Archives For Apple

Digital Media Bytes

Dave Zatz —  October 7, 2008 — Leave a comment

A periodic roundup of relevant news… from our other blogs:

ZNF ‘Round The Web

Dave Zatz —  September 26, 2008 — Leave a comment

Leaving comments across the blogosphere…

XBox Live Video Store – where’s all the content?
There’s plenty of content here in the US, though as you observed it’s kinda of random – but that’s not limited to the Xbox. The bigger problem is presentation. It’s just long lists of genres. Again, Microsoft isn’t the only one with this problem. At least the Marketplace is better designed for the 10′ interface, whereas I find the PS3 more computer-like – things are too small from the couch.

Is Online Gaming Creating Citizens or Monsters?
Davis, in some of the ZNF comments and the TCF I’ve seen at least one or two mentions of adult gaming groups – I assume it would limit some of the silliness. I traded in my Xbox for a PS3 and the Xbox at least allowed me to rate asses and in extreme cases report them. No such feature on the PS3 as far as I can tell. I’ve been playing CoD4 and SOCOM withOUT my headset – less community feel, but less stupid people.

Lenovo IdeaPad S10 netbook reviewed
Agreed, it does look sharp. But after Laptop’s article, I just canceled my (delayed) order. I can live with the battery life, but the reason I’m getting a 10″ screen was for the larger keyboard. “Cramped” doesn’t work for me. Guess I’ll be keeping an eye out for deals on a 6 cell Eee 1000H or MSI Wind. Unless Apple does something crazy in the next few weeks…

MacBook Pros, what to expect, when
16″ and 18″ screens are non-standard and would boost production costs – unless it’s a start of a new trend. WiMax? Forget it – they’d need to get in bed with Sprint. If there’s any 3G or 4G, it’d be more likely they’d expand their relationship with AT&T. For the most part we’re all just educated guessing or regurgitating unsubstantiated rumors. Time will tell…

Seven Social Media Consultants That Deliver Tangible Value

Some of the best results are achieved by consultants/agencies largely invisible to the echochamber. Perhaps that’s how it should be – I know we’re all preaching transparancy, but at the end of the day it’s about the client not the consultant.

Digital Media Bytes

Dave Zatz —  September 15, 2008 — Leave a comment

A periodic roundup of relevant news… from our other blogs:

The New iPods (and iTunes 8)

Dave Zatz —  September 12, 2008 — 7 Comments

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At this point, I’m sure we’re all aware that new iPods were announced on Tuesday. And in fact the fourth generation iPod Nano and second generation iPod Touch have already hit my local Apple Store, as you can see from the pics. Some were underwhelmed by Steve’s announcements, but both these devices receive solid updates (software and hardware) over their predecessors and the iPod line should continue to do well this holiday season (despite the turbulent economy).

Prior to the show, there was some talk that the click wheel would be retired permanently. Fortunately, those prognosticators were off. It’s still the most efficient way to operate an iPod, and I actually prefer it to the touchscreen iPhone ‘iPod’ interface. Leading to… My favorite iPod of all time was the second gen Nano, so I’m pleased to see Apple return to the the vertical orientation – now with accelerometer. Regarding the Touch, it’s a very attractively priced multimedia Internet tablet. The new speaker doesn’t add much value (for music or video), but the addition of physical volume buttons corrects an earlier usability oversight. Directly integrating Nike+, no dongle required, was a surprise. And it gives me hope that my iPhone might one day support this service as well. Heck, the 3G iPhone wouldn’t even require using a footpod, tracking your movements via GPS. Of course, if they can’t sell you hardware accessories they’ll make it up with a $20 App Store fee.

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iTunes 8 also saw an overhaul this week, with a variety of interface changes – including more use of album art and a spruced up visualizer. Neither do much for me, as I listen to my Smart Playlists in the background. Of course, the “Genius” features are getting most of the attention. The opt-in Genius Sidebar recommends similar iTunes songs available for purchase. It’s essentially, the (former) MiniStore rebranded and relocated. Genius Playlists dynamically group similar songs – at least they try to. I’ve had mixed results. Perhaps my experiences are due to (current) limitations in Apple’s cloud db, perhaps it’s limited due to my music collection. Regardless, under no circumstances should Metallica and Flock of Seagulls continue to appear together. What wasn’t announced: I’d been hoping for an iTunes music subscription service (See ZunePass), but it wasn’t meant to be. This time. Guess I’ll be sticking with Pandora while Apple leaves money on the table.

Kevin Rose (Digg, Revision3, Pownce) may have an inside source at Apple – which wouldn’t be surprising given his elite status amongst the digerati and Bay Area location. He’s heard that the entire iPod lineup will see a refresh and iTunes 8.0 will be introduced by the end of September. (Apple’s free iPod promotion ends 9/15…) I’m not extremely fond of the Nano Fatty and wouldn’t mind seeing it replaced with the rendering Rose provided (above) – similar in form to the previous Nano that I’m a fan of.

Supposedly, iTunes 8.0 provides new features and functionality worthy of something more than just a point upgrade designation. Which lines up nicely with our quarterly iTunes music subscription service rumor and iPhone 2.1 update. This time around the claim is $129.99 for a year of unlimited downloads and playback. Works for me if it pans out – cheaper than satellite radio without the continuous network connectivity requirement of a Pandora.