Redditer Discovered Hidden Feature in iOS 9 and Mac OS X El Capitan

We got a lot of information out of what to expect from iOS 9 and El Capitan this fall at Apple’s WWDC in June. Even so, developers are said to be good at discovering Apple’s ‘hidden’ new features, but this time around, it seems that one of them, who I think is actually useful, was actually discovered by someone else.

A redditer going by the name of homeboi808 seems to have stumbled upon a feature who went on unnoticed so far. On both iOS 9 and El Capitan, if you tap on a flight number in either the Mail, Messages or Notes app, the OS’ will work the flight out and give you a flight path overview, along with all information about that flight. This includes arrival, departure times, possible delays and even airport terminal details.

It seems that Apple has added a built-in feature that detects and reacts to gestures when it finds a flight number. However, that needs to adhere to the actual flight number style, so don’t expect it to do the same with just anything you type in. Even so, the flight number needs to be valid in order to get information about it.

Even so, the feature is really helpful when you’re expecting to pick someone up from the airport or are planning a journey. Getting up-to-date information about your flights is a must from my point of view. What do you think?

Thank you BGR for providing us with this information

OneDrive Can Finally Sync Shared Folders

The long-awaited option to synch shared folders on OneDrive is finally here. Microsoft finally started to roll out an update that allows users to sync content in shared folders and have it pushed to other users as soon as the files get synced.

Up until now, Google Drive and Dropbox took the lead in sharing folders and making it easier to collaborate with other people on the same projects. I personally preferred Dropbox so far due to the fact that it synced files and delivered the updated files to colleagues almost instantly (depending on the internet speed, of course). However, as Microsoft wants to integrate OneDrive in its upcoming Office 2016 suite, changes needed to be made.

Besides, synching folders in OneDrive was one of the top upvoted features in Microsoft’s feedback forum, so it was bound to be implemented sooner or later. You may not have the feature yet, but Microsoft is said to have started gradually rolling out the update to users. Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10 and Mac OS X will get the aforementioned update, and yes, it seems that Windows 8.1 will be skipped. OneDrive Director of Product Management, Angus Logan, tells that Microsoft is focusing on Windows 10 and this might be a way to ‘force’ users to update to the latest Microsoft OS.

It seems that Microsoft is moving one step closer to helping businesses collaborate and make it easier to share and sync files, but is it enough to get you to switch to OneDrive? We like to know what software you are using to share folders. Is it Dropbox, Google Drive, or will you switch to OneDrive in the end? Let us know!

Thank you PCWorld for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of macitynet.it

Inateck HB4009 3-Port USB 3.0 Hub With MagicPort for KM Switch and Sharing

Introduction


Have you ever found yourself in the situation that you have run out of USB ports? Maybe your sick and tired or switching your hub from system to system depending on where you need? Or how nice would it be to use the same keyboard and mouse on multiple computers and just switch the target when needed?

If you could answer yes to just one of those things, then one Inateck’s latest products might be just the right match for you. The Inateck HB4009 USB 3.0 3-port hub with Magic Port can do all of the above and a little more.

Let us start with the basics. You get a small 3-port USB 3.0 hub, allowing you to connect all your high-speed storage devices at once, even when you’re out of onboard connectors. The HG4009 is a USB hub and as such supports what it is connected to, including UASP for maximized transfer speeds and full utilization of the 5Gbps USB 3.0 capabilities.

But this isn’t an ordinary USB hub, far from it. The HB4009 it features the Magic Port on the end of the device, and it carries that name with a good right. Instead of being a port to connect another device, it’s a port to connect it to another computer – at the same time.

Whether the two connected systems run Windows or Mac OS, the Inateck HB4009 connects to them all. It can even connect to OTG enabled Android devices. Smartphones and tablets lack the normal USB port to connect it, so Inateck included an OTG adapter, converting the normal USB connector to a micro version.

The advanced functions, meaning everything besides the USB hub itself, do require software or drivers. Thanks to the design of the hub, it has an internal storage where all this is located.

