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29Sep/11Off

China’s HTC Sensation Variant First to Use ST-Ericsson NovaThor SoC

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At first glance, the HTC Sensation Z710t doesn’t differ much from the phone first introduced last spring, but underneath the familiar exterior lurks the new ST Ericsson NovaThor SoC. The handset is headed for China Mobile and couples the 1GHz Nova A9500 dual-core application processor with the Thor M6718 mobile for connectivity to the carriers TD-SCDMA network. The pairing is designed for speed on all fronts.

Otherwise, the Sensation remains largely the same with a 4.3-inch qHD display and 8MP camera. Pricing an release date for the handset are currently not available.

Powerful New ST-Ericsson Platform makes Debut in HTC Sensation Z710t
China Mobile’s latest TD smartphone based on state-of-the-art NovaThor™ platform

Geneva, September 26, 2011 – China Mobile and HTC have launched the first smartphone to be based on ST-Ericsson’s powerful new NovaThor platform. The Sensation Z710t offers consumers immersive 3D graphics, fast web browsing, high-definition multimedia and the ability to run several advanced Android applications simultaneously with exceptional performance and battery life.

Underneath the hood of the HTC Sensation Z710t are ST-Ericsson’s Nova™ A9500 dual-core application processor, running at 1GHz, and ST-Ericsson’s Thor™ M6718 modem, which can connect to China Mobile’s extensive TD-SCDMA network, enabling consumers to get online at broadband speeds across much of China. The HTC Sensation Z710t also sports an eight megapixel camera and a 4.3 inch display.

“ST-Ericsson’s new NovaThor platform has enabled us to develop a world-class Android smartphone for China Mobile’s TD network,” said Matthew Costello, Chief Operating Officer of HTC. “Consumers are going to be captivated by the fast and responsive multimedia experience delivered by the HTC Sensation Z710t.”

“The launch of this exceptional HTC smartphone highlights both the capabilities of our NovaThor platform family and our wholehearted support for China Mobile’s drive to bring world-leading smartphones onto its TD network,” said Pascal Langlois, senior vice president, chief sales and marketing officer of ST-Ericsson. “Consumers and Android application developers alike will relish the raw power and 3D graphical capabilities of the HTC Sensation Z710t.”


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29Sep/11Off

Dell Takes another Stab at Android Smartphones with the Streak Pro 101DL for Japan

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After early attempts to strike a name for themselves in both the Android smartphone and tablet arenas, Dell has more recently kept rather quiet on both fronts. Their 10-inch Honeycomb slate, the Streak 10 Pro, didn’t see an extremely wide release as the Dell name has slowly fallen out of most Android discussions. The company looks to make a return in a big way with the announcement of the new Dell Streak Pro 101DL the first full-fledged smartphone entry into the Streak lineup and no slacker in the specs department.

The Streak Pro 101DL is headed for Japan’s SoftBank and features a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED screen at qHD resolution, a 1.5GHz dual-core MSM8260 processor, and an 8MP camera. Other specs include Dell’s Stage 2.0 interface on top of Android 2.3, a 1.3MP front-facing camera, and support for Bluetooth 2.1 and 802.11b/g/n.

Japan is slated to get the phone first but Dell does have global sales plans for the new Steak Pro 101DL. It could give Dell just the boost they need to become a relevant Android contributor once again.

[via TechCrunch]


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29Sep/11Off

Police break up fake iPhone ring in China

Chinese police have arrested five members of an organized gang that was making and selling fake iPhones. The members would buy components, some of them genuine, on the black market and assemble the phones in rented Shanghai apartments. The police seized about 200 iPhones in the raid. Each iPhone had an estimated build cost of 2,000 yuan (US$313 as of this writing) and sold for almost twice that on the black market. These dupes were so well done that many people had a hard time distinguishing the fake iPhones from the real ones.

It's always been known that imitation iPhones were available in China, but the extent of this forgery was not known until an American blogger posted up images of a phony Apple store earlier this year. This report kicked off a series of subsequent reports detailing similar unauthorized stores that were selling bogus Apple products.

