iNews Review

Apple Intros iPod touch, iPod classic, video iPod nano, Slashes iPhone Price, and More

This Week's iPhone, iPod, and Apple TV News

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2007.09.06

Welcome to the iNews Review, Low End Mac's new roundup of all Apple things that aren't Mac - iPods, iPhone, and Apple TV. PowerBook, iBook, MacBook, and other portable computing is covered in The 'Book Review, and general Mac news is in Mac News Review.

All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted.

iPod News & Opinion

iPhone News & Opinion

Products

iPod and iPhone Deals

Software

iPod News & Opinion

Apple Unveils iPod touch with Multi-touch Interface, Built-in WiFi

PR: Apple's new iPod touch features Apple's iPhone-style multi-touch user interface that enables users to find and enjoy music, videos and more on its widescreen display with just the touch of a finger.

iPod touchFirst introduced on iPhone, the multi-touch interface uses pioneering new software to present the user interface for each application. The iPod touch also includes WiFi wireless networking, the first on any iPod, and three amazing applications that use it - Safari, the most advanced browser on any mobile device, lets users wirelessly view web pages just as they look on their computer, and features Google Search or Yahoo! oneSearch; Apple's YouTube application lets users wirelessly watch over 10 million free videos from the Internet's most popular video website; and the new iTunes WiFi Music Store lets users wirelessly browse, preview and buy songs and albums from the most popular online music store in the world. The iPod touch is a svelte 8 mm thin, and is priced starting at $299.

"The iPod touch is a landmark iPod, ushering in a whole new generation of features based on its revolutionary multi-touch interface and built-in WiFi wireless networking," said Steve Jobs. "People are going to be amazed at how thin it is and how much it does."

With its 3.5" widescreen display, iPod touch is ideal for watching movies and TV shows, as well as viewing photos and album art. iPod touch has a built-in accelerometer that automatically senses when you rotate it into its landscape position. When you're in music, it automatically switches to Cover Flow so you can browse your music collection by album cover artwork with just a flick of a finger. When in Photos, it automatically displays the photo in its landscape aspect ratio; and when in Safari it displays the web page horizontally. iPod touch also has a built-in ambient light sensor that automatically adjusts the display's brightness. iPod touch features up to 22 hours of audio playback and up to five hours of video playback.

The iTunes WiFi Music Store lets you browse the iTunes Top Ten lists of songs and albums overall or by genre, check out new releases and "What's Hot," or search for your favorite songs, albums or artists. You can preview any song for free, then purchase and download the ones you like directly onto your iPod touch over WiFi. The music you download will be automatically uploaded into your iTunes library the next time you sync your iPod touch with your computer.

With Safari on the iPod touch you can see web pages the way they were meant to be seen, with the ability to zoom into any webpage with a tap of your finger. The Safari web browser includes built-in Google Search and Yahoo! oneSearch so you can quickly and easily find information you need. iPod touch also includes Apple's YouTube application that allows you to access, browse and search for millions of free YouTube videos over WiFi.

Apple also announced an exclusive agreement with Starbucks that allows you to access the iTunes WiFi Music Store for free in participating US Starbucks stores starting next month. When you enter a participating Starbucks location, your iPod touch, iPhone, or PC or Mac running iTunes will automatically recognize the iTunes WiFi Music Store. You can see what song is currently playing or has recently played in the store, and immediately preview, buy and download it over WiFi.

iPod owners can choose from a vast ecosystem of accessories with over 4,000 products made specifically for the iPod including cases, fitness accessories, speaker systems and iPod connectivity in over 70 percent of US automobiles.

The new iPod touch is scheduled to be available later this month. The 8 GB iPod touch model is $299 and the 16 GB iPod model is $399. iPod touch requires a Mac with a USB 2.0 port, Mac OS X 10.4.10 or later and iTunes 7.4; or a Windows PC with a USB 2.0 port and Windows Vista or Windows XP Home or Professional (Service Pack 2) or later and iTunes 7.4. Internet access is required and a broadband connection is recommended, fees may apply. The iTunes Store is not available in all countries.

