Several big named tech giants like Apple, Google, Facebook and Microsoft are publicly requesting that the National Security Agency (NSA) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) allow them to transparently publish more information regarding the controversial data mining operations and surveillance programs held by US government agencies.
Dubbed SpyGate, the legitimate controversy has made headlines over legislation of section 215 of the Patriot Act and section 702 of the FISA amendment ACT. Not to mention the whistleblower saga that has ensued after former NSA employee and current on the run globetrotter, Eric Snowden, leaked details about the covert operation infamously known as Prism. Many of the allegations summarized in the massive leak state that the US government has backdoor access to the servers of many leading private industry companies and direct access to major US telecommunication carriers. With such access, the government collects and monitors millions of American's information not limited to just metadata. Many private companies have signed a petition of transparency that includes Apple, Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Skype and many others. Below is the petition letter in its entirety.
Read More | The Next Web
Google is hosting an Android and Chrome event next Wednesday, July 24 hosted by OS honcho Sundar Pichar. Very little is being revealed right now, but the timing is rather interesting in light of the Google I/O event in May and Apple's WWDC event in June. But sure enough, Android will get some much needed attention this time around as it's upgraded to 4.3 (or straight to version 5.0.) Hopefully, it will get some legit support for Bluetooth 4.0 along with the expected new features and UI tweaks. The event kicks off at 12PM EST (that's 9:00 AM for you folks in the west coast.) It will also be live-streamed on YouTube. Stay tuned here at Gear Live as we analyze, synthesize, and slice up the Key Lime Pie.
AT&T just announced that it had come to an agreement with Leap Wireless, operator of the Cricket pre-paid mobile brand, to acquire the company for $15 per share in a cash deal. The purchase includes all Leap Wireless assets, which brings all 5 million Leap subscribers into the fold at AT&T. Aside from giving AT&T more spectrum and more customers, it also increases its retail store footprint. Full release after the break.
Earlier this month, Adobe showed off its vision for its software future. It's called Creative Cloud, and it's available now. Just head over to the Creative Cloud site and you'll be able to download what you need--no longer are you able to just buy a suite of software, like Creative Suite 6 or CS7. Instead, you pay a monthly subscription fee of $50 and get access to everything. Adobe is offering an incentive to owners of CS3 and above--the first full year subscription will cost just $30.
Being that documents are now cloud-storable, Creative Cloud offers new ways of storing and sharing that the older suites were incapable of. The question is, will users pay perpetually for monthly access?
Read More | Adobe
Earlier today Apple revealed iOS 7 to the world, introducing the most radical redesign to its mobile operating system since the launch of the iPhone back in 2007. Check out the video after the break to see Apple's head of design, Jony Ive, explain what went into designing the new software that will soon run on all our iPhones, iPads, and iPod touches.
Apple has just announced iTunes Radio, the new streaming music service for iOS, iTunes (Mac and PC,) and Apple TV. The service looks to compete with Pandora, and will be built right in to the iOS 7 Music app. Apple will have a bunch of curated stations available at launch, and will also allow users to create their own custom stations as well. You can give a track a star to signify that you like it, share the station with a friend, and ask for more like that song. Led Zepplin is even available, a first for streaming. iTunes Radio will be free with advertising, but iTunes Match subscribers get it completely ad-free.
Microsoft has announced that the Xbox One will be released this November for $499. The new console will launch in 21 markets initially, but Microsoft hasn't revealed all of the locales just yet. For your $499, you get the Xbox One and the new Kinect bundled in.
You can pre-order the Xbox One now!
Apple has announced Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks at this mornings WWDC 2013 keynote. Stepping away from the big cats theme, the new version of OS X takes on a new California-based naming scheme. Key features in OS X Mavericks include a tabbed Finder, tagging, support for full-screen apps on multiple displays, and more. AirPlay connected HDTVs can even acts as full-on monitors as well now. There's also a new, lighter font used across the OS as well.
Other technologies include App Nap, which keeps active apps optimized and background apps still available without taking up precious resources. If an app is visible, it gets power, but if it is covered by other apps and running in the background, resources for that app are reduced. Timer Coalescing is a feature which reduces CPU utilization up to 72%, and compressed memory optimizes the inactive memory in your Mac to give it better performance.
Continue past the break for more on OS X Mavericks!
At the D11 conference, Tesla CEO Elon Musk just announced a major expansion to the Tesla Supercharger network. According to Musk:
"There's going to be a dramatic acceleration of the Supercharging network. By the end of next month, we'll triple the Supercharger coverage area. There's a map that'll go live tomorrow. By the end of this year, you'll be able to drive from LA to NY just using the Supercharger network. We're improving the density of Superchargers in well-traveled routes, as well as the overall coverage area."
This is huge, as there is always range anxiety for owners of vehicles that are 100% powered by electricity. Rapid expansion of Tesla's Supercharger network is essential to curbing that feeling. Tesla Model S owners using the Supercharger can go from 0% to 80% charged in 30 minutes. Of course, the Model S is a very expensive vehicle, but getting Superchargers in place for when Tesla expects to have a $30,000 range vehicle for sale (in about three years, according to Musk,) will go a long way towards buyer confidence.
Here at Gear Live, we're big fans of both Drobo and the Transporter, so excuse us if we're more than a little excited about the announcement that the two companies that entered into a merger agreement. We've covered the Transporter in the past, but to refresh your memory, it's a collaborative file-sharing device that offers Dropbox- or Copy-like functionality, but stored locally with no fees. Of course, Drobo makes fantastic external storage devices, many of which we've covered extensively. It will be great to see new Drobos that offer the Transporter file-sharing abilities. Nothing official has been announced, but we can dream.