TUAW - The Unofficial Apple WeblogPolice break up fake iPhone ring in China originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 29 Sep 2011 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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29Sep/11Off

How to enable the FTP server (ftpd) in Lion

Apple decided to remove the GUI for enabling and disabling FTP from Mac OS X Lion. Generally speaking, that's not a bad move, because most times SFTP is available anywhere FTP is, and SFTP is far superior in terms of security. No one should be using FTP over the Internet.

However, there are some cases when using FTP is perfectly fine. For instance, transferring large files over your own LAN. I do this all the time when transferring DVD rips from one machine to another. Others have mentioned that they have some devices which only support FTP so SFTP isn't an option.

Personally, I prefer FTP on my LAN because, since it is unencrypted, there's no extra processing time needed to encrypt and decrypt the transfer. I'm also willing to admit that there may not be much practical difference in most cases -- that is, I don't know that SFTP is much slower than FTP, but when you're talking about "8 GB at a time" transfers, every little bit matters.

Enabling FTP on Lion

The good news is that Apple did not remove the FTP server (/usr/libexec/ftpd) from Lion, they only removed the GUI to enable or disable it.

The even better news is that there are (at least) two GUI tools for re-enabling it:

  1. Lion Tweaks (which also lets you toggle other Lion settings)
  2. FTPD Enable App which is an AppleScript app to launch ftpd

For those of us who prefer the command line, there are even instructions on how to enable ftpd using launchd.

ftpd.zsh

I wrote a small shell script called ftpd.zsh which will let you turn ftpd on or off, or check its current status. Usage is very simple:

  1. ftpd.zsh --on
  2. ftpd.zsh --off
  3. ftpd.zsh

#1 will turn it on, #2 will turn it off, #3 will show you whether it is currently on or off.

My script is based on Daniel Smith's launchd commands mentioned above. The script must be run as root, but if it isn't, it will automatically re-launch itself using 'sudo' rather than failing ungracefully. It is also smart enough not to try to turn it on when it is already on, or off when it is already off.

To use the script, download ftpd.zsh and then put it somewhere in your $PATH such as /usr/local/bin and make sure it is executable chmod 755 /path/to/ftpd.zsh. (If any part of that previous sentence didn't make sense to you, I recommend using one of the GUI programs listed above. Using the Terminal is one option, but it's not the only option.)

Once again I repeat: if you are trying to connect to another machine over the Internet in an otherwise unencrypted manner, use SFTP. The only time FTP should be used is when there is no chance of the password being 'sniffed' by a nefarious third party.

You can enable SFTP and SSH in Lion (and previous versions of OS X) by going to System Preferences » Sharing and making sure that "Remote Login" is enabled. When in doubt, use SFTP. But if you need FTP and are aware of the risks, now you have the option of enabling it when needed.

ftpd just one time

If you want to enable ftpd immediately without downloading or installing any scripts or apps, simply enter:

sudo launchctl load /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/ftp.plist

into Terminal.app. If you want to turn it off afterwards, enter the command

sudo launchctl unload /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/ftp.plist

All ftpd all the time

If you use any of the above solutions, ftpd will be disabled again when you reboot the computer. If you want to enable ftpd automatically after every reboot, you will need to edit /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/ftp.plist by looking for the lines

Disabled

and changing them to

Disabled

which will tell Lion to enable ftpd on reboot. Use the launchctl load command shown above to enable it without rebooting.

Note: I recommend that you do not edit ftp.plist unless you absolutely cannot avoid it. I am firmly against tinkering with anything in /System/ but at the end of the day, it's your computer, and if if your situation requires ftpd to be available at all times, editing the plist is the best way to make sure it is always on.

TUAW - The Unofficial Apple WeblogHow to enable the FTP server (ftpd) in Lion originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 29 Sep 2011 10:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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29Sep/11Off

Dragon Go for iPhone gets smarter

Dragon Go!, the all-purpose voice recognition search app from Nuance, is getting a significant upgrade today. In fact, it's almost a preview of some of the functionality we suspect will be in iOS5.

The free app lets you speak conversationally with your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad. Say things like "What's the best steakhouse in Kansas City", or "Find me some pictures of Lady Gaga", and the app will parse what you said and nearly always return useable results.

The update, which should hit the App Store today, adds many more options, including the ability to launch popular movie and TV streaming services; get direct access to more of the most popular names in mobile content, like Spotify; get answers to the toughest of questions from Wolfram|Alpha and Ask.com; and, find friends on Google+.

