Just in time for the holiday shopping season, the supply of the iPhone 5s is catching up with demand. Both in the US and other stores in Europe, the ship times for the iPhone 5s has dropped to 1 to 3 days. This is the lowest ship time since the handset launched earlier this year. Even the coveted gold model, which was scarce at launch, is now readily available.
If you plan to buy a new iPhone for a loved one this holiday season, you should be aware of Apple's shipping deadlines. All configurations of the iPhone 5s and the 5c must be ordered before December 18th, if you want the phone to arrive on or before December 24th. Apple also is offering free shipping on all orders.
iPhone 5s supply is strong for the holiday shopping season originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Fri, 06 Dec 2013 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Apple is rolling out iBeacon technology to all its 254 US Stores starting today, December 6th, says a report in the Associated Press. The technology will allow customers to receive messages about products, events and discount offers as they walk through a store. It will also alert customers when an order is ready to be picked up.
Apple demoed the technology at its Fifth Avenue store in New York City earlier this week. The store has 20 iBeacon transmitters, some of which are iPhones and iPads that utilize this iOS7-based technology. The iBeacons will connect to your iOS device using Bluetooth, and the connection is optional for the user. You don't have to be pinged about upcoming events if you don't want to. The iBeacons offer a distinct advantage over GPS, which doesn't work well indoors and lacks the sensitivity to detect movement around a store.
Apple now using iBeacon technology in its US retail stores originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Fri, 06 Dec 2013 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Apple on Thursday updated its developer website with a chart indicating that iOS 7 adoption as of December 1 is already at 74%. The chart additionally reveals that 22% of iOS devices are still running iOS 6 while just 4% of iOS devices are running even older iterations of iOS.
The 74% figure is extremely impressive, and further serves to highlight that Apple does a tremendous job of releasing major iOS updates capable of running on older devices. The iPhone 4, for example, was released about three and a half years ago and still supports iOS 7.
This stands in stark contrast to Android where only 1.1% of devices are currently running Android 4.4, otherwise known as KitKat. What's more, 42% of Android devices are currently running various iterations of Android that were first released way back in 2011.
This certainly aligns with a chart we highlighted earlier this week illustrating how a number of Android devices, just two years into their life cycle, often fall two major versions behind the most recent update to Android.
Earlier this week, Chitika released its own adoption rate data which pegged iOS 7 adoption on the iPhone and iPad at 74.1% and 63.8% respectively. And for all you curious minds out there, Chitika found that iOS 5 adoption on the iPhone currently checks in at 2.6% while the number of iPhones currently running iOS 4 currently checks in at .9%.Source | Permalink | Email this | Comments
Assuming that the iPhone/China Mobile agreement is finalized before the end of 2013, analysts have been quick to chime in with estimates regarding how such a deal will affect Apple's iPhone sales and the company's bottom line.
AllThingsD was able to aggregate a number of analyst responses to the rumored iPhone/China Mobile deal. Here's what they found.
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster anticipates that iPhone sales on China Mobile may reach 17 million units in 2014. ISI analyst Brian Marshall, meanwhile, is much more optimistic about Apple's prospects on China Mobile, anticipating sales of 38.7 million units in 2014. Lastly, analyst Brian White from Cantor Fitzgerald anticipates Apple will sell anywhere between 20 and 24 million units.
While it remains to be seen just how well the iPhone does on China Mobile, it's hard to argue that the economic impact of such a deal is anything but huge. With over 740 million subscribers, China Mobile has more subscribers than the United States has people. What's more, more than 10% of all the world's population is a China Mobile subscriber (think about that for a second). That's the type of opportunity that now stands before Apple.
Now there's no disputing that a large percentage of China Mobile subscribers won't be able to afford an iPhone. Nonetheless, the pool of subscribers on China Mobile is so large that when we zero in on the number of subscribers that can, in fact, afford an iPhone, we're still left with a sizeable pool of potential customers.
Ben Thompson over at Stratechery put together this informative and impressively simple chart illustrating this very point.
Put simply, when your starting point is 740 million, even a small percentage yields a sizable number.
Lastly, take note that Apple has not yet confirmed that a deal has been finalized. While the WSJ report from yesterday relayed that it was a done deal, Reuters this morning ran a quote from China Mobile spokeswoman Rainie Lei who said that the two company's are still in the midst of negotiations.
