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22Feb/120

Amsterdam Apple Store to open March 3

Apple will open an Apple Store in Amsterdam on March 3, bringing the number of countries with an Apple Store up to 12. It will occupy two levels of the historic and beautiful Hirsch Building in Amsterdam city center. Rumors of the store's construction started in November of 2010.

The store's windows have been covered with orange (orange is the national Dutch color) barricades for the past few weeks, with three stacked apples inspired by the Amsterdam coat of arms.

If you attend the opening, please send us your photos and stories, we'd love to check them out.

TUAW - The Unofficial Apple WeblogAmsterdam Apple Store to open March 3 originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Wed, 22 Feb 2012 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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22Feb/120

Mystery devices DROID Fighter and LG Cayman headed to Verizon

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A pair of new devices have surfaced for Verizon, though at this point we only have the names to go off of. Sources close to DroidLife have outed the LG Cayman and DROID Fighter, the latter without any manufacturer designation. Any information on the two devices is complete speculation, but both could end up being one of several new devices unveiled at Mobile World Congress next week.

Employee workshops are being held for the Cayman and Fighter on March 29th and April 12th respectively, though those dates won’t necessarily coincide with either device’s release date.

[via DroidLife]


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22Feb/120

Quad-core LG X3 could launch as Optimus 4X HD

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Just as LG’s first dual-core handset denoted its power with the Optimus 2X name, so will the manufacturer’s first quad-core phone, PocketNow reports. The phone rumored as the LG X3, which is said to feature a 4.7-inch 720p display, will honor the four magnitudes of power provided by its Tegra 3 processor when it launches as the LG Optimus 4X HD. The name seems like a no-brainer when taking LG’s previous releases into account.

References to a T-Mobile G4X have recently been spotted, suggesting that the sequel to the Optimus 2X will also make its way to that network. The T-Mobile G2X was the carrier’s branding for last year’s model.

LG has been busy announcing a few of their handsets, including the Optimus 3D Max and Optimus 3D Cube, ahead of Mobile World Congress, but we suspect they will keep their biggest new addition under cover until their press conference in Barcelona this Sunday.

[via PocketNow]


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22Feb/120

Piracy Agreement ACTA faces EU’s highest court

This week the act known as the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) has been pushed before the European Union’s highest court where it will face scrutiny by law. This move has been described by EU trade head Karel De Gucht as a question by the court that will clarify whether the treaty was able to comply with “the EU’s fundamental rights and freedoms.” What we know so far of the ACTA, for those of you following along, is that its a multi-nation agreement currently being signed (or protested against) after its initial negotiation excluded civil society groups, developing countries, and the general public on the whole.

The agreement has thus far been signed by 22 EU member states including the UK (and holds support from the United States, Japan, and Canada) and needs 6 countries to come into force. Protesters include Germany and Denmark and the agreement is set to be debated by the European Parliament in June. As the European Commission stated this week:

“[We have] decided today to ask the European Court of Justice for a legal opinion to clarify that the Acta agreement and its implementation must be fully compatible with freedom of expression and freedom of the internet.” – EC

Though the agreement is being lauded by supporters as being put in place to raise global standards for intellectual property rights, opposition includes talk that blocking the internet in any form or fashion is the opposite of the basic freedoms that should be part of the European Unions defended rights. As Viviane Reding, the commissioner for justice, fundamental rights and citizenship, wrote this week in a statement:

This situation can and must not be changed by the ACTA agreement, which has been negotiated by the EU Presidency and is currently under public discussion in the European Parliament and in the national parliaments of the EU Member States. As I said, I am against all attempts to block Internet websites. Even though the text of the ACTA agreement does not provide for new rules compared to today’s legal situation in Europe, I understand that many people are worried about how ACTA would be implemented. The European Commission has therefore decided today to ask the European Court of Justice for a legal opinion to clarify that the ACTA agreement and its implementation must be fully compatible with freedom of expression and freedom of the Internet.” – Reding

We’ll continue following this agreement, I assure you, as it has the ability to turn into something much greater than a clarification of rules. Blocking the web via internet providers is never the answer, ladies and gentlemen, and any act that may lead to such a law should rightly be struck down.

