Want to see what's next in store for Firefox on the Mac? If you consider yourself a tech-savvy Mac user, check out the latest 3.6.4 beta release of Mozilla Firefox. One of the major new features in this beta version prevents Firefox from crashing from faulty plug-ins by limiting the crash to a single tab. Like any beta software, make sure to save your important data before you install and run this program. Warning: there may be bugs.
Apple has seeded the latest developer build of Mac OS X 10.6.4 to developers. The build, version 10F54, is reported to have no known issues.… Read more
On Monday evening, Amazon announced that it would soon be offering a Kindle app for Android. This shouldn't have come as a surprise to anyone considering the company already had software applications for the PC, Mac, Apple's iPhone and iPad, and BlackBerry phones. But it is worth delving into how the Kindle apps on these platforms differ, if at all, and which one has the best non-Kindle Kindle experience.
Amazon has not been resting on its laurels when it comes to the Kindle as a platform. While the Kindle hardware itself is only in its second generation, the strength of Amazon's strategy is in getting its digital bookstore into the hands of as many users and on as many platforms as possible. The end goal, you see, is that everyone buys their books from Amazon, even if they're not willing to invest in the Kindle hardware itself.
What becomes clear, though, the closer you look, is that the Kindle software Amazon provides for third-party hardware is universally less full-featured than what one can do on a Kindle proper. Is that by design? Certainly. We'll delve into that a little later on. In the meantime, let's start by taking a look at Amazon's various kindle apps by order of release.The platforms
Apple iPhone/iPod Touch (March 2009) The iPhone and iPod Touch Kindle application (download) was the first of Amazon's efforts to offer Kindle users a way to read their books on something other than a Kindle device. Amazon released it about a year and a half after the launch of the first Kindle hardware, and just a month after the launch of the second-generation device.
At launch it wasn't the first e-book-reading software for the iPhone platform, nor was it the best. Competitor Stanza, which Amazon ended up acquiring just a month later, offered far more features as a reader, though it was missing a first-party sales library and a way to sync reading sessions, and titles between devices.
For iPhone and Kindle users alike, the release of this software was a big deal, since they could get all their purchased books synced to their iPhone or iPod without having to pay extra. And not so secretly, Amazon was hoping the app would act something like a gateway drug to get users to buy the Kindle hardware in order to get a fuller reading experience.
One problem that was apparent at the release of the iPhone app, and that still exists today, is that you cannot actually purchase books from within the app. Instead, it kicks you out to Safari to browse and purchase. As we go on you'll find this is a bit of a pattern.
Windows (November 2009) Amazon released the PC version (download) of its Kindle reader software to users in early November 2009. Like the iPhone iteration, it did something the Kindle hardware itself could not do, which was display illustrations and digital publications in full color. It also had the rather obvious benefit of being able to use whatever peripherals were attached to your computer, like the mouse and keyboard to turn pages and adjust various options.… Read more
With slightly upgraded processor (still a Core 2 Duo) and a new version of Nvidia's high-end integrated graphics, the differences between the non-Pro and Pro versions of Apple's 13-inch laptops are slimmer than ever.
In fact, as neither system has discrete graphics, nor a CPU from Intel's newer Core i5/i7 range, the main points of differentiation appear to be the plastic vs. metal chassis, 2GB vs 4GB of RAM, and the lack … Read more
Apple on Tuesday updated its consumer-level MacBook, adding a faster Intel processor and longer battery life.
As expected, the new notebook features a 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor and the Nvidia GeForce 320M graphics card, the newest mobile card from the company.
It also boasts a battery life of 10 hours, up from 7 hours in the previous model.
Like its predecessor, the new Macbook has 2GB of memory, a 250GB hard drive, and a double-layer SuperDrive.
The previous-generation MacBook had a 2.26GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor and used Nvidia's GeForce 9400M graphics card.
There … Read more
New to Mac? Don't worry, MacFixIt is taking it back to basics, starting with System Preferences and moving throughout Apple's Mac OS X and the iLife and iWork application suites. This edition of Mac Basics sorts out the preferences you can change regarding your Mac's appearance.… Read more
Our Weekly Utilities Update report is a list of all the updates for many Mac utilities that have been released in the past week. Though utilities can be any tool that helps you perform a routine task (including image manipulation and synchronization), our focus in this column is to bring you those tools that help in troubleshooting Mac hardware and software problems. This week we have updates for graphics and display management utilities, disk and file management and recovery utilities, as well as a few small updates to maintenance utilities.… Read more