January 27, 2012

Today At Cult Of Android: Google Introduces Android Design, Global Roaming On The DROID 4 And LG Spectrum, And More…

Today At Cult Of Android: Google Introduces Android Design, Global Roaming On The DROID 4 And LG Spectrum, And More…
What’s this? Android news on Cult of Mac?! Who the hell cares?! Maybe you don’t, maybe you do. Point is: these are a few of the popular topics going on in the Android world today. Maybe you’d like to know what the competition is up to, or perhaps your aunt received a Kindle Fire she needs to update. Regardless of the reason, having a resource such as Cult of Android allows you to learn more about what’s going on in the ecosystem powered by the world’s leading mobile OS.

Archos To Update All G9 Tablets To Ice Cream Sandwich In February

If you’re jealous of ASUS getting Android 4.0 and happen to own an Archos G9 tablet, you’re about to get some good news. According to sources over at Android Police, Archos will be updating all their G9 tablets to Ice Cream Sandwich within the first week of February. In addition, all G9 tablets sold in February should come pre-loaded with Android’s latest operating system. More…

Global Roaming To Be Enabled On The DROID 4 And LG Spectrum

Up until now, no LTE device on Verizon has been able to support global roaming (no, not global warming, global roaming), in part because of a network issues that prevents LTE phones from roaming in non-CDMA markets. But now, thanks to some network enhancements and unannounced global GSM/WCDMA roaming capability in the DROID 4 and LG Spectrum, both devices will have global roaming support enabled by the first half of the year. Here’s what Verizon spokeswoman Brenda Raney had to say: More…

Boost Mobile Adding The LG Marquee To Its Pre-Paid Offerings

Boost Mobile just announced the latest Android smartphone to join their $ 55 pre-paid lineup, the LG Marquee. The Marquee isn’t the “latest and greatest” Android phone, and has been out for quite some time, but it’s a nice mid-range device that’s more than capable of handling most tasks. For $ 279.99, you can grab the Marquee along with an affordable pre-paid plan from Boost. The Marquee features: More…

All Extended Batteries For Verizon’s 4G LTE Devices Are 50% Off [Deal Alert]

If you own a 4G LTE device from Verizon then you already know all about battery drain. There are many ways to help improve your battery life on a 4G LTE device, but one of your best options, is to simply purchase an extended battery (if your device has one). It was the first thing I purchased alongside my Galaxy Nexus, and one accessory that I recommend to anyone looking for an extended battery life. Not too long ago, Verizon had the Galaxy Nexus extended battery on sale for 50% percent off, and we’re happy to report that this deal extends to all extended batteries available for Verizon’s 4G LTE devices. More…

Sprint Announces Minor Update For HTC EVO 3D

Sprint has announced a minor maintenance update for the HTC EVO 3D. Software update 2.17.651.5 should be available starting today for anyone who wishes to manually pull it up, otherwise an OTA should begin rolling out on Jan 17. To manually check for the update, simply hit Menu > Settings > System updates > HTC software update > Check now. This update is very minor and includes: More…

Verizon Customers: Start Writing Your 3G Eulogies Now, 4G LTE Connectivity Now A “Hard Requirement” For Manufactures

One day we’ll all look back and say “Hey, remember when we used to have 3G phones?” Of course our kids won’t have any idea of what we’re talking about, in fact, they’ll probably be calling them communicators by then. It seems Verizon is set in making 4G LTE the future of their network, so much, that they have announced from here on out, 4G LTE connectivity is a “hard requirement” for any manufacturer looking to have their phone on Big Red’s network. Of course for now, they will be making a few exceptions for “dumb” phones and phone’s that work on their push-to-talk network. More…

TELUS Reminds Us That The Galaxy Nexus Will Be Available Tomorrow

If you haven’t already heard, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus is set to hit the Canadian wireless company TELUS tomorrow. To remind us of this tasty news, TELUS sent out a tweet confirming its arrival tomorrow, and a link on how to get it. This is exciting news for our northern friends, and I’m betting they can’t wait to get their hands on some Ice Cream Sandwich. More…

