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Christmas is just a week away now, and it seems tech companies are having their elves work overtime in order to push out new products before the App Store shuts down for the holidays. There are even a few good deals to be found within today's news recap, especially if you're in the market for inexpensive cloud storage or unlimited streaming music over the holiday break.
Apple spent Monday afternoon pushing out a trio of updates for its latest Mac computers. First up is Mac Wi-Fi Update 1.0, a recommended patch for all late 2012 Mac models which "improves compatibility when using the 5GHz band in Wi-Fi." Next up is the iMac EFI Update 2.0 for the company's latest late 2012 iMacs, with "general performance fixes pertaining to sleep and Thunderbolt," and also rolls in the aforementioned Wi-Fi update as well. Last but certainly not least is MacBook Pro Retina EFI Update v1.1, which is targeted strictly at late 2012 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display models. "This update improves sleep performance, enhances Thunderbolt router support, fixes an HDMI display issue, and improves compatibility when using the 5GHz band in Wi-Fi," the brief release notes read. The updates can be found in the Mac App Store or by clicking the links above to download them directly.
Quality: It's what most developers strive for, and Camera+ maker tap tap tap continues to achieve, most recently with Monday's update to its camera replacement app. Indeed, the 3.7 update (which is actually 1.2 for iPad) introduces a new Quality setting, adding High to the Normal and Optimized options. This setting affects how images are shot, shared and saved, but the extra quality does come with a cost -- namely slower performance and larger photo sizes. But if you have a current iOS device with plenty of storage, this may be the setting for you. The developer has also bumped up the quality of shared images sent via the Twitter, Message and Web Link options, so even if you opt not to go for High Quality, you'll be getting some improvements automatically. The latest Camera+ update is now available as a free update for existing users.
iOS 6.1 took another baby step toward release on Monday, as 9to5Mac reported a fourth beta has been seeded to developers. Weighing in at 98.9MB, the over-the-air iOS 6.1 Beta 4 update arrives alongside a new preview of Xcode 4.6 as well as an updated Apple TV beta, which should keep developers busy over the holiday break getting their apps ready for the latest and greatest version.
Since Spotify washed ashore on American soil, we don't hear much about Rhapsody, the original music streaming service. But the company hasn't been sitting idly by doing nothing -- on Monday, Rhapsody announced a new version of their iOS app which now supports the iPad and iPad mini, and even serves up an extended risk-free trial to keep streaming music lovers rockin' through the holidays. "Our customers are going to be big fans of the latest tablet additions to Rhapsody’s growing product suite,” said Paul Springer, senior vice president, worldwide product and design. “Rhapsody has never looked or sounded better. We built this app from the ground up optimizing for speed, reliability and an effortless discovery experience for our members. We obsessed -- and will continue to obsess -- over making this the best way to enjoy music on your iPad, whether you listen through the internal speakers, headphones or external speakers using our Airplay and Bluetooth integration.” Rhapsody for iPad 3.0 is a separate 12.9MB download, and the free app requires iOS 5.1 or later.
Cloud storage service Cubby has been in beta for a good while now, and developer LogMeIn has kept mum on exactly what the service will cost when it finally exits closed testing. That is, until this week -- Cubby has now slapped a price tag on its service, starting at $3.99 per month for a single user with 100GB of cloud storage when prepaid annually ($47.88). That's actually a special 40 percent off beta price, so you'll want to grab it now -- the price jumps up to $6.99 per month for 100GB when the service leaves beta, and there are plenty of other options available, including a whopping 1TB for $39.90 per month -- take that, Dropbox!
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter