Apple Testing Television Set Prototypes

The rumors for an Apple Television seem to be all over the place these days. Today, The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple has testing “a few designs” for a large format HDTV. However, the report states that the company may not actually be building the device.

“It isn’t a formal project yet. It is still in the early stage of testing,” said one source.

The report also notes that Apple has been testing television set prototypes for a number of years and that the company tests many different prototype products that never come to market. This would suggest that a launch is not imminent and that Apple could get rid of plans to make a television set.

Adobe Updates Photoshop and Illustrator CS6 with Retina Display

Today, Adobe has updated both Photoshop CS6 and Illustrator CS6 for the Retina displays found on Apple’s latest MacBook Pro models.

With this update, customers can see more detail in images, text, and in the Illustrator user interface when working on high-resolution displays, including the new Retina display available on MacBook Pro. The HiDPI feature in Illustrator is currently only available on Mac OS. It is expected to be available in the future on additional operating systems.

The updates are available for both Creative Cloud subscribers and owners with standalone licenses.

Apple Releases Mac Mini EFI Firmware Update 1.7 to Fix Flickering on HDMI External Displays

Today, Apple released an update for the Mac mini that was released earlier this fall, which fixes an issue with flickering on external monitors connected via HDMI.

The 4.53MB update can be downloaded via Apple’s support website or via the App Store/Software Update on the Mac mini itself.

Apple Will Bring Back Some Mac Production Back to U.S. in 2013

NBC reports that Apple CEO Tim Cook will announce during an interview airing on Rock Center tonight that Apple will starting producing some Mac production back to the United States.

In an exclusive interview with Brian Williams airing tonight at 10pm/9c on NBC’s “Rock Center,” Apple CEO Tim Cook announced one of the existing Mac lines will be manufactured exclusively in the United States next year. Mac fans will have to wait to see which Mac line it will be because Apple, widely known for its secrecy, left it vague. Cook’s announcement may or may not confirm recent rumors in the blogosphere sparked by iMacs inscribed in the back with “Assembled in USA.”

“We’ve been working for years on doing more and more in the United States,” Cook told Williams.

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Upcoming iTunes 11 Update to Restore Duplicate Search, Fix Album Art and Movie Streaming Bugs

AllThingsD‘s Walt Mossberg notes in his review of iTunes 11 that Apple is preparing a minor update to fix several issues with the initial release of the software. Among the changes in the update, it will bring the return of a feature that allows users to find duplicate songs in their libraries.

Mossberg also reports that Apple has no intention of bringing back the Cover Flow view of album art. Apple learned that few users were interested in it and the new Expanded View integrates large album art into library browsing.

Apple Updates Pages, Numbers and Keynote for Mac and iOS

Today, Apple has updated both the iOS and Mac versions of iWork, Pages, Numbers, and Keynote for iOS. The full release notes are below:

Pages 1.7:

In this release Pages for iOS is updated for improved compatibility with Microsoft Word and Pages for Mac.

• Use Change Tracking to track changes to body text in a document
• Accept and reject individual changes as you review a document
• Import Pages and Microsoft Word documents with change tracking and continue to track changes to body text
• Preserve tracked changes in documents exported in Microsoft Word or Pages format
• Preserve calculations in tables when importing from and exporting to Pages for Mac
• Add reflections to shapes
• Lock and unlock objects

Numbers 1.7:

In this release Numbers for iOS is updated for improved compatibility with Microsoft Excel and Numbers for Mac.

• Hide and unhide rows and columns
• Import and export Numbers for Mac spreadsheets with filters, and turn filters on and off
• Preserve rich text in tables when importing and exporting
• Add reflections to shapes
• Lock and unlock objects

Keynote 1.7:

In this release Keynote for iOS is updated for improved compatibility with Microsoft PowerPoint and Keynote for Mac.

• Import and export all Microsoft PowerPoint and Keynote for Mac slide sizes
• Import and export presentation themes, complete with master slides and preset styles
• Play back all Keynote action builds including Move, Rotate, Scale, and Opacity
• Add new slide transitions including Shimmer and Sparkle
• Preserve calculations in tables when importing from and exporting to Keynote for Mac
• Add reflections to shapes
• New print layouts include options to print with presenter notes, with builds, and without backgrounds
• Lock and unlock objects

About iWork 9.3 for Mac:

iWork Update 9.3 adds support for iWork for iOS 1.7 apps.