Analysts have high expectations for iPhone sales on China Mobile originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 22:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
You've probably seen Neat's TV ads touting their new NeatConnect Cloud Scanner (US$499.95). They show someone with a desk somewhat neater than mine quickly scanning in receipts, bills, and business cards with nary a desktop computer in sight. The company sent one to TUAW for a review, so read how this latest scanner from Neat might just change your thinking about scanning ... and keeping a desktop computer around.
I have a love/hate relationship with scanners and the entire "paperless office" concept. While I'd love to get rid of every piece of paper that comes into my home and office by scanning everything and storing it in the cloud, every solution I've tried so far has at least one failing. Take, for example, my great idea of using my Epson WF-3540 all-in-one printer/scanner (it has a sheet feeder!) to grab handfuls of bills, receipts, and other paper detritus and bump them up to either Dropbox or Evernote ... or both. That sheet feeder works a lot better in theory than in practice -- it often jams if I scan documents that were folded into envelopes or if I try scanning sheets of different sizes. The software included with the Epson scanner wasn't that great, so I tried PDFScanner for Mac ($14.99). The app helped a lot in terms of turning the scans into PDFs that I could send to Dropbox and Evernote, but lacks a way to automate a lot of the process.
The NeatConnect Cloud Scanner is designed to remove the personal computer from the loop, allowing direct wireless scanning to a number of cloud services. It does this by putting a small color touchscreen onto the front of the scanner not only for entering commands, but for cropping scans if needed.
Neat's business plan appears to be oriented towards selling the Neat services rather than the scanners, but if you're averse to spending anywhere from $60 to $240 a year for their cloud storage, you can still use Dropbox, Evernote, Box.com, Google Drive or even Microsoft SkyDrive.
The scanner features 802.11b/g/n compatibility, and also has a USB port if -- for some reason -- you want to scan to your Mac. An SD card slot makes scanning directly to removable storage a possibility, perfect for situations where you may want to do scanning off-network. The scanner can do single- or double-sided scanning with a maximum resolution of 600 dpi, while scans of up to 8.5" x 30" can be done at the lower resolution of 300 dpi.
The sheet feeder on the device can take up to 15 business cards, 15 receipts, and 15 letter-size documents at one time. Take out the paper tray, and you can slam in up to 50 letter-size docs. Dimensions-wise, the scanner fills a volume of 11" width x 8.7" depth x 7.5" height, and it weighs in a 5.3 pounds.Test Drive
For me, the proof of how good (or bad) a scanner is lies in how it works in real life, so I unboxed the review device and set it up. My first complaint? The way that the prongs are set up on the power brick insures that unless you plug it in on the end of a power strip, it will cover up three other outlets...
That aside, setup is dead simple -- plug it in, turn it on, and follow a tutorial that appears on the screen. That color touchscreen, which measures about 2" wide by 3" tall, takes you through accepting the terms and conditions of use connecting to your Wi-Fi network, connecting to NeatCloud (a subscription is included), and then using the device.
Entering the password for the network is made easy through the use of a tiny on-screen keyboard, which is smaller than what you may be used to on an iPhone. Next, the device lets new users of NeatCloud sign up for the service or existing users sign in. A few more steps, and the scanner lets you do a sample scan.
Pages and/or cards are put into the three slots on the Cloud Scanner, you are prompted for whether you'd prefer a grayscale or color scan, if the pages are single or double sided, and if you'd like scans combined into one document, and then you press a large orange button on the display. I was quite surprised at how fast the scanner whipped through a few double-sided pages, as I'm used to watching my existing scanner try to (and usually failing) pull the paper back through. Not so with the Cloud Scanner, which did both sides of the pages at once.
The scanner is even smart enough to realize if you've accidentally turned on double-sided scanning for single-sided documents, and eliminates the blank pages. That's quite impressive.
So what happens once your scans are done? They're stored on the device in an "outbox" and you just tap a "Send" button on the touchscreen to send them to the cloud. Once the documents are happily spending their time in the cloud, you can choose to do any number of things with them from either the website, the Neat desktop software, or a free iOS app.
I consider business card scanning to be the litmus test of scanners, as they usually jam or the text isn't recognized properly. I took nine different cards -- some "traditional" and some that were just plain odd -- and plopped them into the card slot. Scanning took just 12 seconds for all of those cards, with the cards being properly oriented on the touchscreen once they had been scanned. Within seconds and without any prompting on my part, those cards started appearing in the NeatCloud inbox -- not only the image, but where possible, with the data extracted into the proper fields of a contact page.
