90% of Premium PCs Are Macs, OS and Browser Market Share, Chrome Browser to Dominate, and More
This Week's Apple and Desktop Mac News
All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted.
News & Opinion
- 90% of 'Premium' PCs Sold Are Macs
- Operating System Market Share for January 2010
- Browser Market Share for January 2010
- Google Chrome Browser to Become Leader of the Pack
- Popularity, Not Problems, Caused iMac Delays
- Second 27" iMac Update Fixes Flickering for Most Users, but Not All
- 2009 Mac Pros Dedicate 20% of Power to Audio Processing
- Intel 6-core i7-powered Mac Pro Rumored for February
Products & Services
- Samsung 2 TB Eco-friendly Drives for High-performance Desktop Systems
- NEC MultiSync PA Series Debuts with 24" Display for Professional Graphics
- Calisto Bluetooth Headset Savings from MacSpeech Continue until Feb. 19
- Puppy Linux Distro Available for PowerPC Macs
- STOIK PanoramaMaker: Fast and Easy Way to Create Panoramic Photos on Mac
- Unified Color Technologies Launches Mac Version of HDR PhotoStudio Software
- maComfort Brings Mac Experience to Windows
News & Opinion
BetaNews's Joe Wilcox says that Windows 7 has done little to slow the Mac's sales trajectory during fourth quarter, and according to a source at one of the major market research firms, Apple's US retail unit share doubled from 5% to 10% for PCs selling between $500 and $1,000.
Even more startling, says Wilcox, Apple increased its unit share from 79% to 90% in the market for "premium" PCs, meaning those selling for more than $1,000. Stated another way: 9 out of 10 premium PCs purchased from US retail brick-and-mortar stores or online sites (including major chains and Apple Store) during fourth quarter was a Mac.
The question remains as to whether Apple can really be effective taking its premium brand success to the market below $500, which the iPad will answer, starting in about 60 days.
The gradural erosion of Windows OS market share continued in January. Five months ago, NetApplications revised the methodology it uses to tally its HitsLink Market Share statistics to a new system of weighting the data which now gives more prominence to page views globally based on the estimated size of each country's Internet population, rather than focusing mostly on the US and other Western markets as had previously been the case.
So here's the Operating System Total Market Share rundown of the significant players for January 2010, based on the new calculating methodology (December '09 figures in parentheses) showing the change during the past month. The the Mac OS is gaining again after slipping a tiny bit in December, and Windows dropped a bit. JavaME has edged the iPhone OS out of fourth place for the past two months, the iPod touch gains two-tenths of a point, and Android's share is up a smidge over December. (The combines iPhone/iPod touch share would hold fourth place, if NetApplications didn't separate them.)
- Windows 92.00 (92.21%)
- Mac 5.16 (5.11%)
- Linux 1.02% (1.02%)
- JavaME 0.59% (0.53%)
- iPhone 0.48% (0.44%)
- Symbian 0.24% (0.23%)
- iPod touch 0.11% (0.09%)
- Windows Mobile 0.07% (0.06%)
- Android 0.06% (0.05% )
- Playstation 0.05% (0.04%)
- BlackBerry 0.03% (0.03%)
- Palm 0.01% (0.01%)
- FreeBSD 0.01% (0.01% )
- SunOS 0.01% (0.01%)
In terms of specific OS versions, Windows 7 gains nearly two points in a single month while Windows XP and Vista fade, and Snow Leopard has now doubled Tiger's share:
- Windows XP 66.15% (67.77%)
- Windows Vista 17.47% (17.48%)
- Windows 7 7.57% (5.71 %)
- Windows 2000 0.57% (0.62)
- Windows NT 0.11% (0.10)
- Windows 98 0.08% (0.09%)
- Windows ME 0.05% (0.05%)
- Mac OS X 10.5 2.37% (2.47%)
- MacOS X 10.6 1.80% (1.60%)
- Mac OS X 10.4 0.77% (0.80%)
- iPhone 0.48% (0.53%)
- Mac OS X (no version reported) 0.17% (0.19)
- iPod 0.11% (0.09%)
- Mac OS X Mach-O 0.05% (0.06%)
- Linux 1.02% (1.00%)
Turning to browsers, Internet Explorer is still losing ground, but somewhat slower, presumably due to Windows 7 growth. Firefox browser slipped a bit more and remains just shy of one-quarter of the browser market, while Safari gained a tiny bit in January, but still stays bumped to fourth place behind surging Chrome, which now has a Mac public beta out. Opera is hanging in at fifth, basically static while Opera Mini remains the 6th place browser.
