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RIM Releases Video Directly Comparing the BlackBerry Playbook’s Browser with the iPad

Nov 16, 2010 - 6:42 PM - by Maura

RIM has today fired a bold shot across Apple’s bows in the tablet wars with the release of a video directly comparing the browser on its forthcoming BlackBerry PlayBook with that of the iPad. Maximum PC, reporting on the story, says that if the video is anything to go by (bearing in mind it does come from RIM, so it is a bit biased!), the iPad may have “met its match”, at least as far as its browsing experience is concerned. I'm not so sure.

The comparison between the two shows the PlayBook loading pages faster than the iPad, but it’s hard to say how accurate the video is when the device isn’t even on the market yet, and given that the iPad usually loads web pages very quickly anyway, I can’t see there being much difference between the two once they’re both released. A comparison between a retail-available iPad’s browser and a retail-available PlayBook’s browser would surely be more convincing. There is one area, of course, where the iPad really does get beaten by the PlayBook, and that’s in loading Flash content, which the iPad can’t do at all due to Apple’s policy of banning Flash from all iOS devices. RIM is clearly hammering this home as a big selling point for the PlayBook, so it will be interesting to see what sort of reply Apple comes back with, if any! Also, has RIM made a mistake by showing the PlayBook and iPad side-by-side and inadvertently highlighting how much smaller the PlayBook’s screen is in comparison with the iPad’s, and especially how the PlayBook’s keyboard takes up almost all of the screen space?

Source: MaximumPC
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Read DRM protected EPUB on iPad

Nov 16, 2010 - 5:04 PM - by Doublegood
Good news! Just received this response from Overdrive Media today re: DRM protected epub and PDF books. Be sure to follow the link to the video.


Thank you for your interest in OverDrive!

The Apple iPad runs a version of the iPhone OS so it has the same
compatibility with our formats as the iPhone. Both MP3 and WMA
Audiobooks may be transferred to the device using OverDrive Media
Console for Windows. MP3 titles can also be transferred to the iPad
using OverDrive Media Console for Mac as well. Also, MP3 Audiobooks may be downloaded directly to the iPad if using it with OverDrive Media
Console for iPhone.

At this time, the iPad does not currently support the DRM protected
eBook formats (Adobe PDF, Adobe EPUB, Mobipocket) provided by
OverDrive. We are working on an app that will be released in the near future. Beginning in December 2010, you will be able to enjoy eBooks and audiobooks on the iPhone in a single app! iPad & Android apps also coming soon.

To learn more about the app, you can read about it and/or view a video by going to the Sneak Preview: OverDrive eBook app for iPhone article on the OverDrive Digital Library Blog:

(I can't post the link because I'm new here) so ....go to Digital Library Blog, Overdrive Sneak Preview, Overdrive eBook app for iphone

The discussion following the video states that this will be a free APP, the book will download directly to the iPad, and there will be no need for Adobe Digital Editions.
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Play ZX Spectrum Games on Your iPad!

Nov 15, 2010 - 4:03 PM - by Maura

Elite Systems has today released ZX Spectrum: Elite Collection HD for the iPad, which is every retro gaming fan’s dream, a collection of hit games for the ‘80s home computer. The app kicks off with 12 games, including the following:
  • Turbo Esprit
  • Saboteur
  • Chuckie Egg
  • Harrier Attack
  • Frank Bruno’s Boxing
  • Buggy Boy

Here’s what Elite MD Steve Wilcox had to say about the app:

“The media and consumer reaction to the announcement, in late September, of Apple’s approval of ZX Spectrum: Elite Collection (for iPhone / iPod Touch) has been extensive and enthusiastic. The six games included in the inaugural volume have each generated a revenue significantly in excess of £1K+ (US$1.5K+).

We’ve taken the first steps toward our goal of restoring some order to the market for ZX Spectrum games. Some developers have a catalogue of in excess of 100 ZX Spectrum games; a not insignificant asset. The launch of the HD App for iPad is our next step in enabling developers and players to benefit. Our concerns continue to be to ensure that both groups understand that Vol. #1 & #2 of the HD App is a work-in-progress and that we’re committed to developing the App over the weeks and months ahead.”
The app will initially be priced at £2.99/€3.99/$4.99, with a free update on the way within a month, including an in-app shop and at least four more volumes containing six ZX Spectrum games each, which will be priced at £1.19/€1.59/$1.99 per volume.

