[News] Apple’s Mac App Store to Open on January 6

overview-callout-main.pngApple® today announced that the Mac® App Store? will open for business on Thursday, January 6. By bringing the revolutionary App Store experience to Mac OS® X, the Mac App Store makes discovering, installing and updating Mac apps easier than ever. The Mac App Store will be available in 90 countries at launch and will feature paid and free apps in categories like Education, Games, Graphics & Design, Lifestyle, Productivity and Utilities.

“The App Store revolutionized mobile apps,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “We hope to do the same for PC apps with the Mac App Store by making finding and buying PC apps easy and fun. We can’t wait to get started on January 6.”

The Mac App Store lets you browse new and noteworthy apps, find out what’s hot, view staff favorites, search categories and read customer ratings and reviews. Like on iPhone®, iPod touch® and iPad™, you can purchase, download and install apps in just one click and start using them immediately. Purchased apps can run on all of your personal Macs and updates are delivered directly through the Mac App Store so it’s easy to keep all of your apps up to date. The Mac App Store is available to Mac OS X Snow Leopard® users as a free download through Software Update.

Mac developers set the price for their apps, keep 70 percent of the sales revenue, are not charged for free apps and do not have to pay hosting, marketing or credit card fees. To find out more about developing for the Mac App Store visit developer.apple.com/programs/mac.

Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork, and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple is reinventing the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and has recently introduced its magical iPad which is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices.

Gmail Introduces Delegation Feature: Let Other People Answer Your Emails

I use two Gmail accounts: one is my personal account and the other I share with my family (we use it to subscribe to groups like my children’s classroom mailing list). Checking these two different accounts used to mean I had to sign out and back in to Gmail all the time. Not anymore.

Yes, Gmail now supports full email delegation. By way of a new feature in settings, you can grant another Google account holder access to your email account. This allows another person to both send and receive emails on behalf of your account.

This feature has been available for some time for Google Apps accounts. But sometimes regular people have assistants too — or simply email addresses that they’d like multiple people to manage in a more coherent way. For example, when a message is sent from the account with access to yours, it appear as being from your address, but with include “sent by XXXX@gmail.com”. Nifty.

To grant access to another account, click the Settings link in the top right corner of Gmail. On the “Accounts” tab, you’ll see a new section where you can “Grant access to your account.”

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The account you add will get a verification email with links to accept or deny access. Once the account accepts, a small down arrow will appear beside the email address at the top right corner of Gmail which can be used to toggle between accounts.


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Each account will open in a different browser tab or window so you can view both accounts simultaneously, all while signed into your primary account. When you send a message from hikingfanfamily@gmail.com while signed in as hikingfan@gmail.com, it will appear as being sent by hikingfan@gmail.com on behalf of hikingfanfamily@gmail.com.

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Signing out of any one of the accounts will sign you out of all the accounts you’re currently viewing, and, of course, you can revoke access at any time.

Google releases Nexus S-Android 2.3 “Gingerbird”

Google today released Google Nexus S, manufactured by Samsung, with the new Android 2.3 “Gingerbread” operating system. This is a phone that was designed with direct input from the Google Android team. And like its predecessor, the Nexus One, which was released in January 2010, it has a “clean” install of Android. That means there is no additional software layer from third party OEMs or carriers to interfere with the user experience. Like the Nexus One, this will become the reference phone for this generation of Android.

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Nexus S is the lead device for the Gingerbread/Android 2.3 release; it’s the first Android device to ship with the new version of the Android platform. Google co-developed this product with Samsung—ensuring tight integration of hardware and software to highlight the latest advancements of the Android platform. As part of the Nexus brand, Nexus S delivers a “pure Google” experience: unlocked, unfiltered access to the best Google mobile services and the latest and greatest Android releases and updates.

Take a look at backstory video for more on the vision behind this product and to understand why we think “a thousand heads are better than one”:

Nexus S is the first smartphone to feature a 4” Contour Display designed to fit comfortably in the palm of your hand and along the side of your face. It also features a 1GHz Hummingbird processor, front and rear facing cameras, 16GB of internal memory, and NFC (near field communication) hardware that lets you read information from NFC tags. NFC is a fast, versatile short-range wireless technology that can be embedded in all kinds of everyday objects like movie posters, stickers and t-shirts.

