Apple releases 10.4.3
As expected and predicted by our site, Apple has now released Mac OS X 10.4.3 8F46 to customers through Software Update, but more importantly the combo updater here
(link a little further down the linked page).
OmniGroup releases OmniWeb 5.1.2
The OmniGroup has just released version 5.1.2
of their great, professional webbrowser.
640*352 on 5G iPod
In case you didn't know already... Apple mentions the 5G iPod can take MPEG-4 files of up to 480*480 at 2.5 Mbps. What it actually means
is that a single frame can take up to 230400 pixels, and you can also have, say, a video encoded at 640*352 (as shown in this picture at macbidouille
...). While the iPod itself will scale the video down to 320*176 on its screen, it outputs the actual 640*352 if you hook the iPod up to a video beamer or a TV set, creating something much better than a lowly 320*240 video. So... Yes: The 5G iPod can
be used as a media center of some sort. And yes you can rip DVDs to the iPod at 640*X resolution with Handbreak. Just make sure you rename the files .m4v - else they won't run on the iPod. - Now we're off for the weekend. :)
That tricky single processor G5 1.8 ...
While an inside source has pointed out to us that 10.4.3 would indeed fix various problems with Tiger and the "1.8 GHz Power Mac G5 (late 2004) systems", MacFixit today says the opposite
. Since we haven't got word from actual users of 10.4.3 8F46 that have access to such a machine, we can only say that as of today, all information is not enough. Apple still says that an update is in the works
for those machines, but it might need a separate firmware update in order to fix everything.
Away 'til Monday...
For the next couple of days, macnews.net.tc will take a timeout. We'll probably miss 10.4.3's release, according to our sources. Build 8F46 is very stable and doesn't show bugs according to our informants. If it's out today, we can still report it, but as soon as tomorrow, we're off until Monday. Have fun!
Apple seeds 10.4.3 8F46
Noting only a couple of little changes, Apple is preparing to get Mac OS X 10.4.3 8F46 - seeded last night - out of the doors in the coming days.
Now? You tell us now?! ;)
An article at eWeek.com
talks about a new chip startup, which wants to create new PowerPC chips that should widely be available at the very end of 2006. Dual core wonders, they claim. Cool enough for notebooks and appliance computers.
Of course, by then, Apple will be in the middle of moving over to intel, and even if the chip would've fitted Apple's PowerBooks and iMacs of today, by then we expect a little more, probably.
MTW as video podcast
Swiss television station SF1 is providing their 40 minute popular science show "Menschen, Technik, Wissenschaft" as a video podcast
compatible with the new iPod for free. The files are about 200 MB in size, currently there is only one available. The link above must be copied and entered into the iTunes "Add Podcast..." menu item under "Advanced".
We certainly hope that a lot of TV stations around the world are following this option.
Hey, Apple: Fix this, please...
Maybe you've thought about this, too - maybe you just don't mind it... But if you're watching a video in iTunes (say, a podcast) in the lower left corner of the iTunes main window, the title bar tells you what you're "listening" to. Surely, it wouldn't be too hard to change that part of the window to actually display the title of the video, but more importantly (to me, at least) to change in vertical size. Videos are usually 4:3 or 16:9, not 1:1 in aspect ratio... Also, it would be nice to have a widget to set this to the video's original and actual size
so that iTunes doesn't have to scale the video at all. I'm sure iTunes 7 (comes out in November, probably) or iTunes 8 (December?). I'm sure iTunes X (January 2006?) will
fix this. ;)
Apple seeds 10.4.3 8F45
New build, no known issues. Apple is expected to release this build or the next during the coming week.
To remind you of the size of this update: There have been a lot
of bug fixes since 10.4.2, but there have also been a lot of bugs in 10.4.3 builds that had to be fixed again. The roughly 100 MB sized combo updater only tells half the story. If you're on 10.4.2, the delta updater will be a lot smaller. We encourage users, though, to wait for the availability of the combo updater and to do the update by hand, not via Software Update where only the delta updater is available. (Gut feeling says: The combo updater is better. Logic says: You should keep the combo updater around anyway, because if a reinstall of Tiger comes around, the latest combo updater is already at your place instead of another 100 MB download away.
