Mac News Review

9.6% Mac Market Share, Quanta to Supply New iMac, New Mac mini a Go, Macintosh at 25, and More

This Week's Apple and Desktop Mac News

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2009.01.05

PowerBook, iBook, MacBook, and other portable computing is covered in The 'Book Review. iPod, iPhone, and Apple TV news is covered in The iNews Review.

All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted.

News & Opinion

Products & Services

Software

Desktop Mac Deals

News & Opinion

Mac Market Share Grows to 9.63%

NetApplications HitsLink Operating System Market Share stats for December, 2008, show the Mac OS's market share gained nearly a full point during the month, its high-water mark for the 21st Century. Windows dropped below 90% in November 2008 and has stayed there, dropping nearly another point over the month while Linux's share remained steady below one percent and the iPhone version of OS X was up slightly.

OS Market Share, December 2008Here's the Operating System Total Market Share rundown of the significant players for December (November figures in parentheses):

  • Windows 88.68% (89.62%)
  • Mac 9.63% (8.87%)
  • Linux 0.85% (0.83%)
  • iPhone 0.44% (0.37%)

Comparing longer term, at 88.68% Windows is down more than five percentage points since May 2006 (95.09%), while the Mac OS at 9.63% has more than doubled its share over the same interval from 4.43% in May 2006 and the PowerPC version of Mac OS was actually up in December, while Linux has also more then doubled its May 2006 numbers from 0.40% to 0.85%..

OS version market share, December 2008In terms of versions:

  • Windows:
    • Windows XP 65.22% (66.31%)
    • Windows Vista 21.12% (20.45%)
    • Windows 2000 1.47% (1.56%)
    • Windows NT 0.34% (0.77%)
    • Windows 98 0.27% (0.29%)
    • Windows ME 0.16% (0.17%)
    • Windows CE 0.05% (0.05%)
  • Macintosh:
    • MacIntel 7.19% (6.51%)
    • Mac OS (Classic) 2.44% (2.35%)
    • iPhone 0.44% (0.37%)
    • iPod 0.08% (0.05%)
  • Linux 0.85% (0.83%)
Link: OS Market Share
Link: OS Market Share by Version

Browser Share

Moving on to browsers, the Firefox browser exceeded 20% share for November, and gained more ground in December, while Safari gained more than half a point of share on the month, while Internet Explorer faded more. Google's newcomer (and so far Windows-only) Chrome now has more than 1% of the browser market.

Browser market share, December 2008Browser Total Market Share:

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer - 68.15% (69.77%)
  • Firefox - 21.34% (20.78%)
  • Safari 7.93% (7.13%)
  • Chrome - 1.04% (0.83%)
  • Opera - 0.71% (0.71%)
  • Netscape - 0.57% (0.53%)
  • Mozilla - 0.08% (0.08%)
  • Opera Mini - 0.07% (0.06%)

Quanta to Supply 800,000 All-in-one PCs Monthly to Apple

DigiTimes' Joseph Tsai reports:

"The Chinese-language Economic Daily News (EDN) has cited sources inside the component supply chain as saying that Apple plans to launch a new iMac all-in-one PC in the first quarter of next year, and the company's sole manufacturing partner, Quanta Computer, is gearing up to supply monthly shipments of around 800,000 units during the first quarter of 2009."

Next-gen iMacs Due in January

AppleInsider's Katie Marsal reports:

"A new-generation of Nvidia-based iMacs are due to begin shipping out of China sometime next month, according to a new report out of the Far East.

"Citing sources within Apple's supply chain, the Chinese-language Economic Daily News reported Tuesday that the Mac maker is scheduled to 'launch a new iMac all-in-one PC in the first quarter of next year, and the company's sole manufacturing partner, Quanta Computer, is gearing up to supply monthly shipments of around 800,000 units during the first quarter of 2009.'

"The paper added that the new models will begin making their way stateside in January...."

