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Yeah, she's a beauty, but that price tag sure gives us pause. Google introduced its latest attempt to deflate the MacBook Air on Thursday, and the Chromebook Pixel is now on sale for anyone with $1299 burning a hole in their pocket. We figure Chrome OS still isn't mature enough to drop that kind of dough on, especially when a similarly-spec'ed MacBook Air can be had for less, but read on to find out more...
9to5Mac is reporting that developers received a new iOS 6 beta on Thursday afternoon in the form of iOS 6.1.3 Beta 2. For those keeping score, Apple completely skipped over a beta for the recently-released iOS 6.1.2, but the good news is that this build reportedly eliminates the lock screen security flaw that we reported about last week. The only other known enhancement is a Maps app fix for Japan, and there's always the possibility Apple may curb the hackers' fun by plugging exploits used for the recent jailbreaks -- but that will be up to the hackers to determine.
Are you sitting down? You might want to be when you read what Google is up to now. The search giant announced its latest attempt at a notebook computer on Thursday with what it calls the Chromebook Pixel, a $1299 contender to the MacBook Air's throne now available for purchase on Google Play and coming soon to BestBuy.com. And that's not all: If you want more than Wi-Fi connectivity, you'll have to up another $150 for the LTE-equipped version. Keep in mind this thing runs Chrome OS, which is Google's answer cloud-based computing -- while you'll receive 1TB of Google Drive storage with the Chromebook Pixel, there's only 32GB of onboard storage. But hey, the 12.85-inch 2560 x 1700 multitouch screen at 239 PPI is surely worth that kind of dough… isn't it…?
Let's get this out of the way right up front: We pretty much hate this kind of "leaked outer casing" rumors, especially for a device like the iPad mini which is unlikely to change significantly between the first and second generation. Be that as it may, MacRumors is reporting that photos have turned up online of what claim to be the rear shell of a second-generation iPad mini. The only real item of note here is that it's a bit thicker than the existing iPad mini, which immediately leads to speculation that Apple will be bringing its Retina Display technology to the 2013 model. For what it's worth, the photos could simply be lame spy shots from the currently available model -- but have a look and you be the judge.
Thursday is a great day for free apps, mainly because Apple offers a new one each week as part of its Free App of the Week promotion. This week's entry is a doozy, mainly because we can't recall it ever being available free before. PopCap's Plants vs. Zombies is now available in separate iPhone/iPod touch and iPad editions, all yours for the taking until the next title lands in the App Store come next Thursday. Do be quick about it, won't you…?
Reuters reported late Thursday that NBC Universal's NBC.com website is now safe to visit following "a security scare prompted by reports that it was infected with malicious software designed for banking fraud and cyber espionage." According to the company, "a problem was identified and it has been fixed," but a spokeswoman declined to elaborate on exactly how severe the problem was in the first place. The scare was prompted by Dutch security firm SurfRight, who claimed NBC.com had been infested by the Citadel and ZeroAccess viruses commonly used in banking fraud and other computer crimes.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter