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Want to change the format and location of your OS X screenshots? It’s pretty simple. Just open Terminal and enter a few commands.

defaults write com.apple.screencapture location ~/Pictures

That will place your screenshots into your pictures directory.

defaults write com.apple.screencapture type jpg

This changes the default format from .png to .jpg.

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In a 2014 product roadmap that outlines all of Apple’s plans for the year, KGI Securities analyst Ming Chi Kuo revealed his predictions for Apple’s much-rumored iWatch, which may ship as soon as the third quarter of 2014. 

According to Kuo, the iWatch will come in two separate sizes to accommodate different sized wrists: 1.3 inches and 1.5 inches. Multiple sizes for the device were first predicted in late 2013, though the original rumor pointed towards displays of 1.3 and 1.7 inches. Both watches will include flexible AMOLED displays with sapphire covers to protect the device from scratches. 

Along with a multitude of biometric sensors, coupled in a system-in-a-package design, Kuo predicts the iWatch will include integration with the iPhone, iPad, and Mac, along with a “fashionable appearance,” an NFC chip, and a slim and light design.

Traditional watch-style iWatch concept by Gábor Balogh

"We are confident on Apple’s ability to make wearable devices with good fashion sense, which sets Apple apart from rivals."

Kuo believes many of the iWatch’s mechanical parts may be constructed using liquid metal and that it may include an “innovative” antenna design that allows for wireless charging functionality

Battery life has been a major challenge for Apple when it comes to iWatch development and Kuo forecasts a 200 to 250mAh battery for the device that will provide at least a one day of operating power. Earlier reports have suggested the company is aiming for three to four days of battery life, however, and Kuo does note that the battery will be longer than “most wearable devices” due to the company’s “vertically integrated operating system and key components.” 

Kuo suggests Apple will release the iWatch at multiple price points and in a variety of materials, competing with low and high-end watches alike. At the high end, Kuo suggests Apple’s iWatch could sell for thousands of dollars.

"Fashion is the name of the game; most expensive model likely priced at several thousand US dollars. Referring to the rules of the fashion market, we predict the iWatch casing and band will come in various materials. The most expensive model of the iWatch line will carry a price tag of several thousand US dollars.”

Apple’s iWatch is not expected until the end of the year, but Kuo believes it will be the most important product of 2014, outshining even the iPhone 6. He is estimating shipments of 5.5 million units in 2014, which will rise to 30 to 50 million units in 2015.

Source: macrumors.com
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Earlier this week, a report suggested Apple was planning a “dramatic overhaul” of its iTunes Music store to combat declining music downloads, which could include an on-demand streaming music service and an Android version of iTunes. 

Apple may also be planning to add high resolution audio downloads to iTunes as part of the revamp, allowing users to download lossless 24-bit audio files. According to music blogger Robert Hutton, who cites an unspecified source, Apple is going to roll out hi-res iTunes music downloads in early June, possibly at WWDC.

"For several years, Apple have been insisting that labels provide files for iTunes in 24 bit format - preferably 96k or 192k sampling rate. So they have undeniably the biggest catalog of hi-res audio in the world. 

And the Led Zeppelin remasters in high resolution will be the kick off event - to coincide with Led Zep in hi-res, Apple will flip the switch and launch their hi-res store via iTunes - and apparently, it will be priced a buck above the typical current file prices. 

That’s right - Apple will launch hi-res iTunes in two months.”

Apple has been working on offering music in a 24-bit format for several years, with a 2011 report suggesting the company was in talks with record labels to increase the quality of iTunes Music. Currently, Apple sells audio files on iTunes in 16-bit lossy AAC format encoded at 256 kbps to minimize file size. 

High-definition 24-bit downloads are said to offer better detail, greater depth, and a deeper bass response compared to traditional 16-bit music downloads, but the file sizes are much larger. 