Google Introduces Android Design: “The place to learn about principles, building blocks, and patterns for creating world-class Android UIs”

Google’s goal with Ice Cream Sandwich is to present a more unified and distinguishable platform UI from here on out. They’ve been hard at work trying to figure out ways to maintain their “open” approach, while also maintaining some sort of consistency. They want developers to know that they have worked hard on creating Ice Cream Sandwich UI with “the users’ best interests in mind,” and encourage them to apply and adapt these methods when developing for Android. To help guide developers on how to create a complimenting application for Android, they have opened up a new site called “Android Design.” More…

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Tim Cook’s 2,400 Square-Foot Home In Palo Alto Keeps Him Rooted

Tim Cook’s 2,400 Square-Foot Home In Palo Alto Keeps Him Rooted

Tim Cook is one of the world’s top CEOs, but you wouldn’t know that by where he lays his head at night. The recently-appointed head of Apple Inc. lives in a 2,400 square-foot, relatively-modest home in Palo Alto, California.

The four-bedroom condo boasts a tiny yard and small adjunct section of real estate in the back. Not much for a man that was recently awarded a $ 378 million stock incentive.

Cook has already cashed in more than $ 100 million in Apple stock, and he’s set to cash in a whopping $ 378 million stock bonus if he stays with Apple for the next 10 years. He made $ 900,000 in salary for 2011, and he purchased his Palo Alto condo for $ 1.9 million in 2010.

To put Cook’s dwelling into perspective, Steve Jobs lived in a 5,678 square-foot, 7-bedroom home with over half an acre of land. Jobs’ former house is estimated to be worth 2.6 million, and its location is a little more than a mile away from Cook’s home.

Tim Cook’s 2,400 Square-Foot Home In Palo Alto Keeps Him Rooted

The Jobs residence in Palo Alto, California

Jobs was known for his quiet lifestyle. As a world-renowned billionaire, Jobs did not live in a gated community and was frequently seen walking around the neighborhood with his wife.

In the upcoming book Inside Apple by Fortune’s Adam Lashinsky, Tim Cook said the following:

I like to be reminded of where I came from, and putting myself in modest surroundings helps me do that. Money is not a motivator for me.

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Apple manufacturing partner Foxconn settles with protesting employees

By Mikey Campbell

Published: 05:18 PM EST (02:18 PM PST)
Apple’s Chinese manufacturing partner Foxconn has settled a dispute with plant workers who threatened mass suicide over wages and working conditions at the company’s Wuhan factory.

The Taiwan-based electronics maker said in a statement released on Thursday that it had reached an agreement with a group of workers who were protesting the low pay and dismal work environment at the company’s plant in Wuhan, China, reports The New York Times.

Foxconn, the world’s largest electronics manufacturer and supplier of products to Apple, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft and others, claims that the two parties came to an amicable agreement to the week-long ordeal which ended with the resignation of 45 employees.

In its official statement, the company noted that most of the approximately 150 protestors had accepted the proposed terms and have returned to work. Details of the settlement have not been released.

“The welfare of our employees is our top priority, and we are committed to ensuring that all employees are treated fairly and that their rights are fully protected,” Foxconn said in the statement.

An employee at the facility, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that over 100 of the 32,000 workers at the Wuhan campus had taken to the rooftop of a three-story campus building in a protest that lasted eight hours. Some of the disgruntled employees reportedly threatened to jump from the roof if the company failed to meet their demands.

“That day was very cold,” he said. “Some women could not stand the freezing temperatures and fainted.”

The unnamed worker said that Foxconn promised a $ 450 per month salary including overtime pay as part of the move to Wuhan, but employees had received only two-thirds that amount and had to endure poor working conditions.