* Battery life and number of charge cycles vary by use and settings. See www.apple.com/batteries for more information. Music capacity is based on four minutes per song and 128-Kbps AAC encoding; photo capacity is based on iPod-viewable photos transferred from iTunes; and video capacity is based on H.264 1.5 Mbps video at 640-by-480 resolution.

Apple Introduces New iPod nano, Now Plays Video

PR: Apple's new iPod nano brings video playback, an enhanced user interface featuring Cover Flow, and an new case design featuring a larger 2" display with 204 pixels per inch, which lets users watch movies, TV shows and music videos in the same resolution they currently enjoy on the video iPod.

New iPod nanoThe new iPod nano also includes three games, and additional games can be purchased from the online iTunes Store. iPod nano delivers up to 24 hours of audio playback or five hours of video playback on a single charge, and is encased in a new all-metal design made with anodized aluminum and polished stainless steel and comes in five colors - silver, black, blue, green and a (PRODUCT) RED special edition.

"We've taken the most popular music player in the world and added stunning video playback just in time for the holiday season," said Steve Jobs. "The iPod nano just keeps getting better and better with each new generation."

The new iPod nano features a 204 pixel per inch display that is 65% brighter than the previous generation and delivers 320 x 240 resolution for watching movies and TV shows on the go, and also features an enhanced user interface that shows off album artwork and photos and now includes Cover Flow, so you can scroll through your entire music collection by album cover artwork using the Click Wheel.

The new nano is ideal for playing iPod games and comes preloaded with iQuiz, the entertainment trivia game; Vortex, a fast-paced 360 degree brick-bashing game; and Klondike, the solitaire card game. Additional games will be available for iPod nano later this month from the iTunes Store, including Sudoku and Tetris from Electronic Arts and Ms. PAC-MAN from NAMCO.

Available immediately, the 4 GB iPod nano comes in silver for just $149 and the 8 GB model is available in silver, black, blue, green and a (PRODUCT) RED special edition for just $199. Both the 4 GB and 8 GB iPod nano for Windows or Mac are available worldwide through the Apple Store ( www.apple.com ), Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers. All iPod nano models include earbud headphones, a USB to 30-pin cable and a Universal Dock Connector.

iPod nano requires a Mac with a USB 2.0 port, Mac OS X v10.4.8 or later and iTunes 7.4; or a Windows PC with a USB 2.0 port and Windows Vista or Windows XP Home or Professional (Service Pack 2) or later and iTunes 7.4. Internet access is required and a broadband connection is recommended, fees may apply. The iTunes Store is not available in all countries.

* Battery life and number of charge cycles vary by use and settings. See www.apple.com/batteries for more information. Music capacity is based on four minutes per song and 128-Kbps AAC encoding; actual capacity varies by content; photo capacity is based on iPod-viewable photos transferred from iTunes; and video capacity is based on H.264 1.5 Mbps video at 640-by-480 resolution combined with 128-Kbps audio; actual capacity varies by content.

Apple Introduces iPod classic: New 160 GB Model Holds Up to 40,000 Songs

PR: Apple's new iPod classic features 80 GB or 160 GB of storage that should be able to hold your entire collection of music, photos, video, podcasts and games and then some - up to 40,000 songs or 200 hours of video.

iPod classicNow in its sixth generation, the iPod classic retains the features customers love about their iPods, and adds an enhanced user interface featuring Cover Flow and a new all-metal enclosure. iPod classic is priced at $249 for the 80 GB model and $349 for the 160 GB model.

"The first iPod put 1,000 songs in your pocket - this new iPod classic can put 40,000 songs in your pocket," said Steve Jobs. "With a thinner, all-metal enclosure and an enhanced user interface, the iPod classic is ideal for people who want to hold everything on their iPod."

The new iPod classic holds up to 160 GB of storage in an all-metal anodized aluminum and polished stainless steel enclosure, and features up to 40 hours of music playback and seven hours of video playback in the 160 GB model, and up to 30 hours of music playback and five hours of video playback in the 80 GB model on a single charge,* letting users enjoy their entire collections of music, audio books, audio and video podcasts, music videos, television shows and movies wherever they go.