How accurate was the recognition? As you'd expect, business cards that had a traditional portrait or landscape layout worked quite well, especially those with dark type on a white background. One card (from Apple co-founder Ron Wayne!) had a photograph in the background, but still picked up important information like street address and name. Three of the cards could not be processed -- a look at them showed that they either had very odd layouts or typefaces.
Receipts scanned amazingly well and moved data into the proper fields of an expense form. The only receipt I had an issue with was one from a thermal printer that was from February -- it was faded quite a bit, but the recognition still picked up the card type, the charge date, and the type of charge (it was for a restaurant).
Next, I connected to two other cloud services: Dropbox and Evernote. Once the Dropbox connection was made, I was informed that scans would appear in the root folder... not exactly where I would have put them. I have a folder specifically for scans, and it would be nice if it was possible to direct the Cloud Scanner to drop my scans in that place. It was the same for Evernote -- scans go straight into the top level of that service.
To select between NeatCloud, Dropbox, and Evernote, you simply swipe across the touchscreen until you see the destination you desire. It's fast and easy to change destinations between scans. As you'd expect, the documents appeared in their proper cloud within seconds.
Did I ever have issues with sheet feeding? Yes -- one set of documents had been folded, and I found that I had to "counter-fold" the pages to get them to feed properly. But considering how fast the NeatConnect Cloud Scanner is, it wasn't a hassle to tweak the pages to try again -- successfully. Seriously, six pages of double-sided documents from scan to Dropbox in less than 30 seconds? Nice.
If my testing of the NeatConnect Cloud Scanner has done anything, it's made me regret buying an all-in-one device. For the type of scanning I need to do -- in other words, getting from under the avalanche of paperwork that shows up on a regular basis -- this device rocks. Side note: As I tested the scanner, I ended up clearing up a lot of paperwork that I was dreading sending through the scanner on my Epson all-in-one.
Large businesses and even small businesses with a lot of paperwork would probably be best served with a document management system that can handle a large amount of incoming paper, but for those who are self-employed or small businesses with a couple of employees, this is an almost perfect solution.Conclusion
For small businesses or individuals and families that want to digitize their lives by turning bills, receipts, and business cards into their electronic equivalents, I can't think of a better solution than the NeatConnect Cloud Scanner. It's fast, amazingly easy to set up and use, and works seamlessly with the major cloud services. If you require the ability to have business cards and receipts entered automatically into a contact list or expense report, then the ability of the Neat services to extract that information will be well worth the cost.
- Bright color touchscreen makes setup of network and cloud accounts fast and easy
- Scans business cards, receipts, and documents (single- or double-sided) in seconds
- Doesn't require a Mac or PC
- Works with all major cloud services plus NeatCloud
- Small footprint ensures that it won't take up a lot of room in your home or office
- Generous return policy if you decide it's not for you
- NeatCloud has issues recognizing some business cards or poorly printed receipt
- Price puts it out of reach of most consumers; small businesses could expense the hardware
Who is it for?
- Anyone who wants to digitize quantities of printed material quickly for storage in a variety of cloud services
NeatConnect Cloud Scanner: Computerless scanning and digital filing originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 21:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Last month we covered a study by online backup provider Backblaze in which the company looked at statistics for all of the hard drives used in their storage facilities and determined -- among other things -- that the median lifetime of a hard drive is about six years. There were a number of other fascinating tidbits, like the fact that the consumer-grade drives used in Backblaze's Storage Pods show three distinct failure rates over their lifetimes. Now the company has revealed statistics showing that more expensive enterprise-rated drives actually have a higher failure rate than much less expensive consumer drives.
Backblaze uses many more consumer-grade drives than those enterprise drives, but it does have a number that are used in server and in one Backblaze Storage Pod that was specifically set up to test enterprise drives. When the company looked at the annual failure rate of drives, enterprise drives failed at a rate of 4.6 percent per year, while consumer drives showed a rate of 4.2 percent.
It should be pointed out that Backblaze does not have data on enterprise drives older than two years, so they're not sure if the failure remains constant or begins to increase (as with consumer drives) as time passes.
The bottom line? When the question "are enterprise drives worth the cost?" is asked, Backblaze's answer is that from a reliability perspective, the answer is no. The company's report points out that enterprise drives do have longer warranties, which is a benefit only if the higher price of the drive and its longer warranty is less than the drive replacement price. Backblaze concludes that "If you're OK with buying the replacements yourself after the warranty is up, then buy the cheaper consumer drives."