Retro fans can download the app here.

Source: Elite Systems Group Ltd
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Guitar World Launches its Lick of the Day App

Nov 15, 2010 - 3:22 PM - by Maura
<iframe src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/15122365?byline=0&amp;portrait=0" width="400" height="225" frameborder="0"></iframe><p>Lick Of The Day from <a href="http://vimeo.com/user595582">John Berry</a> on <a href="http://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p>

Guitar World, the world’s best-selling guitar magazine, has come up with an app in partnership with Agile Partners, that has been specifically designed for guitar players who want to continuously improve their guitar playing skills and broaden their repertoire.

The Guitar World Lick of the Day app for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch delivers a new and challenging lick to subscribers every day, with a feature set that enables guitar players of all skill levels to learn licks in a variety of styles. Here’s an impressive list of the apps major features, courtesy of Guitar World:

• High quality videos of Guitar World’s instructors and guitar celebrities, such as Zakk Wylde, Joe Satriani, Gus G., and Phil Collen, demonstrating licks in a wide range of styles - Rock, Metal, Blues, Country, Jazz and more
• Timeless celebrity videos from the Guitar World Vault
• Standard and tab music notation for each lick that scrolls in sync with videos on iPad
• Practice mode with settings that control music notation tempo, looping, audio synthesis, a metronome and more
• Dynamic fretboard that shows finger positions synchronized with the scrolling music notation (lefties can invert the fretboard)
• Performance notes written by Guitar World instructors
• “Star” your favorite licks to find them later easily, and sort licks by genre and difficulty
• Download licks to any iOS devices that you own iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch

Sounds very cool! And here’s a quote from Brad Tolinski, Editor in Chief of Guitar World about the app:

“We gathered the greatest minds in the guitar universe and the greatest developers of guitar apps to create a monster of an app. Guitar World Lick of the Day is an amazing instructional tool with a totally engaging experience. Will it make you the greatest guitarist in the universe? Anything’s possible!”
The initial app is free, and comes with five sample licks. You can download it here. One-, three- and six-month subscriptions can also be purchased in-app to receive a new lick every day, seven days a week for $4.99, $12.99 and $19.99 respectively.

Source: Guitar World
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Comcast Brings Xfinity TV App to iPad

Nov 15, 2010 - 2:42 PM - by Maura

Comcast is bringing its new Xfinity TV app to the iPad, the company announced today. The app will enable Xfinity TV digital customers to watch TV shows and movies directly on their iPad either at home or when out and about.

The Xfinity TV app is both a TV guide and a mobile video player rolled into one. You can use it to change TV channels from your iPad, as well as to search and instantly find what to watch among thousands of choices, including top movies and premium cable shows, on TV, On Demand, online or on the iPad.

Initially, Comcast will be offering hit shows and blockbuster movies from the top premium networks on the app. Then, in future weeks and months, the app will continue to expand its content and functionality through regular development updates, which will include thousands of additional entertainment choices, added remote control features and enhanced search features across platforms.

The first version of the app, which is also compatible with the iPhone and iPod touch, can be downloaded here, and is free to Comcast digital customers.

Source: Comcast
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iTunes Announcement Scheduled for Tomorrow

Nov 15, 2010 - 10:27 AM - by NumbLock

On the Apple home page, Apple is talking up a big announcement slated for tomorrow. What could that be?

Is it another Ping disappointment, something iOS 4.2 related, is the Mac App Store going live or are we getting something totally new?
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Ragdoll Blaster 2 HD Gets Lite Edition

Nov 14, 2010 - 5:43 AM - by Maura

I always like to have a look at what’s burning up the iPad charts in case I’ve missed anything, and it seems that Ragdoll Blaster 2 HD is currently one game that is riding high in both the Paid and Free iPad Top Apps Chart. The Lite HD version has just been released and is going great guns in the App Store, with 129 5-star ratings in the US App Store just two days after release, and it’s easy to see why. Basically it’s a really cute and addictive physics puzzle game, with the iPad version being an upgraded HD version of Backflip’s iPhone game, with all-new high definition artwork, puzzles, physics, sound and levels.

The rules are the same as before – you simply have to fire a ragdoll by touching the target on the screen in order to hit the target and solve the puzzle. Exactly how you solve that puzzle will get more and more complicated as you progress through the 20 plus levels. New mechanics have also been added to the game, such as gravity effects, teleporters and much more. It really is a lot of fun! And no ragdolls were harmed in the making of this game!

You can download Ragdoll Blaster 2 HD Lite here for free, and get the full version here for £2.99/$4.99.

Source: Backflip Studios, iTunes
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Martha Stewart Releases Special iPad Edition of her Living magazine

Nov 14, 2010 - 4:45 AM - by Maura

Following on from the recent release of her “Martha Stewart Makes Cookies” iPad app, Martha Stewart has just released a truly sumptuous iPad version of her Living magazine to the app store. The special issue, created exclusively for the iPad, features all original content, bringing innovative functionality to inspiring ideas, practical “how-to” guides and gorgeous photography. Full use has been made of the advantages provided by the digital as opposed to print version of the magazine, with more than 23 scrolling recipes, 20 slide shows, videos, audio, animation, panoramas and much more.

Just one example of this is the way in which the iPad version of the magazine opens with a moving image of a single peony in bloom, comprising 180 stills photographed over 10 hours to create the effect of the petals opening in front of your eyes. From there, you can swipe, touch and toggle through the interactive content, including a panorama of Martha’s peony garden, “how-to” stories about flower-arranging, entertaining, decorating, crafting, cooking and beauty, as well as a breathtaking photo essay and video about salmon fishing in Alaska.

Although Martha Stewart Living magazine is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, it really seems as if the company has found the secret of how to make the most of the iPad’s potential as a platform for digital publishing. Here’s Martha Stewart talking about the special iPad edition:

"At MSLO, we are very excited to be re-imagining and re-inventing our creative content for a new era. With this groundbreaking app, we continue our rich tradition of providing beautiful and inspiring ideas for the home, for the garden, and for the family. We are able to use the newest tools and technology to provide a fresh way for people to experience our magazine. It's easier than ever to be inspired."
You can download Martha Stewart Living here for $3.99/£2.39.

Source: Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia
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iOS 4.2 Delayed Due to Wi-Fi Problems

Nov 12, 2010 - 5:50 PM - by Maura

So, the rumour was that iOS 4.2 would be released today, November 12, at 10am Pacific time. Obviously that hasn’t happened, but according to MacStories, who broke the initial story that iOS 4.2 would be out today, and who were correct with their prediction that Mac OS X 10.6.5 and iTunes 10.1 would also be out this week, iOS 4.2 has been delayed for at least another week. The reason for the delay is a number of Wi-Fi connection issues reported by users running the iPad GM (Gold Master) build.

The problem seems to be that when the iPad connects to a local network, it loses the connection after a few minutes. Other users have apparently reported that they are completely unable to use Safari. For this reason, Apple decided to delay the release of the update until it got the bugs sorted.

Following on from this story today, Engadget is now reporting that Apple has just released a new GM of iOS 4.2 to developers, which addresses the Wi-Fi problem. Provided everything works okay with this latest GM and the Wi-Fi issues are put to bed, then we may be getting our hands on iOS 4.2 sometime next week.

Source: MacStories via Engadget
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iPad Voted Gadget of the Year at Stuff Gadget Awards

Nov 11, 2010 - 8:17 PM - by Maura

The Daily Mail reports that the iPad has beaten the Amazon Kindle and Sky 3D TV to win Gadget of the Year and Readers’ Gadget of the Year in the Stuff Gadget Awards in the U.K. It failed to scoop the Innovation of the Year award though, as that went to the Microsoft Xbox Kinect.

“The iPad’s success was by no means pre-ordained. It’s expensive and functionally limited,” Stuff magazine editor and judge Fraser Macdonald told the Daily Mail, adding, “But it is also quite gloriously indispensible and only making itself more so with the increasing number of apps and accessories. To see it is to want it, and that’s why it’s our gadget of the year.”
The Stuff Gadget Awards are held annually in order to give recognition to the best consumer technology devices of the past year, and are voted on by a mixture of expert judges and readers.

Source: Daily Mail
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