The new iPod classic comes preloaded with iQuiz, the entertainment trivia game; Vortex, a fast-paced 360 degree brick-bashing game; and Klondike, the solitaire card game. Additional games will be available for purchase for the new iPod classic later this month from the iTunes Store, including Sudoku and Tetris from Electronic Arts and Ms. PAC-MAN from NAMCO.

Both iPod classic models are available immediately worldwide in silver and black. The 80 GB iPod classic model is $249 and the 160 GB iPod classic is $349.

iPod classic requires a Mac with a USB 2.0 port, Mac OS X v10.4.8 or later and iTunes 7.4; or a Windows PC with a USB 2.0 port and Windows Vista or Windows XP Home or Professional (Service Pack 2) or later and iTunes 7.4. Internet access is required and a broadband connection is recommended, fees may apply. The iTunes Store is not available in all countries.

* Battery life and number of charge cycles vary by use and settings. See www.apple.com/batteries for more information. Music capacity is based on four minutes per song and 128-Kbps AAC encoding; photo capacity is based on iPod-viewable photos transferred from iTunes; and video capacity is based on H.264 1.5 Mbps video at 640-by-480 resolution.

Apple Shows Up Music Industry Once Again

News.com's Greg Sandoval says:

"Steve Jobs demonstrated on Wednesday why Apple is snatching away the music business out from under the record labels.

"Just days after Rick Rubin, Columbia Records' co-chairman, outlined some of his ideas for saving the music business - several that are dated and ignored by the public - Apple blows in with a new distribution model.

"Apple announced at the company's press event on Wednesday that it launched a new WiFi store in partnership with Starbucks. Each time an owner of an iPhone, or new iPod touch enters a Starbucks, a button will appear on their device that enables them to buy music from the WiFi library. They can download a song - without having to log in - by whatever artist Starbucks is featuring at the time, or music playing on the store's sound system or any other they can find in the library...."

"Here's the beauty of the partnership with Starbucks: some investment banker or dog walker enters their favorite Starbucks, hears a song they like and with a few button pushes, it's on their iPod. It's an impulse buy. Cool song, only 99 cents...."

Apple Eats Its Young - Again

The Globe and Mail's Matt Hartley reports:

"Some are calling it a 'mobile internet device,' while others have tentatively dubbed it a 'digital lifestyle device,' but no matter what it's called, the new iPod touch from Apple Inc. is a market-changing piece of technology that has analysts and tech geeks alike buzzing about its potential.

"The iPod touch incorporates the touch-screen user interface from Apple's iPhone but will also feature WiFi wireless networking capabilities and a full Safari browser."

iPhone News & Opinion

Apple Slashes iPhone Price to $399

iPhonePR: In a dramatically controversial move, Apple has announced that it is on track to sell its one millionth iPhone before the end of September, and to make iPhone affordable for even more customers this holiday season, it is lowering the price of the most popular iPhone model with 8 GB of storage from $599 to just $399.

"The surveys are in, and iPhone customer satisfaction scores are higher than we've ever seen for any Apple product," said Steve Jobs. "We've clearly got a breakthrough product and we want to make it affordable for even more customers as we enter this holiday season."

The 8 GB iPhone is available immediately for $399 in the US through Apple's retail and online stores and AT&T retail stores. The iPhone 4 GB model will be sold while supplies last.

iPhone Outsells All Smartphones in US in July

InformationWeek's Antone Gonsalves reports:

"The Apple iPhone led smartphone sales in the United States in July, beating Research In Motion's BlackBerry, the Palm Treo, and other rivals, a market research firm said Tuesday.

"In addition, iPhone sales equaled those of the most popular feature phone in the United States, LG's Chocolate, iSuppli said. The Apple gadget, a combination media player and mobile phone, accounted for 1.8% of all handset sales in the United States.

"iSuppli attributed the meteoric rise of the iPhone in large part to demand built up by months of hype leading up to the gadget's release on June 29. The real proof of whether Apple has a big winner will be determined in the coming months as demand patterns stabilize."