Browser Total Market Share (December '09 figures in parentheses)
- Microsoft Internet Explorer - 62.12% (62.69%)
- Firefox - 24.43% (24.61)
- Chrome - 5.22% (4.63%)
- Safari 4.53% (4.46%)
- Opera - 2.38% (2.40%)
- Opera Mini - 0.59% (0.53%)
- Netscape - 0.36% (0.32)
- Mozilla - 0.14% (0.13%)
- Konqueror - 0.03% (0.04%)
PC Mag's Lance Ulanoff notes that Google Chrome's market share numbers are skyrocketing, blowing past Safari and Opera to become the number three most-widely-used Web browser - and he doesn't think it's going to stop there, fully expecting Chrome to overtake Firefox and challenge, if not beat, Microsoft Internet Explorer sometime in the next five years.
Editor's note: Ulanoff is preaching to the chior with me. I bacame a Chrome convert about the first hour after downloading a developer preview a couple of months ago, and it's now sharing duty about 50-50 with Opera 10 as my general purpose browser of first resort. cm
Other editor's note: Google Chrome is not available for PowerPC Macs or Mac OS X 10.4 users. The Mac version requires OS X 10.5 or newer on an Intel-based Mac. dk
The Register's Rik Myslewski reports:
"Apple says that the shipment delays of its top-of-the-line 27-inch iMacs aren't because it has halted production while it works to correct the big boy's display problems. The real reason for the delays? 'The 27-inch iMac has been a huge hit with customers and we are working to increase supply to meet up with strong demand,' the company says.
"Myslewski adds that Apple's statement about its latest firmware fix doesn't mention a fix for the iMac's yellow-tinged display, lamented in a separate discussion thread that as of Wednesday had 655 posts."
Computerworld's Gregg Keizer reports that Apple's second firmware update for 27" iMacs seems to have fixed the flickering display problems, according to most users' reports on the company's support forum, but a minority still maintain that the update did not stop their screens from flickering.
Gizmodo reports that while the latest and greatest Nehalem-based Xeon Mac Pros are the fastest Apple computers you can buy, they seem to have a serious problem when processing audio, a task that sucks 20% of its power while making the processors overheat.
Appleinsider's Sam Oliver says:
"Intel's new Core i7-980X and Core i7-970 six-core desktop processors are set to debut in March, but could see an early release on Apple's Mac Pro systems in a matter of weeks, according to a new report."
The 27-inch iMac Display Firmware Update 1.0 updates the display firmware on 27-inch iMac systems to address issues that may cause intermittent display flickering.
For detailed information about this update, visit http://support.apple.com/kb/TS3207
- File Size: 294 KB
- System Requirements: Mac OS X
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Products & Services
PR: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. has announced the F3EG, its new high-performance environmentally-friendly HDD (hard disk drive) for the desktop market. The EcoGreen™ F3EG, a higher capacity model from its predecessor the F2EG, features 2TB capacity with 500GB per platter that is capable of storing up to 880 hours of DVD video or 500,000 or more songs in MP3 format. With increased recording density, the EcoGreen F3 drive is more power efficient by supporting a capacity up to 2TB with four disks.
The F3EG delivers all the benefits of a low-power drive yet features high performance and is environmentally friendly.
Storage-hungry multimedia professionals, gamers and home PC users continue to increase the amount of video, music, photo and other personal data they store and back-up, said In Cheol Park, vice president, Storage Sales, Samsung Electronics. The F3EG delivers all the benefits of a low-power drive yet features high performance and is environmentally friendly.
The F3EG utilizes Samsung's EcoTriangle™ technology to provide eco-friendly components, low-power and low-noise operation technology to its EcoGreen hard drives.