Do enterprise-rated drives really hold up better? Backblaze finds the truth originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 20:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
I've seen a lot of collage software come and go. Some are quite powerful and keep growing, such as Diptic. Others don't really have interesting templates or don't allow you enough creative freedom to let you make the collage that fits your mood or your personality.
The last few days, I've been playing with a free app called Fuzel, and it helped me create some striking collages. Best of all, it gave me the flexibility to move and transform the elements without being restricted to stiff templates.
Fuzel starts off with a quick tutorial, then it's time to open your camera roll and select some photos. There are plenty of templates, but the best ones are the ones that aren't just a bunch of rectangles bolted together. You can cut and divide the frames into smaller ones; you can merge frames into a single frame; and you can drag the borders around as you please. I was happy to see my new collage was saved at full resolution, but there are smaller options when you are mailing them or sending them to social networks. Swiping the screen will undo your last change, and a collage can be saved to edit later.
I tried the app with some of my landscape photos, and the results were excellent. This was the first collage app that made me want to print poster-size versions of these collages for hanging on my walls.
The app also features in-app purchases, which it calls credit packs. They are themed objects and labels to further customize your collage, but I didn't feel the need for them. They might be handy if I wanted holiday elements for a collage, but I let the photos speak for themselves.
Fuzel is a very impressive app. It's not universal, so you'll get the best results on an iPhone or an iPod touch. The app requires iOS 7 or later, and it's optimized for the iPhone 5.
With the holidays here, most of us will be taking more pictures than ever. Fuzel can give your photos a fresh look, and you'll enjoy sharing the results with family and friends.
Fuzel is a standout collage creator for you iPhone originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Among the changes:
- Give users the ability to change arming delay time (from instant up to 5 minutes)
- Give users the ability to change alarm delay time (from instant up to 10 minutes)
- Give users an arming countdown (beep beep beep, so you know how long you have to get out of the house)
- Quicker login and auto-login options
- Allows an audible disarming countdown (beep beep beep, so you know how long you have to disarm)
- Add siren volume adjustment to fit user needs
- Set the CubeOne and notifications to use your phone's time zone if you want (if you're traveling to other timezones, for instance)
- Enhanced Family Member page - will allow profile pictures and remote logs
- Provide online recovery of data
- Save alarm pictures automatically to your local album
- Remove requirement to do a manual reboot after recovering data from the cloud
When I tested the iSmartAlarm system, I found it stable and useful. I especially liked the optional camera that lets you pan and tilt it by dragging your finger on your iPhone screen, so you can look around your house from a remote location.
The changes made were the result of user feedback, and the company expects to add some new hardware and new capabilities to the system soon.
iSmartAlarm updates its iOS-friendly home security system originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 19:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
The last time Apple made printers -- well over a decade ago -- there was no iPad, no iPhone, and no Retina displays that could make a digital page look as real as a paper one. In many ways printing isn't as crucial to the average user experience as it once was, but more advanced printing tasks like producing high-quality photos at home are likely to remain for the foreseeable future. We may not need printers as often, but they're not going to outright die in our lifetime.
Apple will likely never get back into the printer business, but could it? I think the answer is yes.
Why Apple should make printers (again)
At a consumer level, printing hasn't been sexy for a long time. In fact, you could argue that printing has never been sexy. Today's printing hardware, including the HP and Epson models Apple sells in its own online store, are clunky, obtuse, and ugly. If they don't have too many buttons for their own good, they sport convoluted (oftentimes resistive, ew) touchscreen interfaces that make navigating an iOS device feel like a Sunday drive.
The customer reviews of these printers are mixed at best, with only two of the 12 AirPrint-capable printers on Apple's online store scoring better than a 3/5, and none of them beating a 4/5 rating. The HP model that I have can't keep an AirPrint connection to save its life, and the average rating of all the printers on Apple's online store is 2.5/5. Apple doesn't make 2.5/5 products, but they're selling them because they haven't seen fit to do it better (yet).
Even when Apple sold its own brand of printers in the 80s and 90s, they weren't really Apple printers as much as rebadged Canon and HP hardware. If Apple were to decide to enter this fray, they would be starting with what is essentially a blank slate. The company could snag a printing engine from one of the many giants of the industry -- who you can bet would be lining up to get their slice -- but Apple would most definitely want to design the rest of the unit in-house. I mean really, look at the new Mac Pro and tell me who wouldn't want to see a Jony Ive-designed StyleWriter?