For the full report, visit:

http://www.informationweek.com/news/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=201803979

$200 iPhone Outrage

weblogs.redeyechicago.com says:

"I had to come back online for this . . . the Mac community is exploding with rage over Apple's decision to drop the price of the iPhone $200 and discontinue the 4 GB model.

"I have never seen such rage coming from the Apple community. Never, and I've been using Macs since 1984.

"If you think about it, it means folks (like myself) have paid for the privilege to be beta testers....

"The Apple forums . . . are overflowing with nasty words, open letters to congressmen and Steve Jobs' resignation.

"It's bad."

How to Get $200 Back if You Just Bought an iPhone

Om Malik says:

"Did you just buy an 8 GB iPhone and paid full price? And are you feeling upset over the $200 dollar price drop that Apple (AAPL) just announced? Well there is a way you can help yourself and get $200 back. Apple's store return policy states:

Should Apple reduce its price on any Apple-branded product within fourteen (14) calendar days of the date of purchase, you may request a refund of the difference between the price paid and the current selling price. An original purchase receipt is required, and you must request your refund within fourteen (14) calendar days of the price reduction.

"Just to clarify, if you bought the phone from Apple store, then you can get the refund from Apple. Otherwise visit the AT&T Store to request a refund."

MobileChat, an AIM Client for Your iPhone

PR: twenty08 has officially released it's first iPhone Application!

We feel we started things off in a big way with MobileChat, an AIM client for your iPhone. The way we see it, this is the way Cupertino intended AIM to be on the iPhone.

While everyone was knocking the iPhone's capabilities and complaining about the lack of iChat support, we took a different route and figured we'd fill the gap that Apple shockingly left open. That being said, MobileChat was born. Using a simplistic approach, keeping a unified GUI in mind, and using the most lightweight methods for executing tasks, MobileChat is the premier AIM Application for the iPhone. In fact, it's so light-weight and efficient that it runs just about as well on the EDGE network as it does on any WiFi network! Give it a try today, and if you love it that much (We know you will!), tell your friends!

MobileChatFeatures

  • AIM Account Support
  • IM Abilities
  • Full Buddy list with Statuses
  • Change status: Away & Online
  • Suspend and stay online
  • Sound notifications
  • Popup Notifications

To download the source, run the following command:

$ svn checkout svn://open.twenty08.com/MobileChat/trunk MobileChat

iphonesimfree.com Announces SIM Unlocking for the iPhone

PR: It gives us great pleasure to announce the worlds first (and only) software driven SIM unlocking service for the iPhone™. No need to open your phone. No need to solder.

Major benefits include:

  • Choose the provider you want, use any SIM card from any network provider in any country
  • No more outrageous roaming charges. When traveling simply pick the local provider of your choice and change your SIM card.
  • Poor network coverage no longer an issue, use the network provider best suited to your region
  • Save money! A favorable exchange rate makes for excellent value for money when importing

To silence any doubters out there, we are welcoming publications from around the world to apply to receive their iPhones™ unlocked free of charge. If interested, please submit an application via our Contact Us form. The top three applications will receive a free unlock within the next 48 hours, which will be soon followed by the commercial launch of the software for public consumption.

Products

Retro Tune Mini Jukebox

PR: A Nostalgic and Retro Desktop miniaturize Jukebox with Tri Color LED lighting System. The multicolor Mini Jukebox develop with 40 watts of power and MaxxBass Technology. ( MaxxBass helps you hear better bass on all speakers)

Retro Tune Mini JukeboxBring music and fun to any room of the house! This cool nostalgic jukebox features iPod connector dock, MP3 Line in, FM radio, full range speakers, top-loading CD player, and a full function remote control. Solid wood and veneer cabinet. 12"W x 9.5"D x 18"H.

Your Mini Jukebox music system is ready to go as soon as you plug it in.

Simply set your iPod to play what you want and insert it into the dock on the front of the system and away you go. Conveniently control your iPod functions across the room with IR remote control.