I tried some of the new functions, and was impressed. For instance, I said "Watch Mad Men on Netflix," and Dragon Go initiated a Google search. When I clicked on the resulting link, my Netflix app launched and the show started. I also successfully searched TUAW for articles and had it define words using Dictionary.com. For apps that require a login, you'll have to set up Dragon Go! to link with those apps, but that's not a difficult task.

Vlad Sejnoha, chief technology officer at Nuance said "We're deeply invested in continuing to evolve Dragon Go! with new features, more content providers and richer app integration, and ultimately opening new doors for the consumer mobile destination experience. This is another step towards the mobile semantic web, and we've just gotten started."

These new services join Google, Bing, Yahoo, Wikipedia, Twitter, YouTube and many others that were already built into the app. I find Dragon Go! and Siri (now owned by Apple) to be two of the best demos for the iPhone around. If you already have Dragon Go! you should see the update today. If you don't have it, download it and impress yourself and your friends.

Gallery: Dragon Go! updated with significant new features

TUAW - The Unofficial Apple WeblogDragon Go for iPhone gets smarter originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 29 Sep 2011 09:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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29Sep/11Off

Humble Indie Bundle team offers a Frozen Synapse Bundle

The Humble Indie Bundle guys are back with another pay-what-you-want bundle of games. Proceeds from your purchase may be directed to the developers or to charity, in any combination you like. This time around, they're focusing on the turn-based strategy game Frozen Synapse, offering it up to anyone who wants to pay in at any price.

There is a reason to pay a little higher this time. If the price you choose is higher than the average (currently around US$4.50) will also get you the Frozenbyte bundle, featuring the great Trine, the Shadowgrounds games, a game prototype called Jack Claw, and the upcoming release Splot. That lot for less than five bucks is a great deal, even if the Humble Indie Bundle folks aren't actually providing a bundle to everyone this time around.

And as you'll probably remember from the past few offerings, these guys have a habit of adding even more extras into their deals, so odds are good that those six games aren't all you'll get if you buy in now. As usual, all of the games are available through Steam and are compatible with Mac, Linux and Windows. If you need something to play this coming weekend, you won't find a better deal around.

TUAW - The Unofficial Apple WeblogHumble Indie Bundle team offers a Frozen Synapse Bundle originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 29 Sep 2011 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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29Sep/11Off

Daily iPhone App: Shadowgun

I was a pretty big fan of Madfinger Games' Samurai II: Vengeance -- it had some solid gameplay, but the really amazing thing about the title was the way it looked. Samurai II offered great art and smart graphics programming. Now, Madfinger has turned their graphical expertise to the third-person shooter genre, and the impressive result is Shadowgun, now available on the App Store.

Like Samurai II: Vengeance, this game is quite an achievement: The graphics look just incredible. A lot of people are throwing around the term "console quality" in regards to mobile games, referring to the graphical level of Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3, and while Madfinger's developers didn't hit that mark, they got very close. The cutscenes, the characters, and the environments all look terrific.

The gameplay itself is very much inspired by shooters like Gears of War, complete with a simple cover system. The animation is a little off at times, and the writing is not too great, but still, this is an excellent game. If Madfinger gets their due, it should be a showcase for the platform in terms of what it can do.

The campaign will last you around six hours. There's no multiplayer mode, though Madfinger promises there is more Shadowgun coming in some form. The game is US$7.99 right now for a universal version, which is pricier than simpler. Still, that's much less than you'd pay for a full console game, and this is a solid title for sure. Madfinger really put their best into this one in terms of graphics and performance, and it shows.

TUAW - The Unofficial Apple WeblogDaily iPhone App: Shadowgun originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Thu, 29 Sep 2011 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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29Sep/11Off

Skype boosts Android video calling (but adds ads) in v2.5

Skype has added video calling support for Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1, the original Google Nexus One and the Motorola Photon 4G, as well as a host of other Android devices. Skype for Android v2.5 adds fourteen new phones and tablets to the compatibility list, bringing the total to 41, as well as adding support for switching between portrait and landscape orientation midway through a video call.

Also newly added in this version of the app is the ability to zoom in during a video call, by double-tapping on the display. Skype has made various bug-fixes and speed tweaks, as you’d expect, and there’s improved Bluetooth headset support if you’re not keen on having your entire conversation overheard by everyone around you.

