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Windows: XPlay 2 released

XPlay 2 provides a variety of new features, including compatibility with Audible files, AAC files, and even automatic WMA-to-MP3 conversion. XPlay 2 is also much faster than the original XPlay, has improved support for international characters, displays album art, supports play counts, and has a greatly-enhanced interface under Windows XP.

Mac/Windows: BiblePod 1.0 released

  • April 12, 2004

BiblePod is a new program that allows you to transfer books and chapters from the Bible to your iPod. BiblePod is free and available for Mac and Windows.

Vaja to release iPod mini Classic case

piciLounge has received the first Vaja Classic case for the iPod mini. Constructed from genuine Argentine leather, the flip-lid case features snap closure, access to all functions and the Ultra-clip swivel belt clip (optional). The mini Classic case will cost about $34.90 and be available in approximately 10 days. The i-Volution case for iPod mini is also coming soon.

New 10GB iPod $249, 30GB iPod $399

Apple has listed new 10GB and 30GB iPods for $249 and $399 respectively in its Special Deals section. The 10GB does not include the dock. Units are covered by Apple’s One-Year Limited Warranty. Supplies are limited, and these products are offered “While Supplies Last”.

Mac: ListSaver 2.0 released – now supports iPod

DeadEnd Software is pleased to announce the update of ListSaver to version 2.0. Version 2.0 adds many new features, including the ability to rebuild manually updated iPods from scratch, including automatically copying the music files from the local library to the iPod. This allows a user to perform a software restore on a manual iPod, and then return it to its previous state, as well as creating multiple iPods with the same set of music.

Apple stops PlayFair, but not for long

The PlayFair project, which removes fair-use restrictions from music purchased through Apple’s [iTunes] online store, has become the latest victim of offshoring. Actually, that’s not quite true: only the hosting provider has moved to India. Not surprisingly, Apple has used the Digital Millenium Copyright Act to ask SourceForge to remove the project. SourceForge declined to use the Safe Harbor provisions of the Act. [...] The new location for PlayFair is at Sarovar, a hosting company for software libre projects based in Trivandrum, India.

Smart car integrates iPod

  • April 12, 2004
  • iPod

“Smart, the iconic automotive brand, is the first car manufacturer worldwide to offer an integrated iPod play-back and charging station into its limited edition smart fortwo i–move.

The white smart fortwo cabrio with a silver tridion safety cell has a matching 20 Gb iPod engraved with the smart logo, as standard, and smart “iPod Car Kit” consisting of a mount with an iPod connection.”

iSkin exo2 for £17.50

The new online retailer of iPod accessories, i-magine, has launched an Easter Special. You can now buy any iSkin eXo2 from www.iskins.co.uk for just £17.50 (including VAT).

Sony EX71SL earphones for $30

Amazon.com has the Sony MDREX71SL earphones (black only) on sale for $29.94 including free shipping.

iSkin.com posts iSkin mini photos

picA reader notes that iSkin.com has posted a gallery of photos of its ‘coming soon’ iSkin mini case. Also note that iSkin.com is reporting a delay in shipping the new case as of March 30. “The release of iSkin ‘mini’ has been faced with a slight delay due to manufacturing. We now expect to begin shipping within the next 7 to 10 days. We apologize for the inconvenience. An announcement will be made once the product is available for order.”

iPod mini sound distortion issue

Many forum members have been reporting that their iPod mini is creating audio distortion when used. One such member claims to have discovered a major ‘design flaw’ in the iPod mini, which results in sound distortion when placing pressure anywhere on its surface or headphone port. The source of the noise may be a weak connection between the headphone port and the main circuit board.

“My iPod mini after two weeks of gentle use started to make horrible static noises; sometimes sound will disappear completely. Then the sound will return to normal, but any pressure as small as thumb pressure anywhere on iPod mini will make sounds to come back. Resetting iPod did not help. Guided by the detailed ‘iPod mini Autopsy’ posted here on iPodLounge, I disassembled by iPod rather easily. To check the reason of these noises, I started to play the iPod and disconnected the wheel, then the hard drive, but iPod was still playing (out of 25 min flash memory) and still making noises. Eventually, I narrowed the problem to a small little part that contains headphone and remote jack and metallic part in the shape of the white plastic top.”

PowerDesign releases new iPod mini BodyMask stickers

picPowerDesign USA has recently released several new iPod mini BodyMasks including; BodyMask Clear ($5.50), BodyMask Color ($7), Self-Design BodyMask ($9.50), and Carbon-Fiber BodyMask ($12). Each BodyMask comes with stickers for all sides (top, bottom, front, back) plus the click wheel. BodyMask for the iPod mini dock is optional. BodyMask Clear comes with an LCD protector.

Lajo releases exoflpmini case

pic#### has released yet another case for the iPod mini. The exoflpmini features a dock friendly design, access to all functions, includes protection over the mini’s click wheel and comes in a variety of colors. The exoflpmini sells for $21.50 (case only) plus $5 shipping to anywhere in the world.

Major labels want to raise the price of online music

“All five of the major music companies are discussing ways to boost the price of single-song downloads on hot releases - to anywhere from $1.25 to as much as $2.49. It isn’t clear how or when such a price hike would take place, and it could still be months away. Sales of such singles - prices have remained at 99 cents - still account for the majority of online music sales.

The industry is also mulling other ways to charge more for online singles. One option under consideration is bundling hit songs with less-desirable tracks. Another possibility is charging more for a single track if it is available online before the broader release of the entire album from which it is taken. There is also talk of lowering the price on some individual tracks from older albums.”

iPodMods offers new iPod modifications

iPodMods is now offering several new iPod modification services including; changing the color of your iPod’s LCD backlight ($75), changing the color of the four touch buttons on a 3rd generation iPod ($65), changing the LEDs on the Belkin Battery Pack ($25) and TuneCast FM Transmitter ($25). All modifications are available exclusively at iPodMods.com.

Did you replace your iPod earphones?

In today’s Wall Street Journal, Marcus Lillkvist writes not about the popular iPod, but it’s mostly unpopular white earphones. Many users think the earphones are uncomfortable and produce mediocre sound and have replaced them with better, aftermarket alternatives. “Still, some customers are quick to dump the Apple-supplied buds. High-school student Austin Agarwal took $390 in birthday money last year and treated himself to an iPod. But when he slipped on the headphones that come with the device, he says the the bass was fuzzy, and the high notes muffled. It sounded “like an old boom box,” he says. Less than a week after the 17-year-old who lives in Easton, Conn., bought his iPod, he plunked down $150 more for a pair of higher-end headphones.”

“It’s not clear how many iPod owners discard their ear buds. ‘We chose the 80-20 rule, as we think that the supplied headphones satisfy the big majority of our customers,’ says Stan Ng, director of iPod product marketing at Apple Computer Inc. The company recently introduced a $39 a la carte option, designed to address the fit issue. It comes with three different size caps, to ensure a snugger fit.”

Music Recommendation System for iTunes released

The Music Recommendation System is an automated system that provides music recommendations specifically tailored to each user to find new music that they might like. This system, designed by students at the University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana), operates by taking ratings from your own iTunes playlists and comparing them against other users who have used the recommendation system. Right now we have a very small number of users, and so the recommendations will most likely be laughable. However they will get better over time as more people enter into the system; meanwhile, enjoy while the numbers grow. Works on Mac or Windows.

Lajo announces exo3mini for iPod mini

pic#### has released another silicone case for the iPod mini today. The exo3mini features 0.7mm silicone, 0.5mm silicone covering the click wheel and comes in an assortment of colors. #### will also be releasing new accessories for all exo and exomini series cases. Exo3mini is compatible with iTrip and iTalk and sells for $9.50 plus $5 shipping to anywhere in the world.

“Me and my iPod” Photo Contest launched

picIf you liked last month’s giveaway, you’re going to love this one. Three lucky people are going to get awesome new in-ear phones courtesy of iLounge and its partners, with one winner taking home a $900 personally customized pair of UE-10 Pros from Ultimate Ears.

What you need to do: Submit a photograph of yourself with your iPod or iPod mini for the new “Me and my iPod” photo gallery. The photo can be funny, sexy, art inspired, or whatever you dream up, so long as you follow the photo and contest rules.

“Secrets of the iPod, Fourth Edition” released

picPeachpit Press has announced the release of Christopher Breen’s fourth edition of Secret’s of the iPod. “This updated, fun guide from Macworld magazine columnist Chris Breen offers tips and tricks for all of you Mac and Windows users on how to get the most out of your iPod and iPod mini. In addition to the inside skinny on the iPod’s all-touch interface and on-the-go play lists, you’ll also find hints for accessorizing and protecting your iPod, tips on maximizing its storage capabilities, and troubleshooting advice for when it refuses to cooperate.” Now available for $19.99.

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