15-year-old Georgian typed in English
Eduard Saakashvili, the 15-year-old son of the president of the country of Georgia, has been awarded a Guinness Book of World Records certification as the fastest typist on an iPad, correctly typing the entire English alphabet in just 5.26 seconds -- with one hand, Cult of Mac reports. The record was set at a resort on the Black Sea often used for high-level diplomatic conferences, and beat the previous record by over a second.
Apple's stock down
Despite record setting earnings for the third quarter of 2008, Apple's stock is down sharply in after-hours trading. As of 4:45 PST, shares were hovering at $148.94, down $17.35 or 10.43 percent. Apple posted revenue of $7.46 billion and net quarterly profit of $1.07 billion, or $1.19 per diluted share for its fiscal 2008 third quarter ended June 28, 2008. In the best June quarter in its history, the company sold almost 2.5 million Macs, or a 41 percent increase from the year-ago quarter and over 11 million iPods.
Native Instruments has announced that Guitar Rig Session and Guitar Rig XE3 are are now available. Session is a new recording solution for guitarists, bass players and songwriters that provides studio-quality results at an entry-level price. Rig 3 XE software is the heart of the suite, which offers a selection of five true-to-life tube amplifier models and 12 cabinet types, as well as 21 stomp boxes and effect units. All components can be freely combined in the virtual Guitar Rig rack, allowing musicians to create sounds ranging from signature tones to unique sonic flavors. A library with over 150 instantly playable tones from different musical eras and genres is included, together with several tools including dual tape-decks, metronome, tuner, and a dedicated Live View.
Orange iPhone sales
Orange France, the official wireless carrier for Apple iPhone in France, has broken its silence regarding iPhone sales figures, revealing that it has sold 90,000 iPhones in total since the device went on sale in late November last year through January 31st, 2008 according to Pocket-Lint. 86 percent of those phones were sold with one of Orange's tariff packages, while 14 percent were sold as legally unlocked. O2 UK recently revealed that the iPhone is its fasting selling device for the UK, noting that the device has helped it achieve 9.5-percent revenue growth during the final quarter for 2007. While O2 did not provide specific sales numbers for the device alone, it said that the iPhone led its strongest quarter on record, adding 483,000 customers and 276,000 contracts to its roster.
Red Marble Games has announced a new Mac OS X game dubbed "Rock Legend" that is part RPG, part life-sim, part Tycoon game. Players take the role of a struggling rock singer who puts together his own band, and tries to achieve fame and fortune, from humble beginnings as a starving garage-band. They can pick their band-members, choose the band name, write the songs, play the gigs and more. Rock Legend is a turn-based game, in some ways similar to the gameplay of Kudos. Each turn of the game represents a single day, and it's up to users to decide how the band spends their time. Some of the activities users will need to spend time on include songwriting, rehearsals, auditions, publicity events, practicing individual instruments recording the latest album. The game is priced at $23.
algoriddim has announced a new version of its turntable-style digital audio player, djay, featuring new plug-and-play support for the VCI-100 and VCM-100 USB MIDI controllers by Vestax. This is the first opportunity to utilize a Mac OS X-native application to power these DJ controllers. djay integrates with the user's iTunes library and allows to mix an entire digital music collection with two realistic interactive turntables. In djay's Automix mode, music can be automatically mixed using DJ-style transitions. Users can perform live, record their mixes, and even send them over the Bonjour network to other connected djays in real-time.
- Domainer 1.6 ($40) an application for web site owners, marketers and investors track and manage their domain names. RAGE Domainer allows web site owners to centralize domain details, as well as those of their competitors, with one easy tuse application. Domainer also provides an overview of a domain's value through various popularity measures including Google PageRank, AlexaRank, incoming back links, and social tags.This free update allows exporting and printing of Domain details to provide a quick overview of domain information and popularity for clients or personal use. [Download - 10.8MB]
- Vvidget 10.5.2 ($190) used to automate graphs for desktop applications, dashboard widgets and web sites. The new release includes support for Quick Look: All data visualization documents made with Vvidget Builder are now browsable through the Mac OS X Finder, including Cover Flow, List and Icon views. This gives immediate access using familiar Finder controls and enables a powerful instant-on data browsing tool. [Download - form]
- Code Collector Pro 1.0 ($30) application for storing code snippets. Key features include Smart Groups: Helps users keep their snippets organized; Snippet Sharing: Snippets can be exported to single files to be shared with other Code Collector users; Customizable Syntax Coloring: Snippets are colored depending on their language; TextMate Bundle Support: Expand the syntax coloring and language support by adding TextMate Bundles. New in version 1.2 is integration with CodeCollector.net for sharing snippets online, an improved source list, snippet locking and enhanced drag and drop support. [Download - 2.5MB]
- Art Files 1.3 ($50) a stand-alone application that takes the tedious task of collecting Illustrator documents, linked images and fonts for graphics files and turns it into a simple point and click operation. Art Files focuses on gathering just the information you need to get your files packaged up for your service provider. This update improves the speed and stability of packaging all Illustrator CS3 files. The result is a massive speed benefit, repeatedly saving time whenever you collect or archive a file. In addition, Art Files now allows you to "re-link" multiple files in the same directory, handles auto-naming of single-file collections, supports custom naming of folders and more. [Download - 1MB]
- EvoCam 3.6.2 ($30) webcam software for Mac OS X. Use EvoCam to publish a webcam with streaming video, view and record video from network cameras and video servers, create timelapse movies, or use it as part of your home security system with its configurable motion sensors. EvoCam 3.6.2 adds support for more network cameras, and fixes several bugs affecting application stability. [Download - 1MB]
TubeStick 2.5 ships
Equinux today began shipping TubeStick 2.5, the latest revision of its TV receiver designed for Mac owners that offers access to the TubeToGo Web service. TubeStick 2.5 allows users to watch as well as record live TV on a Mac simply by plugging into a USB port. The digital tuner features a sleek white exterior, and includes a digital receiver for DTT (DVB-T) signals. The device comes with a white antenna to match its exterior, and is among the smallest TV receivers in its class. TubeStick requires at least a G4 Mac running at 1GHz or faster with at least 512MB of memory. The device is priced at $60.
