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Apple launches ‘Back to School’ iPod promo

Apple has kicked off a new “Back to School” promotion that offers students a free iPod nano after mail-in rebate. Apple said students who purchase a new Mac before September 16, 2006 are eligible to receive up to a $179 rebate to cover the educational customer price of a nano, or use toward the price of any other iPod model.

Major league baseball players discuss iPod use

The Colorado Rockies this year began extensively using video iPods for everything from helping hitters find their groove to tracking upcoming draft picks and future free agents. “It has everything right there for you. It’s great, especially on the road,” says Rockies outfielder Matt Holliday. “You can look at your swings when you were going good. And it only takes a couple of minutes.” The Rockies’ video team loads a player’s iPod with their hits from the previous week, all of their past at-bats against the starting pitchers in the upcoming series, as well as a 2005 highlight reel. Meanwhile, David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox says he would rather watch 50 Cent videos than at-bats. “You don’t want to put video of baseball on here,” Ortiz said. “You need more room, bigger vision to see what you’re doing than this. Like you can sit down and watch a video right here, but your at-bat? Watch the pitcher and you, that’s kind of a small screen.”

‘AppleBerry’ device on the way?

A partnership between Apple and BlackBerry maker Research in Motion could be formed soon, according to Peter Misek, an analyst with Canaccord Capital. Misek said the two companies might jointly develop a new “AppleBerry” device that would combine iPod features with RIM’s wireless technology, or RIM might begin offering iTunes on future BlackBerry devices. Misek, who last year accurately predicted a partnership between RIM and Intel, also said that senior executives at Intel have recommended that Apple work with RIM.

Microsoft: No iPod rival in the works

Microsoft has denied last week’s report that it was teaming up with Toshiba, Victor, NTT DoCoMo and five other companies to take on the iPod in Japan. “The announcement that came out of Japan this week was simply about the Japanese launch of Windows Media Player 11,” said a Microsoft representative who asked not to be named. “Due to translation issues the announcement was misconstrued to sound like Microsoft was developing a rival to the iPod; that’s just not the case.”

Hello Kitty iPod gear abounds

The Spectra Group has recently introduced several iPod accessories under the Hello Kitty electronics brand. Among the new products are three FM transmitters and two speaker systems. The Hello Kitty KT4520 is a small dock-connecting FM transmitter for the iPod nano. The KT4530 is an FM transmitter/car charger/cradle for all dockable iPods. The KT4510 is a top-mounting FM transmitter for 3G, 4G, and mini iPods. The KT4555 and KT4556 speaker systems have identical specs with different Hello Kitty designs. Both work with all dockable iPods and feature integrated docks, two 1” speakers, and can be powered a wall outlet or batteries.

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FIB2.0: TuneDeck, O ROKR, AirDock, iDuo Hub debut

Three new iPod docks and one pair of unique audio sunglasses made their debut in iLounge’s Free iPod Book 2.0. New products (left to right) are from Belkin, Oakley/Motorola/TEN Technology, Griffin Technology, and Atech.

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Belkin’s TuneDeck for iPod nano ($50) combines a metal-reinforced dock with a cassette tape adapter, allowing you to mount your nano in front of your car’s cassette player without wires. The TuneDeck for iPod nano is due in July.

The O ROKR ($250) is a joint Bluetooth product from Oakley and Motorola that combines Thump-style stereo earphones with a pair of modern sunglasses. It can be used wirelessly with an iPod with TEN Technology’s naviPlay ($100), which is being sold through Oakley at that special discounted price specifically for iPod-to-O ROKR pairing. The sunglasses sport an integrated microphone (for cell phone use), volume buttons, and iPod track and playback controls.

Griffin’s AirDock ($70) is the new entry-level member of the company’s TuneCenter line. The AirDock’s remote and iPod dock use RF wireless technology, allowing users to control audio and video functions from up to 60 feet away and through walls. The product will also charge an iPod while docked.

The iDuo Hub + Remote ($60) is Atech’s new version of its iDuo, which combined a memory card reader and iPod dock. The iDuo Hub + Remote features three USB 2.0 ports, a 7-button infrared remote control, and S-video output. It’s also expected in July.

For bigger photos and additional details, download The Free iPod Book 2.0, and turn to pages 18-20.

FIB2.0: v-moda NV Audio, Targus SoundUp, Locks, many cases debut

A number of exciting new headphone accessories and cases have debuted in The Free iPod Book 2.0, from v-moda, Targus, Power Support, Sumo Cases, Griffin, and Pods Plus.

v-moda’s NV Audio (pronounced Envy, $310) is the first gold-bodied, premium headphone designed for the iPod, with real gold used on both of the earbuds, the Y-spitter, and the headphone port plug. A special edition, matching golden iPod nano called NV Nano is also planned.

