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iOS 4.3Get ready to sync your iPhones, iPads, and iPods. Apple's iOS 4.3 is will reportedly launch today, according to Boy Genius Report.

At Apple's iPad 2 reveal last week, CEO Steve Jobs said iOS 4.3 would be available for download on March 11, the same day the updated iPad goes on sale. But according to BGR, Apple will release the newest version of its mobile operating system at around 1 p.m. EST today.

The update brings a variety of new features, including enhanced Safari performance, iTunes home sharing, AirPlay improvements, slider switch rotation, and a personal hotspot for the iPhone 4. Apple iOS 4.3 will support all iPads, third- and fourth-generation iPod touch, iPhone 4, and iPhone 3GS.

Click to continue reading Apple may release iOS 4.3 today


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Jack LondonI met Christopher Golden on the convention circuit back in the go-go 1990s. I was so impressed by our 5-minute-in-the-aisle conversation that, after the con, I wandered over to my local bookstore (you could still do that back in those days) and grabbed a copy of a book of his called Of Saints And Shadows. It was a vampire novel, long before everyone and his institutionalized grandmother starting writing about them.

I took it with me on a camping trip and it proceeded to scare the crap out of me. It was well-written, very scary, had great dialogue and Golden kept the story moving and kept raising the stakes until the breathless end. I was impressed and even more, I was hooked, but never again would I take a horror novel on a camping trip.

Since then, Golden has written quite a number of terrific novels and lots of comic books as well (Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Dr. Fate and Baltimore: The Plague Ships).

Now he's got a new book out - the first in a series - called The Secret Journeys of Jack London: Book One: The Wild. Golden co-wrote it with Tim Lebbon and there are illustrations by Greg Ruth. You can read an interview with the guys at Golden's website.


Verizon iPhone slow

When it comes to data speeds, one research group claims that the AT&T iPhone 4 is a nosehair faster than Verizon's iPhone.

Downloading data with the AT&T iPhone, which runs on a 3G HSPDA network, is twice as fast as downloads with the Verizon iPhone, which runs on EVDO, according to mobile research firm Metrico Wireless. But the average load time for an "average Web page" is the same on both devices.

When the iPhone user is on the move, AT&T's iPhone completed "around 10 percent more data download sessions than the Verizon iPhone. The opposite was true when the iPhone was stationary," Metrico found.

"There are many factors that determine Web performance. Speed isn't the only one," a Metrico spokeswoman said. "There's also OS trends, rendering time, latency on the network, etc. This report's findings are based on a standardized average Web page. Larger Web pages may offer different results."

Click to continue reading AT&T iPhone download speeds beat Verizon


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RIM might be close to making its tablet debut with its upcoming Playbook, but there's one thing that won't be accompanying this device to the market: an ongoing chief marketing officer.

A spokeswoman for RIM told PCMag that chief marketing officer Keith Pardy was leaving "for personal reasons," as first reported in the Wall Street Journal last Friday.

Pardy will continue working at RIM for six months to help with the transition. Furthermore, Pardy shared the news internally a month ago.

RIM poached Pardy from Nokia in late 2009. The departure now leaves RIM without an executive on top mere weeks before the company is expected to launch its flagship Playbook table—either in late March or early April, depending on which batch of rumors you subscribe to. However, according to IHS iSuppli analyst Rhoda Alexander, the executive departure isn't likely to affect the Playbook's launch.

Click to continue reading RIM chief marketing officer leaves right before Playbook launch


Target iPad 2The Apple iPad 2 will be sold in Target stores starting March 11, according to the retailer's Twitter account and an ad on Target.com.

"The #iPad2 is coming to @Target stores! Get yours on launch day - 3/11/11" wrote @Target. An ad on Target's web site also said the tablets would be available in-store starting Friday.

A Target spokeswoman did not have any more details at press time.

Last Thursday Best Buy also announced that it will start selling the iPad 2 on March 11; there are also rumors that the reseller is giving free iPad 2s to all its sales associates.

Click to continue reading Target will sell iPad 2 on March 11


bulletstorm sale

Just a quick Deal of the Day heads up for the gamers out there - Amazon has Bulletstorm for 33% off today only - a great game at $20 off, and you'll get guaranteed access into the Gears of War 3 multiplayer beta to boot. Not a bad deal at all.

Don’t forget, if you’re looking for other deals, be sure to check out our Newegg Promo Code thread.


The space shuttle Discovery undocked from the International Space Station for the last time this morning and started its two-day journey back to the Kennedy Space Center.

The shuttle fired its jets to separate from the ISS at 8:37am Eastern, NASA said. Discovery is scheduled to land at 11:58am on Wednesday; at this point, weather conditions are favorable.

