One of my main uses for the second-generation iPod Touch was to connect it to a pair of docking speakers at home and then stream music using Pandora, Slacker, or Rhapsody. Not only am I sick to death of my own music collection, but using these services means I don't have to exert time and energy on making playlists. Of course, there was a major drawback: when a less-than-spectacular song came on, I couldn't use the speaker's remote to skip it from across the room, whilst I relaxed in the considerable comfort of my couch. It seems … Read more
Apple has released a dedicated page on apple.com detailing some of the features of the forthcoming iOS 4.2 update that will unify the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad operating systems. The page highlights some of the most coveted features of iOS 4 (currently only running on iPhone and iPod touch) that will finally debut on iPad, including:Multitasking. A simple double-tap of the home button brings up a quick-switch interface allowing users to easily jump back to recently used Apps. Multitasking also allows for Apps like Pandora to run in the background while you surf, e-mail, or catch … Read more
Google on Tuesday announced that it is giving the contact management tool found inside Gmail an "overhaul."
The enhanced version of Gmail's contact manager, which Google says is already in the process of going out to users, brings with it a number of small tweaks, the biggest one being automatic saving. So, if you're making changes to a contact, you can be halfway through making edits or additions and if you close the page, or move onto something else, those changes get saved without any user input required.
Also included now are Gmail's standard keyboard … Read more
Do you remember when you bought stereo receivers based on their power and connectivity? The entry-level models were low in power and had just a few inputs. As you moved up in the line, they got more power, more ports, and an extra feature or two. The top models looked cooler than the entry-level ones, with a more high-end design flair and they hid their lesser-used controls under a flip-down panel. If someone bought a more expensive model, it's because they wanted better sound quality.
Home-theater receivers followed the same course, except the higher end models had more speaker … Read more
People are increasingly relying on their mobile phones to deliver maps and directions on the go, according to ComScore.
Data released by ComScore on Friday discovered that 14 percent of all mobile phones users in the U.S., or 33.5 million people, accessed maps on their devices at least once a month over the three months ended April, a 44 percent rise from the same period in 2009.
The number of mobile users who retrieved maps one to three times a month rose 47 percent to 17.1 million, while those accessing maps once a week climbed 60 percent … Read more
There's a lot we like about Palm's WebOS platform, but when it comes to the App Catalog, there are some decisions that leave us scratching our heads.
The latest is Palm's new free program, called Featured Apps, that rotates through a roster of "great handpicked apps each week" on U.S. phones in the Pre and Pixi family.
The app certainly looks good, and it's polished enough that we wish Palm would hurry up and replace its entire spartan App Catalog with the Featured Apps design.
However, with a channel dedicated to EA Games, … Read more
People with Web-browsing phones are spending a lot more of their minutes accessing social networks these days, according to a new study from ComScore.
The study, released Wednesday, pegs social networking as the fastest growing activity among people with smartphones and other advanced phones that offer Web browsing, which are also known as feature phones.
Among the 69.6 million phone users who tapped mobile apps over the three-month period ending in April, 14.5 million of them accessed social networks--a 240 percent jump from the same period in 2009.
Among the nearly 73 million who used mobile browsers, 30 … Read more
Mint.com's CEO Aaron Patzer on Tuesday is giving attendees of the Finovate spring conference in San Francisco a sneak peek at its next major enhancement. The financial planning and tracking service, which was snapped up by Intuit back in September, is getting long-term goals--a feature its software cousin Quicken has had for years, but that could be overly complicated and disjointed.
Patzer, who spoke with CNET about the upcoming service update on Monday, said the new system has been designed with the same kind of simplicity as the rest of Mint.com, and the goals themselves were decided … Read more
Facebook is reportedly adding a new feature that would let its users share their location in their status updates.
The new location feature, described Friday in a story by Advertising Age, would debut later this month and let people automatically include their current locale in their postings if they choose to do so.
Stung by concerns and complaints about customer privacy and new features that are turned on by default, Facebook is likely to offer the location feature on an opt-in basis, according to Ad Age.
Certainly, many of Facebook's more than 100 million users might find it useful … Read more
So, the new MacBook Pros have made their debut, and as always we're left re-evaluating our list of features we hoped Apple would add. We had a rundown on our most-desired MacBook features back in January when the iPad was announced. Revisiting that list, we're happy to say that some indeed came to pass.
Intel's new Core i5 and i7 CPUs made it into this MacBook Pro generation, with the exception of the 13-inch MacBook Pro.
(What we said then: "We're not saying that any laptop without Intel's new mainstream CPUs is ready for the recycling bin, but now would be an ideal time to update the processors inside the entire line, to take advantage of the improved power efficiency and other advantages of the new Core i-series chips.")
We're also pleasantly surprised to see that Apple included automatic graphics switching, enabling MacBook Pros to enjoy a similarly seamless way to activate and deactivate discrete graphics in a way comparable to what we've seen in Nvidia's new Optimus laptop graphics.
There's even another boost to battery life, too. Yet, despite addressing a few of our biggest wishes, a lot of features remain to be addressed. Here's our short list of five, culled from our previous post with a few new additions. … Read more