This week brings an eclectic set of news and reviews, starting off with Microsoft not purchasing Yahoo for $50 billion and running all the way through Joe Kissell’s review of the Nabaztag Internet Rabbit. In the middle Joe also covers the release of the MozyHome online backup service, Jeff Carlson looks at movie purchases on the Apple TV, and Glenn Fleishman examines AT&T’s new iPhone plan for the hearing and speech impaired. Glenn also reflects on the outpouring of support for handcrafted HTML and reports on Microsoft’s ending of support for its PlaysForSure DRM, and Matt Neuburg contributes a glowing review of Vara Software’s new ScreenFlow screencasting software. In the TidBITS Watchlist, we look briefly at updates to TextExpander, DiscLabel, Microsoft Messenger for Mac, Tinderbox, MacPilot, Infovox iVox, Synchronize Pro X, 1Password, the iMac ATI Radeon HD firmware, and Java for Mac OS X.
So much for that $50 billion... Microsoft has rescinded its offer for Yahoo after upping the offer price to $33 per share, $4 below the $37 per share that Yahoo's board of directors wanted.
MozyHome, an online backup service for Macs, has finally reached version 1.0 after more than a year of beta testing. The service offers unlimited online storage for only $4.95 per month.
Owners of the Apple TV can now purchase movies directly from the entertainment device, and do so from an expanded collection of movies. Also, several studios are making rentals available on iTunes and the Apple TV the same day as the movies are released on DVD.
A new AT&T service plan for hearing- and speech-impaired customers reduces the monthly cost of the iPhone if you don't need any or much voice service.
Writing HTML by hand has the same relationship to graphical Web authoring tools as a chisel has to a jackhammer.
If you didn't win a copy of HoudahGeo in last week's DealBITS drawing, don't fret, since you can still save 20 percent on the geocoding software through 18-May-08.
Microsoft has chosen to cut the legs out from under customers who bought music from the MSN Music store up until late 2006. Starting 31-Aug-08, that music can no longer be played on computers that weren't previously authorized.
Make a movie of what's happening on your computer screen - how snazzy can that be? With ScreenFlow, it can be very snazzy indeed. This program has knocked my socks off - with my shoes on.
The Nabaztag is a plastic rabbit with motorized ears, blinking lights, and a Wi-Fi connection. Is it a silly piece of kitsch for people with too much money on their hands or a brilliant glimpse into the future of smart objects?
Notable software updates so far this week include TextExpander 2.1.1, DiscLabel 5.2.1, Microsoft Messenger for Mac 7, Tinderbox 4.2.4, MacPilot 3.0.1, Infovox iVox 1.2, Synchronize Pro X 6.0, 1Password 2.6, an iMac ATI Radeon HD Graphics Firmware Update, and Java 6 for Mac OS X.
Nearly every discussion this week touches on a different topic, such as the iPhone's influence among companies marketing on the Web, pruning Time Machine backups, auto-filing email in Mail, replacing graphing functionality found in AppleWorks, and using OmniFocus. Oh, and Canada is finally getting the iPhone!