The iNews Review

How the iPod Trounced the Walkman, More Tunes on Your shuffle, 75,000 Song iPod Super, and More

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2005.03.18

PowerBook, iBook, iPod, and other portable computing is covered in The 'Book Review, and general Apple and Mac desktop news is covered in The Mac News Review.

How the iPod Ran Circles around the Walkman

NEWS: The New York Times' Randall Stross says:

"....At first glance, digital music is the field in which Sony's considerable assets seem best suited, with a little rearrangement, for a comeback. On one side, Sony has 50 years of experience in producing portable music players, beginning with transistor radios in the 1950s and extended by its Walkman franchise that has sold more than 340 million players. On the other, it owns one of the world's largest music labels to supply content. Yet in the iPod era, Sony's headstart counts for nothing. It's as if the company were the Sony Graphophone and Wax Record Company."

Fit More Songs on iPod shuffle

NEWS: Apple eNews notes:

"If you're after the highest quality tunes and regularly import songs at bit rates higher than 128 Kbps, iTunes offers you the best of both worlds, letting you keep your high-quality songs in iTunes while exporting leaner versions of the songs, sized just right for iPod shuffle."

"Here's how: Connect iPod shuffle, open the iPod Preferences dialog, and click the iPod tab. Click the check box next to 'Convert higher bit rate songs to 128 kbps AAC for this iPod.' Then click OK."

"The next time you Autofill iPod shuffle, iTunes will automatically convert songs to 128 Kbps as it exports them to iPod shuffle. The original versions in your iTunes collection, meanwhile, will remain in your library at their higher encoding rate."

Hack Your iPod Into a Monster Super Music Bank

NEWS: tonytalkstech.com reports:

"Here is a hack for those who aren't faint at heart at electronic customizations. Hack A Day has found information that will allow you to take your iPod to the 75000 song capacity mark..."

The "iPod Super" uses a 3.5" hard drive. You'll have to come up with your own enclosure and battery.

Restoring an iPod to Factory Settings

NEWS: A new Apple Knowledge Base Article says:

Learn how to restore iPod to factory settings.

First, it is important to understand the difference between "update" and "restore."

"Update" simply updates the software that controls iPod and may also update the firmware for the hard drive. Update does not affect the songs and files stored on iPod's hard disk.

"Restore" erases the hard disk and restores iPod to its original factory condition. Because Restore erases all of the songs and files on the hard disk, make sure to back up your songs and files first.

You use the iPod Software Updater application to update or restore your iPod. You can download it from the iPod Download page. From time to time Apple expects to release versions of this application that have newer versions of iPod software. These later versions may include new functions or improvements to existing features.

How to Recover a Partitioned iPod

NEWS: macosxhints.com says:

"A friend of mine decided he wanted to partition his 4th gen 40 gig iPod for some reason. After doing it, he was getting the missing OS error image: a flashing folder with an exclamation on it. Despite his excellent skills with Google's advanced searching, he could find no helpful info on the web. All he found were people saying to NEVER do this.

"He tried running the iPod Updater and doing a Restore. The first time, it started, then quit with an error message: '05 error'. After that, the Updater greyed out the buttons and would no longer recognize his iPod. Further Googling proved fruitless. He sent an email to Apple Support, but got no response other than an RMA box. Fortunately, his wife forgot to tell him about the box until I had a chance to help him."

Motorola Postpones iTunes Phone Debut

NEWS: AP Business Writer Matt Moore reports:

"Motorola Inc. postponed plans Thursday to unveil a cell phone that can buy and play songs from Apple Computer Inc.'s iTunes download service, a sudden decision which may reflect tensions with cellular companies who also want to sell music to mobile phone users.

"The company briefed reporters on the new offering earlier in the week and planned to unveil the phone at the big CeBIT technology show here. Motorola's two-story exhibition booth included a display of iMacs running iTunes, but the new phones weren't there.

"Motorola spokeswoman Monica Rohleder said in Chicago that the company remains in discussions with a number of wireless carriers regarding the first iTunes phone and will announce it 'when it's ready to go,' close to its expected release time this summer."

Logitech Unveils Affordable Speakers for iPods, MP3 Players

PR: Logitech have announced it is giving iPod and mobile music enthusiasts an alternative way to listen to their digital music: out loud. At CeBIT, the company unveiled the Logitech mm22 portable speakers, which produce high-quality sound at an affordable price.

Logitech mm22 portable speakersThe system is Logitech's first product targeted at iPod users and the rapidly growing mobile music market. Technology market research firm IDC forecasts that more than 95 million portable compressed audio players will be shipped worldwide in 2006, up 70 percent from 2004.