The MacKMLink software allows you to switch keyboard and mouse between your Windows and Mac systems and the VirtualLink will provide you with a link and QR code to download the Android app. It’s a simple way to include it all in one package without the users needing to have an optical drive to install from or having to download drivers and carry around all the time. Take the hub with you and you have what you need to use it.

The MacKMLink software doesn’t just allow you to switch your keyboard and mouse from one system to another, it also allows you to share the clipboard and copy files from one system to another without the need for an extra network connection.

The hub itself is made from grey plastic and the USB ports themselves are metallic gilded for long-term usage. The gold-plated USB connectors should last a lot of plugging.

A really cool thing about the KM switch is that the keyboard and mouse don’t need to be connected to the hub itself. It will simply take over the control, when you want it to, of the already connected devices. You can use either mouse or keyboard from either connected system. This is awesome.

Logitech Unveils Multi-Device Keyboard

Logitech has unveiled their new multi-device keyboard, the Logitech K480 Bluetooth keyboard. The new keyboard stands out from the rest by allowing it to connect to three devices simultaneous with the ability to switch between then with a simple knob on the keyboard. The keyboard is completely multi-platform oriented and not only compatible with all major operating systems, it also has the dedicated keys for them printed where they should be.

Not long ago, we posted news about another multi-device keyboard that allowed to connect up to 5 devices, but as many of our readers so well pointed out, the placement of the switch key, instead of the left control key, wasn’t to smart. Logitech has solved this much better with the turn-knob at the top left of the board. The K480 also features a secure cradle-dock for your phone and/or tablets that angles the display for a better viewing-angle. The cradle is 10.5 mm thick and 258 mm wide, so it should fit most mobile smart-devices.

This cradle is the really interesting new thing though, as we’ve previously seen similar smart switches on the K760 and K810 keyboards.

“Typing needs have evolved and consumers are computing and texting across multiple screens, often using two or three different operating systems,” said Charlotte Johs, global vice president of computer peripherals at Logitech. “The Logitech Bluetooth Multi-Device Keyboard K480 makes it simple for people to work, create or communicate quickly and comfortably, no matter what computing device or platform they are using.”

The new keyboard is guaranteed to work with Windows 7 or later, Mac OS X or later, Chrome OS, iOS 5 or later and Android 3.2 or later, but should theoretical work with any Bluetooth capable device. It comes in two colour choices, white and black. It uses two AAA batteries that are pre-installed and the battery life is set to four million keystrokes, that equals about 2 years of work in an office environment.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MceLc7-w1lQ[/youtube]

It has a pretty low warranty period of only 1 year, so it might wear out fast. That however is just a speculation of mine. It doesn’t take up much space on your desktop or in your backpack either, if you want to take it in the go. The height is is 20 mm, width 299 mm and the depth is 195 mm, it does however weigh 820 gram.

The availability starts within days in both Europe and the US. A few shops already report stock while other expect them to land within the next 1-2 days. The Logitech K480 has a MSRP of $49.99. In Germany it’s being listed starting at €40 while the cheapest version in the UK was listed at £49.99 at the time of writing.

Thank you Logitech for providing us with this information

Images and video courtesy of Logitech.

Windows 8 Market Share Finally Bigger than XP’s

Windows 8 hasn’t had it easy since it launched and is far from as bad an OS as Vista. It can actually have many benefits, but in the end it’s a matter of choice and liking which operating system you pick.

Now, for the first time, Windows 8 has surpassed Windows XP in users. This might partly be due to Microsoft halting the support, but also with the improvements made in the 8.1 update. In August Windows 8 accounted for 7.35% and Windows 8.1 for 8.2% of the market, making a total of 15.55% for Windows 8. Windows XP has dropped down to a new low point of 14.31% market share according to the latest figures and it most likely won’t be long before it goes below the 10% mark.

It’s also noteworthy that MacOS X takes up a good spot in the lists by now ending up on a 4th place when counting Win 8 and 8.1 as one. It will be interesting to see if Windows 9 can shake up the statistics once released and and again prove the Microsoft’s every second operating system is good’ rule.

Thank you cnbeta for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of StatsCounter.

Maxthon Releases Windows PC Browser Designed for Faster Video Playback

Maxthon is a web browser for Windows, OS X and Linux, developed in China by the company Maxthon Ltd. Latest news point to the browser receiving an update aimed towards video playback, having features such as “AdSkipper” providing support for skipping through advertisements without slowing the video downloads.

The company has recently struck a deal with MediaTek to pre-load the browser onto more than 100 million handsets this year, having its strategy focused on mobile handset. However, PC users will still receive a lot of support from the company, having the browser include Linux support this March and the new Windows PC desktop version.

With over 100 million unique devices per month using the browser, Pew Research has made a study and came up with some interesting results. The study is said to show that 78% of adults watch or download videos online, having Maxthon using the provided information in order to add video-optimisation to the new version of its browser.

It is also said that the company claims its browser uses memory and CPU usage more efficiently, having video play much faster and with fewer stops and lags. The browser allows users to even drag videos out of the browser screen as well as use the “boss key” to add a “very boring, work-like-looking spreadsheet”over the video you are watching.

Maxthon’s vice president, Karl Mattson, states that the video-optimisation feature was first introduced earlier this year in China, where the ad-skip feature proved to be extremely useful, having users previously dealing with a “flood” of advertisements when attempting to watch videos. It is said that users watching videos on the Maxthon browser, regardless of internet speed, will notice almost no lag, stability over time and video fast-forwarding.

Flash videos are said to work best with the browser at hand, having HTML5 formats currently being worked on. This means that users should get the best results when attempting to watch Netflix and Hulu on Maxthon, having YouTube performance depending on the user agent set in the browser’s settings.

The company has also stated that Windows PC users will not be the only ones receiving the video-optimisation feature, having the other platforms, such as Android, iOS, OS X, Windows Phone and Linux scheduled to receive the feature later on.

Thank you TechCrunch for providing us with this information

iOS 7.0.4 Jailbreak for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch From Evasi0n Has Been Released

The Evasi0n 7, iOS 7.0.4 jailbreak for Apple iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch has just been released, and just in time for Christmas Too! The move is quite surprising since we are just a few days away from Christmas and nobody thought we were going to see something like this until next year at least, but it seems that Evad3rs released the latest evasi0n jailbreak for Apple devices as a Christmas gift for all to enjoy. The latest evasi0n7 can jailbreak devices running iOS 7 through iOS 7.0.4.

The jailbreak tool is available for both Mac and Windows and the requirements posted on Evasi0n website are:

  • 5 minutes of your time!
  • A computer, running Windows (XP minimum), Mac OS X (10.6 minimum) or Linux (x86 / x86_64)
  • iTunes installed if you’re running Windows
  • An iPhone, iPad or iPod running iOS 7.0 through 7.0.4 (you may check in Settings / General / About => Version)
  • A USB cable to connect the device to the computer

But do not forget about the precautionary measures as well, since we don’t want to write an urgent letter to Santa for a new iPhone this year if something goes wrong. Therefore, Evasi0n posted the steps to avoid such misfortunes:

  • Backup your device using iTunes (or iCloud) before using evasi0n. If something breaks, you’ll always be able to recover your data.
  • Please disable the lock passcode of your iOS device before using evasi0n. It can cause issues.
  • Avoid all iOS and iTunes related tasks until evasi0n is complete. Why not just enjoy a brief break from the computer to stretch your legs?
  • If the process gets stuck somewhere, it’s safe to restart the program, reboot the device (if necessary by holding down Power and Home until it shuts down), and rerun the process./li>
  • If you get an error on OS X 10.8 saying that evasi0n can’t be opened, control-click (or right-click) the app and on the revealed context menu, choose ‘Open.’ On the ensuing dialogue box, choose ‘Open’ as well.

Thank you WCCF for providing us with this information
Images courtesy of WCCF

Apple Patents A New Face Recognition Feature

Apple has been given a patent called “Personal computing device control using face detection and recognition” by the US Patent and Trademark, a feature that allows access to your iPhone and other devices with the help of facial detection and recognition. This means users will be able to unlock their Apple devices by just looking at them in the future.

The technology would start by scanning your face in order to record all of its unique features, such as texture, color, size, and shape. You could run the same process for any other person whom you want to use your iPhone. In response to an incoming call, your phone would scan your face to make sure it matches that of an authorized user. If so, the call goes through, and your iPhone displays the usual incoming call screen. If not, the device remains in lock mode.

The same security could apply for incoming e-mails. Looking at the iPhone would alert you to and display an e-mail. An authorized face would prevent the e-mail alert and hide or block the actual message. The technology seems most at home on a mobile phone. But Apple’s patent points to its use on other devices, including TVs, PDAs, and personal computers. As one example, your PC’s screensaver could react to your face rather than to a preset period of inactivity.

Given that Apple already implemented the TouchID feature on the iPhoen 5S, it would be logical for them to look into other security features. Facial recognition is already used by other products, such as Microsoft’s Kinect, Sony’s PlayStation and also Face Unlock is a feature offered on Android phones.

Thank you Cnet for providing us with this information

Nokia Music To Be Released For iOS, Android And Mac OS X

Nokia Music app appears to begin expanding its reach into other platforms than Windows Phone and Windows PC. According to CTechcn.com, Nokia is about to release a web app version of Nokia Music for iOS and Android devices. There is however mention of Mac OS X support available as well.

Nokia Music provides subscription-based music to Lumia and Asha users across the globe. For a nominal fee every month, users will be able to download and save music on their device, which can then be accessed later even when there is no Internet connection. We had earlier reported Nokia would bring Nokia Music store to its all-touch Asha devices for a nominal fee of Rs 50 for one week, Rs 100 for one month or Rs 250 for three months.

There is currently no official news and no word on when the service will arrive on iOS or Android. The timing of the report is quite interesting, considering that it was widely believed that the service would shut down once Microsoft took over Nokia. Many believe that the app’s features would be merged with the existing Xbox Music platform.

Third-party music streaming apps along with Apple’s iTunes and Google’s Music Store will be competing against Nokia when the app reaches the AppStore and Play Store. But lots of competition also comes with a lot of offers nonetheless.

Thank you BGR and CTechcn.com for providing us with this information
Images courtesy of and Nokia Innovation and CTechcn.com

Pear OS 8, The Mac OS X Imitation, Will Launch In 2 Days

While I am not a great fan of Apple products or Mac OS X, this is a familiar story among many consumers – you want a Mac OS X device but you simply have nowhere near the amount of money to afford it. What’s your next best option? Well Pear OS 8 of course!  Pear OS 8 is the eighth incarnation of the Pear OS which is essentially an Apple Mac OS (X) imitation operating system. Pear OS 8 has been going through the stages of its beta testing for a while now but in just 2 days the new OS will be made available to consumers from its official website.

Of course Pear OS cannot brand itself as a Mac OS X imitation but the similarity is pretty darn obvious. Pear OS will be distributed in 32 and 64 bit versions and contains a whole bunch of unique features such as My Pear, Pear Security, Pear Contacts, Pear Cloud and Pear Updater. The overall consensus of Pear OS 8 is that the operating system has come on leaps and bounds since the early days of the Pear OS. If you’re looking to get on board with Linux, but have a soft spot for Mac and Apple OS X, then Pear OS 8 could be for you.

Image courtesy of linuxcomputerbuilder.com

Windows Continues To Lose Desktop Market Share After Windows 8.1 Launch

The latest figures from market analytic firm Net Applications suggest that Microsoft’s Windows based operating systems are  continuing to lose ground to Linux, Mac OS and other operating systems. The figures clearly show a sharp drop off of nearly 1% between July and October of which the vast majority of the lost 0.9% went to Linux and Mac OS. In fact Linux gained around 0.31% market share in the same July to October period while Mac OS gained about 0.54%.