Unfortunately, the updated Skype also brings the advertising recently added to the PC and Mac versions, though you can escape it by having a Skype subscription or adding some credit. As always, it’s a free download from the Android Market.

Newly-supported devices:

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
  • HTC Nexus One
  • HTC Shooter (aka EVO 3D)
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Live with Walkman
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia neo V
  • LG Optimus Black
  • LG Optimus 3D
  • LG Optimus 2x
  • Motorola Photon
  • Motorola Droid 3
  • Motorola Bionic
  • Motorola Xoom
  • Motorola Atrix
  • Acer Iconia

[via Android Community]


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Skype boosts Android video calling (but adds ads) in v2.5 is written by Chris Davies & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2011, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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29Sep/11Off

Steve Jobs opened Samsung patent negotiations court told

Apple ex-CEO Steve Jobs personally contacted Samsung management in 2010, in an attempt to hash out the ongoing patent concerns and give the Korean company “a chance to do the right thing” it has been revealed. The exec outreach news was shared as part of Apple’s legal presentation in Austalian courts yesterday, the WSJ reports, though Jobs’ involvement was apparently limited to just the initial olive-branch. “The discussions started with contact from [Jobs], and then he wasn’t involved in meetings beyond that” senior Apple exec Richard Lutton confirmed during cross-examination.

Although Lutton described Samsung as an “important” supplier of components – the Korean company provides memory chips and other hardware for the iPad and iPhone ranges, among others, with an estimated $45.68 of the bill of materials for a 16GB GSM iPhone 4 going into Samsung’s pocket – and one with which Apple has “a deep relationship,” it seems Jobs’ contact was nonetheless merely a prelude to demanding acquiescence. The motivation was “to give them a chance to do the right thing” Lutton explained.

Samsung obviously didn’t believe Apple’s interpretation of “right” was one they wanted to concede to, however, and the company pushed ahead with the Galaxy Tab 10.1 launch. However it has since agreed to strip out one contentious feature, selective rejection, a method of palm-rejection to avoid inadvertent touches to a touchscreen device’s display.  ”We can live without that feature, Your Honour” Samsung attorney David Catterns said in court yesterday. ”I told you it was trivial.”

The judge presiding over the case hopes to reach a decision regarding a temporary injunction against the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia by next week. Samsung has agreed to hold off from sales until that ruling takes place.


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Steve Jobs opened Samsung patent negotiations court told is written by Chris Davies & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2011, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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29Sep/11Off

Amazon Silk browser could hit PC, Mac and mobile

Amazon may well be planning a version of its Silk browser for PC, Mac and mobile platforms, rather than just the Kindle Fire tablet announced yesterday, if domain name registrations are anything to go by. The retailer has gone on a URL spree, buying over 500 domains, but it’s registrations for “amazonsilkforandroid.com”, “amazonsilkformac.com” and “amazonsilkforpc.com” that have particularly caught attention. Silk uses a combination of caching and on-the-fly server-side compression to boost browsing speed on the Kindle Fire.

Although the so-called “split browser” architecture of Silk is initially an exclusive feature of Kindle Fire, it’s entirely possible that Amazon has broader ambitions for the software. As the company explains it, Silk uses Amazon’s EC2 servers to cache websites at high speed, maintaining a persistent connection open to the backend server on the AWS cloud, and using compressed pages to minimize loading times.

It’s Amazon’s page suggestions that are the biggest indicator of Silk’s potential future, however. The browser learns likely page interest based on an aggregate of all users, and can preload the website it believes you’re probably going to want to visit next. They’re the same skills as used in Amazon’s collaborative filtering techniques and machine learning algorithms for the “customers who bought this also bought” feature, and represent not only a time saving shortcut for Kindle Fire users but a potentially huge source of personal data for Amazon itself.

That has raised the hackles of privacy advocates already, though Amazon says Kindle Fire owners will be able to turn off the heuristics and use Silk as a regular browser if they prefer. Extending the app to the desktop and other mobile platforms, however, as these URLs might imply is the intention, would significantly extend Amazon’s data collection abilities.

[via Fusible]


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Amazon Silk browser could hit PC, Mac and mobile is written by Chris Davies & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2011, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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