New PowerBooks: Safe Sleep
According to this MacBidouille article
, the new PowerBooks offer "Safe Sleep", which saves the RAM content to the harddrive before going to sleep. However: This should definitely not
be a hardware-based feature. Will we see this for other Power- and iBooks soon?
Apple has released the first update to iTunes 6. According to the release notes, the update's about stability issues, whereas our sources claim there was an error of some kind in iTunes 6 about video and DRM. If so, the bug hasn't made any big waves before the update was released. 12.8 MB in SU.
It's tips like this...
Spotlight. Greatest feature of Tiger. Wow: Years ahead of Windows, right? It's tips like this one
that make me think Apple should actually remove Spotlight from 10.4.3 completely and only bring it back when it's finished. It sucks process cycles, paralyzes the Finder and takes away the ability to quickly find files by name. Yet, I'd probably miss it as soon as it were removed. Still: I hope Apple fixes this within Tiger's development cycle. Not that we'll hear that "working Spotlight" is one of the 200+ new features of Leopard one day.
Apple keeps tightening intel builds
According to sources who keep trying to install the OS X/intel version from the developer kit machines on the "any PC", Apple continuously changes things around to make it harder for the hackers. The latest known build of OS X/intel is Mac OS X 10.4.3 8F1099, which is said to "work fine on Apple's machines" but apparently has not yet been brought to run on any other X86 machine.
Dual 2.7 GHz still available.
On the AppleStore, you can still find the Dual 2.7 GHz PowerMac for 2799 USD. It's called the "PCI-X" option, since the newer PowerMacs (with lower frequency processors) have PCI-Express on board.
Apparently, Apple has upgraded the PowerBooks slightly and downgraded most of the PowerMacs whereas it has upgraded the highend PowerMac while also downgrading it. And there's a new photography pro application called "Aperture".
The 15" and 17" PowerBooks get access to the 30" Cinema Display (which has lowered in price by 500 USD, the 23" has been lowered by 200 USD) as well as better displays. Brighter and at 1440*900 for the 15", 1680*1050 for the 17" display, the PowerBooks carry the same old pricing. 1999 USD for the 15" model, 2499 USD for the 17". Gone is the combo model, all PowerBooks now sport SuperDrives. The 12" model, which hasn't
got a screen update, sadly, starts at 1499 USD.
The downgraded PowerMacs are dual core but single processor for low and middle configurations at 2.0 and 2.3 GHz. So basically, they're about the same as before. At least nothing to write home about, which we're doing all the same, of course. The one big news is that the highend model is called a "Quad", because it, and it alone, sports two dual core processors. And at 2.5 GHz, too. More info on apple.com
, of course. And some more on our live update page from the event
. But sadly: The news there ain't much better either, because Apple didn't have much better to show. Guess that's why Steve didn't deliver the news himself, too.
Live Coverage tonight...
At 18.00 CET, Steve Jobs will enter the stage in New York to unveil some "pro" news from Apple. Our sources expect not more or less than dualcore PowerMacs (middle and high end model with dual-dualcore processors, entry line with one dualcore processor), new PowerBooks with higher resolution screen as well as a widescreen replacement for the 12" model and - probably the most controversial thing on today's list - Photo Pro.
Our live coverage will be here
. The link is already active, but there isn't much to be seen as of now. We'll add everything there and later in the evening compile articles about the new products here on the main site.
If you get any information throughout the day that is not yet covered, don't hesitate and drop us a line
Overclocking Alu PowerBooks...
MacXTREM has managed to do just that
. Their 1.5 GHz 15" PowerBook now is running at 1.83 GHz. Several configurations are theoretically possible, but as always with such things, you probably just shouldn't
do it unless you know what you're doing. If you don't, you should rather sell your PowerBook now (and I mean NOW!) before Steve announces the new ones, which you can then buy. ;) Should be easier than overclocking. And safer, too.
Btw.: Are the media on 'ignore'?