Apple has a couple of things going for it already if it should decide to pull the trigger on printers: First, as mentioned above, the competition isn't exactly stiff. Second, AirPrint itself has matured greatly since its birth a couple years back, and I'd be willing to bet that an Apple smartphone would talk to an Apple printer with much less fuss (and consumer complaints) than is true of the current third-party units.
It prints money
The main argument against Apple making printers is also one of the biggest reasons why it should try; "There's no money in it." Yes, there's also no money for Apple to make with a smartphone, a tablet, or a micro desktop computer either, right? Apple is nothing if not the master at creating its own markets, and with a fresh take on printing, I don't think it's silly to think the same would be true once again.
Conventional wisdom pushes the idea that the real money to be made with printing comes from selling the supplies, not the hardware. Well, that might be true when you can pick up an HP printer for $50, but let's remember the company we're talking about. If it's gorgeous, it works, and it has even a hint of that Apple magic, price is rarely a deal breaker for anyone walking into an Apple Store.
I'm not saying you'll be searching for Apple-branded ink, but don't fool yourself into thinking Apple would be on the same playing field with HP, Epson, Canon, or anyone else in the business. Like it or not, "people who buy Apple products" is now a market of its own, and a pretty big one at that.
Why Apple won't make a printer
You're not likely to see a "Designed in California" label on a printer any time soon, and printers themselves are largely to blame. Apple is often at its best when creating a new product category, not entering an established one -- the iPod being a big exception here.
Iterations on tablets and smartphones come fast and furious because Apple is already a leader in those spaces, but in categories where the company is merely a player, change comes slow if it comes at all (*cough*Mac Pro*cough*).
I've done my best to avoid using "innovation" in this article, but that's what it really comes down to. I'm sure Apple could (or already has) come up with a feature that would breathe new life into consumer-level printing, but I couldn't tell you what it is.
A sexy design, the "it just works" quality, and the Apple logo would sell more than a few, but in the end it's about giving people what they don't already have. I'm confident Apple has the brains to make that happen with a printer, I'm not convinced the company is willing to actually do it.Source | Permalink | Email this | Comments
Recently Haiku Deck launched an invite-only web app version of its powerful presentation-creation app. It allows users to build presentations online and then pull them up on their iPads for updating/presenting at a later date. The initial trial period has been a success, so the company is opening up the web app to all users.
Simply head over to http://www.haikudeck.com/ and get started. When you're done with your project, it can be exported to the iPad app, to a PDF or to a PowerPoint file. For frequent power users of Haiku Deck, the ability to keep working on your project -- even when your iPad has run out of juice -- will be a nice addition to your weekly productivity.
Haiku Deck's web app drops its invite requirement, goes free to use for all originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 18:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
It's the TUAW Daily Update, your source for Apple news in a convenient audio format. You'll get all the top Apple stories of the day in three to five minutes for a quick review of what's happening in the Apple world.
You can listen to today's Apple stories by clicking the inline player (requires Flash) or the non-Flash link below. To subscribe to the podcast for daily listening through iTunes, click here.
No Flash? Click here to listen.Source | Permalink | Email this | Comments
For people who live in big cities where there's simply too much for one person to take in by themselves, Foursquare can be a blessing. It can be a way to build a curated list of recommendations based on which places have brought joy to your friends, maybe find a good discount and, most importantly, become the mayor of the hippest bar in town. Foursquare has already released one update to coincide with the updated look of iOS 7, but today it's unveiled version 7.0 of its app featuring a complete redesign and new features.
The most important addition to Foursquare 7.0 is the app's improved notification and recommendation system. When you check in at a new restaurant, the app will alert you to which dishes are the best reviewed on the menu. When you first arrive in a city or new neighborhood, if you have notifications turned on, the app will provide a list of places to try out based on your choices and those of your friends.
If you're weary of turning on push notifications because of how annoying they can be, Foursquare understands. In an interview with TechCrunch, Foursquare's Vice President of Product Experience, Jon Steinbeck, explained the company has optimized its notifications by looking into what users actually respond to. This means you should expect more notifications when you're arriving at a location and fewer random suggestions. Notifications also use significantly less of your battery life than previous versions.