Though Apple only offers 16-bit audio files at present, the company does encourage artists to submit music in a 24-bit 96kHz resolution, which it uses to “create more accurate encodes.” Apple accepts the audio files as part of its Mastered for iTunes program, an initiative that has produced higher quality music for the iTunes Store. Because Apple has already accepted 24-bit files for years, it does, presumably, have a large catalog of high quality audio files that could be offered for sale, reportedly at a premium of $1 over traditional iTunes tracks. 

Hi-res audio has been gaining popularity in recent years, with music sites such as HDtrackssecuring deals with multiple major record labels. Recently, musician and song writer Neil Young launched a Kickstarter project for the PonoPlayer, a $399 digital music player designed to play high resolution audio files. 

Thus far, the project has earned over $5.7 million, suggesting there is indeed a sizable demand for hi-res audio. Should Apple choose to begin selling 24-bit audio tracks, it could quickly dominate competing sites given its existing user base and boost its digital downloads by appealing to audiophiles unhappy with the current quality of iTunes tracks.

Source: macrumors.com
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Apple today released a statement to Re/code confirming that iOS, OS X and “key web services” were unaffected by the widely publicized security flaw known as Heartbleedwhich was disclosed earlier this week.

“Apple takes security very seriously. iOS and OS X never incorporated the vulnerable software and key web-based services were not affected,” an Apple spokesperson told Re/code.

Heartbleed was a security flaw in the popular open-source software OpenSSL which helps provide secure connections between clients and servers. Due the ubiquity of OpenSSL, Heartbleed is believed to have affected approximately 66% of the internet

Security blogger Bruce Schneier describes the issue as “catastrophic” and on “the scale of 1 to 10, this is an 11.” The flaw allowed servers to leak server memory to a malicious attacker, allowing hackers to extract login/password and other private data from a server. Users are recommended to change their passwords on all services that may have been affected. Mashable provides a list of services where you should change your password. Fortunately, MacRumors Forums were unaffected by the security flaw.

Source: macrumors.com
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Amazon is gearing up to release its long-rumored smartphone later this year to directly compete with offerings from Apple and Samsung, reports The Wall Street Journal. According to the report, the company has been showing off prototypes of its handsets to developers in San Francisco and Seattle in recent weeks, with Amazon likely announcing the phone by the end of June and launching it by the end of September.

"The people said Amazon hopes to distinguish its phone in a crowded market with a screen capable of displaying seemingly three-dimensional images without special glasses, these people said. They said the phone would employ retina-tracking technology embedded in four front-facing cameras, or sensors, to make some images appear to be 3-D, similar to a hologram, the people said."

Rumors of the phone first surfaced in July of 2012, where it was reported that the company was working with Foxconn on the device. Last May, another report noted that the smartphone would join other products to complement Amazon’s popular line of Kindle tablets and E-readers. 

The news comes as Apple is expected to ship its next-generation iPhone later this year, which may come in two different sizes: 4.7 inches and 5.5 inches. Recent reports have noted that the 4.7 inch version will ship in the third quarter of 2014, while the larger version may ship later due to production issues. 

Along with a larger screen, both models of the iPhone 6 are expected to include a faster A8 processor, Touch ID fingerprint sensor, 1GB of RAM, and camera improvements in the form of optical image stabilization.

Source: macrumors.com
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After a disastrous Windows 8 launch that saw Microsoft embrace a new tiled user interface, the company announced today that it’s backpedaling and resurrecting popular Windows 7 features like the Start Menu.

Twitter was abuzz with the news of Start Menus with the majority of tweets cheering the return, but after closer inspection of the Franken-hyrbid interface we think they should have left it to rot in a tomb.

You can get a close-up of the prototype Start Menu Microsoft showed off to journos at Build today over at the Verge but it’s similar to the Windows 7 feature with a whole lot of tiles thrown on top.

To make the menu touch-friendly, the area has tripled in size to accommodate more touch tiles which also adds more clutter and distractions.  Windows 8.1 will also bring back windows so you don’t have to monotask in one app, and like iOS, it’ll be free for devices 9-inches and smaller.

