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HP to sell iPod mini and iPod shuffle?

Following last month’s news that Hewlett-Packard has added the iPod photo to its lineup, Engadget reports that the company will soon start selling branded versions of the iPod mini and iPod shuffle. The gadget site says to expect both models on June 12.

While Froogle searches show HP product numbers of PW753AA (iPod mini), PX765AA (iPod shuffle 512MB) and PX766AA (iPod shuffle 1GB), the company would not confirm that it will offer the iPod models when contacted. “HP has not made any such announcements, and we do not comment on plans for future (or potential) products,” an HP representative told iLounge.

Party-Pod Pro 2.0 released

Party-Pod Pro 2.0 is the latest version of the software that “gives your iPod a database of partygoer necessities.” According to the developer, Party-Pod Pro is the most comprehensive party companion for your iPod. It includes 650 drink recipes, 55 drinking games, a Bar & Club database for every major U.S. city, and 100 pick-up lines for men and women. Version 2.0 adds photos (iPod photo required) to the top rated and most popular drinks, and information for 10 additional cities.

Apple offers iPod shuffle Lanyard and Caps

imageApple has quietly introduced the iPod shuffle Lanyard and Caps, a $19 package that consists of a replacement iPod shuffle lanyard cap and three replacement standard USB caps. The set is Apple’s sixth iPod shuffle accessory and the first to sell for under $29.

“You knew it would happen; we did, too,” says Apple on its online store. “Why not purchase a set of Lanyard and Caps to replace yours that have gone missing?”

Mix: Holy iPod, Sirius podcast, New Zealand, Disneyland

Ever wonder what’s on Jesus’ iPod? “Protest anthems, Zeppelin, gospel, classical and, of course, Nine Inch Nails,” says SF Gate columnist Mark Morford.

Sirius Satellite Radio is launching a show that will feature a daily selection of podcasts hosted by Adam Curry, the former MTV personality who helped create the popular audio programs.

Apple’s inability to meet iPod demand is once again frustrating its New Zealand resellers.

Disneyland Resort said that beginning Tuesday, it will podcast the three days of festivities leading to the May 5th launch of the 50th anniversary of Disneyland.

iLounger creates iPod coffee table

imageiLounger Ashley Burrows let us know that he recently finished his iPod inspired “iTable.” He said it was a project for his A-level Design Technology course and that it took months to complete. Burrows was kind enough to share the process of building it along with a handful of photos, including his initial illustrated design.

“Basically, I started with a square frame built out of pine (this made the sides) and then glued a piece of MDF on the top,” Burrows said. “This gave me a five-sided cube kinda thing. To curve the edges I used a hand plane (yeah, it did take about 30 hours to do the curves) and a shaped block covered in sandpaper.”

iPodResQ offers iPod LCD replacement service

iPodResQ has launched a new flat-rate iPod LCD replacement service. The repair service includes a custom “iBox” that’s sent to the customer’s location in the continental U.S. via overnight courier to pickup the iPod for overnight delivery back to the iPodResQ service center. The company will receive the unit, install an LCD the same day, and return the iPod back to the customer overnight. iPodResQ said the LCDs are installed by Apple Certified Technicians. Pricing is as follows: 4G iPod - $145, iPod photo - $219, iPod mini - $129, 3G iPod - $129, 1G/2G iPod - $114.

Mac: iTunes Library Manager 4.1 released

Doug’s AppleScripts for iTunes

has released an update to iTunes Library Manager, a $5 AppleScript application that makes backup copies of the iTunes Library and iTunes Preferences, allowing users to “easily save multiple iTunes Library and Preferences configurations that can be retrieved and loaded at any time.” iTunes Library Manager 4.1 adds compatibility for Mac OS X v10.4 Tiger.

Emeril LaGasse releases ReciPods, ReciPods Too

Emerils.com, the website of famous chef Emeril LaGasse, has now made ReciPods and ReciPods Too available for download. The free recipe collections can be transferred to and read on your iPod.

“We tried to cram 1000 recipes into one iPod app, then discovered that we had 20+ related recipes (sauces, etc) that crashed the app,” says an Emeril representative. “So we divided the app into two equal halves. ReciPods has 510+ recipes and ReciPods Too has 510+ recipes.”

As noted in February, Emerils.com also offers two other free iPod software titles: mFinder (information about Emeril’s 9 restaurants) and PodMeals (weekly menu provided on Emerils.com that comes from the cooking section).