Eliminating halogen compound and brominated flame retardant from the PCBA, the new model is produced with eco-friendly materials and meets all the environmental regulations including RoHS (Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment) which is being applied worldwide as well as the European Union.
Samsung's new hard drive utilizes its low noise operation technology SilentSeek™ and NoiseGuard™ to achieve a quiet operation system.
In addition, with its advanced design and fewer components, the F3EG drive is 40% lower in power consumption in idle mode and 10% lower in reading/writing mode than competitive drives. The drive received a zero percent failure rate in the unstable voltage environment test.
The EcoGreen™ Series has been selected as the best-in-class in the area of power consumption for two straight years by IDEMA Japan (International Disk Drive Equipment and Materials Association) in the performance comparison test of HDDs.
The F3EG incorporates a 3.0Gbps SATA interface, Native Command Queuing features and a 16MB/32MB buffer memory. The 3.5 F3EG drive is available in 1.5TB and 2TB capacities in the United States and EU markets with a MSRP of $179.99.
PR: NEC Display Solutions of America announces the new MultiSync PA Series, successor to the critically acclaimed MultiSync 90 Series, by introducing the MultiSync PA241W. Designed for professional graphics applications, this 24-inch desktop display is ideal for digital photography, video editing, print production, and any environment in which color accuracy is crucial.
NEC's MultiSync PA Series is a flagship desktop monitor family that carries market leadership in the color, medical and professional industries
The PA241W continues the MultiSync 90 Series tradition of delivering crisp, accurate images while adding improved color coverage, sleeker industrial design and enhanced connectivity. The display features 102% coverage of NTSC and 99.3% of Adobe RGB, an increase from 72% in the MultiSync LCD2490WUXi. With a 38% smaller footprint size, the display provides users with more desktop space and decreased costs in shipping and storage. Improved cable management enables simpler setup of the monitor, while its new 10-bit DisplayPort and USB hub add to an already diverse set of input connectors.
NEC's MultiSync PA Series is a flagship desktop monitor family that carries market leadership in the color, medical and professional industries, said Art Marshall, Product Manager at NEC Display Solutions. The MultiSync PA241W, the first model in this series, focuses on both workflow productivity and color accuracy, with the aim to improve upon the success of the MultiSync 90 Series. Users that require a reliable display for color precision will want to take advantage of the sophisticated technologies used in the MultiSync PA Series, starting with the PA241W.
Below is a partial list of features included in the MultiSync PA241W:
- 1920 x 1200 native resolution in 16:10 aspect ratio
- 10-bit IPS LCD panel with 14-bit lookup table, which increases color depth to more than one-billion possible colors
- 360 cd/m brightness
- 1000:1 contrast ratio
- 102% coverage of NTSC and 99.3% coverage of Adobe RGB
- Improved connectivity with 10-bit DisplayPort, DVI-D with HDCP and USB hub
- Improved cable management and smaller stand size
- Ergonomic stand with tilt, swivel, height-adjust and pivot
- DisplaySync Pro, which controls two computers with only one keyboard and mouse
- 3D lookup table, which enables accurate representation of hard-to-match color spaces
- ICC profile emulation, which loads ICC color profiles to accurately support manufacturer color spaces
- Color Vision Emulation, which allows a quick preview of colors that emulate color vision problems
- Ambient light sensor and automatic backlight adjustment for use in any lighting condition
- Carbon footprint meter, which allows users to easily track carbon savings
The MultiSync PA241W is available for shipment with an estimated street price of $1,079 and ships with a 4-year parts and labor warranty, including the backlight. Additional models in the MultiSync PA Series will be announced throughout 2010, including models with the award-winning SpectraViewII™ Color Calibration Solution.
PR: Last month, MacSpeech offered $30 savings on the Plantronics Calisto Headset with Bluetooth USB Adapter, which weighs less than an ounce and lets you roam up to 33 feet away from your Mac. It was so successful they've decided to keep it going. Between now and February 19, you'll save $50 when you buy your Calisto headset by itself or with any version of MacSpeech Dictate. Simply enter the coupon code CALISTO30 at check-out to get the discount.
