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There’s a lot of pocket-themed news today as “read later” service Read It Later rebrands itself as simply Pocket, and Pedia software developer Bruji finally makes a long-awaited return to the App Store with Pocketpedia 3. No, these two “pockets” don’t have anything to do with each other, but they’re cool apps that we love, so suck it up and read on for the details in our Tuesday, April 17, 2012 edition.
“Read later” services are on the rise, but it seems as if they’ll need to mix up their product offerings a bit to draw attention. Such is the case with Read It Later, the aptly named cross-platform service which today tossed aside its legacy and rebranded as Pocket. The service has eliminated their paid app for iOS and Android, making it free to all takers while adding “a cleaner, lighter reading and viewing experience.” That’s right, the move to Pocket has largely been motivated by the recent disclosure that many users were using Read It Later to save video content as much as websites for later reading, and the developers have responded accordingly. Existing Read It Later logins will continue to work just fine in Pocket, and the app features a slick new UI with the option to present stories in an eye-pleasing grid view in addition to the traditional list view. Existing users can step up to the Pocket app by checking for updates in the App Store; for everyone else, the 6.1MB download is available free of charge right now.
It seems nothing can stop Verizon Wireless from 4G LTE domination across the United States. The Big Red carrier today announced that they’ll be lighting up an additional 27 new markets on April 19, and that’s on top of 44 existing markets that will be getting expanded LTE service at the same time. That puts the number of 4G LTE cities at 230 this week, covering more than two-thirds of the U.S. population and absolutely smoking AT&T’s current total, which stands at 32 at this writing. Verizon offers more than 20 4G LTE-enabled devices for its network, including the new iPad. Can an LTE iPhone be far behind? We think not. Be sure to hit the link to see if your region is getting bombarded with 4G LTE this week.
The kids love White Stripes, and frontman Jack White in particular. As you probably already know, White is about to debut his first solo effort entitled Blunderbuss, and fans can spin the entire album free for a limited time thanks to iTunes. “After spending years reworking the rock ’n’ roll foundation with The White Stripes, The Raconteurs and The Dead Weather, White has crafted his first statement as a solo artist,” the iTunes page reads. “And yes, it rocks. Listen to the whole album for free right here. Then pre-order Blunderbuss and the track ‘Sixteen Saltines’ will download immediately.” The full album lands on April 24 and can be preordered for a mere $10.99 -- but we don’t have to tell you that, we probably had you sold with the mere mention of the man’s name...
If you have a large collection of DVDs, books, CDs or video games, you’ve no doubt discovered Bruji’s excellent Pedia apps for the Mac (aptly named DVDpedia, Bookpedia, CDpedia and Gamepedia, respectively). While these apps keep great track of your collection while at home, having them available while on the go has required a lot of work -- until now. Bruji today introduced Pocketpedia 3, its third attempt at an iOS client for syncing your desktop libraries to the iPhone. The first two versions were unfortunately sidelined by Amazon.com, which Bruji previously used to pull content data into its apps. The new Pocketpedia -- as well as the Mac Pedias themselves -- now retrieve this data from their open source library called Doghouse, which users can contribute to by sharing their own libraries. Even better, Pocketpedia 3 is now a universal app with native iPad support, Address Book integration and Retina Display graphics. New collections can be added from the iOS app, which then sync back to the Mac version along with entries marked as borrowed, returned or bought. Finally, the new iOS app is only $2.99 for the first week, so head to the App Store and grab it while you can.
Could there be a light at the end of the patent war tunnel? According to The Verge, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh has sent attorneys for Apple and Samsung into mediation, where they’ll have 90 days to hammer out “the possibility of a settlement.” These talks will also include the respective CEOs for both companies -- Tim Cook in Apple’s case, Choi Gee-sung in Samsung’s. Should the mediation fail to stick, the rival companies will be forced to “submit a streamlined version of their claims and defenses” and we’ll all be back for another round. Settlements have been rumored over the last few weeks, so it will be interesting to see what the two companies can come up with once they’re locked away outside of the courtroom.
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