While the numbers may seem relatively small in absolute terms such low percentages equate to large numbers. I think what is disturbing from Microsoft’s point of view is that since November 2011 their market share of the desktop market has continually declined, totally a cumulative loss of 1.5% for the 2 year period. Windows 8.1 didn’t even manage to reverse the trend of decline, in fact the figures suggest it accelerated it as the biggest drop off in Windows market share was from July to August, the month when the consumer preview for Windows 8.1 was broadly accessed by the public. Any ground lost by Microsoft is ground gained by Mac OS and Linux. These figures do not even factor in competition from Android or iOS they are just purely desktop operating system market shares.

Image courtesy of Net Applications

Mavericks Update Free For A Limited Time On The UK Mac App Store

Yes, this is not a joke it seems. Apple offers the new operating system, Mavericks, completely free for mac users on the Mac App Store for a limited time (or at least it should if they still want to make money). Are you surprised? We are as well.

“We want all Mac users to experience the latest features, the most advanced technologies and the strongest security. And now they can. Because the newest version of OS X is free. It’s a simple download from the Mac App Store, so it couldn’t be easier to get. OS X Mavericks is another major leap forward for the Mac — and for everyone who uses it”

Users who access the Apple website will be greeted with the message above and the link that takes you to the Mac App Store Preview section. Get your Macs ready, connect to the nearest Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection, open your App Store and start your download.

“With OS X Mavericks, the Mac experience gets even better. It brings new apps to your desktop. Adds features you’ll love to use. And introduces technologies that help your Mac perform even better —
while using even less power.”

So don’t miss the chance to get your free upgrade on your MacBook, iMac or even Mac mini. Head on down to the website and see it with your own eyes. And hurry up not to miss the opportunity yourself!

Tropico 5 Teaser Trailer And Game Details Revealed

Kalypso Media have just revealed the teaser trailer for Tropico 5 which you can see below. The game will reportedly be available on Windows, Mac and Linux for PC, though will not be making an appearance on any consoles. The full announcement of the new game can be seen here. Haemimont Studios expect the game to be ready for a “2014 release” though no specifics were given. Let’s hope we are going to get a truly new Tropico game because as good as Tropico 4 was, you couldn’t help but feel there was way too much recycling of Tropico 3 going on in the game.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1dY2S5uKKT0[/youtube]

Below is a description of the new game from Kalypso Media:

‘Return to the remote island nation of Tropico in the next installment of the critically acclaimed and hugely popular ‘dictator sim’ series.’ Expand your Dynasty’s reign from the early colonial period to beyond the 21st Century, facing an all-new set of challenges, including advanced trading mechanics, technology and scientific research, exploration and for the first time in Tropico history — cooperative and competitive MULTIPLAYER for up to 4 players.

  • The Dynasty – Each member of El Presidente’s extended family is present on the island and may be appointed as a ruler, a manager, an ambassador or a general. Dynasty members gain skills and experience based on their individual assignments.
  • Research and Renovate – Advance your nation by discovering new buildings, technologies and resources. Renovate your old buildings to more efficient modern buildings.
  • Advanced trade system and trade fleet – Amass a global trade fleet and use your ships to secure trade routes to neighboring islands or world superpowers, both for export and import.
  • Explore your island – Discover what lies beyond the fog of war. Send prospectors to look for new deposits, but be wary of hostile animals and native tribes.
  • All new art – All artwork has been re-designed from scratch to provide Tropico 5 with a unique visual identity. Choose from over 100 buildings from each of the individual eras.
  • Cooperative and competitive multiplayer — Up to 4 players can build up their own cities and economies on any given island map. Players can choose to share resources, supplies and population or declare war on each other.