The Calisto headset features up to eight hours of talk time and 240 hours of standby time, and it doubles as a multi-point device so you can pair it with another Bluetooth device, such as a cell phone. That's perfect if you live in a state that requires hands-free cell phone use while driving.
Offer available only in the US. Purchases must be made through the MacSpeech web site.
PR: Puppy Linux is a special build of Linux meant to make computing easy and fast.
Puppy Linux also enables you to save money while doing more work, even allowing you to do magic by recovering data from destroyed PCs or by removing malware from Windows.
With Puppy Linux, you can carry your programs and data anywhere.
- Easy - Just use a CD or USB flash to boot a PC. Puppy Linux is downloadable as ISO, an image that can be burned to CD or DVD.
- Fast - Because Puppy is small, it can live in your PC's memory and be ready to quickly execute your commands, whereas in other systems, programs are first read from drive storage before being executed.
- Save Money - Even if your PC has no hard disk (ex, broken hard disk), you can still boot Puppy via CD or USB and continue working. Old PCs that no longer work with new systems will still work good-as-new with Puppy.
- Do More - Puppy boots in less than a minute, even in old PCs, and it does not require antivirus software. Administering Puppy is quick and minimal. With Puppy, you just have to take care of your data, which you can easily save to USB flash (Then forget about your operating system!). Your data can be read by other computers.
- Do Magic - Help your friends suffering from computer malware by booting Puppy and removing malware from their PC (use antivirus that is built-in or can be installed in Puppy). Example - bad Autorun.inf is easily removed by Puppy (Just delete it as well as its companion exe program). If your friend thinks that she has lost data from her corrupted hard disk, boot Puppy and try saving her data!
- Carry Anywhere (Portable) - Because Puppy is able to live in CD/DVD or USB flash, as well as save data to these same devices, you can carry your programs and data with you.
Are you now ready for Puppy? Keep these important reminders before using Puppy:
- You don't have to install Puppy (to hard disk) to use it. Simply burn the ISO to CD/DVD and boot the PC or laptop with it. Once booted, you can then install it to USB flash (see the Setup menu), so you can use it for booting the PC when a CD is not available.
- You don't have to save data to hard drive to work with Puppy. You can save data to USB flash or even to Internet storage (like www.drop.io ). When installed to USB flash, Puppy consumes only a little over 100 MB, or about 256 MB with OpenOffice. You can use the same USB flash (where Puppy is installed) for saving data.
How is Puppy Different?
- Small size, ~100MB! This lends itself to some very useful and unique features.
- 'Live' booting from CDs, DVDs, USB flash drives, and other portable media.
- Runs from RAM, making it unusually fast even in old PCs and in netbooks with solid state storage media.
- Very low minimum system requirements.
- Boot time is well under a minute, 30-40 seconds in most systems.
- Includes a wide range of applications: wordprocessors, spreadsheets, internet browsers, games, image editors and many utilities. Extra software in the form of dotpets. There is a GUI Puppy Software Installer included.
- Puppy is easy to use and little technical knowledge is assumed. Most hardware is automatically detected.
What are Puppy's Aims?
Puppy Linux Mission Statement (Adapted from Barry Kauler):
- Puppy will easily install to USB, Zip, hard drive, or other storage media.
- Booting from CD (or DVD), Puppy can load itself totally into RAM so that the CD (DVD) drive is then free for other purposes.
- Booting from DVD (or CD), Puppy can save all work to the DVD (CD).
- Booting from USB flash drive (or other flash media), Puppy will minimize writes to extend its life.
- Puppy will be extremely friendly for Linux newbies.
- Puppy will boot up and run extraordinarily fast.
- Puppy will have all the applications needed for daily use.
- Puppy will just work, no hassles.
- Puppy will breathe new life into old PCs.
- Puppy will load and run totally in RAM for diskless thin stations.
Barry Kauler is chief developer who leads the development of official releases, the latest being version 4.3. Community Editions (official CE versions) are run by project leaders, the recent 4.2/4.2.1 version was run by Warren Willson (whodo). Projects are run by individuals or groups and posted/discussed in the Forum. Because Puppy is both flexible and fast, it can set up an organization as required for a given aim.
