Sunday, February 27, 2011

Why Didn’t the New 13-inch MacBook Pro Get a Higher Resolution Screen?

By Ray Nicolini

There's no question that the new MacBook Pros are blazingly awesome. The whole line has been rejuvenated with Sandy Bridge processors, better graphics and a lightning fast Thunderbolt I/O port. But one thing has been bothering us about the update, or rather, lack of update: The 13-inch MacBook Pro still has a lower resolution screen. There's not even an option for a higher-res screen, like the 15-inch Pro.

Why is the 13-inch Macbook Pro still stuck with a worse screen than the 13-inch MacBook Air?
It doesn't seem to be an aspect ratio problem, the 13-inch MacBook Pro has a native resolution of 1280 by 800 at a 16:10 aspect ratio. The beautifully high resolution screen of the 13-inch MacBook Air has a native resolution of 1440x900 which is, yup, also 16:10 (and the same resolution as the stock 15-inch MBP). We can't imagine Apple needing to use leftover displays because of an over-order from component companies either. They're too competent and agile for that kind of mistake. And finally, updating an LCD panel doesn't seem too hard—it's arguably as easy as updating any of the other internals.
So...what happened? Are they saving it for a future re-design? That seems to be the most obvious reason, since everything else on the Pros, except for the hot new chips and Thunderbolt (which even uses the same hole in the chassis as the old Mini DisplayPort), is exactly the same. But we don't know.
We'd love to hear from you guys on this. If you have ideas on why there's no high resolution screen for the 13-inch MacBook Pro or hell, even a high resolution resolution screen option, please leave a comment or e-mail me here. If you have facts on why this couldn't happen or any sort of evidence, we'd really love to talk to you.

BlackBerry & Smartphone Manners and the Rising Popularity of the Lack Thereof

A friend of mine has terrible BlackBerry etiquette. When I’m talking to him and he gets a message, he checks it immediately without warning or excusing himself. He continues the nodding and the ‘uh-huh’s, and ‘ok’s, but I know he’s not really listening. I know because I’ve tested him on many occasions. On one such occasion I threw a request for a large sum of money into what I was saying. He predictably answered with his usual ok. He settled for buying me lunch.
With the increasing popularity of smartphones, people are giving in to the urge to check email, Twitter, Facebook and sports scores, among other things at inappropriate times. But who decides what time is an inappropriate time?
Let’s take meetings as an example. Traditionalists would tell you that any use of a BlackBerry in a meeting would be as tactless as dancing naked on the boardroom table. On the other hand, Techno-evangelists would argue that not answering important texts and emails instantly can be bad for business.
Some organizations have banned BlackBerrys in meetings altogether. Others encourage people to bring them for reasons like: reduced paper usage, increased in-meeting creativity and relaxed atmosphere. Most companies do not have rules on BlackBerrys in meetings. This means employees are left to figure out for themselves what is permitted. Dangerous territory if you ask me.
Alex Williams of the New York Times explains how some people have interpreted BlackBerry etiquette.
o Jason Chan, a digital-strategy consultant in Manhattan, different rules apply for in-house meetings (where checking BlackBerrys seems an expression of informal collegiality) and those with clients, where the habit is likely to offend. There is safety in numbers, he added in an e-mail message: “The acceptability of checking devices is proportional to the number of people attending the meeting. The more people there are, the less noticeable your typing will be.”
eyond practical considerations, there is also the issue of image. In many professional circles, where connections are power, making a show of reaching out to those connections even as co-workers are presenting a spreadsheet presentation seems to have become a kind of workplace boast.
r. Brotherton, the consultant, wrote in an e-mail message that it was customary now for professionals to lay BlackBerrys or iPhones on a conference table before a meeting — like gunfighters placing their Colt revolvers on the card tables in a saloon. “It’s a not-so-subtle way of signaling ‘I’m connected. I’m busy. I’m important. And if this meeting doesn’t hold my interest, I’ve got 10 other things I can do instead.’ ”
So which side do you take? Traditionalist or Techno-evangelist?
Source: NY Times

Images Of Facebook For BlackBerry Version 2.0 Leaked! Facebook Chat Included?

By Ray Nicolini

Images Of Facebook For BlackBerry Version 2.0 Leaked! Facebook Chat Included!?
RIM’s Facebook for BlackBerry app has needed an overhaul for some time now and while the latest updates and leaks are nice, they leave a lot to be desired. Facebook for BlackBerry version was just leaked but it looks like a 2.0 version is, thankfully, already in the works. As you can see in the leaked screenshots above, the version 2.0 app will look a lot better and include some nice additions:
  • Facebook Chat
  • UI Refresh
  • View friends’ profile info, pages and friends lists
  • Improved core app integration
Now the question is when we can expect version 2.0 to go official, get leaked or get released as a beta in the BlackBerry Beta Zone. I’m guessing it will get leaked before anything else but  according to this leak, the official release date is set for May 2011 with a beta being officially available in March 2011. What do you think of Facebook for BlackBerry 2.0 so far?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

New MacBook Pros have better screens, better batteries? White MacBook to be discontinued?