[via BBC]

Piracy Agreement ACTA faces EU’s highest court is written by Chris Burns & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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22Feb/120

Verizon LTE down across the US: It’s not just you

Today a nationwide outage of LTE networks is hitting the USA and Verizon has been vocal about being on the case with a fix as soon as possible. If you’re experiencing data loss in Houson, Dallas, Memphis, greater California, and New York City, you’re not alone, though you are unique if you’re not able to access 3G data, as Verizon has also noted that all 3G services are operating as they ought to be. This service outage appears to be regulated to the areas listed above, but feel free to be vocal in comments below if you’re outside these areas with a problem.

Customer service lines have been alerted to the problem so that they can let customers know while repairs are made – and it does appear that voice and text are working normally while data is the center of attention in this case. The message that’s being sent out to customer service representatives at the moment reads something like the following:

“We are aware that some customers in your area are experiencing difficulty with processing data, such as text, picture, and email messaging. We’re already working to resolve the issue.” – Verizon

And there’s another message being sent out to publications which reassures readers and customers alike which notes the following:

“Verizon Wireless is investigating customer issues in connecting to the 4GLTE data network, starting around 6:30 AM EST today. 3G data, and voice and text services are operating reliably.” – Verizon

Again if you’re experiencing any kind of data unreliability, let us know in the comments below and we’re sure Verizon will be glad to know where you are in the United States as well. Thanks everyone for being patient!

[via Twitter]

Verizon LTE down across the US: It’s not just you is written by Chris Burns & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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22Feb/120

ASUS Padfone release teased in MWC invite

It’s less than a week now before we head to Barcelona to check out the biggest event of the year surrounding nothing but mobile and ASUS is bringing the heat with the Padfone! We’ve gotten a couple glimpses of this device in different iterations leading up to this event, and indeed across the ocean in the opposite direction they’ve had an older version of the device out for hands-on experience, but this is the upgrade. What we can expect is nothing less than a whole new set of hardware and perhaps an upgraded processor on the inside as well!

We’ll be checking out the Padfone even closer than we did at CES 2012 where they had the device combo out on display. This device is a unique (or nearly unique if you count all the copycats that have sprung up in the past few months) in that it’s a tablet with a holster for a smartphone that powers the whole rig. ASUS plans on coming correct with this device as it also brings forth the next generation of its tablet line including the Transformer Prime 700 series and the MeMO $249 NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad core 7-inch tablet.

Will you be able to resist such a fantastically powerful tablet lineup, each of them with Ice Cream Sandwich for their Android version without a doubt? We’ll be bringing you the heat from Spain all week long starting this Sunday! Follow all the action through out Mobile World Congress 2012 portal! And of course our lovely timelines which always keep you in the know throughout each device’s history!

ASUS Padfone release teased in MWC invite is written by Chris Burns & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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22Feb/120

AMD Radeon HD 7870 and 7850 specs leaked

Keeping up with desktop gaming hardware is a never-ending quest – and it never hurts to take some shortcuts. So rejoice, GPU enthusiasts: an early preview of the next generation of Radeon cards has been posted by EXPreview. The center of the lineup, the HD 7870 and 7850 cards, have been detailed, using the new Pitcairn processor architecture. The cards use the same 28 nanometer fabrication process, but more memory and other slight speed increases.

On to the good stuff: according to the leak, the Radeon HD 7850 will operate at a core speed of 900mhz with a full gigabyte of GDDR5 RAM, while the 7870 bumps it up to 950mhz and 2GB at a slightly faster speed of 1375mhz. The 7850 gets 20 graphics CoreNext compute units and 1280 stream processors, while the 7870 bumps it up to 22 compute units and 1408 stream processors. The 7850 gets 80 Texture Mapping Units and the 7870 gets 88, but both cards share 24 render output processors and a 256-bit memory bus. Note that the photo above is a generic HD 7770.

Of course all of these specifications are unofficial, and even if they’re 100% accurate, it’s just the reference card. Expect GPU manufacturers to soup up the silicon with overclocked processors, more and faster RAM, gigantic cooling units and the like. Basic cards are expected to hit the retail market in March, with the Crossfire versions and other modifications coming out a few weeks to a couple of months later.

