Thursday, September 13, 2007

iTunes, Watch Out: Rhapsody America Is Here

Today, Verizon announced that it's entering into a partnership with MTV Networks and Real Networks to bring music and video content to entertainment seekers via phone, portable music devices, and PCs.

Riding on Verizon's network will be the newly created "Rhapsody America," a collaboration between MTV Networks and Real Networks that will offer over-the-air music downloads, Rhapsody's subscription services, ringtones, and videos from CMT, MTV, and VH1. If this sounds similar to MTV Networks' and Microsoft's URGE music store, it should; many of URGE's features will be incorporated into Rhapsody America.

So where does this leave URGE? MTV Networks insists that the music store will still exist within Windows Media Player 11 for the foreseeable future. URGE subscribers can log into Rhapsody ( right now with their URGE user names and passwords to sample that service. MTV Networks' content will be merged in coming months.

iCar Wishlist

According to the Travel Industry Association, 28.9 million people will hit the roads this Labor Day weekend. With rumors of talks between Apple and German automaker Volkswagen, many will be stuck in their sub-modern four-doors dreaming of a could-be "iCar."
Although Apple and Volkswagen wouldn't comment directly on the rumors, reports maintain that Apple CEO Steve Jobs and Volkswagen chief Martin Winterkorn met a few days ago in California. This news comes on the heels of Ford and Microsoft's fall release of the Sync, an in-car communications and multimedia system based on voice recognition. Apple already works with a number of automakers, such as BMW, to offer in-car hookups for iPods. However, these rumors are hinting at a much bigger Apple integration effort.
Here at LAPTOP, we're joining the many drivers this weekend who will be dreaming of an iCar while sitting bumper to bumper. Here's hoping these features make it in the first production model.
Dashboard on the Dashboard
We can't wait to slip into our silver, leather-interior car and control everything--from the air conditioning to the gears--via a strictly touch-sensitive dashboard that's void of any buttons or control wheels. Our fingers will manipulate everything on the panel with simple finger strokes and taps. In keeping with Apple's current Mac OS X Dashboard, we're demanding customizable Widgets with everything from Google Maps to current gas prices.
Click Wheel As Steering Wheel
It's going to take some getting used to, or even a retake of your driver's test, but replacing the olden-day steering wheel with an iPod-like Click Wheel will make it easier to turn the corner; you'll merely have to slide your hand over the touch-sensitive plastic wheel. Bonus: A simple push of the center button emits a loud honk that sounds like a Leopard purr.
GPS Powered by Google Earth and Maps
The flyovers look cool on a desktop, but Google Earth really belongs in the iCar's cockpit. When paired with a high-sensitivity GPS receiver, you'll get the most out of the highly detailed satellite views. And with the power of Google Maps under the hood, you'll get all of Google's local-search mashup goodness, free real-time traffic info, and the ability to route around incidents with the new "Drag 'n drop" points feature. Oh, and Google Street View automatically engages when you enter complex intersections.
Lithium-Ion Batteries (Without the Meltdowns)
We've been waiting for a Volkswagen hybrid, and with the iPod's long-lasting battery life, we can see why they've been holding out. Taking a page from the new Nissan Mixim concept, the iCar should be an electric vehicle powered by a compact lithium-ion battery. We just hope you won't have to ship your car back to Cupertino to have it replaced.
Smart Playlists
Using live traffic updates, your music playlists will be automatically generated by the amount of congestion. When you're about to enter areas with heavy traffic, you'll be soothed by the mellowest tracks in your collection. When all that's in front of you is open highway, the bounciest and raciest pop and punk tracks will move to the top of the list. Your iCar will even customize your library based on where you are. If you're cruising down the Jersey Turnpike, for example, you'll hear Lynyrd Skynyrd's "That Smell" blaring through the Apple Hi-Fi sound system.
AirPort Antennas
Pull into the garage and you'll be able to download iTunes movies over the air to the backseat monitors for the kids to watch, or sync videos, photos, and music with your Apple TV. We're also excited about the possibility of swapping playlists with other iCar owners via Wi-Fi while you're at a stoplight-provided they have DRM-free tracks.
Stereo Bluetooth
We know, we know. Stereo Bluetooth isn't yet a feature on iPods or the iPhone-although that could change on September 5th. But the iCar will usher in a new way to sync your iTunes, contacts, and more with the Mac OS X-powered vehicle. Built-in speech recognition will let you make calls through your iPhone, as well as pull up specific tracks or artists.

Apple Launches an iPod Armada

After months of media and fan speculation, Steve Jobs announced the next generation of iPods, confirming the meat of the rumors that have been circulating lately.

The iPod Shuffle sees a refresh with a variety of colors including PRODUCT (RED), for which a portion of the sales of the 1GB player ($79) will go toward fighting diseases in Africa.

The new iPod nano, available in 4GB ($149) and 8GB ($199) capacities, features a two-inch QVGA screen and introduces the Cover Flow navigation system, which was previously available only in iTunes. Apple claims 24 hours of audio playback and 5 hours of video playback.

The sixth-generation "iPod Classic" also integrates Cover Flow, features a new all-metal body, and comes in two capacities: 80GB ($249) and 160GB ($349). The 80GB model is rated to have 30 hours of audio playback and 6 hours of video playback, while the 160GB is expected to have 40 hours of audio and 7 hours of video.

The most exciting product in today's announcement is the introduction of the iPod Touch, which basically is an iPhone without AT&T's service. The 3.5-inch iPod Touch comes in 8GB and 16GB sizes (priced at $299 and $399, respectively), includes Cover Flow, and enables users to navigate menus and flick through photos with a finger. Like the iPhone, it includes Wi-Fi, which users can use to access the iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store. Once within the store, entertainment-seekers can search for music, preview it, and purchase it over the air (these purchases can then be synched to the computer-based iTunes). Apple has also partnered with Starbucks; when you're at a Starbucks location, an icon will appear on the iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store that allows you to purchase tracks from a playlist of recently played songs in that store. The deal also grants you free Wi-Fi, but only within Starbucks stores.

In an effort to not totally screw over the droves of people who purchased the iPhone, Apple announced that it lowered the price of the 8GB model from $599 to $399 and that the 4GB model has been cut from the company's product catalog. Plus, compatibility with the iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store will be available through a software upgrade in the near future. Steve Jobs also announced that 500,000 customizable ringtones will be available for purchase through iTunes at 99 cents a pop.

Q&A: How's The Zune Doing?

Now that the Zune has been out for a few weeks, we've heard all sorts of things about how the MP3 player is doing. Market-research company NPD Group first reported the Zune debuting as the number-two MP3 player on the market, but recently updated that by saying it has dropped to number five. Given the anticipation leading up to this product's release, we wanted to see how Microsoft feels about the Zune's early performance. We caught up with Zune marketing director Jason Reindorp and asked him how things are going with its iPod competitor thus far.

Q: Is the Zune selling as well as or worse than you expected?

JR: For us, the sales are right on track. They're exactly where we wanted them to be. This is week three, so it's kind of early for us to be thinking about share. The main thing for us is--and right from the beginning we were saying this--that this is a three-year plan. We're really thinking in terms of years and not weeks. From our retail partners we're hearing--and this is completely anecdotal--that they're seeing Zune drive what they think is incremental sales to the category right now.

Q: Who is buying the device?

The core, target audience for us (is 18- to 28-year-olds). That said, what typically happens with this kind of a device-and certainly if it's a Microsoft device-is the initial wave of people who respond to it include the target market and tech-centric people.

Q: How many Zunes are you forecasting to sell by the end of this fiscal year?

At the end of June 2007, we are predicting over one million units, which is pretty much what we were saying in the beginning.

Q: Any surprises you've encountered so far with the way people are using or reacting to the Zune?

What we're hearing from retailers is that if there's one (Zune) that's kind of hard to keep on the shelf, it's brown. We were hopeful that that would be the case because we were excited about that color treatment, but it wasn't until it hit retail that we knew for sure.