Its new look helps users quickly scan through their recommendations, tips and specials with a simple finger swipe. You'll notice your check-in feed finally takes up your whole screen instead of being split with the maps or trending events that used to take up space on the screen. As a whole, it's a cleaner, less-cluttered and easier-to-navigate take on an already well-designed app.
This is the most powerful version of Foursquare yet. If being a mayor of a hot new local dive bar is important to you, consider this upgrade a positive step toward building your power.
Foursquare 7 introduces a scannable redesign and smarter location recommendations for users originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
There's an iPad case out there for everyone: slim ones, waterproof ones, cases covered in gold bling. iPad cases nowadays are as much about style and taste as about protecting Apple's tablet. If you're into a case that's more artisan than most -- or just a fan of Moleskine notebooks -- you might want to check out the BUKcase iPad case.
The BUKcase 'ORIGINALS' iPad case is designed to look like the famous notebook when closed. It has a faux black leather cover and a vinyl inside cover that comes in blue, purple, red, or grey. The model I tested was the one with the purple interior cover. Attached to the back of the case is an elastic band that is wound around it when closed -- securing the cover of the case just like a Moleskine notebook. A dime-sized hole is cut into the upper right rear of the case so you can use the iPad's camera without taking it out. Each case is made by a small team of people in Manchester, England and every unit made is labeled with a unique number stating the birthdate of the case.
The top, right, and bottom sides of the the case are made of a birch plywood wooden frame with four studs that act as a Tommy lock system, keeping your iPad securely in place. The fourth-generation iPad I tested with it fit securely without rattling around. The case also features a smart sleep-wake function that wakes your iPad when you open the case cover -- just like Apple's Smart Cases do. The case also doubles as an iPad stand. Fold the front cover all the way back and lay it on a table to set the iPad at an angle; that's something people who like to use drawing apps will appreciate.
At £40.00 GBP (about US$65.00) the BUKcase 'ORIGINALS' iPad case isn't priced badly. The thing is, the case won't appeal to everyone, especially those that want a case to make their iPad feel protected. But this case isn't designed with a form-fitting mission in mind. It's designed for those artistic iPad owners out there who enjoy craftsmanship and want an iPad case that can make their tablet blend into the surround of other items they frequently carry -- like Moleskine notebooks. If you're one of these people, then I think this could be the case for you.Source | Permalink | Email this | Comments
There's been a lot of discussion surrounding Kyle Lambert's stunning painting of Morgan Freeman, with many people questioning whether the iPad-painted image was a fake. Lambert claims it is legitimate and released a YouTube video showing how he used Procreate to draw the realistic image. This video has now been viewed over 8 million times.
That hasn't stopped skeptics like Robert Daigle to take a closer look at the image by overlaying the painting on top of the original photograph. Daigle uses a slider image to show how the two images appear to be identical and concludes that "every line, hair and feature seems to be in the precise place as the original." Daigle adds that this doesn't prove conclusively that the image is fake, but it does raise some questions on how Lambert was able to be so precise.
How precise is Lambert really, though? We fired up Black Pixel's Kaleidoscope app to see if it could spot any differences between the original photograph and the painted image. Kaleidoscope has an Image Scope tool that's designed just for this purpose -- it'll reveal differences between images that can't be seen with the naked eye.
According to Kaleidoscope, there are only a few pixels that match up precisely, and these are marked with white dots in the image above. Even though we can't detect it with our eyes, most of the painted image is indeed different from the photograph. If the two images were identical, the result from Kaleidoscope would be entirely white as shown below.
James Cuda, co-founder of the award winning App Procreate and head of Savage Interactive, also chimes in with is support of Lambert. Cuda claims the company reviewed the source file and confirmed that "what we are seeing, is the real deal."
Why the Morgan Freeman finger painting is probably not fake originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Thanks to a seemingly endless string of iconic products, Apple design guru Jony Ive's name has long been synonymous with award-winning industrial design. When one thinks of Ive's greatest creations, it's only natural to conjure up products created in the Steve Jobs part-deux era, beginning, of course, with the Bondi Blue iMac.
But Ive's career at Apple began all the way back in 1992, nearly a decade before the iPod was unveiled and a good five years before Jobs returned to the fray. Ive's first design project at Apple, interestingly enough, was the Apple MessagePad 110 (internally codenamed Lindy). It's funny to think that Ive has been at Apple for so long that he actually helped design a device that ran the Newton OS.
