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Game Centered Special Edition—Modern Combat 5: Blackout

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The wait is over. After several delays, Gameloft's Modern Combat 5: Blackout ($6.99) is finally available. And it is well worth the wait! This is one of the year's most anticipated games and it doesn't fail to impress. With cutting edge graphics and gameplay, and a storyline filled with mayhem, evildoers, and heroic deeds, MC5 is destined to be one of this summer's top blockbuster video games. This week's Game Centered gives you a brief introduction to this latest installment in Gameloft's highly successful Modern Combat series.



Apple Announces Solid 3rd Quarter Profits, But Is it Enough for Investors?

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Another quarter, another solid profit reported by Apple. But it seems like investors always want more—When asked what his number (to retire) was, Josh Brolin's character in Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps said, "More." In this case, the number was 35.2 million iPhones sold, which is a new record for Apple, but amazingly, expectations were higher. That number represents a 12 percent increase over the same quarter from 2013, but it's apparently not enough to make investors happy. That rate is on par with the rest of the smartphone market (understandable, because Apple is a big part of it), but much less than Windows Phone, which is growing at 28% (also understandable, because it's coming from such a small share.) Most businesses would be happy with such increases, but investors seem to have a special relationship with Apple.



Better Headphones than Beats for Less

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When Apple paid $3 billion for Beats by Dr Dre, a lot of analysts think Apple overpaid. But that doesn't mean you have to. Sure, Beats headphones will set you back $200 and if you want wireless Bluetooth headphones with the Beats logo, expect to pay $300 to $350. But there are alternatives.



5 Fun iPhone and iPad Accessories for Kids

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1. Plush Pals ($39.99)

These adorable plush animals are a must have for any music-loving kid (or adult). Plug Freddy, Manny, or Patch into your iDevice and they'll sing your favorite song, act as if they're narrating a cartoon, or mimic your video game. A bonus? They're soft and cuddly, apart from the battery area in the bottom. See the Plush Pals in action on their website or right here



Apple News: Evil or Not?

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Surveys and statistics can be used to suit any agenda, but one from Ranker.com suggests that cable companies, banks, and airlines have terrible service (no surprise) and that a lot of people think Apple is evil. The customer survey list includes notorious firms like Time Warner, AT&T, Bank of America, Walmart, American Airlines, Comcast, Citibank and more. Apple is ranked 22nd "worst" customer service, with 120 up votes ("worst") to 126 down votes ("not worst"), so it's almost a dead heat between haters and lovers.



Apple News: IBM and Apple Team Up to Bring iOS to Enterprise

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In the early 1990s, Lou Gerstner, then head of IBM, wrote a book entitled Who Says Elephants Can't Dance? It was about his efforts to turn around a stodgy mainframe systems and also-ran PC vendor into a service provider. He and other IBM stewards have made tough decisions such as eliminating OS/2 (a powerful Windows competitor that ended in what Gerstner called a "resounding defeat") and selling off their entire PC line to Chinese manufacturer Lenovo. Lenovo has since added Motorola to their arsenal, while IBM is increasingly offering services as their raison d'etre.



Forget Marketshare, Apple Users Still Doing Most of the Buying

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Android may have a larger marketshare, but recent reports from Custora show that Apple fans are using their devices for online shopping at a monopolistic rate. As much as 80 percent of tablet-based shopping is done on an iPad. Considering iPads start at $300 and Android tablets can be purchased for as little as $50, this is remarkable.



A Rolling Rollout for Apple's New Lineup?

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Apple has the most exciting roster of new products set to release in 2014, according to Eddy Cue; but as 2014 is more than halfway done, does that mean all of the products will be announced at once? Not necessarily. Rumors and predictions indicate delays for some of the more difficult products, like a 5.5-inch iPhone and the long anticipated iWatch. Apple's new sapphire factories are doing their best, but this is brand new territory. Sapphire has been used for Apple's camera lenses and for traditional watches, but to make 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch screens is a new challenge.



Turn Your iPad into a Full-Fledged Desktop with the myKeyO

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Increasingly, iPads are replacing laptops and even desktops as the computing platform of choice, especially in schools. But the onscreen keyboard is often the weak link. There are a plethora of Bluetooth keyboards, notably Apple's own pricey Wireless Keyboard. It could get expensive to outfit each student with one.



iKlip Xpand and iRig Voice Review Roundup

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IK Multimedia is a company whose products I have been reviewing for several years, and they continue to impress me with their prodigious release of new hardware and software. Their latest batch consists of substantial revisions to their popular iKlip and iMic product lines. This review roundup takes a look at these to see if they are worthy of your purchase consideration.



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