentioned
Various editions of FileMaker Pro 13 have gone on sale at Apple's UK online store ahead of an anticipated official announcement. The listings don't make mention of specific feature upgrades, but in screenshots the OS X release appears to have a new "Share" button, while the companion iOS app - FileMaker Go -- has been given a visual overhaul for iOS 7. Still missing is a matching FileMaker Server update.
Side Tree Software's programs on Mac App Store $1 throughout December
Side Tree Software has announced that all of its programs available at the App Store will be $1 each through the month of December. Starting today, apps such as Abuzzle, Equal, Mymyry, SlidePuzzle and Tribbi are available for the $1 sale price.
LG will add Android KitKat to G2 late in first quarter of 2014
The LG G2 will receive the latest version of Android early next year, allowing the device to skip past Android 4.3 entirely. Version 4.4 of the mobile operating system, also known as KitKat, will appear on the company's flagship smartphone late in the first quarter of 2014, or near the end of march, according to details passed from LG Canada to Mobile Syrup.
Reduced up to 50 percent or more this weekend, including $1 apps
Black Friday sales aren't exclusive to tech gear and shopping malls -- there are plenty of discounts to be had on iTunes and the App Store for Mac OS X and iOS users.
Black Friday sales on tablets, laptops, desktops and more from OfficeMax
Officemax, a office supply retailer, currently has its own Black Friday sale promoting a variety of office-related products, but with a focus on technology. Tablets, laptops, desktops, monitors, printers, scanners, and portable file storage systems are included in the promotion.
Valentina Studio 5.5 released, Paradigma offers Black Friday and Cyber Monday specials
Paradigma's cross-platform database management software for Linux, Mac OS X and Windows, Valentina Studio has been updated to v5.5 and 5.5 Pro. Offering new features for administration of database servers, Valentina Studio has improved report design features for datasource Microsoft SQL Server, additional administrator functions, and more. Valentina Studio Pro is regularly available for $200, and includes 12 months of free updates, while Valentina Studio is free.
Allows scaling for different phone, tablet szies
RunRev has released v6.5 of LiveCode, its simplified app development tool for iOS and Android apps. The update primarily adds resolution independence -- meaning that the same app can quickly be rescaled for any screen size, whether on a phone or a tablet. This includes accommodation for displays with high pixel densities, such as the iPhone 5s and iPad Air.
Pioneer release includes specialized SuperHero, Frontier variants
Following up on the release of flagship xStream and Infinite editions, e-on Software has shipped the Esprit, Studio, Complete, and Pioneer versions of Vue 2014, its scenery rendering software. As its name implies, Complete is intended to be a completely self-contained scenery tool. Studio is focused on vegetation, while Esprit is more basic still. Pioneer is a free, feature-limited edition of the software, meant to introduce people to concepts and the platform; images it produces include logos and watermarks.
Mega releases cloud storage app for iOS, iPad version due in future
Mega, the cloud storage service operated by Kim Dotcom, has launched an official iOS app. The free download allows users to browse their account, preview and stream specific documents and files, and to send links to files and folders to other people. Support for the iPad as well as photo synchronization are touted as future upgrades.
Skulls of Shogun: Bone-A-Fide Edition now ported to iPhone, iPad, iPod touch
Originally released for Xbox 360, Windows Phone, Windows 8, and Steam, Skulls of Shogun is now available for iOS users. The Bone-A-Fide edition of Skulls features five episodes of single-player content, and 36 multi-player maps, playable over the Internet through the turn-based Skulls Anywhere mode, or pass-and-play with up to four people.