Another is in relation to the Zune Pass. What we're seeing is the downloading behavior of people who sign up for the Zune Pass is pretty different than an a la carte download-type of behavior. What I mean is people are signing up for their Zune Pass and they're downloading up a storm. When you remove the "risk" of downloading a song or an album you may not like, people go crazy.

Also, anecdotally, we're hearing people really like having a radio on the device-and this is again anecdotal-but we're hearing some people who haven't necessarily bought the device because it has a radio have been surprised by how much they use it.

Q: We haven't really heard much about people using the send feature to share music. What have you heard?

JR: With the send feature, we're hearing anecdotally that people are experimenting with it. It's a whole new idea. We've always been pretty realistic-because it's new and it's different, it's going to take people a while to understand what it is, experiment with it, and decide if they're going to keep using it. We wanted to include this feature because Zune is really focused on building community, in this case a music community, and helping people promote songs they really like with their friends and stuff.

Q: How many Zune users are actually using it, and how many are buying Zune Pass subscriptions versus the number that are buying the device?

JR: Similar to the send feature, it's a relatively new concept, a new idea, so we're encouraged to see people are signing up for it. The numbers are still relatively small because we've only been in the market for about three weeks, but it looks good.

Q: We read that people are buying Zunes but not using them, which you should be able to tell by whether or not a unit's account has been activated. Any truth to that?

JR: It's a theory we have that people are buying them as Christmas presents.

Q: What about the pink and orange Zunes that have been floating around-any plans to officially add those colors to the line?

JR: There were pink and orange ones. What we did was give the entire internal team involved in the launch of Zune, pink and orange devices as their ship gift. On top of that we opened a number of product boxes and sprinkled in an equal number of pink and orange Zunes so they would just appear in retail, like the gold wrapper in Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. Essentially, if somebody opens one of the boxes and sees a pink or orange one, they're numbered, it's a limited edition. They get a certificate that says congratulations, if you would like to have the original color you wanted to buy, give us a shout.

Q: We've seen them popping up on eBay and various blogs, so people are obviously paying attention to them. But has anyone called and asked you to replace a pink one with, say, a brown one?

JR: Actually, we haven't seen anyone call in and ask for the original color. They seem to be responding to them.

Q: We were wondering if Microsoft sees this first Zune as a sort of test device upon which to improve, based on consumers' reactions. Any truth in that?

JR: Not at all. We thought through several different approaches to what type of device, what size of device, etcetera, etcetera, we would put out as our first step into the market. We put a lot of thought into that and decided on this form factor and this hard drive intentionally because we thought it was a solid first step or first offering.

Q: Will there be any changes to the Zune lineup soon?

JR: All the predictable variables in terms of eventually bringing new devices, new features, going into new geographic markets (will happen, but nothing now).

Q: Any chance of a 100GB Zune in the near future? We know Toshiba is going to start producing 1.8-inch 100GB hard drive disks that might go nicely with your player.

JR: We're looking at all the same things and talking to the various suppliers that are out there, and looking at what the consumer really wants. All of that is being factored into our future strategy.

Q: How well will the current Zune work with Vista?

JR: It is compatible; it's just not currently optimized. Our plan has always been to make sure Zune is completely optimized for Vista when Vista is available to consumers, because Zune is a consumer device, obviously.

Q: Initially, there was a lot of negative buzz surrounding the Zune. Some of the analysts we spoke to at launch time expressed doubts about how it would fare against the iPod. How do you feel about that now?

JR: Michael Gartenberg at Jupiter is a great example. He is somebody that in the very early days was not quite sure, a tiny bit negative. He turned around completely and wrote another report where he expressed his opinion and felt very positive about the device. What we're seeing across the board is people see the idea of the Zune and react in one way, and when they can see the device and touch it, feel it, have it in their hands, then their tune changes.

Logitech launches Pure-Fi Elite

Remember when I told you about the Logitech Pure-Fi Dream (link below)? Well, it looks like Logitech has upped the ante and launched the Pure-Fi Elite!

The system produces 80 watts split over two 1-inch speakers and two 4-inch subwoofers. Even better, you can tweak the sound field by using the 3D spatialization feature to enhance higher or lower frequencies. Much like the Dream, the Elite will also include an LCD that displays track progress from an attached iPod or tuning info from the built-in AM/FM radio.

The Elite outputs audio from any dockable iPod and accepts general input through an auxiliary input jack. It also sports RCA and S-video outputs so you can watch video from your iPod on your TV.

Look for the Elite next month for $300.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

iRing, a new concept for iPod and iPhone!

iRing is a ... ring, it will give you the possibility to control your iPod or iPhone from your finger, things like pause/play/volume up...

The power at your fingertips!! Simple as that.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Sony Unveils New Network Walkman

Well, it finally happened: Sony finally took the wraps off its Network Walkman.

Dubbed the NWD-B100 (which the company told the world about months ago), the new Walkman will be coming to Europe first and sports a 3-line color LCD, offers either a 1GB (NWD-B103 / B103F) or 2GB size (NWD-B105 / 105F), and sports an FM tuner, voice recorder, 12 hours of battery life, and support for MP3 and WMA as UMS... Bye Bye SonicStage ! After several years Sony finally understood that proprietary soft like SonicStage or iTunes sucks...

So far there is no word on pricing or US availability, but hopefully it'll hit shelves soon.

What about a little KanaSD for your ears?

GreenHouse now puts on sale a new KanaSD in black or silver color, this updated Digital Audio Player can welcome SD and SDHC cards but also MMCs, giving you access to stored data from 32MB to 8GB.

Of course this baby plays the MP3 and WMA files, all in a ridiculously small (56x12x59) and light (26g) piece of technology.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Apple expands refurb MacBook offerings

Apple's stock of reconditioned consumer-oriented MacBooks has grown to include four separate configurations priced between $849 and $1,299. The Cupertino-based company's online store is currently selling refurbished white 1.83GHz Intel Core 2 Duo MacBooks for $849 that feature 512MB of memory, a 60GB hard drive, and a Combo drive DVD-ROM/CD-ROM. Apple is also offering refurbished white 2.0GHz Intel Core 2 Duo MacBooks with 1GB of memory and an 80GB hard drive with either a Combo drive or SuperDrive for $999. Refurbished 2.16GHz Intel Core 2 Duo MacBooks feature 1GB of memory and are available in white or black with a 120GB (white only) or 160GB (black) hard drive for $1,099 and $1,299, respectively. As always every refurbished Apple item includes free shipping alongside a one-year warranty.

Mac market share up 26% in Q2

Reporting that worldwide PC shipments grew by 12.5 percent in the second quarter 2007, IDC has issued its latest PC Tracker market share analysis. According to its statistics, Apple's share of the US personal computer market grew 26.2 percent year-over-year, pegging the company as the 4th largest vendor in terms of unit shipments with 5.6 percent of the market. IDC's channel checks show that Apple moved 960,000 Macs in the quarter, compared with 600,000 Macs (representing 3.8 percent market share) in the year-ago quarter. Dell topped IDC's list of US vendors, shipping 4.8 million PCs in the quarter and achieving 28.4 percent market share. Dell's unit shipments shrank nearly 11 market share year-over-year, however. HP, meanwhile, nearly matched Apple's growth with a 26 percent year-over-year growth in market share, taking the number 2 spot with 23.6 percent of the market. Overall, the United States market accelerated to 7.2% growth following a slow second half of 2006. IDC said "The Portables market remained strong, driven by consumer retail and channel activity. Although desktop shipments continued to contract, shipment volume was higher than anticipated. Dell remained the top vendor, though still losing ground as it restructures and faces rising competition."

A previous market share report from NPD Data showed that Apple's online and retail sales grow to 13 percent of the overall consumer market during May, up more than 12 percent from its 11.6 percent share in April. The company's notebook sales saw an even more impressive gain, rising to 14.3 percent from 12.5 percent in April.

Apple is due to hold its third-quarter earnings call on July 25th, when the company will announce actual Mac unit shipments for the quarter.