In Leander Kahney's new book, Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple's Greatest Products, Kahney details the work and dedication Ive put in when designing the MessagePad 110, the first product Ive was ever tasked with designing as an Apple employee.
Ive added a spring-loaded cover for the Lindy that popped open after you pressed it. He also integrated the pen at the top of the device. The pen telescoped out to fit in the device."I insisted the lid fold up and over the top, like a stenographer's notepad, which everyone understands ... The stored pen at the top where a stenographer's notepad's spiral binding would be, made the right connection," said Ive. He thought the original Newton was too foreign, so he tried to make the Lindy more relatable. Ive went from his initial design concept to a foam model in two weeks, the fastest anyone at Apple had ever seen, says Kahney. When it was being made, Ive stayed at [a] hotel in Taiwan near Apple's manufacturer to help get the product right. He basically broke his back; spent an enormous amount of time in Taiwan getting that thing just right. It was beautiful. Well executed. It worked really well. It was an amazing product," said Robert Brunner, who led Apple's Industrial Design group at the time.
The Ive-designed Newton MessagePad was released in March of 1994 and would go on to win a number of industrial design awards. Of course, when Jobs returned to Apple a few years later, one of the first things he did was axe the Newton.
As a point of interest, here's what the packaging for the MessagePad 110 looked like. Apple's packaging sure has come a long way since then. To borrow an over-used phrase from Ive himself, this box is unapolegetically '90s.
Lastly, and for any Apple history heads out there, this is how Apple, back in 1994, touted the features of the Newton MessagePad 110:
The Newton MessagePad 110 personal digital assistant can help you manage information; stay in touch via fax, e-mail, and paging; and exchange information with your computer. It's the second member of the Newton family, and has more than three times the memory space and twice the battery life of the original Newton MessagePad. It can help you stay in and communicate more effectively. You can send faxes and receive pages and messages. Tap into on-line services or electronic mail. Even exchange business cards via built-in infrared technology. It can help you share and synchronize information with your Windows-based or Macintosh computer. It can help you organize ideas. Take notes. Make sketches. Format and print letters. And you can expand its capabilities with new software titles that help you keep track of your time, find your way around unfamiliar cities, and even deliver better-organized speeches.
The Newton MessagePad 110 has powerful handwriting-recognition capabilities for both printed and cursive writing. So it can transform your handwriting into text letter by letter or word by word. It can also leave your notes handwritten should you wish to defer recognition until later. And as time goes by, it learns about you, your handwriting, and the way you work, helping you get more done. It comes with a built-in notepad, to-do list, datebook, and name file to get you started. And when combined with software titles offering new capabilities, the Newton MessagePad is your personal assistant with all the right connections and is likely to become your most treasured possession.Source | Permalink | Email this | Comments
Remember back when all the iPhone naysayers cried "Fail!" because the device lacked a physical keyboard? They were wrong, but the Typo Keyboard Case is a glimpse at what those sad souls apparently wanted. Adding a full qwerty keyboard to the bottom of the phone, the Typo connects via Bluetooth, features backlit keys and can be recharged within one hour.
The device is currently available for pre-order, so we haven't gotten a chance to go hands-on with one, but from a design perspective, the Typo seems like a mixed bag. If you're curious about where the Home Button went -- which was my first concern upon seeing the keyboard placement -- it has been relocated to the bottom-right of the keyboard itself, which means no more Touch ID functionality. Bummer.
Still, if you've been searching for physical keys on your iPhone for the past five years, US$99 will make that dream come true, starting in January 2014.
Fine, you can have a physical keyboard on your iPhone originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 15:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has announced the ratification of Bluetooth 4.1, which will enable current devices -- like the iPhone, iPad and latest Macs -- to have a more seamless experience with "Smart Bluetooth" accessories like heart rate monitors, speakers and more.
Bluetooth 4.0 (also known as Bluetooth Low Energy, or BLE) was a huge step forward over Bluetooth 2.1. BLE connections allowed much more reliable pairing with devices and a huge improvement in battery life. The Bluetooth Special Interest Group says Bluetooth 4.1 will be an "evolutionary" advance over the current Bluetooth 4.0. There will be three main advantages for both consumers and developers:
- Coexistence -- engineered to work seamlessly and cooperatively with the latest generation cellular technologies like LTE. Bluetooth and LTE radios can communicate in order to ensure transmissions are coordinated and therefore reduce the possibility of near-band interference. The coordination between the two technologies happens automatically, while the consumer experiences the high quality they expect.
