ZAGG’s iPad-an-Hour Giveaway is almost here [Update: Now Live]

The second annual iPad-an-Hour Giveaway bonanza by ZAGG is back. Same as last year, 24 iPads (this time the iPad 4 16GB Wifi model) will be given away throughout Black Friday.

Starting at 12:00 am MST on Black Friday, we’ll be giving away an iPad 4 every hour. 24 iPad 4s over 24 hours. Each hour is a new opportunity to enter the giveaway. So yes, you need to go to the giveaway page each hour and enter.

Entering the giveaway will be simple. To enter, just submit your email address. For additional entries, you can share on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. A Facebook share is worth two additional entries, a Twitter share is worth one additional entry, and a Pinterest share is worth one additional entry.

You can get a reminder by texting ‘hour’ to 53535 and ZAGG will text you each hour to remind you to enter. The contest starts in a few hours, so if you’re feeling lucky then, head over to the ZAGG Contest page to submit your entries. Good luck!

The Mac Utility Bundle: 5 apps for $59 (including Parallels 8)

Been patiently waiting for a price drop on Parallels 8? Well you’re in luck, because it’s part of the latest Mac bundle to hit the web this Thanksgiving season. With the Mac Utility Bundle, you get 5 apps for $59 – which is 75% off the total retail price. They include: Parallels 8, Snagit, MacOptimizer, Rubbernet and VirusBarrier. Normally Parallels 8 sells for $80 and it’s arguably the best utility for running Windows right from within Mac OS. Snagit’s another app I use heavily for capturing screenshots for TMA and other projects (it can also do video capturing), and this alone retails for $50. You have 7 days to take advantage of this great Mac Utility bundle, so head over to the Stacksocial page for the complete details.

And if you missed it earlier, the ProductivityMac bundle (9 apps for $29) is still on.

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A history of photography: from the first photo to Instagram [Infographic]

Photography sure has come a long way. From the first photo ever taken (which required an eight hour exposure) to the explosion of mobile photography, more and more users are relying on their cellphones to snap their pictures. The team behind Overgram (an app that lets its users add an assortment of text to their Instagram pics), have drummed up an infographic detailing its evolution. Some of the stats include: more than 3.5 trillion photos have been taken since the first photo, 300 million photos are uploaded to Facebook everyday and photos make up 42% of all posts on Tumblr. Check out the full breakdown filled with stats, fancy charts and the like after the break.

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ORA turns your iPad into 8 Speaker Sound System

Watching movies on the iPad can be an enjoyable experience no doubt – just so long as you’re not relying on its terrible speakers. Even the ones on the iPad mini sound significantly better, thanks to the stereo speakers onboard. So how do you create the perfect accessory that makes the film sound great on-the-go AND not require you to carry around separate peripherals (i.e bluetooth speakers)? Enter ORA, a unique case that literally puts 8 speakers around your iPad, delivering 5 times the loudness you’re accustomed to hearing.

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Google putting finishing touches on iOS Maps app with turn-by-turn navigation

Good news for Google Maps advocates using iOS 6. According to the Wall Street Journal, Google has been field testing their long rumoured iOS Maps app and putting on the “finishing touches” prior to submitting it to Apple’s stringent approval process.

Google has distributed a test version of its new mapping app that will work on Apple’s iPhones and iPads to some individuals outside the company, said a person with direct knowledge of the matter. Google has been putting the finishing touches on the app before submitting it for approval to the Apple iTunes store, this person said, though it is unclear exactly when that will happen.

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Apple mini Wifi + Cellular now available in the US

Two weeks after the launch of the iPad mini, the Wifi + Cellular models (LTE) have finally arrived in the US. Both Sprint and AT&T have officially announced that the LTE minis are now available on their 4G networks and can be purchased at select retail stores. Meanwhile, Verizon‘s iPad mini product page has gone live on their website. It is also believed that cellular iPad minis are available in Apple Stores and Best Buy stores across the country. With a data plan, the mini will provide the added convenience of allowing its users to go online even if there isn’t Wifi available. Personally, I’ve always just owned the Wifi models; if I need internet access, I simply turn on hotspot sharing on my iPhone. But if your carrier charges for tethering however, an iPad mini 4G certainly makes more sense. Prices for the iPad mini Wifi + Cellular are as follows: 16GB ($459), 32GB ($559) and 64GB ($659).

If you missed my thoughts on the mini, you can check it out here.

Must have offline maps app: City Maps 2Go now free

Anyone who’s ever travelled to another country with their iPhones (and iPads) have no doubt looked up the App Store for some offline maps solution. With carriers charging an arm and a leg for data roaming fees, it’s no wonder that there are countless travel apps with offline map capabilities. The best I’ve come across so far is City Maps 2Go, which also happens to have gone free today (was $1.99). Using Map data and POI from OpenStreetMap, the app lets you separately download 7,800 maps from all over the globe – all neatly sorted by cities, counties and provinces.

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Evernote 5 now available on Mac App Store

After several weeks in beta, Evernote 5 has officially launched and is now available on the Mac App Store. The complete redesign took a year in the making and comes packed with over 100 new features.

We’ve spent the past year identifying the needs of new and advanced users to craft an environment that beautifully caters to both. We re-imagined the look of the app to make everything more accessible. We explored the changing role of sharing and collaboration within Evernote and the opportunities we have to make them more useful. We considered search and the ways that we could make it feel like it was one step ahead of your thoughts. In short, it’s the Evernote we’ve always wanted.

I’ve been using the beta and can’t speak highly enough about this major update. Love the new interface, especially the retooled sidebar where user shortcuts and recent notes can be found (in the top left). Recently, Evernote 5 released for the iPhone and iPad with new features, including handy gesture swipes to reveal notes, tags etc. Check out the list of what’s new and a quick video walkthrough after the break.

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ING Direct $50 Orange Key promo is Back [Canada Only]

If you missed ING’s awesome Double Referral Bonus promotion (and live in Canada), the good news is that it’s back and now runs through December 31st, 2012. Basically, ING Direct is doubling their usual $25 bonus to $50 for each referral made, so once you’ve got your account setup, you can get your friends and family to sign up for a free Thrive Checking account. And when they do and deposit their first $100, you’ll get $50 for each referral. At the very least, you’ll still get $50 yourself just for setting up an ING account (you must use an Orange Key, like this one: 39694980S1). See my previous post for the complete details on how to get started.

As an added bonus, you can even score a $100 Apple Gift Card just for switching over your payroll.

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