Piper: AT&T sharing revenue with Apple

Although Apple is already said to be earning a substantial margin on each iPhone, it may be earning extra through its agreement with AT&T, note analysts with the research firm Piper Jaffray. Gene Munster and Michael Olson argue that AT&T is sharing subscription revenue with Apple, based on the circumstances under which a person bought their iPhone. At a minimum, Munster and Olson estimate $3 a month per existing AT&T customer, for the duration of their two-year contract; this figure is said to go up by $8, however, if the person switched to AT&T for the iPhone. Other less likely arrangements range from a mere $5 bonus for new subscriptions, to $7 for current subscribers and $14 for new ones.

Under the $3/$8 plan, it is suggested that this could add $0.02 to Apple's earnings per share (EPS) in 2007. The real income is not set to arrive until 2008 though, when extra EPS may reach $0.15. By 2009 the growth could hit $0.58, adding tremendously to the company's bottom line.

Apple patenting iPod wireless remote, sync

Apple has been researching technology that would let the iPhone or the iPod double as a remote control for steering playback of music and videos on the Apple TV or other media hubs, according to a new patent filing. The application, originally submitted in December 2005, would let a wireless portable media player synchronized with a server and tell that server to play files based on metadata such as the song name, album, or genre; the server in turn relays its sound to a stereo or a TV using either a wireless method such as the company's AirPort Express audio output feature or a direct, wired connection.

The system would eliminate many of the common complaints about network media streaming devices, according to Apple. Where typical solutions often require specialized extenders that quickly add to the cost by requiring controllers and individual converters, the described method would allow an existing handheld to navigate tracks using an existing wireless network. This would also save the trouble for AirPort Express users of having to access their Mac or PC to change songs or videos, the company adds.

While the patent is not certain to translate into a finished product, its existence may let Apple update the iPhone and any future Wi-Fi iPods to have them check for computers on the local network and play locally-stored entertainment as long as the computers have direct access to the proper output. The Apple TV currently supports controlled streaming of music and imagery from other computers but so far can't be controlled intelligently by a network device. Slingplayer Mac achieves remote control by generating the infrared signals used by Apple TV's remote.

Other patents published today include a method wirelessly synchronizing media and other files between a wireless media player and a host computer by submitting a request and transferring only necessary updates across the network, and a second patent for a karaoke-like lyrics mode that displays song verses in time with the music itself.

Apple expected to earn $.72/share on $5.3B

In its third-quarter financial results, due on July 25th, Apple is expected to earn 72 cents a share on revenue of $5.29 billion, up from 54 cents a share on $4.37 billion in sales posted in the same quarter a year ago according analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial. In its second quarter, Apple announced revenue of $5.26 billion and net quarterly profit of $770 million, or $.87 per diluted share. Though Apple likely moved between 500,000 and 1 million iPhones in the quarter, Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray thinks Apple will only recognize about $12 million in sales from the iPhone, meaning the device "will not be material" to Apple's results this time. As previously reported, Apple will recognize revenue for the iPhone (and Apple TV) on a subscription basis. The reason is that both the phone and media hub will receive a relatively steady amount of software features for free over their respective lifespans, meaning that the income from each sale in effect amortizes the software development costs after the product is released.

Analysts are also expecting Apple to have shipped 1.6 million Macs in the quarter.

Analyst sets $205 price target for AAPL

Having released some initial predictions on Thursday, analysts with Piper Jaffray have increased their expectations for Apple stock performance and price target of $205, based on both revenue sharing with AT&T and now booked iPhone revenue. The group is predicting additional earnings per share (EPS) of $1.91 in 2009, and potentially as much as $2.49, which would bring the total growth for that year to $7.31. The determining factor will be how many iPhones Apple will be able to sell -- numbers could fall anywhere between 25 and 45 million, but will need to come closer to the latter to meet Piper's estimates.

This view is supported mainly by a belief in the "game-changing" nature of the iPhone, which is hoped will trigger a turning point similar to that of the iPod. Piper is also siding with suggestions that much cheaper iPhones are inbound, since they believe the average cost will be approximately $330.

The company raised its price target on Apple stock from $160 to $205.

iChat patent links photos to voices

A new patent application filed by Apple surfaced today that separates the audio data of each participant in an iChat conference into its own track, allowing other software to handle iChat conference data in the same fashion as other audio applications that play multiple tracks. The invention specifically describes linking photos of audio conference participants to their corresponding voices, ensuring that iChat users on Macs, iPhones, and other devices would see a photo of the person speaking at any given time. The patent broadly covers both audio and video aspects of conferences, and is worded to include all manner of conferencing equipment -- including PDA devices and cellular phones. Other Apple patents that surfaced today include a Graphical user interface with improved media presentation, Computer Component Protection, Remote content updates for portable media devices, and a Deferred Shading Graphics Pipeline Processor with "Advanced Features."

Apple patenting Zune-like sharing, wireless buying

Apple may be ready to not only bring wireless file sharing to the iPhone and iPod but could affect Microsoft's Zune as well, according to the details of a newly publicized patent. The filing would allow fully mobile devices such as cellphones and MP3 players to automatically discover each other on a local network, similar to the way the Zune can recognize nearby devices on its Wi-Fi connection; also as with the Microsoft jukebox, owners would be able to "push" media and other files to other devices. But the patent's implementation would also let a device make such requests, Apple says, allowing one handheld to pick files for download in a way the Zune currently forbids. A wireless sync method could automate these requests simply by coming near the right device.

One version of Apple's technique would also use a central pool of information rather than a direct transfer. Devices could grab content from a remote server as part of the mobile-to-mobile link, and could accomplish the same through a local server or a nearby computer that hosts the content itself. Users could even create a random or semi-random effect through this method by telling the device or server on the opposite end to randomly load the device with content, similar to the way the iPod shuffle's AutoFill creates a new mix of songs through USB.

Importantly, this wireless request would also include purchases -- addressing the common request that Apple's handhelds, particularly the iPhone, be able to purchase media themselves. In cases where data is bought, a future Apple device could either earmark tracks for later download, similar to the way the Zune can flag shared songs, or else download the track directly and sync the resulting content later with a computer or another portable.

While it's currently unclear as to whether or not the patent would directly hurt Microsoft's ability to implement enhanced Wi-Fi, having been originally filed less than three months before the Zune's mid-November launch, the technology described inside explicitly greenlights not just device-to-device media library transfers and iTunes Store interaction but also general file transfers that may be useful for phones, such as contacts and user profiles.

Heart Imaging Technologies with Iphone

Heart Imaging Technologies (HeartIT) today announced a new service that enables physicians to simply click on a Web link sent via email and enter a password to instantly view movies of a patient's beating heart from across the globe on Apple's iPhone. "Viewing medical images traditionally requires dedicated workstations costing tens of thousands of dollars, which in turn are connected to proprietary picture archiving communications and storage (PACS) systems costing millions of dollars more. In order to view medical images, physicians must literally drive or walk to one of these workstations. Recent advances in World Wide Web browser technologies and the Web sites that utilize their rich features, collectively referred to as Web 2.0, are challenging these expensive and cumbersome proprietary approaches." Medical images displayed in a Web browser have historically remained low quality which limits their diagnostic usefulness. The new technology enables physicians to "drill-down" and view medical images, including movies, on Apple's iPhone.
"Patient privacy is obviously a critically-important issue on the internet," said Brent Reed, HeartIT's Director of Software Development. "Fortunately, medical privacy concerns can be addressed using the same encryption technologies employed by online banking and credit card transactions."

Firm sets whopping $205 price target on Apple shares

Piper Jaffray on Friday hiked its price target on shares of consumer electronics maker Apple Inc. to $205, explaining that a newly developed model for booked iPhone revenues reveals substantial upside to his 2009 calendar year earnings estimates.
"In 12 months, shares of Apple will be trading on calendar year 2009 (CY09) numbers and therefore we are using CY09 numbers to set our 12 month price target," analyst Gene Munster told clients. "While it is early to be using '09 numbers, we believe that as '09 comes into focus, investors will start to put numbers around Apple's booked revenue metric."