This update is recommended for users of iWork 9.0 and later.

For detailed information on this update and individual application changes, please visit this site:

iTunes Music Store Launched in India

Today, Apple has launched the iTunes store in India. By doing so, the users can purchase local and international music and movies from the store. The store now offers Bollywood, Tamil film songs, and other international music from all major labels.

Songs are priced between Rs 7 and Rs 15 and albums start from Rs 70. In addition, the company has also made iTunes Match available in India. iTunes Match allows users to upload music bought from other than iTunes into the cloud. It costs Rs 1,200 per year. Before today, the iTunes Store only offered some free books and podcasts.

Apple also introduced the iTunes Store in the following countries today:

– Europe: Belarus, Moldova, Russia, Turkey, Ukraine

– Africa, the Middle East and India: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Egypt, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, India, Israel, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Swaziland, United Arab Emirates, Uganda, Zimbabwe

– Asia Pacific: Fiji, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Micronesia, Mongolia, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan

– Latin America and the Caribbean: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts and Nevis, Trinidad and Tobago

The company published a press release confirming that it has launched the iTunes Store in 56 new countries.

Apple Releases iTunes 11

Back in September, Apple gave a sneak peak at iTunes 11 during the iPhone 5 event. Today, the company has released the new version of iTunes to consumers. iTunes 11 features a redesigned store, simplified player, and better iCloud integration.

 – Completely Redesigned. iTunes makes it more fun to explore and enjoy your music, movies, and TV shows. You’ll love the beautiful edge-to-edge design, custom designs for each album, movie, or TV show in your library, and getting personal recommendations any time you click in the Store.

– A New Store. The iTunes Store has been completely redesigned and now features a clean look that makes it simpler than ever to see what’s hot and discover new favorites.

– Play purchases from iCloud. Your music, movie, and TV show purchases in iCloud now appear inside your library. Just sign-in with your Apple ID to see them. Double-click to play them directly from iCloud or download a copy you can sync to a device or play while offline.

– Up Next. It’s now simple to see which songs are playing next, all from a single place. Just click the Up Next icon in the center display and they’ll instantly appear. You can even reorder, add, or skip songs whenever you like.

– New MiniPlayer. You can now do a whole lot more with a lot less space. In addition to showing what’s playing, MiniPlayer now includes album art, adds Up Next, and makes it easy to search for something new to play – all from a smaller and more elegant design.

– Improved search. It’s never been easier to find what you’re looking for in iTunes. Just type in the search field and you’ll instantly see results from across your entire library. Select any result and iTunes takes you right to it.

– Playback syncing. iCloud now remembers your place in a movie or TV show for you. Whenever you play the same movie or episode from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Apple TV, it will continue right where you left off.

The software is available through Software Update in the Mac App Store and via Apple’s iTunes page.

How iPad is Changing Education Big Time

iPads have disrupted the way we do things for the better. It has changed the way we work, read, learn, game, and communicate. In fact, the device has also changed the way industries complete tasks. One prominent industry that has adopted the device is education. The iPad is helping students learn better, improve test scores, and making learning a better interactive experience. Creativity is inspired among students because they are now learning on a device that motivates them. The amount of features and apps the device offers also helps get them more engaged with the content. In addition, iPads have replaced bulky textbooks and lets students easily access content they need anywhere. They don’t need to carry cumbersome laptops or bulky backpacks anymore.

Even though the use of technology in the education system has been discouraged, that is quickly changing thanks to the iPad. Let’s take a look at how the device is disrupting the traditional ways of teaching:

Updated Textbooks

A major problem with paper textbooks is how quickly the material becomes outdated. Due to this, students are forced to learn old material instead of current material. Also, since paper textbooks are expensive to produce and costly for schools to buy, they aren’t purchased frequently within school districts. These books are also very costly for students. With some textbooks costing more than $100, the price tag adds up quickly. If a typical student has six different courses, then they could easily end up spending $600 on textbooks alone. Also, a typical class has more students than sets of textbooks. This doesn’t help teachers or students in any way. The solution for this? Apple’s iPad. The cheapest retail version now costs $329 made possible due to the iPad mini. Apple may offer a discount on iPads in the future for education, but that has not been revealed yet. The company already offers discounted prices for Macs in education. For example, the $999 iMac for education.