I've read quite a few articles about how great the 5G iPod is, how great it is to watch Lost and Desperate Housewives on it etc. One thing that truly struck me, though, is that the media seem to want to
ignore the illegal exchange of TV shows happening online. I've read that "Apple might have less of a drive with video than they've had with music, because there is no Napster or Gnutella to be fought this time...". Erh... I'm not sure where that
reporter lives, but I personally download every episode of "The Daily Show", because here in Europe, we only get the weekly-sample on CNN and not the real thing. Yes, I admit, it's probably wrong
to do so from some perspective, but on the other hand they're not even trying
to sell me the stuff. With music, the thing was this: You as a user choose whether you want to buy the music or illegally acquire a copy on the 'net. Often with TV shows it's this: No, you can't get it legally unless you move to a country where your favourite show is actually shown. Hm.
Now back to the iPod's 320*240 two-dollar shows. I'd really much rather have the 720*3xx free version with ads. Or at least the high-res version for two dollars. I'm not saying the iPod can't be a success, but where iTMS vs. P2P had several points going for it (Steve Jobs several times talked about them in keynote addresses) like better quality, speed and karma, it actually seems to me like, currently at least, iTMS is on the weaker end here! They lack quality, they definitely lack choice - and I'm just not
so sure about the karma part this time around, because I get the very distinct feeling that supporting the idea of selling crappy quality (320*240 is
crappy, even if it's H.264...) for 2 dollars per 45 minutes is somehow wrong
I wouldn't be too surprised if this subject will come up a couple of times - at least until the next generation iPod is revealed. I hope and suspect that the 6G iPod will have a wide screen and at least double the resolution. Quality: check. I guess Apple will
get other networks to license content. Choice: check. Karma? Well, we'll see. Two out of three wouldn't be bad... But maybe, to get back to the title of this article, the media are
on 'ignore' here, because they want Apple to succeed instead of luring people onto the illegal tracks of P2P again
DivX, Xvid, others in iTunes 6
They don't work. Right? Nope. You'll need Quicktime Pro, but if you do - and have the right QT codecs installed - you can simply save the .avi or .divx files as a referenced .mov file. Sure, it adds a file, but it's small, and this
be added to iTunes, where you can also add meta-information etc. Unless you want to view these files on an iPod, you don't even have to reencode the movies.
It's started already: More TV for iPods.
As you can read here
, there's more TV shows coming to an iPod near you. At least if it's a 5G iPod. Or you might as well just look at the content on iTunes on your Mac or PC, of course. CBS will make available several things as video podcasts. And I'm pretty sure, others will follow. Such content might not be ad-free, but could still be interesting for Apple overall, because the more TV stations put content out for the iPod, the more useable the video feature of the iPod gets - so the more iPods Apple will eventually sell.
Wednesday, 19th: PowerMacs, PowerBooks, Software
On Wednesday, Apple will hold yet another invitation-only press event, this time about the "pro" stuff. New PowerMacs with dual dual-core processors (PowerPC 970MP) as well as PowerBooks with higher-resolution displays are expected. Currently, we still have mixed info on the PowerBooks. One side thinks that all three models will get new screens and that the 12" will finally go widescreen, whereas the other side thinks that only the 17" model will get a 'real' upgrade. The same goes for the processor. Apple planned on using the FreeScale MPC 7448 part, which enables faster bus speed. But recently, information has come up that Apple might have to actually keep the highend at the 1.67 GHz MPC 7447B part, which would, of course, make a lackluster upgrade for the PowerBook line.
Video on the iPod. Let's see...
Okay. So the Reality Distortion Field that Steve's created is wearing off a little. Or rather: He didn't even create one this time. Jobs clearly said at the keynote, that video is not the primary feature of this new iPod, rather it's still music, and video is just an add-on, like the photos with the iPod photo and the later colour iPod.
Will people buy these iPods? I'm pretty sure they will. The price is right (you don't actually _pay_ for the new and bigger screen and the video funcitonality) and the design is good. Gotta hold one in my own hands to see if it feels well in the hand, but from watching the keynote and seeing pictures, I'd say it should be good.