Mac: iPod.iTunes 2.8 released

iPod.iTunes 2.8 from CrispSofties is the latest update to the iPod utility that synchronizes songs and playlists from any iPod to any Mac, including track info like Rating, Last Played and Play Count. Version 2.8 adds compatibility for Mac OS X v10.4 Tiger, which will be released today at 6:00 p.m.

PortalPlayer’s positive guidance a good sign for iPod sales

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster says that PortalPlayer’s upbeat second quarter guidance is a positive sign for sales of hard drive-based iPods. He also notes a new trend that he calls iPod mini up-selling.

PortalPlayer, which supplies the chips that power the iPod, iPod mini and iPod photo, yesterday reported first quarter earnings of $7.8 million, or 33 cents a share, on revenue of $44.5 million. The company forecast second quarter earnings of 21-27 cents a share on $41.6 million to $47.6 million versus street estimates of 17 cents on $37.3 million in revenue.

“We believe that PortalPlayer’s Q2 guidance is positive for Apple’s HD based iPods and may be consistent with a trend that we have been picking up on in the channel related to iPod shuffle to 4GB iPod mini up-selling,” Munster said in a research note obtained by iLounge. “Specifically, we have been hearing from Apple retail stores and independent Apple VARs that customers are consistently being up-sold to 4GB iPod minis ($200) when intending to buy the 1GB iPod shuffle ($149), given the minimal ($50) difference in price.”

Munster said that more than 85 percent of PortalPlayer’s first quarter revenue was from sales to Apple.

Griffin ships TuneJuice battery backup device

imageGriffin Technology said today that is now shipping TuneJuice, its $19.99 battery backup device for the iPod and iPod mini. TuneJuice uses a single 9-volt battery to provide up to 8 hours of additional power for any iPod with a Dock Connector port. (It will provide 4 hours if your iPod is completely drained).

“TuneJuice is perfect for extending the play time of your iPod for those times when you just gotta have more than your iPod battery can give,” says Griffin. “It’s the perfect carry-on for airplanes, road trips, camping and ski trips. Anytime you need some serious play time and don’t have access to charge your ‘Pod, TuneJuice is a lifesaver.”

Mix: Podcast station, Hebrew, Dutch levy, Subway crime

Infinity Broadcasting has announced that it will convert its KYCY-AM radio station in San Francisco to a podcast-only format on May 16.

Because of Apple’s lack of Hebrew support in iPods, Israeli developer Edo Mendelson has created a free application that enables the use of the language on the device.

A proposed tax on MP3 players in the Netherlands “could devastate sales of hard disk players, and set up international waves over copyright legislation,” reports The Register.

New York City police told the city transportation board yesterday that 50 iPods have been stolen on subways so far this year, compared to none during the same period a year ago.

NewerTech adds charger to RoadTrip! FM transmitter

imageNewerTechnology today announced the release of the RoadTrip!+ (iLounge rating: B+), a new version of its iPod FM transmitter. Like the original RoadTrip!, the new model broadcasts music from your iPod to your car’s stereo at 87.9 FM. Unlike the original, however, it also charges your iPod simultaneously.

The device is compatible with 3G/4G iPods and iPod minis, and plugs into the cigarette lighter outlet. The RoadTrip!+ combination FM transmitter and iPod charger is available now from Other World Computing for $27.95.

iLounge’s Horwitz takes listener questions on Your Mac Life

iLounge’s Editor-in-Chief Jeremy Horwitz will appear on popular Internet radio broadcast Your Mac Life on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 to take listener questions at 8:15PM Central Time, 6:15PM Pacific Time. A live stream of the broadcast will be available at this link, and listeners will be able to submit questions in the Your Mac Life chat rooms, which open at the beginning of the show.

Want to queue up for a question? Send it to [email protected] or join the YML chat. Two Your Mac Life chat rooms are available. Go to the World Without Borders site (http://www.wwbchat.com/login/index.shtml) or use the dedicated IRC Server at irc.netmug.org, channel #yourmaclife.

Update: A transcript is now available here.

Nyko Button Relocator now available

imageNyko today announced the immediate availability of its iTop Button Relocator (iLounge rating: B), which duplicates an iPod’s controls and places them on top of the device for on-the-go use.

“On Nyko’s iTop, the standard play, fast-forward, rewind and volume control functions are tactile.  Jeweled buttons allow users to control their digital music player without exposing the screen or removing the unit from their pocket or handbag. Each button is assigned a unique texture so that users can recognize the controls by touch. It is a great option for controlling the iPod while working out or on the go.”