  • Play your iPod music with this system
  • Display photos with iPod with color display
  • Display video on TV with iPod with video capability
  • Control iPod functions across the room with IR remote control
  • Connect other devices via the RCA ports

Using the Remote

Use your 17 function Remote Control to control iPod function. Please make sure there are no obstruction between your remote and the IR window located at the Mini Jukebox.

Retro Tune Mini JukeboxFeatures

  • iPod/iPhone Docking
  • Alarm Clock
  • Date
  • Calendar
  • Single Disk CD Player
  • FM radio
  • Rotating Light Column

Design for iPhone Principles

Our design consists of general principles related to shielding, grounding, by passing, and keeping conductive material from the iPhone antenna area. We have also taken special consideration to ensure that all our electronic products built for the iPhone are custom shielded to eliminate TDMA noise when in used.

Our PCB and electronic wiring are shielded with special cooper wrap to help eliminate RF interference from the iPhone. A special integrated chip (IC) is used in conjunction with the audio pin outs to lower the TDMA noise on all audio and docking products.

V-MODA Intros Dual-Purpose Headset for iPhone

PR: Music lifestyle brand V-MODA has announced the VIBE Duo, a dual-use earphone with microphone combination designed to accessorize the Apple iPhone. The VIBE Duo luxury headphone/headset for the iPhone features hi-definition sound, in addition to optimum communication capabilities. It offers unprecedented mobility during any activity, from exercise to travel and beyond.

Dual-Purpose Headset for iPhoneWith a suggested retail price of $99.99 and boasting durable black fabric cables and an all-metal design, the luxurious VIBE Duo in-ear earphones with microphone are lightweight, comfortable and stylish. Val Kolton, founder and CEO of V-MODA, said the VIBE Duo will give consumers a unique way to benefit from all the technology the iPhone offers.

"We developed VIBE Duo to bring unmatched convenience, comfort and mobility to Apple iPhone users," Kolton said. "At V-MODA, we celebrate an active, music-inspired lifestyle - we live it and breathe it. The VIBE Duo is perfect for consumers who appreciate innovation, craftsmanship and style. It's got all these qualities in one sophisticated, great-sounding, cost-efficient, premium accessory that complements the new iPhone."

The iPhone is lauded for combining three products - a mobile phone, a widescreen iPod with touch controls and a breakthrough Internet communications device - into one small and lightweight handheld. It boasts a thin, sleek profile that is complemented by the lightweight (13 grams) VIBE Duo. The VIBE Duo's mini microphone is also discreet and unobtrusive, blending seamlessly with the black cabling.

For active, on-the-go consumers, VIBE Duo features three sizes of ultra-soft silicon fittings for a secure, comfortable fit. To further ensure the accessory doesn't jar loose during exercise or strenuous activities, a small clip adds extra security.

VIBE Duo joins the existing VIBE line of luxury, high-fashion modaphones from V-MODA, heralded upon introduction for offering state-of-the-art audio on the go. Much like VIBE, when it comes to enjoying tunes, VIBE Duo offers superior technology that enables a sculpted response curve fashioned for the discerning audio enthusiast, providing a precise balance of rich bass, warm mids and unprecedented clarity. Utilizing V-MASQUE dynamic driver technology, VIBE Duo achieves a precise yet natural sound stage in comparison to other high-end earphones. BLISS (Bass Level Isolating Soft Silicon) technology further reduces outside noise for a precise and rich bass response (frequency 12 Hz to 22 Hz).

VIBE Duo is compatible with the iPod and all other portable music players. Available in Nero (black) and Chrome, it is packaged with an elegant leather pouch for safe travel and storage.

The VIBE Duo headphone/headset is available now for $99.99 and can be found at the Apple Store as well as online at Shop V-MODA (shop.v-moda.com) and Apple.com. The product is backed by a 100 percent risk-free satisfaction guarantee, as well as free shipping in the US for a limited time only.

Music Rescue iPod File Copy Utility: Disaster Insurance

PR: Your music library is precious. It contains all those memories of your youth, or that first dance. With an iPod, it helps you work out, keeps you company when you drive and drowns out that noisy train ride into the city. Unfortunately, your music library is fragile. If your computer dies and takes your music with it, you still have your iPod, right? However, iTunes only lets you transfer tracks bought from the iTunes Store back to your new/fixed computer. What about those tracks ripped from CD, or lovingly recorded from your vinyl collection?