Through the iPad, teachers are able to provide updated information, stories, and research for each session instead of using outdated printed material. Apple’s iBooks textbooks are ensuring that digital e-books are developed for all levels of students. The biggest impact is being caused via the form of textbooks.

Mobility in education 

Until recently, students had no option but to carry extremely heavy loads of textbooks to school every day for completing homework or following coursework, but the iPad eliminates this issue. The device’s light weight and extremely portable design allows students to complete their homework and learn from anywhere. They are constantly tuned into learning. For teachers, iPad has made it much easier to carry their course work with them on the go. This has already become a trend. Jackson Christian School in Jackson, Tenn., has virtually paperless classrooms. Students no longer carry binders and textbooks and teachers test students on their iPads.

New ways to increase productivity and organization

A common issue among students is keeping their notes and homework assignments easily organized. Either the paper has somehow disappeared or got thrown away by accident. This is partially due to students having grown up in a digital age. They are used to having documents automatically being saved on a computer and having them accessible at time. Finding something is as easy as clicking a button these days.

Say good bye to the traditional paper planner and say hello to new applications like iStudiez Pro and other content organizer apps have made it is easier than ever before for students to keep track of schedules and deadlines, complete homework, and even find their assignments and task lists. In addition, it has revolutionized note taking inside and outside of the classroom. No longer do students have to spend a lot of time and energy copying notes. Oh, another bonus point? Notes are actually legible!

In fact, a teacher at Garden City High School in Garden City, Kan. was actually taught by one of her students on how to use Notability, an iPad app that enables the user to take notes, record lectures, and annotate PDFs. It is the power of the iPad combined with rich apps that make all of this possible.


iPads are quickly becoming a PC replacement in school districts and universities because they are more economical than laptops that offer similar options. It has been proven that providing students with iPads is much cheaper than purchasing a whole new set of textbooks for each student from kindergarten through 12th grade. iPads are already overtaking PC sales in schools and with the new iPad mini, adoption of the device in education will rapidly increase.

Customized Curriculum

Every student learns differently, but the education system currently imposes a one size fits all method. Now with the iPad, the student can be in control, choosing how they learn, where, and when. In addition, the power of technology and the device enables the option of an app to be developed that can help create a customized learning experience for individual students. Yes, this is a bit far off, but it is totally possible. Students who struggle on a certain topic can receive more guided practice and teachers can spend more time with them, while other students continue to work independently as they master the curriculum. Students can also easily collaborate with peers as they go through the curriculum. Courses can be fine tuned for each student as they make progress throughout the curriculum, which would lead to education becoming a truly personalized experience – something that does not exist as of today.


The education system is in desperate need of change and iPad is one of the ways it is disrupting the way students and teachers do things inside and outside of the classroom. Combine that with applications, open education sources, or an online school like Khan Academy and you have a modern day teaching and learning environment. It’s also creating a desire for lifelong learning and creativity among students rather than just learning information for a grade.


iTunes Digital Gift Cards Now Available Through Facebook

Today, Facebook announced that users can now purchase iTunes Store digital gift cards via Facebook’s Gifts platform. This makes it easier for users to send iTunes credit to their networks of Facebook friends. The digital gift cards are available for $10, $15, $25, or $50. In addition, upon purchase, Facebook users can suggest what music, video, or apps their friends should spend their iTunes credit on.

AllThingsD notes that this partnership increases visibility for the iTunes Store and gives Facebook a part of what is currently estimated to be a $260 million business in iTunes Store gift cards for third-party retailers.

Apple and Facebook have had a bit of a bumpy history, with the two companies failing to have reached an agreement to offer Facebook integration in Apple’s failed Ping social networking service for iTunes. However, the companies have been working more closely recently, with Facebook integration in iOS 6 and OS X Mountain Lion.