Call Recorder for Skype
Ecamm Networks today unveiled Call Recorder for Skype 2.3, an update to its call recording software, which has added support for the newly released Skype 2.7. In addition to compatibility, the update also adds a two-track video recording function, enhanced video recording quality, and several bug fixes. New users can purchase Call Recorder for Skype 2.3 for $15, while Ecamm also has a time-limited demo version available for download.
Harman Kardon does Blu-ray
Harman Kardon today announced its support for the Blu-ray video standard, and confirmed this by hinting at a standalone player, which will cost approximately £500 (~$980). While details were scarce about the Blu-ray player, a spokesman for the company adds that it will release additional players, including all-in-one AV systems, according to What Hi-Fi?. In addition, the forthcoming DVC 600 combination Blu-ray/HDD recorder will be able to record up to eight channels of standard or high-definition TV to a 1 Terabyte hard drive.
Summary of Q1 financials
Apple recently made available its first quarter financial data for 2008, which displayed record earnings for the company. Senior VP and CFO Peter Oppenheimer guided analysts and industry insiders through the quarterly figures, citing record Mac sales, with strong software and iPod sales backing the numbers. A strong install-base of Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard has also helped the company's quarter, with estimates being placed at a 19-percent install base on Macs. Apple's cash generation has doubled that of its net income, and has over $18 billion of financial reserves.
One-touch video transfers
Pinnacle Systems today debuted Pinnacle Video Transfer (site not updated), a device that record analog video onto any USB 2.0 storage device without the need for a computer. With the touch of a button the company says users with little or no technical expertise can record from a TV, DVD player, iPod, or other device to a USB flash drive or USB hard drive. Users can select three different recording levels for each device, opting for varying video qualities and sizes. Pinnacle Video Transfer will ship January 15th for $130, and includes three RCA audio/video cables as well as a power supply and a quick start guide.
Apple, Jay-z record label?
Rumors had circulated that rap star Jay-Z and Apple would together launch a record label, but a new report from the Boy Genius Report "just about" confirms a deal. Citing a "high-up" source attached to Jay-Z, the deal is said be a go. Jay-Z is allegedly happy with the business model and wants to go ahead with the plan. The implications of Apple forging its own music label would likely send tension thundering through the already-tenuous relationships between the Cupertino-based company and its music label partners selling tracks via the iTunes Store.
Mac OS share hits 7.3%
Strong holiday sales of both MacBook and iPhones resulted in significant market share gains for Apple during the month of December, according to a Net Applications survey. Mac OS X rose to a record 7.3 percent share from 6.8 percent in November, while the company's iPhone garnered .12 percent share over the previous month's .09 percent. The survey suggests that more than one in 1,000 people on the internet are browsing the Web with an iPhone, according to Fortune.
Ambrosia issues updates
Ambrosia Software has released updates to two applications and one game, signaling the arrival of WireTap Studio 1.0.4 along with iSeek 1.1.3 and pop-pop 1.0.6. WireTap Studio 1.0.4 is a free update to the audio recording and management application that offers enhanced Leopard compatibility alongside other fixes and enhancements. WireTap Studio is priced at $70 and requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later. Upgrades for WireTap Pro users are priced at 30.
Creating custom ringtones
Apple today released an informational note about creating custom ringtones in GarageBand 4.1.1. "With GarageBand 4.1.1 you can export your original song, your original audio recordings, or use Apple Loops and iLife jingles to create a custom ringtone for your iPhone," the company says. Users need GarageBand 4.1.1, iTunes 7.5 or later, and an iPhone with firmware version 1.1.2 or later. The process involves setting up a cycle region that covers the desired area of a song to use in a GarageBand song, which must be 40 seconds or less in length.
Tube 2.0 TV software
Equinux today released The Tube 2.0, marking the second generation of its TV software for Mac with support for TubeTalk and BuddySurfing community-oriented features. TubeTalk enables TV viewers to chat with one another about the current program, while BuddySurfing enables users to follow others as they channel surf. The Tube 2.0 also simplifies the overall recording process, and provides a visible chatroom where all viewers can discuss programming while keeping tabs on how many viewers are currently watching the running program for each channel. The software is priced at $30, and is obtainable with a DVB-T (DTT) USB receiver TubeStick for $60.
Miglia ships TVMini+
Miglia has released the TVMini+, a device that aims to offer complete digital entertainment with Miglia TV software in an ultra-portable format. The device plugs into a USB 2.0 port, thus enabling users to watch and record analog as well as digital terrestrial television. Supported by the DVB-T standard, the TVMini+ combines a 10-bit analog-to-digital converter and a video decoder for improved reception, according to Miglia. TVMini+ is available for $175, and comes with a 2-year warranty. [updated with proper images]
First Look at Djay 2.0
Mixing music as a disc jockey can be an cluttered proposition, requiring turntables, a mixer, expensive needles, among other pieces of equipment. A decent collection of vinyl can also prove to be unwieldy for some who don't have vintage record or specialty shops nearby. Algoriddim's Djay 2.0 provides users with most of the resources they will need for doing gigs and live parties. By using an iTunes library to provide mixing material, users require little more than the app, a Mac some headphones and speakers, maybe a USB audio interface if they want to do some of Djay's more advanced features.