New Mac mini Go for Launch

TUAW's Steven Sande reports:

"When it comes to the Mac mini, there are people out there who know everything there is to know . . . and now, those savvy sources are telling TUAW that they are confident a new Mac mini is set to be announced at Macworld Expo 2009 next week. While many details are still vague - we still have no idea if the dimensions of the new mini are at all different from the existing model - some details are starting to emerge...."

Is Apple Planning a 'Mac Nano?'

Fast Company's Chris Dannen says:

"A Chinese company says it's producing a case for an upcoming iPhone Nano. Bits of code inside the latest version of OS X suggest a new Mac mini. Are they one in the same?

"Apple has been mum about both rumors. But XSKN, a manufacturer of rubberized protective cases, has been right about forthcoming Apple gadgets before; the company's product line successfully predicted both the iPhone 3G and the iPod Touch. Now XSKN is selling a case for an 'iPhone Nano' that it says will have a 2.75-inch screen and no 3G wireless. Judging by XSKN's image, the iPhone Nano would look like a thicker, broader version of the current iPod Nano.

"Of course, this doesn't make sense with what we know about Apple....

"The other big Apple rumor this week is concerned with a new Mac mini, Apple's long-neglected bare-bones computer. The last time the Mac mini was updated, Barack Obama was still a long-shot senator from Illinois; many rumor sites have proclaimed the Mini dead. But MacRumors has discovered strings of code in the most recent version of OS X that refer to a Mac mini version called '3.1,' which doesn't yet exist.

"Could the new Mac mini and the 'iPhone Nano' be the same device?...."

Link:Is Apple Planning a 'Mac Nano?'

What's Missing from Apple Products?

Bare Feats' rob-ART Morgan says:

"We keep a running list of what's missing from Apple Inc. products and product line. Here's our latest of suggestions...."

Macintosh at 25: Still the Innovation Leader

CNET's Dan Farber says:

"On January 24, 1984, the Macintosh came into the world, starting the second major revolution in the personal computer industry. Steve Jobs and team took some lessons from Xerox PARC and created the first user-friendly, mass market computer....

"The 128K Mac version of the graphical user interface, with icons, fonts, folders, audio and a mouse, started a new era of computing that hasn't yet run its full course. MacPaint, MacWrite, and eventually LaserWriter, PageMaker, and Photoshop led to a revolution in desktop publishing, and AppleTalk made networking relatively simple.

"After nearly 25 years, the Macintosh and its offspring, such as the iPod and iPhone, are still leading in terms of setting the pace for innovation...."

25 Years of Mac: From Boxy Beige to Silver Sleek

Wired's Steven Levy reports:

"It's the 25th anniversary of the Apple Macintosh, but Steve Jobs' eyes are dry. At the company headquarters in Silicon Valley, where he was presenting a set of new laptops to the press last October, I mentioned the birthday to him. Jobs recoiled at any suggestion of nostalgia. 'I don't think about that,' he said. 'When I got back here in 1997, I was looking for more room, and I found an archive of old Macs and other stuff. I said, 'Get it away!' and I shipped all that shit off to Stanford. If you look backward in this business, you'll be crushed. You have to look forward.'

"Here's what's amazing about the Mac as it turns 25, a number that in computer years is just about a googolplex: It can look forward. The Mac's original competition - the green-phosphorus-screened stuff made by RadioShack, DEC, and then-big kahuna IBM - now inhabit landfills, both physically and psychically. Yet the Macintosh is not only thriving, it's doing better than at any time in its history...."

Products & Services

MyOtherDrive Announces Unattended Backup with Encryption

PR: MyOtherDrive have made several new improvements to their online backup and file sharing service. The major enhancements are:

  • Unattended Backup
  • Encryption
  • Copy To My Drive
  • Grab File

Unattended Backup

Mark the folders on your PC to backup, set the days of the week and time to copy, and let us do the rest. Our service will copy new and changed files for you on a scheduled basis, protecting your data from loss. Each night when the backup completes, you will receive an email summary report.

