Archive for March 2015

Apple Watch available in 9 countries on 24 April 2015

Apple today announced that the Apple Watch will be available on 24 April 2015 in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, the UK and the US. Surprisingly, Singapore is not in the initial launch countries.

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The Apple Watch is an incredibly accurate timepiece, an intimate and immediate communication device and a groundbreaking health and fitness companion. Highly customizable for personal expression, Apple Watch also brings an entirely new way to receive information at a glance and interact with the world through third-party app experiences designed specifically for the wrist.

Apple Watch introduces revolutionary technologies including the Digital Crown, an innovative way to scroll, zoom and navigate fluidly without obstructing the display. The Retina display with Force Touch on Apple Watch senses the difference between a tap and a press, providing a new way to quickly and easily access relevant controls. The all-new Taptic Engine discreetly delivers a gentle tap on your wrist whenever you receive a notification or message.

Designed to be worn throughout your day, Apple Watch delivers up to 18-hour all-day battery life and comes with a unique charging solution that combines Apple’s MagSafe technology with inductive charging for a quick connection that simply snaps into place.

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Apple Watch is available in two different sizes, 38 mm and 42 mm, and in three distinct collections: Apple Watch Sport, Apple Watch and Apple Watch Edition.

Apple Watch Sport features a lightweight anodized aluminum case in silver and space gray with a Retina display protected by strengthened Ion-X glass and matching high-performance fluoroelastomer Sport Band in five colors. 38mm version will retail at US$349 while 42mm version will retail at US$399.

The Apple Watch collection features highly polished stainless steel and space black stainless steel cases with a Retina display protected by sapphire crystal. The Apple Watch collection comes with a choice of three different leather straps, a stainless steel link bracelet and Milanese loop, and a black or white Sport Band. 38mm version will retail from US$549 to US$1049 while 42mm version will retail from US$599 to US$1099 depending on the band.

Apple Watch Edition features cases specially crafted from custom rose or yellow 18-karat gold alloys developed to be twice as hard as standard gold, a Retina display protected by polished sapphire crystal and a choice of uniquely designed straps and bands with 18-karat gold clasps, buckles or pins. Price starting at US$10,000.

FREAK security flaw

A newly discovered vulnerability believed to exist since the 90s has been discovered. Dubbed as FREAK, (Factoring RSA Export Keys), the vulnerability forces a secure connection to use weaker encryption—making it easy for cybercriminals to decrypt sensitive information.

FREAK was discovered by Karthikeyan Bhargavan at INRIA in Paris and the mitLS team. They found that OpenSSL (versions prior to 1.0.1k) and Apple TLS/SSL clients are vulnerable to man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks. Once attackers are able to intercept the HTTPS communication between vulnerable clients and servers, they force the connection to use the old export-grade encryption. Attackers who “listen” in on the communication will then be able to decrypt the information with relative ease.

Apple’s SecureTransport is used by applications running on iOS and OS X. These include Safari for iPhones, iPads, and Macs. Meanwhile, OpenSSL is used by Android browsers and other application packages.

According to reports, 37% of browser-trusted sites are affected by this flaw. Affected sites include Bloomberg, Business Insider, ZDNet, HypeBeast, Nielsen, and the FBI. It bears stressing that there are country-specific sites that were also affected.

To address the FREAK security flaw, OpenSSL has provided a patch for CVE-2015-0204 in January. Apple is reportedly deploying a patch for both mobile devices and computers.

Trend Micro is advising all Android users to refrain from using the default Android browser in their devices. They can instead use the Google Chrome app as it is not affected by the bug. Furthermore, connections to the Google search site are not affected.

For more information about the FREAK security flaw, visit Trend Micro blog.

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day from 11 to 17 March 2015

St. Patrick’s Day is happening on the 17 March and GUINNESS will be extending festivities in Singapore from a weekend carnival to a week of enticing celebrations.

The local week-long extravaganza will feature a wide range of activities from foot-tapping Irish dance and music performances to delectable food and drink specials available all across Singapore, promising an energetic, fun-filled week to remember. For instance, catch Jack & Rai pay a fitting tribute to Irish music at Timbre @ The Substation, witness top international chefs battle it out at Singapore’s 19th Guinness Oyster Opening Championship at Muddy Murphy’s or sink your teeth into specially created Guinness-infused tapas at Fabrika @ Klapsons, all accompanied by special GUINNESS offers.

The highlight of St. Patrick’s Day will be taking place at Boat Quay and the adjacent Circular Road. Supported by GUINNESS, the St. Patrick’s Street Festival is a modern celebration of all things Irish and will kick off on 13 March.

The iconic St. Patrick’s Day Parade will take place on 15 March at 3pm. Free for all to participate, the parade will march from the Asian Civilizations Museum to Circular Road.

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McDonalds National Breakfast Day

The National Breakfast Day is back and McDonalds is giving over 120,000 Egg McMuffins on 9 March 2015 (Monday).

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The giveaway is available from 6am to 11am for a limited quantity only, while stock lasts. Free Egg McMuffin Giveaway will start at 7am (instead of 6am) at the Compass Point and Clifford Centre stores.

Not available at the following McDonald’s restaurants: KK Hospital, LIDO, Singapore Science Centre, Tampines Interchange Kiosk, Lucky Chinatown, Clementi Avenue 3, and Changi Airport Terminal 2 Transit.

Besides free Egg McMuffins, McDonalds will also be having all day breakfast from 4am to 5pm. Looks like a great way to combat Monday Blues.

SanDisk Ultra Dual USB Drive 3.0

Here’s a great flash drive for Android phone users. The SanDisk Ultra Dual USB Drive 3.0 is a USB flash drive featuring both a micro-USB and a USB 3.0 connector.

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This allows super fast file transfer between On The Go enabled Android devices, PC and Mac computers. Great for transferring files via an Android device without the need for cables, or wireless setup. The drive sports a slick retractable design for easy usability, as well as a longer micro-USB connector to accommodate device cases or port covers.

With USB 3.0, the drive offers up to 130MB/s from the drive to the computer.

The SanDisk Ultra Dual USB Drive 3.0 is available in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB capacities and retails at S$19, S$29 and S$49 respectively. The drive is currently available in Singapore through Challenger Technologies Ltd, Sprint-Cass Pte Ltd, Sprint-Cass Pte Ltd, Nubox and Gadget World.