Munster's published CY09 per-share earnings estimate currently sits at $4.82, but the inclusion of both the booked revenue methodology and ATT revenue share would bump that guesstimate to $7.31 per share, he said.

"Applying a 28x multiple on $7.31 leads to a $205 price target," the analyst wrote. "Our target multiple of 28x is in line with the three-year average price/earnings multiple based on two-year forward earnings-per-share."

Munster emphasized that his revised target is based on Apple's ability to sell 45 million iPhone units in 2009 but has little to do with iPhone sales in 2007 and 2008.

"One thing we learned with the iPod is that when a device is game-changing, the demand will come," he advised clients. "However, it is difficult to predict the inflection point. For example, in December 2004, Street expectations for iPod ran wild with investors anticipating 8 million iPods, but Apple only sold 4.6 million. It was feared at the time that the iPod would never go mainstream."

The analyst added that the value of Apple shares 12 months from now will largely dependent on whether the Street believes the company can sell 45 million iPhones in 2009 for an average price of $330.

"Conversations with investors over the past month suggest awareness of potential for iPhone units is high, but awareness of potential resulting impact to earnings is low," he wrote. "If Apple can sell 45 million units in CY09, the earnings power and historical multiple ranges suggest our price target is reasonable."

Briefly: Sony boss calls Jobs "greedy," Vodafone on iPhone, more...

Sony's chief has accused Apple, Inc. head Steve Jobs of wanting absolute control over the market. Also, Vodafone said it would warm up to the iPhone under the right conditions, and Apple hoped to inspire its phone's young development community.

Sony exec: Apple's Jobs "greedy"

Although he is the head of a multinational company with influence in virtually every aspect of home electronics and media, Sony head Sir Howard Stringer was reportedly undeterred from accusing Apple's leader Steve Jobs of only caring about his and Apple's wealth at a recent Allen & Co. media conference.

Speaking as part of a panel which counted Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Google co-founder Sergey Brin among its ranks, Stringer is said to have characterized Jobs as a "greedy" hypocrite who would accuse music labels of only being interested in money while wanting to funnel money only to himself. The introduction of the iPhone was part of this approach, Stringer argued.

InterActiveCorp head Barry Diller allegedly brought the discussion to a halt to draw attention to the bold statement but only received a 'diplomatic' response from the Sony executive, who retreated from the statement.

Vodafone eager for 3G iPhone

Ending his company's largely silent approach to speculation over the choice of an iPhone carrier for Europe, Vodafone chief Arun Sarin on Thursday said that the iPhone's wireless Internet speed was an important factor in deciding whether or not to pick up the phone for its networks.

Including some form of cellular Internet faster than EDGE, such as Europe's UMTS or the international HSDPA standard, was important to pleasing a European audience, according to Sarun. 3G wireless is typically much more popular in the region and is known to be in the works for an eventual refresh of the iPhone.

"It's clearly a good, software-driven device, but we're concerned about wideband area coverage so that 3G or HSDPA connectivity with the iPhone is something that we look forward to," Sarun said.

The cellular provider head would not be drawn into confirming or denying that Vodafone would be selected for iPhone service in some European countries, but noted that nearly every major player in the continent was 'having a conversation' with Apple about possible deals.

Apple to host Tech Talks for iPhone devlopers

Roughly a week after the unofficial iPhoneDevCamp took place in San Francisco, Apple itself has announced a series of iPhone Tech Talks to take place in major US cities.

The month of August will see Apple host one-day events in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco that mix official seminars and demos with a loosely structured 3-hour programming session. Basic site compatibility, Web 2.0 apps, and handling content will form the heart of company-run discussions, the company said.

Anyone with a free ADC online membership or better is welcome to attend simply by signing up through the Tech Talk page and needs only to bring the bare essentials to the events, which begin with a Los Angeles gathering on August 2nd.

"Bring your notebook, your code, and your iPhone," Apple said.

iPhone 'Hello World' Application

iPhone hacking efforts have been ongoing, but early efforts have provided only a few practical uses (custom ringtones), but one big news item from the community is the first proof-of-concept "Hello World" application has been compiled and launched on the iPhone.

After many, many hours of intense work from "Nightwatch", the first independent "Hello World"* application has been compiled and launched on the iPhone. This was made possible using the "ARM/Mach-O Toolchain", Nightwatch's "special project", that he has been working on so carefully over the past few weeks. Certain parts of the toolchain (such as the assembler) are being refined and tested and these will be released as soon as possible.

No sample code or development tools are yet available, but this may pave the way to future 3rd party iPhone applications. There has been some hope/rumors that Apple may eventually launch their own official SDK.

How To Add a Custom Ringtone on the iPhone

So, the first practical (sorta) application from the iPhone hacking efforts appears on HacktheiPhone -- but its not for the faint of heart.

The 23 step tutorial requires an involved process which is not without risk:

Following these instructions may brick (kill) your iPhone making it completely unusable. If your iPhone becomes unresponsive to restoration via iTunes, then you may have to seek repair or replacement through Apple Inc., or AT&T. However, everyone we know of has been able to restore their iPhone fully by using iTunes. Pay careful attention to the instructions here. We are NOT responsible for your results. You are assuming all risks. These instructions were completed successfully by many people before being posted here, but we cannot account for everyone's individual computer system configurations or ability to follow directions.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Color Picker Software! How it can help you?

How many times when you was going to make you own, profitble website about different interesting facts you was thinking about colors?? Many times! It's true. Colors at your website is very important, because all your visitors will receive devastating chromatic effect.
Many people think that Photoshop will help them to solve that problem, yes it is. But it's very expensive... don't you think so? To solve this problem, you can use the AdesDesign’s color picker tool, AdesClrPicker, that permits you, with just one click, to select the right color to use: go with the color picker directly over the color on the screen you are interested in, Make your mouse click and color picker will show you the exact color value in HTML, RGB, C++, VB and Delphi formats (last 10 colors are saved into program cache). And use it on other parts of your site to reach the perfect chromatic effect (colorpicker doen't occupy your windows bar, just a little icon in your tray)!

Color picker is sold for just $9.90 and pay via PAYPAL

On Ades Site, there is also a very nice blog, full of interesting information and facts. Take a look:

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Body Glove releases kickstand case

Famous mainly for its swimwear, Body Glove has launched a new iPod case, simply dubbed the iPod Case with Kickstand. It fits 30GB, 60GB and 80GB video iPods, and as its name might suggest, it has a stand built into its belt clip which allows it to stand upright on a flat surface. If the clip proves more of an obstacle than help, it can be removed. Meanwhile, the case itself is made of Body Glove's "Ion" fabric, which stretches to fit iPods while protecting them from water and surface damage. The Kickstand is now available at Wal-Mart for $20.

Belkin debuts new iPod charging accessories

Belkin has unveiled a new line of power-related accessories for the iPod, offering various ways to charge the device. They include the Power Dock AV, Power Dock, Charging Kit, and Power Adapter. The new power accessories are compatible with the iPod nano 2nd generation (aluminum), iPod 5th generation (video), iPod nano 1st generation, iPod 4th generation (color display), iPod 4th generation, and iPod mini 1st generation.

The Power Dock AV is priced at $50 and charges and plays your iPod through home entertainment center. It also syncs with iTunes using included USB cable. The standard Power Dock is $35, and charges/syncs the iPod through your computer. The charging kit, also priced at $35 includes wall-outlet and in-car power adapters and a USB cable for charging. Finally the Power Adapter for iPod is $25 and includes a wall-outlet power adapter and a USB cable for charging..

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Nissan nav-compatible Bluetooth for iPod

mobilecast has announced a new iPod Bluetooth transmitter that is compatible with the CARWINGS HDD navigation system from Nissan. The transmitter allows users to listen to music stored on their iPods wirelessly through car speakers on select vehicles. The device allows self-contained control of the iPod, creating a wireless remote setup. It also offers switching between Bluetooth hands-free (HF) communication and Bluetooth data communications. Pricing has been set at 7,800 yen.