Encryption

Not comfortable storing all of your data on a online site? Then use our encryption feature. Before your files are sent to our service, the files are encrypted using advanced AES 128-bit encryption. This means that when our servers receive your file, the contents are completely encrypted impossible for us or anyone on the Internet to read. When downloading encrypted files, enter your password, and the files will be decrypted on your machine before being written out. It's that simple.

Copy To My Drive

Have a file that needs to be shared amongst many? With this feature, one person uploads, and the rest can "Copy To My Drive" - effectively sending the file from the uploader's account directly to your account, bypassing any upload or download. You control the group that can share the file(s).

Grab File

See an interesting video or other file that you wish to move straight to your MyOtherDrive account, without downloading and then uploading? Use Grab File. Enter a URL, select a file name and folder, and we will download the content from the URL straight to your account.

You can store up to 5 GB online with a free MyOtherDrive account.

Symwave to Demonstrate World's First USB 3.0 Storage Solution at CES 2009

PR: Symwave, Inc., a semiconductor supplier of high-performance analog/mixed-signal connectivity solutions for the PC, consumer and mobile devices, announced today it will demonstrate the world's first consumer application of SuperSpeed USB 3.0, which is 10 times faster than legacy USB technology, at CES. Symwave is collaborating with the leading test, cable, components, and hard drive manufacturers to demonstrate the transfer speeds of USB 3.0 and will showcase streaming data to and from external storage devices at speeds previously unattainable.

Symwave claims that SuperSpeed USB 3.0 is poised to become the most pervasive high-speed connectivity technology over the coming years. It is backwards compatible with the more than 10 billion USB devices shipped to date.

Software

Urban Design Announces Qu-s: Do More with Your Desktop

PR: Urban Design Limited announces the release and the immediate availability of Qu-s, a unique utility that adds functionality to your Desktop.

Qu-s

Throw away that scrap paper for phone numbers, forget the whiteboard for inspirational nuggets, and stop bookmarking the entire internet.

Qu-s is the permanent answer for organizing all your temporary items. Use Qu-s for storing Internet links, jotting down thoughts, and remembering tasks.

Qu-s

But what makes Qu-s unique, is by utilizing the Desktop it keeps what you need at your finger tips but out of your way. Using a design-aware and simple interface, with fun and sophistication, Qu-s uses advance features usually reserved for word processing applications to bring organization to your ideas and your notes.

These and other features are as follows:

  • Bullet, check boxes, and numbered lists
  • File and Internet links with previews
  • A built in browser with the capability of zooming web pages
  • An automated system for storing and clearing completed tasks
  • Multiple ways of organizing and displaying information
  • Exporting content for use with other applications

Qu-s

Minimum Requirements: Mac OS X Version 10.5 Leopard or higher

By not complicating a simple process, Qu-s is the program you've wanted, the organizing tool you need, and the fast access and creative linking you deserve.

Qu-s can be purchased online for $16.95. For more information on Qu-s which includes a full interactive tour, or to download a fully functional demo version, please visit the company website.

Find Any File Searches for Files on Mac OS Disks

PR: Find Any File 1.0.2 is a free program for Mac OS 10.4 and later that lets you search for files on your disks, primarily on HFS formatted ones.

Contrary to Spotlight, it does not use a database but instead uses the file system driver's fast search operations.

This lets you search for file properties such as name, dates, size, etc., but not for file content (use Spotlight for that)!

Find Any File

Find Any File can find files that Spotlight doesn't, e.g. those inside bundles and packages and in inside folders that are excluded from Spotlight search (i.e. system files), and Find Any File is fast. Not always as fast as Spotlight, but faster than other, similar file search tools you might find for the Mac.

