Shazam launches new always-on menu bar app for Mac

By Cody Lee on Jul 31, 2014

Popular audio identification service Shazam launched a new application for the Mac this morning. It lives in the operating system’s menu bar, and offers a lot of the same features seen in its iOS counterpart, with a few new tricks.

Because it resides in the menu bar, Shazam for Mac is always-on and constantly running in the background listening for audio to identify. Once it recognizes a track, the app offers quick access to lyrics, song info and downloads… Read More

 

FCC questions Verizon’s plan to throttle select data customers

By Cody Lee on Jul 30, 2014

Last week Verizon announced a new ‘network optimization’ initiative to start throttling data users. Beginning in October, the carrier is going to start slowing the speeds of the top 5% of its unlimited LTE customers when they’re connected to a busy cell site.

Obviously, VZW subscribers weren’t very happy with the news, and apparently neither was the FCC. Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler sent a letter to Verizon today saying that he was “deeply troubled” by its new throttling plans… Read More

 

‘Modbook Pro X’ turns your 15-inch Retina MacBook into a powerful tablet

By Cody Lee on Jul 30, 2014

Folks longing for a more powerful Apple tablet may want to checkout the new Pro X project from long-time MacBook-modifier Modbook. The company has taken to Kickstarter to market its latest creation—a 15.4″ quad-core tablet with Retina display that runs Mac OS X.

The Modbook Pro X will be available in a number of configurations, based on the new Retina MacBook Pros Apple unveiled just this week. Packages can include a processor as fast as Intel’s 2.8GHz Haswell chip, up to 32GB of RAM, and up to 2 terabytes of flash storage… Read More

 

Let’s Talk Jailbreak 67: That’s so beta

By Jeff Benjamin on Jul 30, 2014

Episode 67: Activator gets a massive update and brings a ton of new features to the table.

To celebrate, the crew talks about some of the ways that they use this jailbreak staple.

Other tweaks covered include Mikoto, Scrub Radio, and Smart Search.

Sponsors:

Read More

 

Sharknado: The Video Game attacks the App Store

By Lory Gil on Jul 30, 2014

After much trepidation, I finally decided to give the goofy action film “Sharknado” a try. If you haven’t seen it, the movie is about a freak storm that lands hundreds of man-eating sharks into the greater Los Angeles area. Hilarity ensues. It is one of those so-bad-it’s-good type movies.

Sharknado: The Video Game recently launched in the App Store and, in light of the fact that Sharknado 2 premiers Wednesday, July 30 on the SyFy Channel, I thought I’d tell you all about it… Read More

 

AgileBits shows off iOS 8 app extension feature for 1Password

By Cody Lee on Jul 30, 2014

The folks over at AgileBits are all over the new developer tools Apple introduced in iOS 8. Last month they previewed Touch ID support for their popular 1Password app, and today they posted a video showing off a new app extension feature.

Among the many new features announced for iOS 8 is one called app extensions, which allows developers to make some functions of their apps available in other apps via Share Sheets. And 1Password will take advantage of this in a big way… Read More

 

Apple reportedly laying off some Beats staff, transitioning Beats Music to iTunes servers

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 30, 2014

Apple’s $3 billion acquisition of Beats Music, a music-streaming service, and Beats Electronics, a highly lucrative premium headphone business, is nearing its completion.

Monday, the European Commission okayed the deal, saying it won’t stifle competition in Europe.

Though still pending regulatory approval in the United States, Apple is expecting to complete the purchase by the end of September.

Analyzing the inner workings of the Cupertino firm in the wake of the Beats acquisition, a reputable publication has shed more light on the transition phase and behind-the-scenes moves… Read More

 

No new Apple TV box expected this year

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 30, 2014

We’ve been kinda holding our breath for an Apple TV hardware refresh this year. Sadly, early signs haven’t been encouraging thus far.

For instance, part leaks are non-existent while useful information in terms of which new hardware capabilities the updated box might bring is few and far between.

Pouring cold water on the “New Apple TV in 2014″ meme, The Information, a new publication by the former Wall Street Journal reporter Jessica Lessin, has learned that Tim Cook & Co. have no plans to update the hardware in the $99 media-streaming box this year.