Puppy is covered by the GPL/LGPL license.
Puppy Linux was first released in June 2003 by Barry Kauler The community that later developed is completely open, without any formal agenda or structure. It often takes newcomers a while to realise that, other than being friendly, there aren't really any rules to Puppy. If you want to do something, make a new Puplet, offer your skills or take things in a new direction, just do so and be surprised that support will be around. However, questions will be asked so be ready to defend your ideas.
Puppy Linux will run on Intel Macs
For PPC Macs there is this PowerPup, a project to port Puppy to PPC Macs!
PR: STOIK Imaging has announced the availability of STOIK PanoramaMaker for Mac: The famous Windows panorama making tool is now available for Mac.
STOIK PanoramaMaker for Mac is fast and convenient way to automatically create horizontal, vertical, 360-degree and tiled panoramic photos on Mac.
Literally all of the existing solutions fail to render the image properly when a moving object gets in the picture: blurred or misshapen images ruin the shot. STOIK PanoramaMaker for Mac has a special algorithm (Object-Preserving Blending), which makes allowance for that issue and stitches the exposures error-free. Among available features are lens and geometrical compensation, manual matching of images. Minimizing uneven brightness, double-edge defect and curves in the picture are the application's commons.
The workflow takes only three steps: adding images, selecting the stitching mode, and obtaining the result. The automatic image transformation, alignment and color blending are optimized to correct differences in brightness, color balance, and camera tilt angle.
The application automatically assembles horizontal, vertical, 360º and tiled panoramas. The new version also adds the automatic creation of tiled panorama from several rows of photos or a panorama from photos taken with different camera focal length. In complex cases, the images can be assembled and stitched manually.
- Mac OS X 10.4, 10.5, 10.6
- PowerPC or Intel Mac
- 100 MB free hard drive space required for program installation
- 512 MB DDR RAM or above
$39 for a single-user license. Further information on the product, as well as its 30-days fully functional trial version, is available at STOIK PanoramaMaker for Mac product page.
PR: The only high dynamic range software capable of editing and rendering images in the full 32-bit color scheme extends its creative toolbox to Mac users
Unified Color Technologies, experts in high dynamic range imaging (HDR), announced that its hallmark software application, HDR PhotoStudio, is now also available for Mac operating systems. Powered by Unified Color's next-generation color model, Beyond RGB™, HDR PhotoStudio is the only solution capable of creating realistic-looking HDR images that unlock the full range of color as perceived by human vision.
HDR PhotoStudio provides photographers with complete control over the colors within an image and a comprehensive toolbox to address the effects of merging multiple exposures, while simultaneously improving workflow. Available for immediate download through http://www.unifiedcolor.com, the Mac version of HDR PhotoStudio is being offered for an introductory price of $99 throughout the month of February, which represents a savings of over $50.
"In response to requests from photographers, we are excited to introduce HDR PhotoStudio to the Mac faithful," said Alfred Zee, CEO of Unified Color Technologies. "With HDR PhotoStudio, Mac users can finally produce full-color HDR images that they envision, without concern that their dynamic range or colors will be clipped or shifted by applications constrained by traditional narrow gamut color models. With our technology, photographers can unlock the full color spectrum while preserving a realistic look and feel to their images."
HDR PhotoStudio's unique 32-bit floating-point technology and Beyond RGB color space is the only HDR-capable software which can accurately depict and edit all the colors the human visual system can recognize. Most other offerings are forced to reduce image quality to bring an HDR photo into a color range it can manage, often losing image data and clipping the full scope of colors in the process. While the current evolution of HDR photography has been dominated by oversaturated and unnatural-looking images, mainly due to these software limitations, HDR PhotoStudio enables photographers to unlock their complete photographic vision enables by creating the most true-to-life look for HDR images.
HDR PhotoStudio also offers a comprehensive tool set that addresses some of the common difficulties in HDR photography, including Unified Color's unique halo reduction slider to fight the notorious haloing problem of HDR images, a patented HDR noise reduction technique, the unique Veiling Glare adjustment designed to cut down on the image haze from compounding lens glare, a Color Tone Equalizer allowing simultaneous management of saturation in six basic color channels, and a customizable recipe button to save macros.