The Logitech mm22 portable speakers complement the sleek design of the much-celebrated iPod - but also work with any portable music player or notebook PC that features a 3.5 mm jack. Whether it's at the office or on the road, the one-piece system gives digital music lovers the freedom to listen to their favorite tracks without wearing a headset - and allows them to share their music out loud with a group of friends.

Logitech, a leading manufacturer of multimedia PC speakers, designed the speakers with portability, quality and affordability in mind. The Logitech mm22 portable speakers will be available for a suggested retail price of $79.99 in the U.S. The system includes a total of four neodymium micro drivers - two on each side - that produce rich, smooth sound with tremendous depth for their size. When it's time to hit the road, the Logitech mm22 portable speakers, which weigh only 12 ounces including batteries, fold neatly into a deluxe traveling case that's about the size of a hard cover book (9.8" x 5.9" x 2.0").

"People everywhere are using portable audio players to listen to music, but one thing has been missing: the ability to listen to their collection out loud, without spending a fortune for high-quality sound," said Ray Weikel, director of product marketing for Logitech's Audio Business Unit. "Other portable speakers on the market are either very expensive, or sound like an old clock radio. Logitech developed the mm22 portable speakers to provide people with a compelling mid-range product that combines quality and an affordable price."

The Logitech mm22 portable speakers include three custom cradles to fit any size of hard drive-based iPod and many other portable music players. The speaker system can be used anywhere and anytime, because it can be powered by either batteries or the included AC adapter. The traveling case holds the speakers, the international power adapter (100-240V), two speaker cables: a 10-inch cable for connecting the speakers to the portable audio player, and a 24-inch cable to connect the speakers to a notebook, and is also roomy enough to store the iPod or other portable music players of similar size.

The Logitech mm22 portable speakers will be available in retail stores and online at the end of March throughout the U.S. and Europe.

"iPod On Wheels'' Next Big Thing for Automotive Aftermarket

NEWS: As anticipated by market intelligence firm ABI Research, 2004 was a blockbuster year for the portable navigation aftermarket. Most aftermarket navigation devices are based on small computers with large storage capacity to hold map databases, so the next step is to store music, and video and to provide Internet connectivity.

ABI Research believes that 2005 will be an even bigger year for aftermarket navigation, as vendors expand its functions by bringing the music library into the car (an "iPod on wheels"). As part of its "Aftermarket Navigation, Infotainment, and Telematics Research Service," ABI Research identified the leading market differentiators for this year as real-time traffic and digital media playback. Since from a hardware perspective a connected navigation system is not very different from a connected PDA, why not allow users to run some of their own software?

Although the market is still in its infancy and many solutions are custom-built for individual vehicles, there is hope for the future in the shape of a new generation of tiny computers such as Apple's Mac Mini, which fit quite well in the dashboard.

"Automakers are generally afraid of offering something too complex, which is why they would rather connect to an iPod-type device rather than circumvent it," states ABI Research Senior Analyst, Dan Benjamin. "Head units with computing capabilities, large hard drives and even Internet access can help aftermarket vendors distinguish their products from the stock components that come with a vehicle."

The latest edition of the Service discusses many upcoming product offerings for the remainder of 2005 in the navigation, telematics and infotainment space. This quarter, it also adds a vendor matrix for North American navigation products. It details and compares every product offering in the competitive environment, discussing features, usability, price-points, distribution channels and marketing. Regional market forecasts for navigation, telematics, video players, and digital radio are provided through 2010.

Founded in 1990 and headquartered in New York, ABI Research maintains global operations that support annual research programs, intelligence services and market reports in automotive, wireless, semiconductors, broadband, and energy.

How to Make a Cardboard Case for Your iPod shuffle

NEWS: AppleMatters.com's C. K. Sample III says:

"Craft time! For iPod and iTunes Hacks, I wrote a hack about how to create a cardboard case for your iPod. This was easy. Apple provided a measurement guide for case developers (which has been updated since I wrote that article), but unfortunately, there are no such diagrams live yet for an iPod Shuffle case. On the other hand, the iPod Shuffle's spec page provides us with the rough dimensions: 3.3 x 0.98 x 0.33 inches.

"Why cardboard? Cardboard is cheap, strong, impact resistant, easily replaceable, bendable, and although it can be rigid, it still has some give. Perhaps most importantly, you can probably find a very suitable piece of cardboard for this project lying around your house or place of work. If you screw up, it won't cost anything to start over. After you've gone through these instructions with cardboard, you can try designing your own case out of other materials."

MaxPod Podcast 0.9.9b5 for News & Weather on Your iPod

PR: You can daily listen to news and weather on your iPod using MaxPod - get daily news, weather, and email and/or save to audio file.