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Gingerbread is the fastest version of Android yet, and it delivers a number of improvements, such as user interface refinements, NFC support, a new keyboard and text selection tool, Internet (VoIP/SIP) calling, improved copy/paste functionality and gyroscope sensor support.

Here’s a glimpse of the “magic” of Google on Nexus S:

Facebook Redesign Profile Pages

Facebook has redesigned profile pages. A lot of changes have been made. Mainly, there are a lot more of photos and photos.

There are two big themes to the revamped design: a bigger emphasis on keeping things visually interesting, and streamlining the design to make it easier to find information people actually care about. Facebook Product Manager Peter Deng explains that on the old profiles, some of the most popular features and information has been a pain to find — the ‘View more photos’ link, for example, is immensely popular, but it’s been nestled between far less important links for years.

So it makes sense that first things you’ll notice on the new profile pages involve major layout changes. Your vital stats — birthday, employer, current city, and the all-important relationship status — are now featured at the top of the page. A photo stream appears just below it, showcasing a handful of the photographs you’ve most recently been tagged in (you can choose to ‘hide’ a photo that you don’t want to have in your stream, so there’s some flexibility with what shows up here).

Tab navigation is now taking place directly below the profile photo, which makes profiles look more similar to Place pages. Most of these tabs are self-explanatory: clicking ‘Questions’ will bring up that application, the photos tab brings up your photo albums and albums you’ve been tagged in (now with infinite scroll!) and so on.

The biggest change to these tab apps involves ‘Info’. This now looks totally different — the dozens of text links representing your Interests have been converted to images whenever possible, giving you a more visual overview of the person.

New Design:

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You can activate the new design on http://www.facebook.com/about/profile/

Old Design:

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Ubuntu 11.04(Natty Narwhal)-Alpha 1 released

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The Alpha 1 Release of Ubuntu 11.04, often known as “Natty Narwhal,” is intended as a “developer snapshot” of the next major Ubuntu version, which is due in April. 
That version has already generated considerable interest and controversy in recent weeks, most notably because of Canonical’s announced decision to use the 3D-enabled Unity interface in the desktop version of the application as well as the Wayland graphics method.

Canonical on Thursday released the first alpha version of Ubuntu 11.04, offering fans of the open source Linux operating method an early glimpse at the next major version.

four more alpha releases of Ubuntu 11.04 are planned for after this one, followed by a beta version due roughly a month before Natty Narwhal’s scheduled official release on April 28.

Natty Narwhal Alpha 1 can be downloaded from the project’s website, though it’s a  early release and not intended for production systems. Users currently running Ubuntu 10.10 on a desktop method can upgrade by pressing Alt+F2 and typing “update-manager -d” in to the command box.

Unity is indeed the default desktop interface in this new Ubuntu version, but it’s only partially implemented so far. Currently, the Unity Launcher is available for launching applications that are pinned to the launcher and for switching among running applications.

Under the Hood

Ubuntu 11.04 Alpha 1 also includes version 2.6.37-rc3 of the Linux kernel, which is based on the latest mainline release candidate. This represents a major update from version 2.6.35, which is what’s used in Maverick Meerkat, or Ubuntu 10.10. By the time Natty Narwhal releases officially next spring, it is expected to include version 2.6.38, which will offer considerable speed improvements under heavy lots.

Users can pick to run either Ubuntu Desktop, which requires 3D driver support and offers Unity by default, or the Ubuntu Classic Session, which is based on the traditional GNOME desktop and supports all video hardware and video drivers, Canonical says.

The current kernel update includes  a few desktop-related responsiveness improvements along with AppArmor for security and multiple improvements to virtualization performance.