The manufacturer says: "As a solutions vendor that focuses on wireless personal area networking (PAN), mobilecast worked with Nissan in developing and marketing an iPod Bluetooth Transmitter that is compatible with Nissan's HDD car navigation. Bluetooth technology is the subject of great international anticipation as a safe, secure, and easy solution for vehicles. Consequently, this collaboratively developed product is drawing considerable attention as a model for wireless solution in ITS (Intelligent wireless solution in ITS (Intelligent Transport Systems and Services)."

Marks & Spencer to stock iPod-ready suit

UK-based apparel retailer Mark & Spencer has agreed to carry a new business suit for men with integrated iPod functionality. The suit features Elektex fabric to offer built-in iPod controls, turning a standard lapel into a five-button electronic control panel. The Marks & Spencer hands-free iPod suit is made from wool with added Lycra and the afore-mentioned Elektex is priced at $300. The technology-enabled jacket sells for $180 while the accompanying trousers go for $120. A spokeswoman for Mark & Spencer described the apparel -- which features an iPod connector sewn into the pocket of the jacket alongside a system of loops to keep earphone wires hidden -- as a classic black pinstripe, two-button modern-cut suit, according to The Guardian.

Apple extends iTunes to Bebo social network

Apple today announced a deal that will expand its popular iTunes music service into the realm of social networking. The company on Wednesday announced a deal to embed its iTunes music download service into the Bebo website, according to The Financial Times . Initially, the deal will be limited to UK and Ireland, but could eventually extend to its entire user base of 33 million users. The San Francisco-based Bebo network has nearly 9 million users and 500,000 musicians in UK and Ireland--all of whom will now be able to buy music directly from the profile of any musician who has a Bebo profile and whose music is available on iTunes, making it the first time Apple has linked iTunes to a social networking site, the report claimed. The report says that more than 4,000 bands sign up on the site each day, creating a huge selection of potential iTunes music.

"The deal with Bebo will give Apple a deeper reach into the market segment of 16- to 24-year-olds, who are both keen users of social networking sites, and key consumers of music," FT reported. "Some 32 percent of 16- to 24-year-old internet users visit social networking sites at least once a month, making the demographic the leader of the social networking trend."

Bebo will reportedly also offer a platform for iTunes to promote lesser-known artists. Much like iTunes current "Single of the Week" promo, the site will offer users a free music download each week in a continued effort to introduce new artists and releases.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

How To Ipod Your Car

If you like to ipod your car - pump music on your ipod through your car stereo system - apart from changing to a brand new car that has ipod integration such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan and Volvo - there are other options available to you.

If your car does not have the ipod connectivity, the solution to ipod your car is to install an ipod adaptor.An ipod adaptor retailed by companies such as Peripheral and Monster can be installed within the cavern of wires behind your car dashboard, with one prong from adaptor going to the back of your stereo while another prong goes to a ipod holder near the front seats of the car.

The ipod adaptor works like an emulator and tricks the stereo to think it is a CD changer, so that you can use the track buttons on the stereo faceplate to select songs of your choice.

Installing an ipod changer might be difficult for the non-mechanical inclined, and the services of a trained mechanic might be easier.

If your car is too old, the factory installed stereo might not be suitable for ipod integration. For such cars, it is advisable to install a new player from manufacturers such as Alpine, Kenwood and Pioneer.

If sound quality is important to you, the use of ipod cassete adaptors is not recommended as the sound quality is not good enough, and more importantly they do not recharge the ipod's battery.

Yet another solution is to use a FM modulator that can produce better sound, and can recharge the batteries, but cannot be directly controlled from the radio.

With these drawbacks, the ipod cassete adaptor and the FM modulator are not the best options, and it is still the ipod adaptor that is recommended.

To facilitate your personal research and to find out what ipod integration is necessary for the model of your car, there are online catalogues from car audio online websites such as that from

So your first step is to determine the ipod integration requirements for your car and get the suitable adaptor. Before long, you can be pumping your ipod tracks through your car stereo and enjoying your favorite songs.

What Is Ipod Shuffle?

iPod shuffle is flash-based digital music player designed by Apple Computer. The iPod shuffle is designed to be easily loaded with a selection of songs and to play them in random order. This iPod enables iPod shuffle users to get rid of all that iTunes or other complicated playlist management stuff. Due to the simple structure of the shuffle it is possible to use the player almost like any other USB flash MP3 player: You simply copy MP3 files onto it. You only need to run the Database Builder program after you added or removed files from the iPod.

Type of iPod shuffle

There are two Category of iPod, which are categorized on the basis of storage capacity.
• 512 MB iPods
• 1GB iPods

Good Thing about iPod shuffle

Small size and High Storage
You know what they say about good things and small packages. But when something 1.62 inches long and about half an ounce holds up to 240 songs, "good" and "small" don't quite cut it. Especially when you can listen to your music for up to 12 continuous hours. In fact, iPod shuffle just may be the biggest thing in small.

The Battery life of iPod shuffle is 12 hour. It also provide battery indicators, Green means go, Amber means you're low, and Red means you've almost hit zero. iPod shuffle may keep rocking even longer than you do. Rechargeable batteries have a limited number of charge cycles. Battery life and number of charge cycles vary by use and settings.

Easy to carry
Clip it to your coin pocket. Clip it to your bag. No matter where you clip your skip-free iPod shuffle, you'll have instant access to music. And iPod shuffle's anodized aluminum enclosure goes with absolutely everything. Put it on, turn it up, and turn some heads.

iPod shuffle's headphone jack does double-duty as a dock connector. Flip iPod shuffle upside-down and drop it into the included dock. Then connect the dock to your Mac or Windows PC via USB for a quick sync and charge. And if you're away from your computer, you can charge on the go with an optional USB adapter.

Remix and match
Got more than 240 songs in your iTunes library? No problem. Let iTunes autofill your iPod shuffle and get a new musical experience every time. Pop follows jazz. Rock follows rap. iPod shuffle loves to improvise. Take the Shuffle switch, for instance. Even if you've synced a particular playlist, you can shuffle songs with a flick.

Configuration of Latest iPod shuffle

Flash Memory Size: 1 GB

Song Capacity: 240 Songs

Color & Material: Silver Aluminum

Integrated USB Port: No

Dimensions: 1.07 x 1.62 x 0.41 inches

Price (As Introduced): US$79

iPod shuffle is flash-based digital music player designed by Apple Computer. The iPod shuffle is designed to be easily loaded with a selection of songs and to play them in random order.

Home Remedies for Your Sick iPod

What should you do when your iPod freezes or you frequently see the Sad Face icon appearing on your screen? Do you run to the nearest computer guru or iPod geek and shell out cash that you don't have? Why not learn how to fix some of these yourself!

There are several diagnostic tests you can do to see if your iPod has a hardware problem. It is nice to turn to the built-in Diagnostic Mode on your iPod to check for hardware problems. First, you need to restart your iPod and then put it in Diagnostic Mode. Make sure the hold switch has been turned off. You can do this by pushing the switch away from the headphone jack. Jiggle it on and off to be sure. To reset your iPod, you will need to press and hold a few buttons at the same time for about 10 seconds. Hold the "Menu" and "Play/Pause" buttons down if your iPod is 1G to 3G. If you have the iPod 4G, you will need to press and hold "Menu" and "Select". If your iPod has been reset, you should see the Apple logo and feel the spinning of the hard drive. Now, press and hold these buttons: "REW", "FFW" and "Select" for iPod 1G to 3G and "Back" and "Select" for the iPod 4G. If your model is a 3G or above, you should hear a bird chirp sound and the Apple logo should pop up backwards. You have now reached the mecca of Diagnostic Mode. Keep in mind that your scroll wheel will not work when you are in this mode. Using "REW" and "FFW", you can look through the lists of tests to see which one you might need.