Image courtesy of Kalypso Media (YouTube)

New Figures Show Windows 8 Has Higher Market Share Than Expected

 

Recent figures have shown that Windows 8 experienced very slow growth in July – managing to only amount to 5.42% market share. However, the latest figures provided by StatCounter provide a different picture. They claim that Windows 8 now has a market share of 6.61%, much higher than the 5.42% estimated by Net Applications. This makes Windows 8 the fourth most popular operating system but catching up quite quickly with Mac OS X which powers 7.35% of global computers.

That said whether you believe Net Applications’ figure of 5.42% or Stat Counter’s figure of 6.61% either way we can see uptake of Windows 8 has been quite slow. Microsoft will of course be looking toward Windows 8.1 to increase uptake of their new operating system later on this year. A lot of OEM partners are excited about the prospect of Windows 8.1 after it reinstated the Start Button, something many consumers said put them off buying Windows 8. Microsoft will be hoping that the Windows 8.1 launch later this year times well with the retirement date of Windows XP next year in April and starts the transition of Windows users on old operating systems to a newer OS.

Image courtesy of Stat Counter

Windows 8 Growing In Popularity With Gamers Shows Steam Hardware Survey

The Steam Hardware Survey always gives a good indication of what PC gamers are doing in terms of hardware and software trends. The monthly survey reveals details on all the hardware and software inside Steam users’ PCs. So if you’re interested in seeing if Steam gamers prefer Nvidia or AMD, 4GB or 8GB of RAM and so on then be sure to check it out.

The latest figures from the Steam Hardware Survey reveal that Windows 8 is actually growing reasonably fast among PC gamers using Steam. Windows 8 64 Bit grew by 1.1% taking most of that market share from Windows 7 64 bit which declined by 1.16%. That said most other Windows operating systems declined in market share with only Windows 8 64 bit showing positive growth. Most gamers that left declining Windows operating systems ended up moving to Windows 8 64 Bit, Linux based operating systems or Mac OS X.

So Windows 8 64 bit is popular with gamers. Are there any gamers out there that are using Windows 8 64 bit? Let us know if you are, and let us know why you have chosen Windows 8 64 bit over other operating systems!

Image courtesy of eTeknix via Steam

Windows 8 Experiences Slowest Rate Of Growth In July

Windows 8 experienced a bit of a boost last month with the release of the Windows 8.1 preview but now that all the excitement has died down a bit the latest current OS from Microsoft has returned to slow growth. In fact it recorded just 0.32% of growth during last month according to Net Applications. Windows 7 grew by 0.13% in the same month while Vista dropped 0.35% and XP dropped 0.15%.

Despite Microsoft’s best efforts it is struggling to overcome the inertia of the PC market. Windows XP and Windows 7 still both dominate with 37.02% and 44.50% respectively while Windows 8 is barely struggling to do much better than Windows Vista.

In the grand scheme of things Microsoft also experienced a 0.06% decline in overall market share between June and July losing some ground to Mac OS and Linux.

While every month Windows 8 does grow and has been growing consistently for a while, Microsoft is unlikely to be pleased at how low the rate of growth is. By current rates it could take another year before Windows 8 passes 10% market share so Microsoft will really be counting on Windows 8.1 to give Windows 8 sales that kick up the backside it so sorely needs.

Image courtesy of TNW

Windows Plummets In Global Computing Market, Android Takes Over

While we know Windows based operating systems dominates the “desktop market” with around 91% of market share, the world of computing is much more than that. It includes tablets, smartphones, consoles, servers and so on. With the dramatic decline of PC shipments over the past years and rapid growth of other mobile computing platforms, Windows has been having a hard time. If we take those things into consideration then Business Insider, using Gartner and IDC analytics, suggests that Windows has been plummeting at a staggering rate over the past 4 years.

As the graph demonstrates since 2009 Apple and Android have eaten into the share of most other operating systems including Windows, Blackberry and other Linux based operating systems. Now Android is the single biggest operating system and Apple operating systems are nearly as popular as Windows based ones. With the broader picture in place things look quite dire for Microsoft and Windows. It is no surprise Microsoft are trying really hard to make it big in the mobile market with their Windows Phone OS and close ties with Nokia. Yet that is clearly not working and Microsoft’s decline will continue unless they can find a way to boost the popularity of Windows or cash in on the tablet or PC market.