Overall, the astronauts engaged in seven days, 23 hours, and 55 minutes worth of joint activities with the ISS crew. This is Discovery's 39th and final mission.

The crew received a special wake-up call at 3:23am this morning: the theme from "Star Trek" and a recorded message from actor William Shatner. "Space, the final frontier. These have been the voyages of the Space Shuttle Discovery. Her 30 year mission: To seek out new science. To build new outposts. To bring nations together on the final frontier. To boldly go, and do, what no spacecraft has done before," Shatner said.

Click to continue reading Discovery leaves International Space Station for the last time


iPhone 5

Now that Apple has announced the iPad 2, you can count on months of rumors leading up to a probable summer release of a fifth-generation iPhone. The most recent tidbits suggest that the next version of the device will replace the glass back with an aluminum that is similar to the original iPhone.

Macotakara translated a story that first appeared in Taiwan's Economic Daily News which said complaints of scratching and difficulty painting the glass back prompted Apple to make this change. Additionally, the report said that the weight of the glass added to Apple's rethinking of the back design.

Apple will also abandon the external steel frame that works as the iPhone 4's antenna, according to the report. The external antenna led to a wealth of bad press for Apple when it was revealed that holding the phone in way that covers the anetnna, dubbed the "death grip," could interfere with wireless signals.

Click to continue reading iPhone 5 to pick up metal back, new antenna?


Twitter DickBar

Twitter users are up in arms over the Twitter Quick Bar, which pundit John Gruber termed the "Dickbar" after Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, a forced trending topics bar appearing at the top of the new iPhone Twitter client. To some extent, this is just whining—there are so many Twitter clients out there, it's easy to find one with the layout you prefer. But it also shows the bigger problem with Twitter's trending topics, which the service has managed very poorly since it became a mass medium.

Real estate is precious on small phone screens, and users demand that every pixel be spent on something relevant. People are willing to make an exception for ads on free apps; after all, developers need to pay the bills. But the trending topics tend to spotlight micro-communities that don't overlap much with each other. As an optional means of discovery, they're mildly interesting. Forced upon us, they bombard us with irrelevant data that breaks down our carefully constructed social-networking comfort zones.

Twitter started out, years ago, as a social service for a common techno-clique who all attended the South by Southwest music conference, so trending topics made sense. But since then, it's expanded and fragmented into a mass medium made up of non-overlapping micro-communities. Everybody uses Twitter differently, but almost everybody consciously or unconsciously cultivates their feed. The trending topics are like a loud stranger wandering into your invitation-only party.

The Quick Bar is really about advertising, of course. Twitter is trying to make money off "promoted topics" for movies and consumer products. But I don't think that's the source of the real anger here. Most people see ads as a necessary evil so we can get free stuff. But we don't understand why our screens are full of jibber-jabber about Brazilian TV presenters.

Click to continue reading Why the Twitter Quick Bar (DickBar) is a bad move


iPad 2 questions

You have to hand it to Apple CEO Steve Jobs. No matter how ill he may be, his showmanship and stage presence remain undimmed. So much so that it took, as it often does, days for the euphoria of the iPad 2 unveiling to wear off. As that happened, though, I, like others, started to have these little, "Hey, wait a minute…" moments. And from there, the inevitable questions about the latest magical device from Apple started piling up. Here are the ones I've been considering or hearing from others. Fortunately, I think we have answers for virtually all of them.

Why No Memory Specs?
Apple's busy touting the iPad 2's huge performance increase (over the original), which comes courtesy of the A5 chip. That makes sense, a dual-core processor should beat the pants off a single core CPU. However, as with any computer, the CPU is only part of the performance story. What's the easiest way to increase system performance? Add memory. We know that the first-generation iPad has 256MB of RAM, but Apple isn't saying how much is in the iPad 2. "More" seems like a reasonable guess.

Why No 4G?
Apple's new best friend, Verizon, has a brand-new LTE network, but you won't find 4G on the new Verizon iPhone 4 or the latest-gen iPad. Why is that? Price is one reason: Adding a 4G radio would certainly have increased the price on the top-of-the line iPad 2. Also, Apple pays pretty close attention to the market and early market research indicated that almost 50 percent of potential iPad buyers were picking up a Wi-Fi-only model (Apple does not break out Wi-Fi-only iPad sales figures). I have a 3G-ready iPad, but I've never activated the service (I find ample Wi-Fi access almost everywhere I use my iPad). I suspect that's a common scenario. If a good percentage of iPad owners aren't using 3G—even when they have it—why would Apple jump to introduce 4G?

Click to continue reading 10 iPad 2 questions answered


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