If your iPod is older, there are some tests you can run on 1G to 4G's. The 5 in 1 will run five separate tests at one time that include the LCM, SDRAM, RTC, FLASH/CHECKSUM. AMD FOREWORE/FW ID. For 3G iPods, you will hear a jingle when the test has completed. RESET will tell you if your iPod can reset. The AUDIO test will check the iPod audio subsystem. If you have a remote, the REMOTE will test it. Make sure your iPod is plugged in or you will get "RMT FAIL" on your screen. FIREARE will check the FireWire port. You want to see "FW PASS". SLEEP will give your iPod a rest but you will need to reset your system to revive it. To test your iPod's power, you will need to run the A 2 D test. You will get different outcomes based on where your iPod is getting its power from a battery or wall outlet. If your scroll wheel is giving you fits, run the I.OTPO CNT test. To make sure the screen is functioning properly, run the LCM test. You will need to keep holding down the "Select" button to have it run through several patterns. The RTC test will test the real time clock in your iPod. To test the iPod RAM memory, run the SDRAM test. If you need to find out what firmware version you have on your iPod, simply run the FLASH test. The OTPO or Wheel A2D will test the analog to digital input of your iPod's scroll wheel. After this test, you will need to reset your iPod. Want to know if you have a healthy hard drive? Do the HDD Scan. The RUN IN test will test the chip sets non-stop. After you have completed all necessary tests, you will need to reset your iPod to get it out of Diagnostic Mode.

The newer iPod test names are easier to understand and won't leave you looking for your nerd dictionary. The MEMORY test will test the SDRAM, IRAM, and FLASH memory. The SDRAM is the RAM memory test, which may take a few moments. You will want to see "SDRAM OK". The FLASH test will let you know where you iPod stands on flash memory. The Comms test will let you know how the ports are faring. You will know if your remote is not connected to your iPod if you get a NG, or no good result, for the HP, headphone-port. The Wheel test will test the key and wheel. The LCD test will test the colors, patterns, and gradients of your LCD. To test your hold switch, you will do the Headphone Detect test. When you own an iPod, you want to make sure that you have protected your investment. An iPod is not cheap, and neither are your music downloads. Keep your iPod in top working condition by learning a few things you can do at home instead of paying someone else to fix it.

The magic within Apple's iPod player

There are so many digital music players available.So why is Apple's iPod so special?We used one and discovered that it has a lot more to offer than just music.

Every now and then a technology comes along that promises to change our lifestyle.The sony Walkman (launched in 1979), the video cassette recorder (in the 1980s) and the internet (mid-1990s) are vivid examples.The latest technology fascination is a small digital music player called iPod.No bigger than a pack of cards and a slim as a cigarette lighter,the little wonder can holder as many as 10,000 songs!that lets you carry your entire CD collection in your back pocket!.

But the iPod is much more than a digital music player.In fact it has so much to offer that it's fast acquiring the same status of the Walkman.Here are some features that we will find them under the 'Extras' menu on the iPod.

Feature 1 : An address book

One of the iPod's most unknown features is its ability to store and display addresses,phone numbers and other text-based data.If you have a collection of phone numbers that you want to access easily,you can store textual information from website articles and e-books.The amount of data you store is limited only by the available space on the iPod's hard drive.
If you are a Mac OS X user,you'll use two application to transfer this data to the iPod:
Address Book and iSync.Address Book installs with OS X and iSync is a free download from the Apple website and will sync Mac,iPod,PDAs and Bluetooth devices.
In other operating systems such as windows,you use any application that will export your data into the vCard format (for e-mail addresses).Then connect the iPod to the PC,and in the software drag the vCard file into the 'Contacts' folder of the iPod.
Now,let's say you want to use the iPod to store a large document.Though the iPod technically does not allow it,you can work around the problem by simply typing the name of the file first where you would normally type the name of the person.Having done that paste the text file into the 'Notes' or 'Comments' field of your address entry.Then,when it gets transferred to the iPod,your entry will show up as just another address entry and the text file will deployed under the 'Notest' section of the entry.
This is a handy way to take important information and text files on the road with you.You can add driving directions,WAP stumbling logs,notest,just about anything that you can imagine.

Feature 2 : Calendar

The iPod can also function like a PDA (Personal Digital Assistant) and you can store your daily schedule in it.It has a calendar that can store your forthcoming events.
To access the calendar simply follow the patch 'Extras | Calendar' and you will find your daily to do schedule.Navigate through days by using the scroll wheel or through months by pressing the 'Forward' and 'Back' buttons.Selecting a day will bring a list of all events scheduled for that day.Selecting a specific event will bring up exact time information and a description of the appointment.
How does one go about putting their calendar onto iPod?Luckily Apple has used the standard vCalendar format.This means that one can export calendar information from application such as Microsoft Entourage or Palm Desktop and put it straight into the iPod during a Sync operation.
Apple has developed its own solution for adding vCalendar files via iCal.If you don't want tp use iCal,then use the Palm Desktop or Entourage to export your calendar information.Once you have exported it,simply drag it to the 'Calendar' folder on iPod.It will automatically be updated and recognized.

Feature 3 : Games

The iPod also including some simple games like Music Quiz,Solitaire,Brick and Parachute.There are web sites from where you can download more games and put these in your ipod.The games and put these in your iPod.The games are the simple kind,so don't expect as you'd get on PCs or the latest phones.

Feature 4 : A secret storage device

Here's one thing an iPod can do that a PDA or paper notebook can't.It can be used as a hard disk drive.That might have certain advantages if you're concerned about certain files or information being discovered on your computer.
With storage capacities ranging from 5 GB to 30 GB,there are lots of possiblities for use as an external storage device for your laptop when you are on the field.
If there are some applications that you want to use,but for some reason you don't want to install them on your laptop,you can run them off the iPod.You can also use the iPod as a boot drive if you have an OS installed on it and if your computer supports booting from an external Firewire device.Most modern day computers allow that.
An iPod can be connected to any Firewire-equipped computer and be used to share and swap files as needed.On an iMac computer,the iPod will automatically show up on the desktop as an external drive.With any other system you'd need the Firewire drivers to be installed.
iPods connect to iMacs using Firewire cables.This,flexible Firewire cables are now available that are much better for field use,that the standard thick cables that most Firewire devices ship with.To connect an iPod to the PC you would need an iPod Dock Connector to USB 2.0 + Firewire cable (see )

Feature 5 : Storing your photos while traveling

The new iPod photo allows you store all of your pictures on the contraption.Truth is it costs a bomb.Perhaps it will come down in few months.
Until then thoug,if you are saddled with an earlier version of the iPod,fret not.Though you can't view pictures on it yet,there's nothing to stop you from storing them in the device.
A 40 GB iPod can hold up to 24,000 photos (captured on a 3 megapixel camera ).Want to transfer pictures from your digital camera? Well,then here's what you could do.Get yourself a card reader that connects to your iPod.
The card reader will simply act as a bridge between your digital camera and the iPod.It reads the pictures on your camera and transfers them to your iPod.At a later date,when you get back home,you can pull out the pictures from your iPod and transfers them to your computer.However you may have to spend some money to get this kind of capability.A card reader usually costs less than $100.
Belkin ( ) has a pretty decent card reader that does a good job.
The advantage of going in for a card reader if you have an older version of the iPod is that you get full functionality for cheaper than what it would cost you to buy a new photo iPod.

Feature 6 : Storing audio files

Storing music is the primary function of the iPod.The fourth-generation models have a 40 GB hard disk which can store up to 10,000 songs!The 20 GB iPod can hold about 5,000 songs.
Apple offers an online music store (called iTunes) from where you can buy and download songs for the iPod.
And don't worry about the batteries getting over.The ipod has a long battery life - up to 12 hours.And with the 25 minutes of skip protection that iPod provides,you can listen while playing basketball,and the music will keep playing A word on the batteries though.It is perhaps the iPod's Achilles Heel.After 12-18 months of sustained use.It starts running out of juice.Once that happens,you'll have to spend a packet on getting a new pair of batteries for the iPod.Unless you decide to go for a third-party battery pack that isn't quite as sleek as the original,but does the job nevertheless.