HDR PhotoStudio supports Unified Color's native BEF file format which enables the most efficient HDR image compression in the industry so photographers can easily manage and archive the large resulting files. An included BEF-converting Photoshop plug-in, enables the finalized HDR image to then be applied to a Photoshop project. HDR PhotoStudio also supports the RAW files from all the major camera manufacturers as well as TIF, JPEG, BMP and OpenEXR formats.
System Requirements: Intel Macintosh 2.5 GHz dual core CPU with 2GB minimum RAM (4GB is recommended) running Mac OS X 10.5.x (Leopard) or Mac OS X 10.6.2 (Snow Leopard).
For more information on HDR PhotoStudio or to download a free trial, go to the Unified Color website.
PR: Never miss the comfort of Mac while using Windows again. Works on Windows 9x, ME, XP, Vista, and 7
maComfort brings the Mac-experience to Windows, and makes it feel like a Mac.
Especially designed for users of both Operating Systems, which often change between Windows and Mac will love this app: It emulates the mac key combinations for example, so that you will never have to adapt. Just keep using Apple-Q to quit and Apple-C to copy - no need to re-adapt to Ctrl-C!
But there is much more to maComfort: You have now access to great mac features like Quicklook: Just select any file in Windows Explorer and hit space - and there's your Quicklook window.
Also on board are other features like active corners. Just adapt your settings and when hitting a screen corner with your mouse it will do the selected action. Other mac-like features include Spaces, which brings virtual desktops to Windows in a great new way. Have up to 9 virtual desktops.
To not get bored there is a theming system, so you can change the looks of the application. There's heaps more to discover, so try the free version now.
And with the plug-in system there is no need to worry: The possibilities are endless.
With maComfort you can preview files like you would on Mac. Just hit space and a preview of the file will be shown.
Intuitive virtual desktops with easy switching.
No need to re-adapt to Windows hotkeys. The Windows-key now works like Command - in any application! F. e. just use Command-T to open a new Tab in Firefox.
Program the screen corners to toggle a specific action.
Mac Key Combinations
Using Command-D often to duplicate a file in Finder? Now, all of the most known key combinations can be used on Windows
Easily set any keys to control your audio. For example have F3, F4 and F5 toggle and controlling sound. Useful if drivers don't work correctly or you have another keyboard attached.
The flexible skinning system allows you to completely customize the look of maComfort. Either create you own theme or select one of many downloadable on this website.
With the built-in plug-in system you can adapt your personal Mac-experience on Windows even more
So, what is maComfort exactly?
maComfort is a background process usually starting automatically with Windows which enhances the overall usability of Windows. It was specifically designed for frequent Mac users.
If you happen to often switch between Mac and PC (for example if you have a PC at work and a Mac at home) you will know the problem: You select a file and hit 'space' but nothing happens. You press the 'alt' or 'windows' key instead of 'ctrl'. Ever hit 'windows'-C instead of 'ctrl'-C?
With maComfort, all of these problems are gone. It's no longer up to you to adapt to the computer you're using, but rather to maComfort to solve all your issues.
It will emulate nearly all Mac OS hotkeys and key combinations on a Windows PC, let you use great features such as virtual desktops or Quicklook and is even customisable.
You will still benefit from Quicklook, Spaces, active corners and much more. If you like to have a mac feeling - perfect. If you don't - just use another skin, maybe the one perfectly integrating to Windows.
- No more restrictions. Up to nine virtual desktops.
- Complete theme system: Download and add more themes.
- Complete plug-in system: More features to customize your experience.
- Standard Support: All support types; reply often within 24 hours.
- Complete theme system: Download and add more themes.
- Complete plug-in system: More features to customize your experience.
- Premium Updates: More frequent updates (smaller patches)
- Premium access: Premium subscribers get updates first.
- Beta access: Get a look at new versions before anyone else.
- Premium Support: Quick replies, advanced handling, feature requests.
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