(Fun fact: Pitcairn is the name of the smallest democracy in the world, a tiny island in the South Pacific populated by descendants of mutineers from the HMS Bounty.)

[via Tom's Hardware]

AMD Radeon HD 7870 and 7850 specs leaked is written by Michael Crider & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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22Feb/120

NASA discovers a new planet class with thick and steamy atmosphere

NASA has discovered a distant exoplanet dubbed GJ 1214b that is 40 light years away from Earth. The planet is dubbed a “Super Earth” because it’s larger than our planet, but smaller than gas giants such as Jupiter. The planet was studied using the Hubble telescope, and the scientists believe the large part of the planet is water. The planet has very high temperatures and orbits close to the host star.

The planet temperature is high enough to suggest that there may be some exotic materials existing. The planet was originally discovered in 2009 using ground-based telescopes and later studied using the Hubble Space Telescope. The data gathered suggests that the planet orbits 2,000,000 km above the surface of its cool red-dwarf star and it the temperature is likely to reach above 200C.

The planet is 2.7 times the diameter of the Earth with a mass seven times that of Earth. Another possibility is rather than the atmosphere being made up of water, the planet could potentially be covered in a haze similar to what covers the Saturn Moon Titan. However, researchers believe that their findings suggest an atmosphere dense in water vapor rather than a haze. In fact, calculations suggest that the planet may have more water than earth. Combining high temperatures and pressure the planet could host exotic materials such as “hot ice” or “superfluid water.”

“The high temperatures and pressures would form exotic materials like ‘hot ice’ or ‘superfluid water’, substances that are completely alien to our everyday experience,” said Dr Berta.

[via BBC]

NASA discovers a new planet class with thick and steamy atmosphere is written by Shane McGlaun & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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22Feb/120

iTunes offers first Beatles ringtones

Apple started selling albums from The Beatles last year and now the company has released a set of ringtones taken from the band's most popular albums. The selections span a wide range of titles including early titles like A Hard Day's Night and later tracks like the 1970 chart-topper Let It Be.

You can buy the ringtones from the iTunes app using your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch. Each ringtone is US$1.29 or you can grab the 1 collection for $12.99 which has 27 ringtones from the band's twelve studio albums and 22 singles.

[Via ipodnn]

TUAW - The Unofficial Apple WeblogiTunes offers first Beatles ringtones originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Wed, 22 Feb 2012 11:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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22Feb/120

Factory workers claim Foxconn hid underage employees prior to inspection

No doubt you watched Nightline's special edition about Shenzhen's Foxconn factory where workers assemble iPhones, iPads and Macs. If you missed it, you can watch it online at ABC's website (US only). As we noted last night, the documentary showed a rather clean Foxconn factory filled with young, Chinese workers.

Missing from the show, says Debby Sze Wan Chan of Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior (SACOM), were the underage workers who Foxconn hid during the Fair Labor Association (FLA) inspection.

Speaking to AppleInsider, Chan said "All underage workers, between 16-17 years old, were not assigned any overtime work and some of them were even sent to other departments." She claims two workers in the Zhenghou plant told her Foxconn was "prepared for the inspection."

A similar sentiment was expressed by FLA president Auret van Heerden who said he expects Foxconn to put on a show. Despite Foxconn's careful presentation, van Heerden asserts the FLA's bottom-up interviews could uncover any issues in the factory. It's worthy to note that Apple is a member of the FLA, paid US$250,000 to join the group and funded this latest round of inspections.

Though Apple works with the FLA, Chan claims she has received a cold shoulder from the company. No one within Apple has responded to her requests; supposedly the company even refused to receive reports, documentaries and petition cards from her when she traveled to Apple's California headquarters. A security guard who escorted her out of the building at One Infinite Loop took the paperwork and promised to deliver the items to someone in charge, but she has not heard back from Apple.

Speaking at a recent Goldman Sachs technology conference, Apple CEO Tim Cook told the audience that Apple is working to address underage labor, safety issues, and excessive overtime at its contract factories. Chan, though, doubts Apple has "any commitments to do so."

TUAW - The Unofficial Apple WeblogFactory workers claim Foxconn hid underage employees prior to inspection originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Wed, 22 Feb 2012 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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