Feature 7 : Lots of accessories

There are plenty of accessories that expand the functionality of the iPod and make it more useful.Check out the 'Accessories' section on Apple iPods store ( ).
There are external speakers,a remote control,a stereo connection kit,an add-on voice recorder,a radio and kits for using the iPod while driving.
You can also pick up an inexpensive cassette tape adapter and listen to the iPodin your car through your car stereo.It seems everyone wants to make accessories for the iPod these days.

Ipod Domination

iPod Is Dominating the Market, and There Is More to Come

iPod contributes 12-14% of total company revenues, a number industry experts believe will continue to increase. With this increase comes pressure on gross margins, as the blended iPod gross margin of 20% compares unfavorably with Apple's corporate average of 27-28%. The iPod helped augment Apple's growth by expanding its addressable market from the core computer market, which continues to grow, but at slower rates. To increase penetration of the rapidly growing MP3 player market, Apple launched the iPod Mini internationally in July 2004, and HP's iPod launch is scheduled for later in summer.

How To Replace Your Ipod Battery

iPods are a great invention, however many have complained about the lack of playtime and poor battery life. Previously, replacing an iPod battery was next to impossible. So when your battery dies, its time for a new iPod. This of course proved to be extremely expensive. As a result, manufacturers have begun producing aftermarket iPOD batteries for a DIY conscious producer. There are even high capacity batteries that will basically give you more playtime on your iPod in comparison to the original iPod batteries. An even better incentive to replace that dying battery!

I know what you're thinking, you don't want to rip apart that shiny iPod of yours! Aftermarket iPod batteries were designed to make the installation as simple as possible (it wasn't really all that difficult to begin with anyway). Since the batteries installation doesn't require any soldering, the most difficult part is opening up the physical case. Since the iPod doesn't contain any screws, the casing must be pried off in order to access the internal battery. I do not recommend using a screwdriver to do this as it will damage the case. A guitar pick has been recommended to do the job, but even better, some batteries come with the non scratch nylon tools required to open your iPod safely.

iPod Domination

iPod Is Dominating the Market, and There Is More to Come

iPod contributes 12-14% of total company revenues, a number industry experts believe will continue to increase. With this increase comes pressure on gross margins, as the blended iPod gross margin of 20% compares unfavorably with Apple's corporate average of 27-28%. The iPod helped augment Apple's growth by expanding its addressable market from the core computer market, which continues to grow, but at slower rates. To increase penetration of the rapidly growing MP3 player market, Apple launched the iPod Mini internationally in July 2004, and HP's iPod launch is scheduled for later in summer.

Apple's entry into the digital music player market (MP3 market) with its popular iPod expanded the company's addressable market and signaled a turn in Apple's strategy. The iPod is a cultural phenomenon that is capitalizing on the convergence of digital consumer electronics and the computer, and Apple's position as an early mover enabled it to achieve the number-one position in the marketplace. iPod adoption continues to accelerate, with little indication of a slowdown. It took Apple approximately 18 months to sell its first million iPods, but its second million came in six months and its third million came in four. In fact, it appears that only its suppliers can slow it down, in particular the hard-drive vendors, which are having a difficult time meeting demand. Industry experts believe that iPod's growth will remain strong in the foreseeable future and do not expect any significant customer fallout stemming from Apple's inability to meet demand.

An analysis of the launch of the Sony Walkman in 1979 indicates the market opportunity for a revolutionary portable music player will remain strong for several years to come and Apple is expected to maintain a strong share for the next few years (unlike Sony's experience with the Walkman).

While iPod and iTunes generate significant awareness of the Apple product, they have done little to grow Apple's core Mac business. Experts attribute this mainly to Apple's aboveaverage pricing, along with continued ignorance on the part of consumers regarding the compatibility of Windows and Mac. With regard to pricing, the average consumer desktop PC retails for $1,019, which is $280 below Apple's low-end price point on Apple's now, discontinued flat-panel iMac. Furthermore, the industry ASP is falling as most of the growth in the market is taking place in the sub-$1,000 market.

With regard to the compatibility of Windows and Mac OS X, even though Apple made a concerted effort to educate consumers about the ease with which these two products work together, it has fallen on deaf ears for the most part. Apple made some progress through its retail stores, where it estimates half of Mac purchases are from first-time buyers, but for Apple's stock to work over the long term, the company needs to maintain share against Windows, at a minimum. Understandably, Apple wants to avoid selling PCs at a loss, but unfortunately the growth prospects for $1,000-plus PCs are limited. This presents a conundrum for Apple longer term, but for now it maintains its current strategy. Incidentally, Apple's revenue share has held much better, and while this is not an often-discussed topic, revenue share is probably more important than unit share.

IPod Video Sales

The sales of the new iPod video are surprisingly good, taking into account the fact that no research has been made for the customer market and their needs or requirements.

A possible disadvantage for the sales may be the fact that the negative advertising has been made. This negative advertising concerns the vulnerability of the screens, the easy scratching surfaces and other several features. However, the sales are up due to the great success among the teenagers, among very busy people who travel a lot.

Some researches show that instead of the iPod video success and publicity the Amazon online store the most popular iPod is the nano model. However, the sales are ahead expectations and in the case of other stores are outselling the popular iPod nano. These high sales may be due to the high storage capacity, video features and reasonable prices. From this point of view, a selection of users may be made, as the nano edition iPod attracts more MP3 users. Therefore, a new trend and a new profile of user appeared taking into account the high sales for the new video iPod.

Another aspect of the great sales concerns the fact the new iPod video is not a competitor for the TV industry, but more a complementary device. Although the rating of some TV shows or films may lower, the iPod video may also contribute to the fame extend of some TV shows or films. The sales may be also triggered by the trendy urban lifestyle and capacity of influencing the preferences and needs of the others. The fact that the episodes of the TV series such is the case of "Lost" or "Desperate Housewives" may have contributed to the great success and great sales of the new edition of the iPod.

Other sales were going up as they developed from the new edition of the iPod and this is the case of the iTunes Music Store. In this type of store you may buy episodes of the famous TV series, music videos and pictures. The parallel development of two complementary services - the handheld video device and the special store for it - is a great achievement. Besides, the iPod is the best selling music online store and it will probably be the best music video online store. The sales may also rise due to the new available TV series or TV shows of the famous TV Channels.

Taking into account the fact that the iPod is the best seller in the United States, being the most successful music player, it was easy to predict high sales for the new edition, even it is a video iPod. The prices were lower as the lower-cost players were introduced on the market in the last years, but the nano edition has increased the prices. With the new iPod video the price has been pushed beyond the average selling price.

That is why the sales of 100 iPods every minute may seem not surprising at all and sales of 14 millions in the first quarter of the fiscal year 2006 are considered not bad at all for such a company. The sales for the iPod video may also rise together with the spreading worldwide of the popularity of this edition of iPod.

However, the iPod video doubles the Apple's sales. The sales were made skyrocket due to the great success of the new iPod video outselling in some cases other types or editions of iPods. Nevertheless, the maximized sales are due to the new video features, longer battery life, more options and more memory space enough for a lot of music, music videos, TV shows and episodes, and even lots of photos for the photo album. These features and improvements make the new iPod video so popular and fashionable. These aspects and others (games, possibility of checking the e-mail, possibility of finding out the time in other cities and other useful features) suit very well the contemporary lifestyle.

Expectations About The New iPod Video

The new iPod video seems to have been met with great expectations and hopes. The audiophiles were waiting for a better sound, those concerned with photos for a bigger memory, the video fans were expecting longer life battery. And the key word for all these expectation is quality.

Some of the groups of customers with different expectations got what they wanted, others are disappointed and have other expectations from the future editions of iPods. In many ways the customers were surprised by the new iPod video as many improvements were made as compared with previous editions. The previous generations of iPods had some disadvantages and maybe due to the customers' expectations those aspects were improved.