They also claim that the 13-inch MacBook Pro will gain a 3rd USB port, a matter screen option, and an i3 processor. They also say there will be an option to replace the superdrive on the 15 and 17 inch models with another SSD drive.  Perhaps that explains the rumor from yesterday.
The new MacBook Pros are said to adopt new, higher-resolution screens: 1440×900 on the 13″, 1680×1050 on the 15″. They new notebooks will also be 200-300 grams lighter and feature better battery life (also from yesterday). 12 hours of wireless productivity on the 13 inch and 10 hours on the 15 inch.
They also claim the 17 inch MacBook Pro will be equipped with 8 GB of RAM as standard. Finally, the report says the white 13 inch MacBook will be dropped from the lineup. This makes sense with the 13 inch MacBook Airs’ current success/prices and the new 13 inch MacBook Pro.
We can’t confirm this new information but we’ll surely know all this Thursday, February 24th.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

New BlackBerry Travel App, Features and Demo Video

The next time you board a plane, train or automobile, be sure to pack the new BlackBerry Travel app, an all-in-one mobile travel service!

BlackBerry Travel enables you to search for travel options; plan and manage flight itineraries; book hotels, transportation and other activities; and tap into your social networks by connecting with friends and family while traveling – all from a single app on your BlackBerry. The app integrates with your BlackBerry email addresses to populate itineraries and send you important updates.
Whether you’re embarking on a “European Vacation” or regularly “Up in the Air,” BlackBerry Travel packs a suitcase full of helpful features:
  • Itinerary Management – View, create, and edit current and future itinerary items including flight, hotel, car rental, meetings, public transportation and more
· Automatic Trip Catch – Never manually enter an itinerary! BlackBerry Travel automatically acknowledges email itineraries sent to your BlackBerry email address and populates the details into the BlackBerry travel app
· Social Sharing – Easily view, search and connect with LinkedIn contacts traveling to the same location
  • Notifications & Alerts – Receive push-based notifications and alerts for itinerary updates, flight reminders/alerts and connections information
  • Flight Schedules – Find flight schedules by city, airport and date
  • Hotel Search & Book – Search and book hotels, and rank results based on location, price and quality
  • Local Search – Search for local dining, shopping, nightlife and more, with access to maps, reviews and click-to-call via a Yelp-powered local search tool
  • Tools – Easily access world clocks, currency converters, weather, flight status updates and maps from one app!
The BlackBerry Travel app is available as a beta download beginning today from the Test Center category on BlackBerry App World™ ( for BlackBerry smartphone users in North America, the UK and Spain.
From your BlackBerry you can download BlackBerry Travel App Here.

SocialScope Giving Out Invites to Anyone Who Signs Up!

By Ray Nicolini

socialscope SocialScope Giving Out Invites to Anyone Who Signs Up!
SocialScope, the multi social network client for BlackBerry that has been in an eternal private beta stage, has for the first time become available to anyone who wants it! They took advantage of UberTwitter’s temporary fall and is trying to become sort of a comfort to those users who can’t seem to settle for Twitter for BlackBerryand want “something more”.
I’m a fan of SocialScope and I absolutely recommend it to anyone who can get their hands on it, which used to be really hard until today! Head over and simply sign up, an invite code will be sent to your email along with the steps on how to install the app on your BlackBerry. Don’t waste a second more, hurry up!

Monday, February 14, 2011

BlackBerry Playbook - update

  • Full computing power in a tablet format
  • 1 GHz dual-core processor
  • 1 GB RAM
  • Symmetric multi-processing

  • Powerful, user-friendly QNX technology:
    It's what the World Wide Web runs on
  • Multi-processing for true multitasking
View the video demo showcasing features of the Tablet OS SDK

  • Wirelessly connect to your BlackBerry® smartphone* for real time access to:
  • Email, calendar, address book, task list and BBM™
See what Engadget has to say Keep Informed

  • Ideal for games, media, apps and everything the real Internet offers
  • Full Adobe® Flash® 10.1 enabled
  • Built-in support for HTML 5
  • No-compromise rendering of text, graphics and video
View the video demo showcasing multimedia, games and social networking.

  • 3G network access using your BlackBerry® smartphone as a modem
  • Wi-Fi® 802.11 a/b/g/n
  • Bluetooth® 2.1+EDR

  • 3 MP high-definition forward-facing camera
  • 5 MP high-definition rear-facing camera
  • Codec support for superior media playback, creation and video calling
  • 1080p HD video; H.264, MPEG4, WMV HDMI video output
  • Micro USB and Micro HDMI ports

  • Rapid development environment
  • Reliable BlackBerry Tablet OS, powered by QNX technology
  • Supports POSIX OS, SMP, Open GL, BlackBerry®, WebKit, Adobe Flash,
  • Java® and Adobe Mobile AIR
Get details on app developmentView the video demo

  • Crystal clear HD display
  • Rich stereo sound
  • Dual HD video cameras
Keep Informed

  • 7" LCD display, 1024 x 600 screen resolution
  • 0.9 lbs (400g)
  • Multi-touch capacitive screen

  • Out-of-the-box compatibility with BlackBerry® Enterprise Server
  • Seamless pairing for a secure window into your BlackBerry® smartphone
  • Corporate data access
  • Secure and manageable

* BlackBerry PlayBook can pair with BlackBerry smartphones running BlackBerry® Device Software v5 or higher