Features

Find Any File has a few hidden gems:

  1. If you hold the Option key down while choosing Find, you are asked for an administrator password - and then Find Any File will restart with root permissions, being able to find really any file on your Mac's volumes (something that Spotlight won't do).
  2. It sports a new hierarchical view for the found items. You can switch to it using Command-2 or click on the right little icon at the top of the results window.
  3. You can save your entered searches to files (they'll have the extension ".faf"). You can later open them again from within the Find Any File application, or you can double click them in the Finder - in the latter case the search will automatically start, unless you hold down the Option key while Find Any File opens the document.

Limitations

  • This tool's design was inspired by the Classic Mac OS' Find File application, hence its UI design might look a little old fashioned. And the icons aren't snazzy, either.
  • Using this tool on volumes that are not Mac (HFS, HFS+) formatted, including network volumes, may not work well - or even not at all. You'll notice. This won't change - it's the nature of this program to depend on the efficient search operations designed for HFS volumes.
  • The user interface of this app gets sluggish when it's performing a search. This is mostly out of my control, as this app is written in REALbasic, which has a rather unsatisfying multithreading implementation.

Key Features:

  • Can search as root user
  • Savable queries
  • Folder view for results

New in version 1.0.2: Move to Trash works now; volume selection is observed with root search and saved searches; results update after moving items.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.4 or later

Freeware

Freeware BibleMemorizer Program Helps with Memorizing Scripture

PR: BibleMemorizer is a program to help with memorizing Scripture. It allows you to create files with lists of verses you want to memorize, including the text of the verse and any categories you create. It can also quiz you over your verses, either one at a time or in multi-verse quizzes, and intelligently corrects your errors. By default, it is now configured to ignore minor errors such as spelling, capitalization and punctuation errors, but these settings may be changed.

BibleMemorizer will compile and run on any operating system which supports Qt. This currently includes Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and most forms of Unix and BSD.

BibleMemorizer is both Open Source and Free Software. What both these terms essentially mean is that you are free to copy and modify BibleMemorizer as you wish, under certain conditions. You can even sell copies for profit if you wish. Full source code for BibleMemorizer is provided, which you are free but not always obligated to pass on to others. See the license for more details.

The developer says he believes that releasing BibleMemorizer as open source will allow God to best work through it, and he created the program to serve God and others, not to make money. Allowing others to copy and modify it ensures that it will be accessible to the greatest number of people. It also provides the potential for other programmers to contribute changes back to the project, which can improve its quality.

Although Free Software as mentioned above does not always mean "zero cost", BibleMemorizer is available free of charge. If you were intending to buy a Bible memory program, you're asked to consider giving the money to your church or a ministry that needs it.

BibleMemorizer now has integration with the Open Source Sword Bible text project, via plugin support. The plugin is optional.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.4 or later.

System Support: PPC/Intel

Free

TypeIt4Me X 4.1 Completes Partially Typed Words For You

PR: TypeIt4Me expands your abbreviations as you type, and works in all applications, not just one. It also lets you define meaningful abbreviations, so you can type them naturally, as part of your writing, without memorizing - or reaching for - obscure ctrl-cmd-xyz combinations.

Born in 1989, TypeIt4Me is still a teenager youthful 20 in human years, yet old & mature in Mac years.

No matter how much you type, I'll save you wear and tear on those wrists & fingers.

  • Never type your full name or email signature again;
  • Never hunt around for that standard contract clause;
  • Type a short abbreviation and have it expand to a word, a phrase, even several pages worth of text (with pictures, too);
  • Trigger AppleScripts with your abbreviations instead of reaching for a menu or pressing obscure keyboard combinations.

Anytime you enter text in your Mac by typing it at the keyboard, TypeIt4Me can help you do it faster and more accurately. First you define a number of abbreviations and the full text entries that they represent, then you watch the Mac expand them on the fly even as you continue typing!

New in version 4.1:

  • TypeIt4Me 4.1 provides one new feature: a filter field just under the list of clippings in the system prefs panel:
  • Typing text in it will filter the list of abbreviations to show only those which include the typed text in either the abbreviation or the clipping.
  • Fixes: plugged a memory leak or two.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.4 or later

System Support: PPC/Intel

$27 shareware

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