Today Apple announced that the much anticipated Mac App Store will open for business on Thursday, January 6 2011. The new service was announced back in October and offers developers a 70-30 split in revenues for applications sold. The new service looks to mimic the ease-of-use and utility of the iTunes-based App Store on the desktop. Let’s hope they succeed.
“The App Store revolutionized mobile apps,” said Apple’s CEO, Steve Jobs. “We hope to do the same for PC apps with the Mac App Store by making finding and buying PC apps easy and fun.” Don’t worry, I’m sure by “PC” he means Mac OSX.
The store will be available in ninety countries at launch and will contain both free and paid applications. Click through for the full press release from Apple and start saving your pennies to buy all those great apps starting in January.
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Even though most of us are Mac users here at The Flickcast, that doesn’t mean we don’t have to use some Microsoft products. Case in point: Office 2011 for the Mac. This recently released suite of applications, which includes Word, Excel and for some Outlook, is pretty essential especially if you’re dealing with Windows users where the Office Suite is king.
The new update update for Office 2011 (Which brings the suite to version 14.0.2) offers improved reliability when accessing Office for Mac through third-party applications, fixes problems with Microsoft’s AutoUpdate program and improves stability in Outlook 2011. And really, who doesn’t want improved stability. Amiright?
The update is available now through Microsoft AutoUpdate. We’ve started applying to our Macs here at the office and so far, so good. If you do update, let us know if you have any problems in the comments.
Unless you’re pretty knowledgeable, when you think of powerful server hardware for your business or other enterprise level needs the first manufacturer that pops into your mind probably isn’t Apple. It’s more likely Dell, HP or even IBM that comes to mind.
To most consumers, Apple is the company that makes the iPhone, iPad and the Mac and not a line of server hardware designed for businesses. It seems Apple sees themselves that way too as the company has announced it will discontinue sales of their Xserver server hardware as of January 31, 2011.
The company made the announcement via a post on its Xserve splash page. Apple does indicate it will continue to support the Xserve but you just won’t be able to buy a new one after that date. Apple has also made a PDF “transition guide” for Xserve users (Or potential users) which explains the alternatives to Xserve for users wishing to deploy Apple hardware and OSX Server software.
With this announcement it begs the question what Apple has planned for its server software. For the moment, the Mac Pro and Mac Mini server support OSX Server and based on the “transition guide” it sems they will continue to do so, at least for now. Perhaps this means Apple is going to license its server software for use on other Intel based platforms?
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Macs are great, except for when you want to play video games on them. Instead, OSX users rejoice whenever new and exciting titles are announced for the platform, and today is no exception. Kotaku has officially confirmed that along with the Steam software, Left 4 Dead 2, Team Fortress 2, Counter-Strike, Portal, and the Half-Life series are coming to Mac.
“As we transition from entertainment as a product to entertainment as a service, customers and developers need open, high-quality Internet clients,” said Gabe Newell, President of Valve. “The Mac is a great platform for entertainment services.”
This announcement has been rumored for awhile, as Mac-specific graphics were discovered in the beta files for the new Steam service last month. Valve dropped some serious hints later, with the release of some images of Valve games integrated with some familiar Mac themes.
Even more exciting is the new feature Steam Play, which will allow anyone who purchases a game on Steam for PC to download and play it for Mac, and vice versa, with no extra charge. Valve also hopes to release titles for Mac on the same day as the PC versions. The first simultaneous release for PC and Mac on Steam will be Portal 2, which was announced earlier this month.
Today, in an event hosted by Apple CEO Steve Jobs, the company announced a shiny new touch screen tablet computing device which utilizes Apple iPhone OS and has a host of new features. The device, dubbed the iPad, will serve as another example Apple’s dominace in the mobile computing space.
According to the announcement, the iPad is “fully customizable,” “better than a smartphone or a laptop at browsing,” will alow you to read e-books, and has a “great maps application.”
Here are just some of the specs and features:
• 9.7″ IPS screen
• 1/2″ thick
• 10 hours of battery life
• “Shut the iPad down, come back in a month and it still has a charge”
• 16-64 Gigabytes of flash storage
• Accelerometer and compass
• 80s.11n Wifi and Bluetooth 2.0
• It can run all iPhone apps, unmodified, out of the box
• New Software called iBooks along with iBooks Store to purchase and read books
• iWork suite developed expressly for the new iPad
• Syncs with your Mac and iTunes via USB cable just like the iPhone
• In addition to Wi-Fi, also features 3G service from AT&T with unlimited plan @$ 29.99/Month and 250 MB plan @ $14.99/Month
• Prices start at $499.00 for 16 GB model, $599.00 for 32 GB model and $699.00 for 64 GB model. 3G will be $130.00 extra across the board.
• Shipping in 60 days for base model. 3G Model ships in 90 days.
More on this extraordinary device as we get it.
Today, one of our favorite companies (Apple, if you couldn’t guess) sent out invites to an event next week on January 27th at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco. In the invitation, the company cryptically says, “Come see our latest creation.” Cool. We hope its the long-rumored tablet, but you never know. Based on the look of the invite it might just be a great new paint application.
It’s going to be a crazy day since so much anticipation and hype has been building for an Apple tablet and the room will probably explode if Apple doesn’t announce one. Still, with all the things going on in the world, it’s nice to see a company that’s able to suprise people now and then.
Although the company’s near-obsession with security may annoy some, it’s sometimes okay not to know everything that’s going on all the time. Surprises are actually nice sometimes.
The event starts at 10 AM Pacific so be sure to check in right here at The Flickcast for all the scoop.
We’re pretty excited for the release of Apple’s next version of its flagship OSX, code named Snow Leopard, here at The Flickcast fortress and apparently, we’re not the only ones who feel that way. At the moment, the software is the number one pre-order at Amazon (having become available a scant few days ago) and at only $29.00 for a single user license, its a darn good deal as well. While there’s no “official” release date as of yet, if you do pre-order today, Amazon assures you can expect your shiny new version of OSX to arrive “…sometime in September.”
Apple, which bills Snow Leopard, as “The world’s most advanced operating system. Finely tuned” will offer a host of new and improved features including support for multi-core processors with a new technology code-named “Grand Central” and further support for modern hardware with Open Computing Language (OpenCL), which lets any application tap into the GPU computing power previously available only to graphics applications. Snow Leopard, according to Apple, also “raises the software limit on system memory up to a theoretical 16TB of RAM, introduces QuickTime X, which optimizes support for modern audio and video formats resulting in extremely efficient media playback.”
Finally, for the first time, Snow Leopard “includes native support for Microsoft Exchange 2007 in OS X applications Mail, iCal and Address Book, making it even easier to integrate Macs into organizations of any size.” Well, that all sounds pretty awesome. If you think so too, head on over to Amazon and place your order for Snow Leopard. I know I did.
By way of its Inside BlackBerry blog, RIM has put the world on notice — BlackBerry Desktop Manager is coming to OS X in September. Yes, its finally happening after many, many years. I know you never thought it would happen but it is. We had our doubts also but glad they were finally put to rest.
Here’s some highlights of the new features:
* Sync your iTunes playlists, calendars, contacts, notes and tasks.
* Add/Remove applications.
* Update your device when new software becomes available.
* Backup and restore your device data with such features like automatically scheduled backups and optional encryption.
* Manage multiple devices.
When this software finally comes out at least Mac users finally won’t have to resort to less-than-perfect solutions to sync their Blackberry with their Mac. Make sure to check out www.blackberry.com/mac and sign up to get notified when the software is available, and stay tuned for more info on this software as we get closer to the release date.