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Targus’ SoundUp ($30) is an audio enhancer for all iPod models, designed to unlock detail hidden in digitally compressed music files. The company’s Mobile ($40) and Eyelet ($20) Security Locks are additions to its previously announced series of Desktop Security Locks ($30), all attaching a combination lock to your iPod’s Dock Connector and offering varying degress of security - Desktop attaches to a table, Mobile to your bag, and Eyelet to either of the other locks. Targus also unveiled the Mobile Essentials Kit ($60), a nylon travel case bundled with a ton of travel accessories, including a battery charger, auto charger, wall charger, and more.

 

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Power Support has debuted three new products - the incredible Mirror Cases ($30-40), which turn your iPod into a see-through mirror; the lightweight Water-Resistant Case for iPod nano ($36), and the surprisingly cool Liquid Titanium Screen Protector, the first iPod protector we’ve seen that uses a clear protective liquid rather than film to scratch-proof your iPod’s screen and face.

 

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Sumo Cases has announced the Major League Baseball Cases for iPod 5G ($40), a striped and baseball-stitched version of its Vertical PlayThru cases for iPod. Griffin showed off Trio nano, a three-piece leather case design offering six colors and your preferred degree of nano coverage. And Pods Plus showed off Aluminum V2, a metal case with a protective silicone cover for your iPod’s Click Wheel, providing especially comprehensive iPod protection.

For bigger photos and additional details, download The Free iPod Book 2.0, and turn to pages 10-21.

FIB2.0: Sonic Impact K1, 2 Monitor i-decks, Atlantic E GO debut

As just several of the brand-new iPod accessories debuted in The Free iPod Book 2.0, speaker makers Sonic Impact, Monitor Audio, and Atlantic have released first photos and details on the next generation of iPod audio systems.

Sonic Impact’s K1 (tentative name, $300) is the first combination video screen and speaker dock for the iPod, designed to add a large 7” monitor for viewing while you travel.

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Monitor Audio’s i-deckcompact ($200) and i-deckplus ($300) take the company’s successful i-deck (iLounge rating: A-) formula to the next level. i-deckcompact is an all-in-one, less expensive version of i-deck, while i-deckplus is a three-piece, enhanced i-deck with integrated radio and on-screen RDS display.

imageAtlantic’s E GO ($200) is the iPod’s first totally water-submersible speaker system. Carried with a shoulder strap or mounted on its included stand, you can take it to the pool or beach and even fully dunk it in the water without fear of speaker or iPod damage.

For bigger photos and additional details, download The Free iPod Book 2.0, and turn to pages 8 and 9.

Belkin announces TuneStage for iPod nano

Belkin has announced the TuneStage for iPod nano, a new version of its device that allows you to stream music from your iPod to your home stereo wirelessly via Bluetooth. The new TuneStage, which was first shown in iLounge’s Free iPod Book 2.0, consists of a transmitter that connects to the nano’s dock connector and a receiver wired to your system. The TuneStage for iPod nano can transmit from up to 33 feet away from your stereo, connects via RCA or 3.5mm outputs, and does not require direct line-of-sight for control. The new TuneStage will ship in July for $180.

XtremeMac MicroMemo gets ship date, lower price

XtremeMac told iLounge today that its MicroMemo iPod audio recorder will begin shipping in early July for $60. The MicroMemo, which was announced in January for $80, features an omnidirectional microphone and a built-in speaker for instant playback. The device connects to a fifth-generation iPod’s dock connector, and records 16-bit audio in high or low quality formats. The MicroMemo’s microphone is detachable from its 3.5mm port, which can be used as a line-in port for use with external stereo microphones or other audio devices. XtremeMac is now taking pre-orders for MicroMemo via its website.

Industry heavyweights team to take on iPod in Japan

Microsoft, Toshiba, Victor, NTT DoCoMo and five other companies have teamed up to offer digital music and video services and media players to compete with Apple in Japan. Bloomberg News reports: “The companies will develop a portable music and video player for the Japanese market, according to a Microsoft press release dated yesterday. The device would challenge Apple’s iPod… Microsoft will develop the software while consumer electronics makers Toshiba and Victor, will make the portable device. DoCoMo, Japan’s largest mobile phone operator, last month said it would offer a handset that is compatible with Microsoft’s software, and that lets customers transfer Windows format music files from their personal computers to their cell-phones.”

iPresent It for Windows released

ZappTek has announced the release of iPresent It for Windows. Like the original Mac OS X version, iPresent It for Windows allows you to convert PowerPoint or PDF presentations into slideshows that are synced with your iPod. The software sells for $18. “Never carry a laptop into a presentation again; it’s all on your iPod,” says the developer.