Foxconn is no stranger to employee unrest, and was the subject of some controversy during a rash of suicides in 2010. The disturbing trend brought Chinese factory conditions to the fore and compelled large tech corporations like Apple to launch internal investigations of workplace conditions and employee compensation.

In response to the 2010 suicides, Foxconn promised to up wages by 20 percent and is looking into replacing a portion of its workforce with robots.


Select Text Like A Pro [OS X Tips]

Select Text Like A Pro [OS X Tips]

Here’s a handful of tricks you can use when selecting text within a document or web page. Like many good tricks, these techniques are simple but could potentially change the way you work with your Mac.

Here’s another tip from Mac Kung Fu, which contains over 300 tips, tricks, hints and hacks for OS X. It’s available from Amazon as well as other bookstores, and also as an eBook for all eReaders.

In some built-in Mac apps like TextEdit, as well as in Microsoft Office and Mozilla Firefox, it’s possible to select text in a variety of useful ways above and beyond simply clicking and dragging.

Holding down Command while clicking and dragging lets you select disparate sections (i.e. noncontiguous regions) of text. You could highlight one sentence at the beginning of a paragraph, for example, and while holding down Command, select another sentence at the end of a paragraph. Hitting Command + C will copy both to the clipboard. If you hit Command + V to paste, the two sentence components will be pasted on two separate lines.

Holding down Option will let you select rectangular blocks of text within a paragraph. This is hard to describe, so give it a try by holding down Option and clicking and dragging within a paragraph of text (try Option + Command if this doesn’t work). Again, hitting Command + C will copy it and Command + V will paste it. It’s hard to imagine how this would ever be useful, but you might find a use for it!

By clicking at the beginning of the region you want to select, then holding Shift and clicking at the end of the region, you’ll select everything in between. If you’ve already made a text selection, you can hold down Shift and click on either side of it to add text to the selection. Clicking within the selection while holding down Shift will let you subtract letters and words from the selection.

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Thousands line up in China ahead of Friday launch of Apple’s iPhone 4S

By Katie Marsal

Published: 03:45 PM EST (12:45 PM PST)
Hours before the iPhone 4S is set to go on sale in China, massive lines with thousands of people have formed outside of Apple’s heavily trafficked retail stores.

Throngs of people gathered outside of Apple’s stores in China were captured in pictures shared by Penn Olson on Thursday. China Unicom also began reminding its customers that the iPhone 4S will go on sale Friday at 12:01 a.m. local time with text messages.

The pictures show Apple’s two stores in Beijing and three in Shanghai with hundreds of people lined up at each. Most of the stores have a ticketing system to help protect everyone’s place.

Apple announced earlier this month that it would launch the iPhone 4S in China on Friday, Jan. 13, along with 21 other countries. The device will be sold through China Unicom, which remains Apple’s only carrier partner in the nation of over one billion people.

As an added incentive for mobile customers, China Unicom is offering a heavy subsidy on the iPhone 4S at launch. Subscribers will be able to get Apple’s newest smartphone model for free with a new multi-year service contract, and as little as $ 285 yuan ($ 45 U.S.) per month.

China has become a very important part of Apple’s business with tremendous growth in a relatively short period of time. A year ago, Apple executives revealed that the company’s retail stores in China were its most visited in the world, only three years after the company opened its first retail store in Beijing in 2008.