Auto mode can automate file syncing between ipod and local drives Music mode lets you backup your music and can rename music. Add/modify/backup notes, maps, and lyrics on your ipod

The Registered version gives the following:

  • Save multiple watermark setups
  • No Nag window
  • Excellent Support

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.3 or higher

MaxPod sells for $16.50.

iPod.iTunes 2.7.4 iPod Track & Playlist Sync/Transfer

PR: Unlike other iPod copy tools, iPod.iTunes provides real synchronization of MP3, AAC, Protected AAC and Audible tracks and even playlists from your iPod(s) to your Mac(s).

iPod.iTunes saves your time because it automatically only copies those tracks which are missing in the iTunes library, excluding duplicates. If you wish, it provides also an option to show a list of tracks which are not in iTunes and to copy only desired tracks from that list.

iPod.iTunes can be used to

  • Keep music and playlists on different Macs up to date
  • Do a full restore of tracks and playlists - i.e. after a hard disk failure
  • Revert accident deletion of tracks and/or playlists, if these are still on your iPod
  • Clone an iPod
  • Transfer an entire music library from one Mac to another via the iPod

Tracks and playlist entries can be synchronized together or separately. If the tracks on the iPod are already in the iTunes library and you only want the iPod playlists, you can use the playlist synchronization alone.

For every track synchronization iPod.iTunes creates a date&time stamped iTunes playlist containing the tracks which were transferred. This gives the option to easily add those tracks to existing playlists or to create new playlists from the transferred tracks.

System requirements:

  • iPod.iTunes 2.7.4 supports:
    • Mac OS 10.2 up to 10.3.8
    • iTunes 3.0.1 up to 4.7.1
    • Mac/PC-formatted iPod with firmware 1.0 up to 4.0. Does currently not work with the iPod shuffle.
  • iPod2iTunes 1.8.1 supports:
    • Mac OS 10.1.2 up to 10.1.5
    • iTunes 2.0.4 up to 3.0.1
    • Mac-formatted iPod with firmware 1.0 up to 1.2.2

New in this version: Compatibility for the latest iPod firmware updates.

System requirements:

  • Mac OS X 10.2 or higher
  • iTunes 3.0.1 or higher
  • iPod

iPod 'Squeaks' Betray Software Secrets

NEWS: NewScientist.com' Will Knight reports:

"Computer enthusiasts have worked out how to reprogram Apple's iPod music player with their own code using an ingenious acoustic trick.

"They adapted the component that generates clicks - or 'squeaks' - as a user scrolls through the on-screen menu in order to extract vital information from the latest generation of the device. This allowed them to install an alternative operating system and make their iPods run games and other new programs.

"The project began when Nils Schneider, a 17-year-old computer science student from Germany, received an iPod for Christmas. Unlike most new iPod owners, he decided to install Linux - a freely available computer operating system not used as standard in iPods - on his device.

"The existing version of Linux for the iPod would not install easily, however, as the latest generation of player features new hardware. Undeterred, Schneider decided to figure out how these components worked by himself. He found he could control some parts of the device but not those containing details about the way the unit starts up, which is vital to getting Linux installed."

Tunewear Announces iPod Case with Price, Color, and Material You Can Choose

PR: Tunewear announces the new PRIE series "PRIE Classic","PRIE Lux" and "PRIE Pearl", carry cases for Apple's iPod 4G/photo and iPod mini digital music player. The new PRIE series 4G and mini will both be available at the end of march 2005.

New PRIE series lineup consists of 3 products. The "PRIE Classic", made of highest quality leatherette, The "PRIE Lux", made of high quality genuine leather and the "PRIE Pearl" which is made of exquisitely smooth sheepskin. Each PRIE series is available in a choice of colors.

Tonewear PRIE Series

The new PRIE series is available in a range of colors:

  • The "PRIE Classic" comes in, key lime, ruby pink, canvas gray, and jet black.
  • The "PRIE Lux" is available in black, brown, green, and cream
  • The "PRIE Pearl" comes in pearlblue, pearlviolet, and pearlbronze

The PRIE series comes in two shapes, one for the iPod mini and the other for the iPod 4G. The 4G model comes equipped with an internal spring that ensures a snug fit for the iPod 4G 20GB/40GB, iPod U2 Special Edition and iPod photo 30GB/40GB/60GB.

The Classic Face design of the PRIE series covers the whole body of your iPod and allows easy access to the screen and Click Wheel. With the flip cover closed the PRIE provides excellent protection for your iPod 4G/photo and iPod mini against dirt and scratches. The twin snap-button design is easy to open and close but will not fall open in your bag, offering even more protection for your iPod.

The PRIE series includes two straps, one long and one short, that clip onto the the sides of the case. The long strap can be used to hang PRIE around your neck or shoulder while the short strap can be used to attach the PRIE Classic to a bag, purse, or almost anything else that suits your style.

The PRIE series has been designed so it allows you to connect all sorts of gadgets to your iPod, without taking it out of it's case, so it is incredibly functional. Of course, the hole in the top of the PRIE allows you to connect headphones and a remote control. There is also an opening in the bottom of the PRIE series that allows you to access the Dock Connector so you can sync in style.