Will people watch videos on that thing? I think yes, they will. I'm not sure whether the TV shows will be a huge success initially, but I'm pretty sure that third party content will start to appear very, very soon. And be big. People with iSights will start to create video podcasts. A lot of them. Some will actually be good. German TV station ARD currently has a podcast that lets you hear the news. Sounds like radio. But once the news are a video podcast, I think I'd very much _like_ iTunes to get the latest news for me so I can watch them on my iPod when I'm
ready for them. And think of the possibilities. Ads could
be the way to actually turn video podcasts into the new free-TV. Sounds good to me.
Apple seeds Mac OS X 10.4.3 8F40
The combo update's still around 100 MB and has one known issue, which brings it much closer to being finished than the last couple of builds, but it means that there's at least going to be another one, hopefully with no known issues at all. The update is said to provide support for not only the new iMacs, but also the dual-dual PowerMacs and new PowerBooks that should come out at the end of October, possibly as early as next week.
Just a side note, but I think an important one: No videos for "outsiders", meaning outside the USA, so far. I don't know what Apple thinks people will do with their video-enabled iPods outside the USA, but *I* think we'll hear a lot about a) podcasts and b) P2P-places filling up with content for those iPods.
New iPod Battery Life...
Good and bad. Well, good mostly. ;) ... The bigger model gives up to 20 hours of music play (if you don't touch that dial, that is...), 4 hours of slideshows with music and 3 hours of video playback. The smaller model obviously also has a smaller battery, since it can only reach 14 hours, 3 and 2 hours respectively. I personally think that the 60 GB model is "just the better deal". And since you're going
to put videos onto it, you're going to enjoy its larger harddrive, anyway.
Today's event: iPod video, iMac with iSight and TV shows.
At today's keynote, Steve Jobs announced the almost-immediate availability (1 week) of the new iMac G5. It comes in two flavours: 1.9 GHz 17" (1299 USD) and 2.1 GHz 20" (1699 USD). Both of them come with built-in iSight video camera as well as the new remote control and Front Row, which effectively lets you use your Mac like a media center - but one that actually works. (Of course it lacks TV reception and recording, but for playing media, it's wonderful.) They also sport Photobooth, a software for the integrated camera that does what its name implies, bigger harddrives, newer graphics card (the first PCI-Express graphics card in any Mac!) and faster RAM.
The new iPod - which replaces all instances of the "big, white iPod" of old - does video and comes in white and in black, just like the nano. They come in two sizes: 30 GB and 60 GB. Cost: 299 and 399 USD. The 320*240 pixel screen is 2.5" in size - and gorgeous according to our contact who was able to play with one in San Jose today. It plays H.264 and MPEG-4 movies, decoding them in hardware. The iPods are a bit wider than the previous models they replace, but much thinner.
Also introduced was iTunes 6, which has a couple of new features, but most of them are on the iTMS side - and only available for US customers currently, it seems. Mainly, this means that international users will not
be able to buy "Lost" and "Desperate Housewives" off iTMS. Quicktime 7.0.3 Pro, which was also released today, lets you convert TV shows you might download off of 'other services'
into the formats the iPod supports. H.264 can achieve lower file sizes at the same quality, but encoding to MPEG-4 will be a quicker process.
We've seen and heard a lot today, and although we predicted most of it correctly and have been talking about this exact
kind of video service on iTMS for more than a year, we were still thrilled, of course, to actually see it happen before our eyes. Stay tuned. If you want to read our live coverage of the event, you can still do that here
on our HTML-only page. (This page will be replaced by the next keynote we have live coverage for.)
iPod video. For real.
And iTunes 6. The iPod models have a 320*240 pixel screen (2.5") and come in 30 GB (299 USD) and 60 GB (399 USD). iTunes 6 enables you to buy music videos and Pixar shorts for 1.99 USD a flick. In the future, you can buy TV shows from iTMS, just like we predicted. All's great in Apple's world.