The first aspect that was changed is the screen and its dimension. Then the quality of the screen, its clarity and the number of the colors are impressive. The dimensions of the screen are big enough for watching the favorite video, the favorite photos or pictures so that the time would pass easily. Another important aspect that should be taken into account while speaking about the improvements of the iPods concerns the quality of the screen and image as the usual obstacles of light, sunny indoor or outdoor does not represent a problem anymore. The fact that the memory of the new iPod video is so generous seems to be a bonus to the quality of the pictures. There are also some features that permit creating slideshows, fact that is very useful.

The long life of the battery of the new iPod video is impressive so that the 30 GB has 14-15 hours of music listening. The 60 GB has almost 20 hours of music audition. Unfortunately, this great news has another aspect that concerns the life of the battery in case of video playing. The battery life while video playing is only 2 hours so that long movies or other longer shows are not possible to be watched because of this impediment. Some customers suggest that the life battery would be longer taking into account its huge memory and probably these complaints will be taken into account while creating new generations of iPods.

Another aspect that was expected and received with great joy is the huge memory. In this way, other customers prefer the new iPod video only because of this very aspect. It gives the possibility of having all digital photos on the new iPod, classifying them in a photo album. The memory of the new iPod video 30 GB and 60 GB hold up to 15,000 songs and 25,000 photos. The possibility of holding vivid color album art is another advantage and great news for lovers of the art. The customers have also the possibility of viewing and reviewing up to 150 hours of digital video.

The new features may satisfy almost all requirements and may meet almost all expectations. Digital entertainment, the superior quality of the sound, the best technology in MP3 domain, great battery life and huge memory are only few features that are worth being mentioned.

The disappointments regarding the new iPod video may be the result of high expectations that belong to different categories of people with different preoccupations. This aspect may contribute to a great development of handheld video devices and may bring variation on the market. The edition of a new iPod video and the disappointments regarding the video features may be the expression of new needs and requirements on the market of iPods.

Even in the case of too many disappointments or disagreements with some features and the quality of some aspect are true, these may contribute to the development of future generations of iPods. In this way, all expectations may be fulfilled and other wishes and requirements may develop.

All these improvements and new features are a great success and a new step in developing new video devices with the possibility of watching TV shows and TV series of great success. The new iPod video meets the expectations of the customers and especially the busy lifestyle, accommodating the crazy rhythm of the modern life.

A Look At Ipod Accessories

With the increasing popularity of the iPod, it only stands to reason that the accessories market is growing right along with it. Often referred to as the iPod ecosystem, the large number of available iPod accessories are designed to work directly with the iPod and are manufactured by a variety of different companies. Well known industry music leaders Bose and Kennsington are among the companies to create iPod speakers, which use the iPod's third pin dock connector. Various other companies create add-ons that permit the iPod to record sound, recharge, experience playback music on the radio and create wireless capability for the iPod to be operated with the use of a remote control.

In addition to technological iPod accessories, there are also a number of protective carrying cases designed to tote the iPod safely. While maintaining their equipment's safety, iPod users are also making a fashion statement with their trendy carrying cases.

Industry experts are amazed at just how far iPod accessories have come. For instance, an iPod control is now available on selected jacket sleeves or backpack straps made available by an apparel company specializing in the snowboarding industry. The theory behind this placement is that it will allow individuals with additional convenience for operating their iPod outdoors and on the go. Now that's iPod accessories at their best.

There are more common iPod accessories, including a headphone connector that allows for private listening of your favorite tunes. An iPod Hi-Fi speaker is also available for use in an electrical outlet or by battery operation.

With radio being a popular pastime for automobile operators, iPod accessories quickly made their way into car integration. BMW was the first to release an iPod interface, which allowed operators to control their iPod through built-in steering wheel controls. By January 2005, Volo, Nissan, Mercedes-Benz and Ferrari would offer similar systems. Later that year, Acura, Honda, Volkswagen and Audi confirmed their plans to integrate iPod accessories into their car stereos as well.

With it's ability to customize music playback, the iPod is growing with each passing day. As it's popularity increases, additional iPod accessories will be manufactured to make the convenience of customized music-on-the-go even better. With auto manufacturers jumping on board with their plans to incorporate iPod accessories into their newest creations, it's clear to automakers and to the world that iPod is here to stay. And, where there is an iPod, there are iPod accessories not far behind.

Apple iPod Nano Accessories

A new digital audio player manufactured by Apple, which first became available during the Fall 2005, is known as the iPod Nano. This handy new unit is the 4th digital audio player to be manufactured by Apple and connects to any PC via the USB port. It's compact design, combined with even more flash memory storage than the Apple iPod units before it, make the Apple iPod Nano the ultimate in convenience and portability. In size, the device could be compared to a standard computer mouse.

The Apple iPod Nano is said to be compatible with Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X and iTunes. Additionally, it features a 14 hour battery life and is available in both black and white colorations. Depending on the storage capacity, which includes 1 GB, 2 GB or 4 GB, the Apple iPod Nano will feature prices starting as low as $150.00 and up.

Because of the iPod's increasing popularity, the accessories market is booming. Sometimes referred to as the Apple iPod ecosystem, the growing number of compatible accessories are designed to work directly with the Apple iPod. Bose and Kennsington, two of the most respected names in music sound systems, are among the creators of Apple iPod speakers, which use the iPod's third pin dock connector. Other companies, which create add-ons, manufacturer Apple iPod accessories that enable sound recording, recharging, allow the user to experience playback music on the radio and create wireless opportunities for use with the Apple iPod to be operated via a remote control.

In addition to the many electronic accessories for the Apple iPod, there are equally impressive cosmetic accessories that are designed to enhance safety, portability and style. One such accessory is a protective carrying case, which is designed specifically for the Apple iPod, that will make transporting safer, easier and will add just the right amount of style. The most common Apple iPod accessories include a headphone and connector and a Hi-Fi speaker for use in an electrical outlet or through battery operation.

With the Apple iPod being focused on music and convenience, it only stands to reason that they would eventually find their way into the manufacturing process of an automobile. The first to release an Apple iPod interface was BMW, which allowed car owners to operate their iPod through built-in steering wheel controls. By January 2005, Mercedes-Benz, Ferrari and Nissan would release similar systems. By the end of that same year, Honda, Acura, Volkswagen and Audi announced plans to include Apple iPod accessories into their upcoming production lines as well.

Because of it's ability to customize music listening, the Apple iPod continues to grow in popularity among consumers, manufacturers and automakers. As it's demand continues, more Apple iPod accessories will be produced in an effort to take convenience one step further. For those who ever wondered if the Apple iPod would be a success, just ask the automakers. Would they incorporate anything into their automobiles that doesn't have staying power? The Apple iPod is one product that is sure to have a long and successful road ahead.

How To Download Ipod Games

Before I wrote this article I was sitting on my porch, enjoying the afternoon sun while playing Me and My Katmari on my Ipod. Now I love downloading Ipod games but until recently I didn't even know you could download games onto your Ipod until my friend John showed me how.

It's quite easy to download Ipod games. Most sites provide the converter you need in order to put the Ipod software downloads onto your Ipod. Once you've downloaded the games of your choice, you can play them directly on your Ipod Mini, Ipod Nano or video Ipod.

There are so many different games you can download to your Ipod; sports, action, strategy, puzzles, driving, adventure, simulations and role-playing. Some of the most popular games at the moment are action games such as Persuit Force, Daxter and Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories. Popular shooter games include Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Essentials. A popular arcade/puzzle game is Me and My Katmari. Two popular fighting games are Fight Night: Round 3 and Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai.

These games are just the tip of the iceberg. With so many Ipod games to download, you're spoiled for choice. Of course, you could always download ALL the Ipod games. That's sure to keep you busy for a while!

There are so many Ipod software downloads out there though. It can be very time consuming surfing from site to site trying to find the particular games you want to download. Wouldn't it be great if you could download hundreds of Ipod games from the one site?

Well, I've just found such a site. It has hundreds of Ipod games to download and the game database is updated daily. I'm in Ipod game heaven! Want to join me?

Jessica Smith is an Ipod game fanatic. If you'd like to find out more on downloading hundreds of Ipod games, visit now!