Depending on who you ask, cable companies are “dragging their heels” in terms of negotiating content deals for the device, whereas Apple is reportedly biting off “more than it can chew”Read More

 

Russia asks Apple for source code to alleviate espionage concerns

By Cody Lee on Jul 30, 2014

Russia’s Ministry of Communications and Mass Media has suggested that Apple, along with German tech giant SAP, open the source code for its software to ensure that it’s not enabling US intelligence agencies to spy on the country.

The request comes just a week after a security researcher accused Apple of building surveillance backdoors into iOS, and as the United States and Europe expand their sanctions on Moscow over Russia’s involvement in Ukraine affairs… Read More

 

Yahoo redesigns Finance app for real-time

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 30, 2014

If you’re something of a number guy like Apple’s Time Cook, there’s no better way to catch up on the latest stock quotes, company trends and breaking financial news than Yahoo’s excellent Finance service, available on the web and mobile.

I mean, even Apple’s own Stocks uses Yahoo as a data source. Today, the Internet company has pushed a new update to its free Finance iOS app.

It’s got a brand new look, introduces real-time pre and after-market data, offers built-in financial news and more… Read More

 

FreedomPop adds LTE iPads to its no-contract free data, text and voice plans

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 30, 2014

FreedomPop, a startup backed by Skype founder Niklas Zennstrom which provides free or inexpensive Internet service on the Sprint network, today added the original iPad mini and other cellular-capable iPads to its stable of supported devices.

Apple’s LTE iPads, along with Samsung’s seven-inch Galaxy Tab 3, are now eligible for FreedomPop’s no-contract, free of charge voice, data and text plan.

It’s basically the same plan that the company originally offered to smartphone owners. Additional voice and data is available for a fee.

Regardless of whether you’re buying a little used iPad mini from FreedomPop or bringing your device over from another carrier, FreedomPop will treat you to gratis 500MB of LTE data, 200 voice minutes and 500 text messages.

But how does one take advantage of voice minutes and text messages on LTE iPads which only support data connections over cellular? Read on for the full reveal… Read More

 

How to get a tax break on Apple products

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 30, 2014

Apple is reminding customers of the upcoming sales tax free days in the United States. Specifically, as part of the back-to-school sales tax holidays, the company is reminding would-be shoppers of a not-to-be-missed opportunity to buy select Macs, iOS devices, accessories, educational software and services at a significant discount.

The Online Apple Store is now advertising a tax break on Macs and iOS devices purchased both at its brick-and-mortar outlets and online.

Even better, tax-free purchases can be combined with Apple’s own 2014 Back To School promotion to net yourself up to $100 in Apple Store gift cards for Macs, iPhones and iPads… Read More

 

Reddme review: a new Reddit experience on the iPhone

By Lory Gil on Jul 30, 2014

Do you read Reddit? What am I saying? Of course you do. If you are on the Internet, you probably read it every day, multiple times per day. If you consider yourself ahead of the game, a taste-maker, or well-informed, you have probably posted an article or two. Fans of the site probably read Reddit on the go using the popular third-party client Alien Blue, which is a fantastic app. However, maybe it is time for something new.

Reddme is a third-party Reddit reader that makes it easy for you to read, write, edit, and comment on various articles, categories, and threads. We’ve got an app review of Reddme for our loyal readers here… Read More

 

How to grab Mac screenshots like a pro

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 29, 2014

Ever since the dawn of the Computer Age, screenshots have been essential. Images showing software in action are used all over the web, on social media and in specialized magazines.

Blog about software, you’ll need screenshots. Putting together a useful how-to like this one, are we? Good, you’ll need even more screenshots.

Want to get your point across in an unambiguous manner? You’re definitely going to need memorable screenshots to illustrate your point effectively.

There are plenty applications, both paid and free, which allow you to grab screenshots, such as Skitch from Evernote, for example. But allow me to let you in on a dirty little secret: you don’t need any of them.

Assuming you’re in the vast majority of the population whose needs don’t go beyond grabbing screens, or are among the group that has no use for advanced annotation and image management capabilities, Apple has you covered.

I myself have never used a third-party app to grab screenshots. How’s so? Because OS X sports a compelling set of built-in shortcuts for taking different types of screen images in an instant, without having to even launch any kind of app.

Still, it’s surprising just how many folks are totally oblivious to the fact they can capture Mac screenshots. That being said, we’ve reckoned to do something about it.