Monster’s Not Even Pretending Anymore: It Finally Becomes a Fashion Company [CES 2012]

Monster’s Not Even Pretending Anymore: It Finally Becomes a Fashion Company [CES 2012]

The Diamond Tears in black (they’ll also be available in white)

Monster’s Not Even Pretending Anymore: It Finally Becomes a Fashion Company [CES 2012]Or maybe it’s that they’re pretending even less. The amount of bling at the Monster “booth” — it was actually more of a compound, complete with super-secret inner sanctum — would make Snooki (who was at the show) blush. Three new released three new headphones that seemed far more focused on fashion than sound; even Monster founder Nole Lee’s Segway (was it a Segway?) rolled around on gold-rimmed wheels. Then there were the booth fashion shows…

The most ostentatious of the ‘phones was the faceted Diamond Tears – Edge, which looked like a pair of giant, plastic, faux-diamond earrings (in white or black) with shimmery highlights on a headband. Gaudy, yes — but it’ll have huge appeal.The second was oddly similar, but far more masculine: a facteted-looking set called the VEKTR, designed in partnership with DKNY.

But the set they seemed most proud of (I assume, since they were pushing it at every opportunity) was the Inspiration, which was fairly plain compared with th other two pairs save for one thing: The headband fabric could be removed and replaced with another color or fabric type. Oh, almost forgot: They’re also noise-canceling.

That’s the thing — nobody cared how these ‘phones sounded; I certainly didn’t. In fact, for the entire first day the headphones were out, Monster had the Diamond Tears and the VEKTR locked up in a display box, and wouldn’t take them out for anyone because it was their only “prototype”, despite having them out on the floor to play with the next day.

There was one new Monster gadget with impressive audio performance; their new ClarityHD Micro Bluetooth speaker was as loud as their iClarity HD but sounded much better, and can alo be controlled through voice commands. Cool. No, Monster didn’t leave the fashion out of these guys either — its grill is swapable and attaches through a patented method using magnets. The new speaker is probably a response to the popularity of the Jawbone Jambox, which Jawbone told me saw a massive surge in popularity over the last six months.

The Inspirations are $ 230 and ship in in June the VEKTR and Diamond Tears are $ 250 and $ 280 respectively and arrive in a few months; and the ClarityHD Micro is $ 220 and available this March.

Monster’s Not Even Pretending Anymore: It Finally Becomes a Fashion Company [CES 2012]

Clarity HD Micro

Monster’s Not Even Pretending Anymore: It Finally Becomes a Fashion Company [CES 2012]

The Inspiration’s removable headband cover

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Eli Milchman

When he was eight, Eli Milchman came home from frolicking in the Veld one day and was given an Atari 400. Since then, his fascination with technology has made him an intrepid early adopter of whatever charming new contraption crosses his path — which explains why he’s Cult of Mac’s technology editor. He calls San Francisco home, where he works as a journalist and photographer. Eli has contributed to the pages of Wired.com and BIKE Magazine, among others. Hang with him on Twitter.

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Daily Update for January 12, 2012

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.

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog

16 GB iPhone 4 still available at some Radio Shack locations

If you’re in the market for a cheap iPhone 4, you may want to call your local Radio Shack. A leaked document provided to 9to5Mac suggests the electronics retailer still has inventory of both the 8 GB and 16 GB models.

The two iPhone 4 models are available for US$ 99 with a new two-year contract. This offer extends to all US carriers with an iPhone which includes Sprint, Verizon and AT&T.

Supplies are limited so you may want to move fast. If you’re on the fence about buying an iPhone 4 or an iPhone 4S, you can check out Chris Rawson’s article that highlights some of the differences between the two handsets. You may also want to wait for the iPhone 5 which is rumored to launch later this year.

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog

Say iDo With An iPad At This Las Vegas Wedding Chapel [CES 2012]

Say iDo With An iPad At This Las Vegas Wedding Chapel [CES 2012]

Say iDo With An iPad At This Las Vegas Wedding Chapel [CES 2012]LAS VEGAS, CES 2012 – Not only does Sin City’s newest quickie-wedding chapel look like an Apple store, the vows are read off an iPad.

For the moment, the chapel is offering only pretend weddings. It’s not yet licensed to perform legally-binding unions. So what happens in Vegas can really stay here. You can “marry” that hottie you met at the club, but you don’t have to give them half your earnings when things inevitably go sour.