New iMac G5 with iSight
Thinner than previously, Apple has revealed a new iMac G5 (17 and 20 inch models) with up to 2.1 GHz processor, bigger harddrive, faster graphics card and: An integrated iSight camera. See here for details
We have live coverage available here
and will later summarize things into an article here on macnews.net.tc. Thanks for joining us in this "one more thing..." today.
Half an hour before the "one more thing..." event, Apple has taken their online stores down.
iPod video, media partnerships to come...
As first rumoured here on macnews.net.tc
, Apple will today announce not only the iPod video, but also collaborations with several media partners.
Today, ThinkSecret has now added this, too
, to their site.
ThinkSecret comes on board.
In recent days, ThinkSecret repeatedly denied the iPod video rumour that first appeared on macnews.net.tc. Today, it changed its mind
. The rumours still have some differences, though. TS claims the iPod video would come as 30/60 GB, whereas our own sources claim 60 and 80 GB models (with a 20 or 30 GB model without video playback capability as an additional offer). Also different: Pricing. Our own sources put the highend 80 GB model at 499 USD, whereas TS' highend 60 GB model should come at 399 USD. Soon enough, we'll see. We're counting the hours...
My one wish...
Tomorrow's the day of the iPod video. If it doesn't happen, it's going to be at least the day when the iPod video didn't
appear. ;) - But I want to talk about something else entirely. I've been looking at this review of the Sharp C3100
, and I've been thinking about the Palm LifeDrive etc. You know: PDAs with 4 GB of storage. They're achieving this through the mini harddisks also found in the iPod mini. But the nano shows that 4 GB are possible with NAND flash memory, and that this saves a lot of space.
If you look at the review linked above, you'll see a nice little PDA. Sure: Apple won't ever go back there, but I'm thinking of something else entirely. Just a possibility. Let's think about the "iBook mini". Actually, it'd replace the venerable eMate 300 as a rugged little notebook for pupils. (And writers, of course.)
Think 8 to 10 inch widescreen display. Something like 1024*600 would be good. Think a much better keyboard than the C3100's. Think a PowerBook's keyboard, just a little
smaller, so people wouldn't even notice much. The TrackPad wouldn't be needed, since it'd have a touchscreen. Or, if you prefer that, it wouldn't
have a touchscreen, but a small trackpad instead. I don't care much. ;) Both would work.
Then: 8 GB of NAND storage. The OS would take about 1 GB, the apps would probably take another half GB, the rest's for your documents, for music, for videos. If you intend to use it for documents, really, even 4 GB could be enough (in order to make it cheaper).
make a really, really good ultraportable notebook slash big-PDA-with-keyboard. The eMate, back then, was pitched at the educational market mainly. Some were sold in stores later, but that only happened when Steve already nixed the Newton altogether, so the window for buying an eMate was rather small. I'd say the free market didn't even have a chance to see whether the device would have been a hit.
Mac OS X 10.4.3 8F36
Just hours, maybe a day, after 8F35, Apple has seeded yet another 10.4.3 build to developers. Still some issues to be solved, though. Also seeded: Mac OS X 10.4.3 Server 8F36.
Apple seeds Mac OS X 10.4.3 8F35
Apple has seeded yet another build of 10.4.3. Still around 100 MB in size, the combo updater (direct updates from 10.4.2 will be much smaller, of course) still has a few known issues. Some are merely cosmetic in nature (but have to be solved, of course), but others - like a possible kernel panic when launching iChat - are showstoppers that of course need to be taken care of before the update can be released. The planned release is still mid-October, as first reported here on macnews.net.tc a couple of weeks ago.
Event on October 12th
Apparently, our sources were wrong in the date. But an invitation by Apple showing closed theatre curtains with type that reads "One more thing...": Let's just say we'll see the iPod video soon enough.
According to various sources, an event around October 7th will finally bring on the 5G iPod, the "iPod video". With a larger screen, overall a tad smaller size, the "big" iPod will have 60 and 80 GB drives and have the ability to view music videos, video podcasts as well as a selection of licensed TV shows, cartoons and short films from iTMS.
For all the critics out there: It's quite hard to ignore that iTunes and the iTMS have been prepared for (short) video content lately.
According to same sources, the price for the highend iPod video will be 499 USD.