Enter Music Rescue - the answer to your nightmare.

As you have your music library on your computer at home, and keep it on you when you're out and about with your iPod, you'll probably want to listen to it at work. Or your dorm. Or anywhere you regularly use a computer. With Music Rescue, you can copy your tracks to the other machine. If you're not allowed to install iTunes (school and corporate networks tend to not like this), simply install Music Rescue onto your iPod at home and it'll be available wherever you go - Mac or PC.

Once you're at your work computer, you only want to add the tracks you've added since last time. No problem - Music Rescue scans your local iTunes library and compares it to your iPod - telling you which songs are and aren't in iTunes, and even telling you which similar tracks are present.

Using Music Rescue's powerful "Rules" feature, you can very quickly copy only the tracks that aren't there:

Once tracks are copied, Music Rescue can then bring up iTunes, add the new tracks and even recreate your playlists.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later.

You're free to download and try Music Rescue for free, but if you find it useful you should buy the full version. No features are missing before you pay, but you'll be politely reminded that you should do so while you're copying music. Music Rescue costs £10, and has two different licenses:

Computer License (Music Rescue)

  • Registers Music Rescue to a computer
  • You can use as many iPods as you like with the one computer

iPod License (Music Rescue Anywhere)

  • Registers Music Rescue to an iPod
  • You can use this iPod with as many computers as you like

For more information, visit:

PodWorks iPod Song Transfer Utility

PR: PodWorks is a Mac OS X application that compensates for the iPod's only downside: Apple only allows you to copy songs to your iPod. If you have two Macs and want to use your iPod to transfer music from one to the other, or you only store your music and videos on your iPod and need to copy them back onto your hard drive after a disk failure, you are out of luck!

This is where PodWorks comes in: it allows you to copy songs and videos from any iPod or iPhone to any Mac running OS X 10.3 or higher. Its important features include:

  • iPhone support: PodWorks is the first (and currently only) iPod song transfer app for the Mac to recognize and allow transfers from the iPhone.
  • Superior performance: Many other standalone iPod song transfer utilities work by reading song data out of every song on the iPod - a slow process. PodWorks, by contrast, reads its data directly from the iPod's internal database, resulting in nearly instantaneous display of your song list.
  • More metadata: Since PodWorks can read from the iPod's internal database, it can also display and sort by song "metadata" not available through ID3 (including Date Added, Play Count, and Star Rating).
  • iTunes integration: In addition to copying songs to the Finder, PodWorks can send songs, playlists (registered version only), and metadata (star ratings, play counts, track numbers, etc.) directly to iTunes. It can also filter its song list to show you only the songs on the iPod that are not present in your iTunes library.
  • Playlists: PodWorks recognizes your iPod's playlists. Entire playlists can be copied to your computer with a single drag (registered version only).
  • Song Playback: PodWorks allows you to preview songs before you copy them by playing them directly off the iPod (not yet available for iPhone).
  • Strong organizational capabilities: Copying large numbers of files can get messy, so PodWorks can automatically sort transferred files into directories and change their filenames according to your preferences.
  • Portability: PodWorks can be placed on your iPod for convenient access away from your home computer. It will work when run off the iPod, and will remember its registration information even when connected to a previously unknown machine.

New in version 2.9.2:

  • Support for the iPhone: PodWorks now recognizes iPhones in additional to traditional iPods, and allows users to transfer songs from iPhones to the Finder or iTunes.
  • Fix for the "error -54" bug: This version introduces a fix for the frequent error -54" messages that could occur during large transfers to iTunes with previous versions of PodWorks.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.3 or later, iPod.

System support: PPC/Intel

$8 shareware

Until registered, PodWorks has the following limitations:

  • 30 day time limit.
  • 250 song copy limit.
  • Songs must be copied one at a time.
  • Single-drag copying of playlists is disabled.

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