In terms of the desktop market Microsoft has been losing ground slowly over the same time period but to a much smaller extent. Currently it has 91.5% market share compared to around 7% for Mac OS X and 1.5% for Linux. This has declined from around 94% in 2009. With all things considered then, Microsoft is losing ground in the desktop market and losing huge ground in the global computing market. Things certainly aren’t looking good. What do you think about Microsoft’s fortunes? Are the figures portraying the situation accurately or does it exaggerate things?

Image courtesy of Business Insider

Windows Runs On 91% Of World’s Desktop Computers

Despite all the bad press Microsoft has had this year, and the bashing that Windows 8 has faced (rightly or wrongly so), Microsoft still dominates the desktop PC market and this shows absolutely no sign of slowing. According to the latest figures by Market Research firm Net Applications Microsoft still boasts 91.5% of the market share. The above figures show a relatively stable percentage for Microsoft but if we look at bit further back we can see a very slight long term decline:

  • July 2010 – 93.83%
  • July 2011 – 92.90%
  • July 2012 – 92.01%
  • June 2013 – 91.51%

Furthermore their figures reveal that Microsoft’s main rivals are Mac OS X with 7.2% and Linux with 1.28%. Windows 7 is the world’s number one operating system with 44.37% and Windows XP follows behind with 37.17%. The figures also reveal that Windows 8 now has 5.10% of market share which is rising fairly slowly but has overtaken Vista which has just 4.62%.

So the figures are certainly interesting but Microsoft shows no sign of slowing down on the PC platform. Despite all the talk of switching to different operating systems after “the disappointment” that Windows 8 was we can see very few users are actually opting for desktop alternatives (Mac OS X and Linux) and most simply move around within Windows operating system, mainly to Windows 7 or Windows XP.

Image courtesy of Net Applications

Microsoft Introduces SkyDrive Pro Client For Windows Download

SkyDrive, Microsoft’s free cloud storage client, has been mainly used with your online email client such as Outlook or Hotmail, or with your Microsoft Office packages that allow syncing to Microsoft’s SkyDrive.

Recently Microsoft have released SkyDrive Pro, which is a new standalone client for Windows that allows you to sync files on your Windows based system with your SkyDrive account. SkyDrive Pro does not require any version of Microsoft Office to be installed to use it either. The new client is mainly targeted at Office 365 users and towards the business/enterprise market.

“The standalone SkyDrive Pro sync client allows users of SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint Online in Office 365 to sync their personal SkyDrive Pro and any SharePoint 2013 or Office 365 team site document libraries to their local machine for access to important content on and offline. The SkyDrive Pro client can be installed side-by-side with previous versions of Office (Office 2010, Office 2007, etc),”

If you are a more “normal” user and have no uses for the SkyDrive “Pro” client then a standard SkyDrive app/client has already been made available for Android, iOS and Windows.

With all that said you can see the download links below:

Do you use SkyDrive? What are your thoughts on it? Will SkyDrive Pro be useful to you?

Source

EVGA announces GeForce GTX 680 Mac Edition

For those of you who follow our news updates here at eTeknix you may remember the Sapphire HD 7950 Mac Edition Graphics card that was recently released. Well now it appears Nvidia have done a similar thing to AMD, partnering up exclusively with EVGA to deliver the GTX 680 to the Mac OS X platform. EVGA seems like the sensible choice since they are the biggest supplier of Nvidia graphics cards to the American market.

This development is important because we all know that the Nvidia GTX 680 is much faster than the AMD HD 7950 when it comes to most tasks. Consequently, Nvidia now offer the fastest Mac compatible graphics card on the market.