PRIE features

  • Highest quality smooth case material
  • Choice of colors
  • Classic Face design offering complete protection and access to controls
  • One long strap and one short strap included
  • Full access to headphone jack and dock connector
  • Flip cover for access to headphone jack, hold switch and Click Wheel
  • Interior slot for holding a credit card or business cards
  • Highest quality tailored cut, shape and stitching
  • Easy to open and close twin snap-button design
  • PRIE mini series fits all iPod mini models.
  • PRIE 4G series fits all iPod 4G and iPod photo models due to the internal spring design

PRIE Classic

Material: highest quality leatherette

Price: US$24.95 SRP (both 4G and mini model)

PRIE Lux

Material: high quality genuine leather

Price: US$34.95 SRP (both 4G and mini model)

PRIE Pearl

Material:
Exquisite smooth sheepskin

Price: US$44.95 SRP (both 4G and mini model)

iPed: iPod Stand

PR: i•Ped•es•tal n. (pd-stl) 1. An architectural support or base, for an iPod. 2. A foundation for display and cable control. 3. A position of high regard or adoration for the ultimate digital player.

iPediPed features:

  • Designed to enhance ALL 3G and 4G iPods
  • Professional appearance enhances your desktop following the wake of the iMac G5 / Cinema Display
  • Take back control of your desktop. Your FireWire and or USB cable will no longer be loose and sliding off your desktop when disconnected from your iPod, thanks to anti-pull thru grommet design. more info.
  • Robust 11 gauge formed Alloy Steel Construction
  • Hard Powder Coat - iconic matching Gloss Bright White, Off White or Gray
  • EPDM Rubber Seating to protect your iPod from scratching.
  • EPDM rubber sole footing for proper desktop compliancy

Gloss Bright White, Off White, Gray - $25.99 Plus $3.99 USPS S&H for U.S. and Puerto Rico

iPed 2Also iPed "2"

For iPod 3G, 4G and iPod mini - All with or without cases and skins. Use with your PocketDock too.

Features:

  • Technically designed to enhance ALL iPod 3G and 4G including the iPod mini and more.
  • Skin and case protectors will not impede the iPeds setup function allowing for various iPod sizes and setup configurations. May also setup with more electronic gagets you own.
  • Take back control of your desktop. Your FireWire and or USB cable will no longer be loose and sliding off your desktop when disconnected from your iPod, thanks to anti-pull thru grommet design. more info
  • Variable holder for the right viewing position.
  • Compatible with all PocketDock connectors.
  • Professional looking desktop, following the wake of the iMac G5 / Cinema Display.
  • Robust 11 gauge formed Alloy Steel Construction
  • Hard Powder Coat - iconic matching Gloss Bright White
  • EPDM rubber seating to protect your iPod from any scratching.
  • EPDM rubber sole footing for proper desktop compliancy

Gloss Bright White - $39.99 Plus $3.99 USPS S&H for U.S. and Puerto Rico

iPed shuffleiPed Shuffle

Designed to enhance and integrate boldly with the iPod Shuffle principle of simplicity
Professional appearance enhances your desktop following the wake of the iMac G5 / Cinema Display

Features:

  • Robust 11 gauge formed Alloy Steel Construction
  • Hard Powder Coat - iconic matching Gloss Bright White
  • USB 2 compatible
  • Thumb Drive Compliant
  • Eliminates possible USB port blocking. Plugging the Shuffle into some systems with multiple USB ports will result in blocking open adjacent ports.
  • Take back control of your desktop. iPed Shuffle stand eliminates the troublesome loose desktop cable that you need to find and secure all the time providing excellent control and organization.
  • 3 foot cable for minimum desktop clutter. (extensions available)

Bright White - $17.99 Plus $3.99 USPS S&H for U.S. and Puerto Rico

Run Linux on Your iPod

NEWS: ExtremeiPod's Patrick Norton says:

"The crew behind the iPodLinux Project have ported Linux to the iPod's hardware, at least first, second and third generation models. (iPodLinux doesn't run on fourth gen, mini or photo models yet.)

"What do you do with iPod Linux?"

Apple's Dual-Sourcing Strategy for iPod Tech

NEWS: Forbes reports:

"Bear Stearns upgraded Synaptics to 'outperform' from 'peer perform' saying vital customer Apple Computer is likely pursuing a dual-sourcing strategy rather than ending its relationship with the touchpad technology firm. The upgrade comes just one month after Bear Stearns downgraded Synaptics to 'peer perform' on fears that Apple would begin developing its own technology for the ubiquitous iPod music players, despite no official comments from either company."

iPod Deals

For current iPod prices from a variety of sources, see our Best iPod Deals.

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