- Better Connections -- provides manufacturers with more control over creating and maintaining Bluetooth connections by making the reconnection time interval flexible and variable. This improves the consumer experience by allowing devices to reconnect automatically when they are in proximity of one another. The consumer can leave the room and, upon returning, two recently used devices reconnect without user intervention.
- Improved Data Transfer -- Bluetooth Smart technology provides bulk data transfer. For example, through this new capability, sensors, which gathered data during a run, bike ride or swim, transfer that data more efficiently when the consumer returns home.
The gist of all these advances means Bluetooth is gearing up to be the connection technology of choice in the increasing world of the "Internet of Things" (IoT). The IoT refers to any device you can think of communicating with not only your computer or smartphone, but your other devices as well. These devices can include anything from your pedometer to your toaster to your shower head.
In the short run, however, Bluetooth 4.1 will allow for current devices to hold much better connections with their accessories, making automatic reconnection to those accessories easier, and allow developers to build more advanced features -- like timed connects -- into apps that work with Bluetooth devices. Best of all, any iPhone, iPod touch, iPad or Mac you have right now with a Bluetooth 4.0 chip in it will become Bluetooth 4.1-enabled whenever Apple rolls out a software update for it.
Bluetooth 4.1 to offer improved connections, will be available on existing iOS devices originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Perhaps it was the reports of huge volumes of iPads heading out the doors of retailers on Black Friday, or maybe it is Carl Icahn's shareholder proposal that's doing the trick. Whatever the case, shares of AAPL hit a 52-week high today, reaching US$575.14 at one point before retreating slightly.
While that's a great feat, the share price still hasn't recovered from the $700-per-share level reached on September 21, 2012. AAPL fell as low as $390 per share in April of 2013, then began a slow, but sure recovery in July.
With the new high for the year, the company's market value has now reached a whopping $515 billion, towering over the market cap of energy giant Exxon Mobil at around $412 billion. AAPL is now the world's most valuable publicly traded company again.Source | Permalink | Email this | Comments
The ordeal begins with the thief approaching a pedestrian and asking for the time (apparently you're more likely to be targeted if you don't happen to be wearing a watch). When the potential victim produces their phone from a pocket or bag, the thief gets a moment to decide whether the payoff is worth it. If the victim has a simple flip phone or other not-so-flashy device the thief can resume their search for a big payday, but if the victim pulls out an expensive smartphone, such as the iPhone after which the scam is named, the criminal grabs the devices and flees.
According to an NYPD report, thefts of Apple devices in particular are becoming a bit of an epidemic. The department claims that 14 percent of all crime in NYC -- all crime, not just theft -- involves stolen Apple products.
So what can you do to protect yourself from Apple Picking? Simple: Wear a watch. That is, until Apple releases one of those, too.
[Image credit: Lakelou]
"Apple Picking" crime wave targets watch-less iPhone owners originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 05 Dec 2013 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
For anyone who spent a good deal of time in the 80's and early 90's playing Nintendo or visiting arcades, there are a few video game titles that automatically conjure up feelings of nostalgia; Street Fighter II, NBA Jam, Bad Dudes, Off Road, and of course Double Dragon (note that this list is by no means exhaustive).
If you spent your fair share of time (or quarters for that matter) beating up up bad guys as a pair of ass-kicking twins, you'll be glad to know that the Double Dragon Trilogy is now available for iOS.
The app will set you back US$3 and includes the following titles: Double Dragon, Double Dragon 2: The Revenge, and Double Dragon 3: The Rosetta Stone. Thankfully, the app does not also come with the atrocious Double Dragon live action movie, considered by many to be one of the worst video game to big screen adaptations in history!
In any event, some of the app's features include:
- Two game modes: "Arcade" (play the game from beginning to end and go for the high score) and "Story" (unlock new stages and achievements while playing through the game)
- Customizable controls
- Three difficulty levels: "mobile" (specially balanced for mobile games), "original" (similar to the arcade version) and "expert" (a real challenge!)
- Achievements & leaderboards via Game Center and Google Play Game Service
- Choose between the original 8-bit soundtrack and a brand-new remastered one!
- Co-op mode (two players) via bluetooth
The game will also be compatible with third-party iOS controllers once they start hitting store shelves. You can download the game here on iTunes.Source | Permalink | Email this | Comments