Apple releases MacBook Pro firmware update to fix battery issues

Apple has released the MacBook Pro SMC Firmware Update 1.7. The update addresses a very specific issue owners of the MacBook Pro (15- and 17-inch models, Early 2011) and MacBook Pro (15- and 17-inch models, Mid 2010) were having. Though rare, the issue would cause the laptops to unexpectedly shut down or stop functioning after more than 1,000 battery charge cycles.

The firmware update can be downloaded through Software Update on the select models, or users can download it directly here. Last month Apple released the MacBook Pro SMC Firmware Update 1.6, which addressed asimilar issue on other models.

[Source: TUAW]

PS Vita firmware update adds button controls, iTunes playlists and more

If you're a Vita owner, then this week must feel like running through rain of joy, as new features and functionality keep coming. Well, why not splash in a puddle or two along the way, as we learn what treats the next firmware update for the handheld -- version 1.80 -- will bring. First up is the ability to use the console's buttons on the home screen and within some applications -- yeah really! In addition to that mind-bomb, you'll also be able to fast-forward and rewind video, import playlists from the PS3 and iTunes (10.6.3 or later) as well as use the rear touchpad for scrolling and zooming in the browser. There's a bunch of other minor tweaks, too, just skip down to the source for the breakdown or wait until "late August" for the download.

[Source: Engadget]

Apple Releases Firmware to Activate PowerNap on 2011 MacBook Airs

One of the new features found in OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion is PowerNap. PowerNap was introduced at WWDC 2012 and allows your Mac to continue to perform tasks such as receiving email and updating software even when it's sleeping. 

Apple lists the full capabilities in this Knowledge Base document. Capabilities include getting new Mail, syncing Calendar, Contact and Reminder changes, and more. When plugged into power, your Mac can download software updates and make backups with Time Capsule. 

Apple only supports PowerNap on 2011 MacBook Airs and beyond as well as the 2012 Retina MacBook Pro. The capability should move over to more of Apple's laptops as Apple makes a full transition to SSD. Built-in flash storage is listed as one of the requirements of the technology. Apple just released a firmware update that enables this functionality in the 2011 MacBook Airs, while support for the Retina MacBook Pro is said to be "coming soon".

[Source: MacRumors]