Website uses iPod as ‘modern message in a bottle’

60gbroundtheworld.com is a new project that will send a 60GB iPod across the globe, from person to person, to collect random content until it finally returns back to the site’s owner. “60gbroundtheworld.com is a project, using a black iPod as a modern kind of a message in a bottle,” the site explains. “This iPod collects exciting content (photos, voice-messages, etc.) throughout his journey. Meanwhile, there’s a white iPod everbody‚Äôs invited to fill with some content via internet. As soon as both iPods are full, 60gbroundtheworld.com will present the iPods’ content doing a round-the-world-tour!” [via TUAW]

Belkin TuneTalk Stereo shipping this month

Belkin today announced that its new TuneTalk Stereo will be available in North America in mid-June, with launches in Asia, Europe, and Australia to follow closely. The $70 device, first shown at Macworld Expo in January, lets you record audio in CD-quality stereo sound. It features two high-quality omnidirectional microphones, an auxiliary 3.5mm stereo-input for an external microphone, and comes with a positionable stand. The TuneTalk Stereo also has an adjustable gain control switch, an extended dock connector spacer for using the device with a protective case, and is available in both black and white colors.

Download Now: The Free iPod Book 2.0

Blog The Book XL Contest
It’s here: The Free iPod Book 2.0, by iLounge.com! Weighing in at 194 pages, this revised and expanded second edition of our popular Book is your one-stop answer to every major iPod and iTunes question… plus much, much more. Inside, you’ll find 20 exclusive sneak peeks at new iPod accessories from Atlantic, Belkin, Griffin, Monitor Audio, Oakley, Power Support, Sonic Impact, Targus, v-moda, and others, ratings of over 900 accessories and iPods, plus extraordinary guides to All Things iPod, All Things iTunes, and Beyond. Click the link below for the details and the download links. Two versions - printable and widescreen - are available; please download only one. We hope you enjoy!

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Mix: Cars contest, World Class awards, Nike/Apple, Pirate Bay

Disney/Pixar has launched the “Radiator Springs iPod Sweepstakes” to promote the release of the animated film “Cars.” Four custom engraved “Cars” iPods will be given away.

PC World today announced the winners of its annual “World Class Awards.” Apple won five for the fifth-generation iPod, iPod nano, iTunes, Boot Camp, and Mac mini. Apple was also selected as the “Hardware Company of the Year.”

Dr. Bott offers i-doll case collection

Dr. Bott has announced the i-doll line of fashion iPod cases. “Made from the finest, most luxurious materials, i-doll cases are hand-stitched by French leather craftsmen who pay close attention to detail and tradition,” says the store. The cases come in more than 20 different styles—from “classic luxury leathers to the most modern and original materials like genuine and metallicized python skin, glossy cotton, fluffy fur.” Each case features a metallic spine, attachment ring and plexiglas stand. Available for the fifth-generation iPod, iPod nano and iPod shuffle, the i-doll cases retail from $28 to $50.

NYPD launches etching program to track stolen iPods

In response to the increase of iPod thefts on the subways, the New York City police department has launched a new program to register and track iPods. The New York Daily News reports: “Under the iPod etching program, cops are using invisible ink to mark the mini-music machines—as well as cell phones, BlackBerries and other electronic devices—so they can return lost or stolen items to their rightful owners and connect with potential prosecution witnesses.” The police are offering the free iPod service at Transit Bureau offices, and are setting up tables throughout the subway system where devices can be marked. About 2,100 devices have been registered in the last three months. [via Infinite Loop]

SigmaTel to keep iPod shuffle socket, Samsung ‘punished’

SigmaTel will likely remain the chip supplier for Apple’s iPod shuffle, after a Samsung executive revealed publicly that the company had won a contract to supply chips in future iPods. According to Wedbush Morgan Securities, Apple may be “punishing” Samsung for the leaked news by keeping SigmaTel as the iPod shuffle chip supplier. “It is not surprising that Apple would ‘punish’ Samsung for commenting publicly about its position within the iPod Nano follow-on, and we believe that SigmaTel is likely to be the resulting beneficiary of the Samsung executive’s gaffe,” wrote analyst Craig Berger in a report Tuesday.

iGlaze faceplate now available for 5G iPods

Moshi has introduced a new version of its iGlaze protector for fifth-generation iPods. The ultra-thin stick-on faceplate provides scratch protection for the front casing, screen and click wheel of iPods, and can be repositioned and removed without leaving residue, according to the company. The new 5G iGlaze ($30) comes in four basic colors—pink, white, silver and black/red—and will soon be available in a selection of World Cup styles ($35).

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