Designed for all full size iPods, the iTop Button Relocator is priced at $29.99.

Mix: SAT, Nokia N91, Australia iTMS, Wal-Mart

eNotes.com has released over 500 of the most commonly tested SAT vocabulary words in iPod Notes format for studying on the go.

Nokia today introduced the N91 music phone, which boasts a 4GB hard drive, an industry standard 3.5mm headphone jack, USB 2.0, and support for MP3, M4A, AAC, and WMA.

Several iTunes users have found a backdoor route into the Australian iTunes Music Store that lets them buy tracks, which cost AUD$1.69 — slightly cheaper than Russell Crowe’s $1.80 statement.

Wal-Mart is now offering customized music CDs to online customers for $4.62 (three songs) plus 88 cents for each additional song.

RealNetworks restores iPod compatibility

In addition to expanding its Rhapsody subscription service today, RealNetworks also quietly restored iPod support for songs purchased from its online music store with an update to its Harmony technology. A RealNetworks executive confirmed the move to CNET News.com. “Harmony now supports all shipping iPods, including iPod photo,” said RealNetworks Chief Strategy Officer Richard Wolpert.

RealNetworks released Harmony without Apple’s blessing last year making the company’s online store the first to offer copy-protected digital music (other than the iTunes Music Store) that could play on the iPod. Apple said at the time it was “stunned that RealNetworks has adopted the tactics and ethics of a hacker to break into the iPod,” and updated the iPod firmware a few months later to break compatibility.

It should be noted that songs downloaded from RealNetworks’ new subscription services do not work with the iPod and are only compatible with a small number of Windows-based MP3 players.

BBC Radio 2 features iPod on Digital Music Explosion broadcast

The iPod is featured prominently in a radio broadcast by BBC Radio 2’s Steve Lamacq, who explores the boom in digital music and its impact on the music industry.

“In this one hour authored documentary, Steve Lamacq investigates how we have arrived at this point and what impact the ‘digital technology revolution’ will have on the future of the music industry as we know it: we talk to the record labels, retailers, consumers, artists and the kids who get music in a different sort of way to how we used to.”

The role of the iPod is among topics discussed, and comments are included from Apple’s Greg Joswiak, Vice President of Hardware Marketing, and Eddie Cue, VP of Applications. To hear the program on BBC Radio 2 Replay service, visit Listen Again. The broadcast is available until Saturday, April 30, 2005.

iLounge debuts live grade summaries, new categories

In response to reader requests, iLounge is proud to announce two new ways you can simplify your search for iPod accessories. Today, we have launched “Ratings Only,” a way you can compare letter grades across all of the approximately 350 products reviewed by iLounge, and a collection of improved accessory categories that make it easier to find and sort accessories by type.

Click on “Ratings Only” at the top any of our Reviews pages to view this new page with grades of all reviewed products, listed in alphabetical order. A drop down menu at the top of the page will let you narrow down the grade listings to the following new review categories.

Adapters and Cables
Batteries
Bluetooth Wireless
Camera Adapters
Car Mounts
Car Power Chargers, Kits and Adapters
Cases - iPod 1G & 2G
Cases - iPod 3G
Cases - iPod 4G/HP/U2/photo
Cases - iPod mini
Cases - iPod shuffle
Clips - iPod shuffle
Clips and Cord Managers - General
FM Transmitters
Headphone Expanders
Headphones & In-Canal Earphones
iPod Hardware Expanders - General
iPods
Microphones and Microphone Adapters
Remote Controls
Software
Speakers
Stands (Docks and Cradles)
Stickers, Guards and Film

If you’re looking for a way to view our reviews in “best grades first” order, download the most recent issue of our free iLounge Buyers’ Guide 2005 and check out the Report Card on pages 90-92.

DLO intros Flip Clip for iPod shuffle

imageDigital Lifestyle Outfitters today announced the availability of the Flip Clip (iLounge rating: B+) for the iPod shuffle. The snap-on clip “secures the shuffle to a person’s belt, shirt, bag — anywhere they choose — with a spring loaded clasping system that points the shuffle controls and headphones right-side up.”

The Flip Clip attaches to the iPod shuffle by locking into the shuffle’s USB cap, while the frame protects the back of the device from scratches. The $19.99 clip also provides access to the slider switch on the back of the iPod shuffle as well as the controls on the front.

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