Say iDo With An iPad At This Las Vegas Wedding Chapel [CES 2012]

The Pop-Up Wedding Chapel opened recently at the Cosmopolitan on Las Vegas’s Strip. It’s the only one of its kind offering faux wedding packages. “Hitched in a Hurry,” for example starts at $ 80. Fear of commitment is no problem at this place.

The chapel has a clean crisp and modern vibe to it; like an Apple store with wedding-themed gifts available for purchase. A white, lit-up pathway leads the happy couple to the alter which has a giant picture of the famous Las Vegas sign.

White metal chairs are lined on plush white carpeting for guest viewing. A giant gum ball machine is full of colorful diamond shaped ring erasers (to erase your names from the mock marriage license the next day). The chapel is surrounded by windows for outdoor public viewing and cheering. While I was there I witnessed two girlfriends getting hitched.

The mock wedding vows are read from an iPad at the altar. With over five different choices of vows (sassy to poetic), there is something for everyone. Included in the package price is the faux ceremony, two Sofia Coppola champagne cans, 2 eraser rings and one photo booth token.

Of course there are several add-ons to be purchased. Like using your own iPod for a more personal playlist or if you want flowers, silk flower bouquets can be purchased or rented. If you are feeling really drunk or just extra brave, a legally binding ceremony can be performed for an additional $ 90.

Say iDo With An iPad At This Las Vegas Wedding Chapel [CES 2012]

This cute couple from Australia dressed up and took a picture in the photo booth as a joke to freak out their mothers.

Via Gizmodo

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Intel ‘Talking to Apple’ — But Is Anyone Listening?

Intel ‘Talking to Apple’ — But Is Anyone Listening?

Photo by Mike Turner – http://flic.kr/p/8SLd7p

Intel wants to be friends with Apple — or more specifically, Apple’s hoard of cash. As the PC industry craters and mobile devices seem to be the future, the chipmaker wants the tech giant to buy its Medfield design. Although Intel is talking is Apple listening?

It’s not like Intel has its hat in hand, but it certainly is button-holing participants at the CES tech gathering. As we’ve been reporting all week, Apple is topic No. 1 in Las Vegas. Although Android is high on Intel’s list, company VP Dave Whalen told the Telegraph that he’s “talking to everybody.”

But Intel could have a tough sell with Apple. We recently reported that one Wall Street expert is betting against the chipmaker, predicting it is Apple that holds all the cards when it comes to mobile chips. Sterne Agee analyst Vijay Rekesh downloaded Intel stock to Neutral from Buy, noting Intel rival ARM is coming on strong. What with declining sales of x86 chips to PC makers, Intel must turn to mobile devices, which could be an uphill climb.

According to Rekesh, during 2012-2013, major PC makers will adopt ARM in 10 to 15 percent of their devices — or 1 million PCs. To balance the loss of the more expensive PC chips, Intel will have to sell 4 million of the less-expensive mobile chips. Here again, Intel is in a tight spot.

That’s because it is smaller companies, such as Qualcomm and Marvell that have the upper-hand in mobility. Qualcomm is often used by smartphones while Marvell produces ARM-based designs making their way into set-top boxes, such as Google’s TV device. Which also brings us back to why Intel is chasing after Apple while not trying to seem too needy. But Apple may be giving Intel a polite brush-off.

First, Apple has a long-standing relationship with ARM. The A5 chip is based on an ARM design. Apple has also spent mucho bucks securing primary contracts with Samsung and other chipmakers. Then there is the growing number of chip investments by Apple, including its latest, Anobit.

Of course, there is precedence for Apple to link up with Intel. But PCs are an entirely different animal than the iPhone or iPad. The reason Apple spent all the money on chip companies is its well-known need for control. Why drop that for a generic mobile SoC like Medfield?

But Intel shouldn’t worry. This year’s CES reportedly spans 35 football fields of vendors — someone must want to hire a down on its luck chipmaker.

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