Download Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty Narwhal) Alpha 1
natty-desktop-i386.iso – 717MB Desktop CD for PC (Intel x86)
natty-desktop-amd64.iso – 723MB Desktop CD for 64-bit PC (AMD64)
natty-desktop-amd64+mac.iso – 719M Desktop CD for 64-bit Mac (AMD64)

Android eating away share of other OS – comScore Report- October 2010

When it comes to dealing with stats about the mobile market, the best principle follows the line of “the more, the merrier”.

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ComScore has now shared its data for October 2010 in the mobile market – the smartphone platform share looks like this:

OEM Market Share

For the three month average period ending in October, 234 million Americans ages 13 and older used mobile devices. Device manufacturer Samsung ranked as the top OEM with 24.2 percent of U.S. mobile subscribers, up 1.1 percentage points from the three month period ending in July. LG ranked second with 21.0 percent share, followed by Motorola (17.7 percent share), RIM (9.3 percent share, up 0.3 percentage points) and Nokia (7.1 percent share).

Top Mobile OEMs
3 Month Avg. Ending Oct. 2010 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending Jul. 2010
Total U.S. Mobile Subscribers Ages 13+
Source: comScore MobiLens
Share (%) of Mobile Subscribers
Jul-10 Oct-10 Point Change
Total Mobile Subscribers 100.0% 100.0% N/A
Samsung 23.1% 24.2% 1.1
LG 21.2% 21.0% -0.2
Motorola 19.8% 17.7% -2.1
RIM 9.0% 9.3% 0.3
Nokia 7.8% 7.1% -0.7

Smartphone Platform Market Share

60.7 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones during the three months ending in October, up 14 percent from the preceding three month period, representing 1 out of every 4 mobile subscribers. RIM was the leading mobile smartphone platform in the U.S. with 35.8 percent share of U.S. smartphone subscribers, followed by Apple with 24.6 percent share (up 0.8 percentage points). Google Android saw another month of strong growth, rising 6.5 percentage points to capture 23.5 percent of smartphone subscribers. Microsoft accounted for 9.7 percent of smartphone subscribers, while Palm rounded out the top five with 3.9 percent. Despite losing share to Android, most smartphone platforms continue to gain subscribers as the smartphone market overall continues to grow.

Top Smartphone Platforms
3 Month Avg. Ending Oct. 2010 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending Jul. 2010
Total U.S. Smartphone Subscribers Ages 13+
Source: comScore MobiLens
Share (%) of Smartphone Subscribers
Jul-10 Oct-10 Point Change
Total Smartphone Subscribers 100.0% 100.0% N/A
RIM 39.3% 35.8% -3.5
Apple 23.8% 24.6% 0.8
Google 17.0% 23.5% 6.5
Microsoft 11.8% 9.7% -2.1
Palm 4.9% 3.9% -1.0

Mobile Content Usage

In October, 68.1 percent of U.S. mobile subscribers used text messaging on their mobile device, up 2.1 percentage points versus the prior three month period, while browsers were used by 36.2 percent of U.S. mobile subscribers (up 2.6 percentage points). Subscribers who used downloaded applications comprised 33.7 percent of the mobile audience, representing an increase of 2.3 percentage points. Accessing of social networking sites or blogs increased 2.4 percentage points, representing 24.2 percent of mobile subscribers. Playing games represented 23.7 percent of the mobile audience (up 1.4 percentage points), while listening to music increased 0.9 percentage points, representing 15.4 percent of subscribers.

Mobile Content Usage
3 Month Avg. Ending Oct. 2010 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending Jul. 2010
Total U.S. Mobile Subscribers Ages 13+
Source: comScore MobiLens
Share (%) of Mobile Subscribers
Jul-10 Oct-10 Point Change
Total Mobile Subscribers 100.0% 100.0% N/A
Sent text message to another phone 66.0% 68.1% 2.1
Used browser 33.6% 36.2% 2.6
Used downloaded apps 31.4% 33.7% 2.3
Accessed social networking site or blog 21.8% 24.2% 2.4
Played Games 22.3% 23.7% 1.4
Listened to music on mobile phone 14.5% 15.4% 0.9