After going balls to the wall on touch with Windows 8, Microsoft is now in an odd position of trying to find a balance between mouse-users and touch devices. We’ll see how users respond when 8.1 is released on April 8th, but what we’ve seen so far makes Apple’s decision not to merge iOS and OS X yet seem quite sensible after all.

Source: cultofmac.com
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The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 51 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we primarily cover integrated camera windows in Apple iDevices, the MacBook Pro’s unibody design and a possible future 3D remote controller for Apple TV. While we may not be getting an Apple centric HDTV anytime soon, perhaps we could look forward to Apple’s 3D remote on the horizon. Only time will tell if that’s just wishful thinking or not. And as usual, we wrap up this week’s granted patent report series with our traditional listing of the remaining granted patents that were issued to Apple today.

Click here to view all the patents.

Source: patentlyapple.com
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Spotify seems to have solved one major problem with its apps. Until now, the music streaming service has been focussed on playlists, forcing you to organize your music in order to “save” it for later.

Compare this to Rdio, which concentrates on albums and songs, letting your save them to an iTunes-like collection.

Spotify now offers “Your Music,” which is pretty much a copy of Rdio’s collections, and is a very welcome addition.

"It’s Your Music collection. Save albums and browse their beautiful cover art, gather your favourite artists and create playlists for every mood and moment. Found a song or album that you like? Just hit save to add it to your collection. It’s that simple."

This big change in philosophy is somewhat obscured by the new dark-themed makeover for the apps, which is nice nut not really an improvement – it just looks different.

Source: cultofmac.com
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HAPPY BIRTHDAY iPAD. FOUR AND ALL GROWN UP.

The iPad is four years old today and my mom hates it. Maybe not hate. Dislikes. Loathes. I don’t know the right word but for two weeks it sat in Apple’s pristine white box, unwrapped, unlocked, setup and then discarded; snuggling in its brown leather SmartCover completely untouched.

After dismissing it as “just a big iPhone” it’s grown on her in four months, just like it’s grown on us since 2010. Now it’s the only place she watches YouTube, looks at pictures, reads websites, FaceTimes and gets down on Solitaire like Kim Jong-un at a nuclear buffet.

It’s the best damn thing to ever happen for children with tech-illiterate parents.

Since its introduction on April 3rd 2010, Apple has gone on to sell nearly 200 million iPads. Cupertino quickly made tablets cool – something Microsoft failed to do for years – and spat out five generations of the device over four years, plus expanded with the iPad mini lineup.

Everyone from Obama to Nicole Kidman, Lindsay Lohan to Vanilla Ice, has been spotted using one but its appeal isn’t just glitz and hype. It’s the utter simplicity of the hardware and software. It’s almost too easy-to-use, which makes it feel nothing like a “computer” at all.

iPad spread through schools like a mutant winter flu, capturing 94% of the education market by the end of 2013, but make no mistake, it is popular with parents too. Nearly 80% of U.S. tablet users are armed with iPads, probably because just like mom they’ve realized you can do everything on it if you want to, and you don’t have to be a geek to figure it out.

Thanks to the iPad, my family and friend tech support requests numbers have plummeted lower than Justin Bieber’s pants. Obscure cousins no longer text for help trying to rip DVDs into MP4s now that Duck Dynasty can be streamed from the cloud.  Gone too are the complaints from parents that a virus or something worse must’ve been downloaded and now I can’t use Pandora or Yahoo Chat or play Bejeweled.

Apple isn’t the only one benefiting from iPads’ popularity as tablets outsold PCs 4 to 1 last year, but fueled by competition, iPad has been gotten increasingly thinner and lighter while also adding Retina displays, bigger batteries and 64-bit processors for better production.

In four quick years iPad created entirely new industries, put others on the endangered list, and invaded our culture. And even though we still laugh at people like Spike Lee who use it as a camera in public, my mom’s most intimate moments playing with her grandson as he battles cancer, have been captured using nothing but iPad.

She swears the iPad is probably just a waste of money, but when I stop by to visit and spot her swiping through her Photo Stream, I know she’s lying.

Source: cultofmac.com