Strangely it seems the Mac Edition EVGA GTX 680 will only be available with a PCI Express Gen 2 bus even though it does support Gen 3. The EVGA GTX 680 Mac Edition can support four concurrent displays via DVI-I, DVI-D, HDMI and DisplayPort. Other than that the specifications of the GTX 680 Mac Edition remain entirely to reference GTX 680 specifications. EVGA have listed the “key features” for your reference:

  • NVIDIA GPU Boost Technology – Dynamically maximizes clock speeds to push performance to new levels and bring out the best in every game.
  • Support for four concurrent displays; two dual-link DVI connectors, HDMI and DisplayPort 1.1
  • NVIDIA SMX Engine – Brand new processing engine which delivers twice the performance/watt compared to previous generations.
  • NVIDIA CUDA Technology – Unlocks the power of the GPU’s processor cores to accelerate the most demanding tasks such as video transcoding, physics simulation, ray tracing and more.
  • OpenGL 3.2 (4.3 in Windows) Support – Support for the most widely-used open graphics standard in the world.
  • OpenCL Support – Supports the latest standards in GPGPU computing.
  • Boot Camp Support – Full support for Microsoft Windows operating system in Apple Boot Camp.

EVGA didn’t mention pricing but we have been told it will be priced at $599.99 on their store making it $100 more expensive than a reference GTX 680 price of $499.99. You may also want to consider the fact you can pick up many GTX 680s new, on Newegg, for $419.99 and $439.99 so in effect it is over $150 more expensive for what is essentially an identical reference design. It may still be a con at $599.99, but it certainly isn’t an Apple-con, until you put it in a Mac OS X system that is.

What are your thoughts on this new card from EVGA?

Source

Sapphire launches HD 7950 for Mac Pro

Getting decent graphics cards on Mac systems has always been hit and miss, and as far as I know the HD 5870 was the best graphics card you could get that was compatible with Mac. Sapphire’s newest product, the HD 7950 Mac Edition, will be the fastest AMD card supported on Mac OS X systems.

Sapphire have scored a pretty good deal in being able to get exclusive rights to sell the HD 7950 for Macs. There isn’t any need for me to bore you with any specifications of the HD 7950, you can find those on the AMD website here, but what is interesting is that this new HD 7950 Mac Edition from Sapphire absolutely destroys most other graphics cards that were available for the Mac OS – particularly the HD 5870 and 8800GT (which is believe it or not a very common GPU for Mac machines).

The Sapphire HD 7950 Mac Edition is equipped with 3 GB of the latest GDDR5 memory, and its Dual Asynchronous Compute Engines (ACE) deliver up to 2.87 TFLOPS Single Precision compute power. It provides hardware support for Open GL 4.2 and Open CL 1.2 as well as AMD HD3D technology and APP acceleration.

Other advantages of this new Mac card from Sapphire are that it supports up to 3840 by 2160 resolution displays through 3GHz HDMI 1.4a port and DisplayPort, or 2560 by 1600 resolution displays via Dual-link DVI port with HDCP.

Mac compatibility is with Apple Mac Pro models of 2010 or later with an available PCI Express X16 slot. Two six pin power cables and a Mac driver disc is included with the card.  Mac OS X 10.7.5 (Lion) and 10.8.2 (Mountain Lion) or later are supported.

Sapphire’s dual BIOS switch means you can use it in non-UEFI compliant mode (supports Windows and Mac OS X) or UEFI hybrid mode (supports Windows only) and obviously the latest Windows drivers can be acquired from the AMD website.

Windows support means any “white fanatics” out there can use this with a Windows based operating system, but the reality is it will cost substantially more than a normal HD 7950. A “normal” HD 7950 currently sells for around $290 while this will cost $479 – a significant amount more and you won’t get any of the games from the AMD Never Settle Bundle. Retailers, Apple and Sapphire will tell you this extra cost is due to the certification process that needs to be conducted for the graphics card to work on the Mac OS, however the reason why the price is so high is because they all know Apple users will pay more and want to cash in on this fact.

What do you think of this new offering from Sapphire? Are there any Mac users out there that are willing to pay that much for what is a glorified white HD 7950? Let us know your thoughts.

Source: Press Release