This comprehensive tutorial will teach you how to take screenshots on your Mac like a pro and have fun in the process. Read More

 

Musiex provides system-wide access to music controls

By Alihassan Mahdi on Jul 29, 2014

Recently, we compiled a list of best jailbreak tweaks for the Music app on iOS 7 and you might want to check it out to discover new tweaks that you may find useful. This said, Musiex was among the list and we decided to take it for a spin. Read on to find out more about it.

Musiex allows users to access the media controls from anywhere within iOS and control the currently playing song without having to open the Music app. It can be launched by making use of an Activator gesture and swiping up the interface or pressing the Home button will close it. Once Musiex is activated, a neat interface appears at the top of the device’s screen, just like the notification banner, and displays information about the currently playing song such as the track name, artist and more. Additionally, the song’s artwork appears to the left of the interface and a progress bar is also available enabling users to scrub through songs and move to any specific point of a track… Read More

 

Check out Bolt, Instagram’s Snapchat competitor

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 29, 2014

In case you missed it last week, Facebook-owned Instagram is hatching out a new mobile app to take on the likes of Snapchat, Taptalk and a growing list of other ephemeral messaging apps out there.

Several people have spotted a banner advertising the app in Instagram’s Android app. Billed as a “one-tap photo messaging” solution, they’re calling it Bolt.

I have good news and bad news. The good news is, the app’s just stealthily launched on the App Store. But, alas, Bolt is only available in New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa for the time being.

And this is how Bolt looks like… Read More

 

Amazon updates Kindle app with placeholders, note exporting, Wikipedia integration and more

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 29, 2014

Hot on the heels of announcing a standalone all-you-can-eat subscription for books and audiobooks costing ten bucks per month, the online retail behemoth Amazon has issued an interesting update to its free Kindle for iOS app.

In addressing customer complaints, the company has brought out several new features that make sync and navigation easier. For starters, Kindle 4.4 lets you create placeholders to explore other areas of the book without losing your current place.

I’m exited about Wikipedia integration: you can now easily learn more about a word by selecting it to read an entry from Wikipedia in the Info Card at the bottom of the page… Read More

 

OneNote for iPhone, iPad and Mac now lets you insert files, password-protect sections and more

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 29, 2014

Software giant Microsoft today is pushing a major update to its note-taking application for the iPhone, iPad and Mac, OneNote. Available free of charge, the new OneNote sports half a dozen new features and enhancements.

Among them: the ability to lock or unlock password-protected sections created in OneNote for Windows and another one making it possible to insert files into your notes from other applications using the ‘Open In’ function.

You can then open the inserted file within the app, by double-tapping, or send it to nearby devices through Apple’s wireless sharing technology, AirDrop. Read on to learn about other new features in OneNote for iOS and OS X…. Read More

 

How to quickly switch between Mavericks and Yosemite beta

By Timothy Reavis on Jul 29, 2014

Following Apple’s release of a public beta of OS X Yosemite, iDB reader Antony Verros sent us some code he wrote in AppleScript, which allows users to quickly restart a computer and automatically boot up in the installed OS of choice. For anyone who installed the OS X Yosemite beta on a separate partition, this is an easy solution for booting up into Yosemite or Mavericks without having to hold down the Option key on boot to select the desired partition. The script can even be tweaked to work with BootCamp.

While it’s mostly a matter of time-saving convenience, this method can prove to be quite advantageous over time, particularly for users who find themselves frequently switching between OSs, whether it be a Yosemite beta, Mavericks, or Windows 7. Having an easily accessible application for booting into another OS while making a sandwich or refilling a cup of coffee, versus having to wait around to hold down Option, can be highly useful… Read More

 

New evidence hints that iWatch production is behind schedule, delayed for Q4 2014

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 29, 2014

The iWatch, Apple’s alleged fitness/health wearable device, may not launch in November alongside a 5.5-inch iPhone 6, as previously rumored.

If a revised guidance for the third calendar quarter of 2014 by Apple supplier TPK Holdings is an indication, ongoing production issues are to be blamed that the gizmo is running behind schedule and is now said to launch by the end of the fourth quarter.

Although TPK during its quarterly conference call with analysts did not mention Apple by name – nor has the Taiwanese supplier blamed Apple for its poor third-quarter performance – the iPhone maker is its biggest client and the rumor-mill did identify TPK as a supplier of flexible iWatch displays… Read More

 
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