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NBC sells over 6 million videos through iTunes

NBC said today that it has sold more than 6 million television shows through the iTunes Music Store since the network’s videos were added in December. John Miller, chief marketing officer for the NBC Universal Television Group, said the Sci-Fi Channel’s “Battlestar Galactica,” USA Network’s “Monk,” and sketches from “Saturday Night Live” have been among the most popular videos on iTunes, while classics such as “Alfred Hitchcock Present” have not done as well. NBC also announced today that it is partnering with the YouTube video-sharing site to promote its Fall television lineup.

Analyst: New iPods likely delayed

American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu believes that Apple’s next generation iPod models will face delays. “Previously, we believed that the new iPod nanos and widescreen vPod could be slated for release in calendar Q3 and Q4 of this year respectively. However, we now believe that both could be delayed by a quarter or two,” Wu wrote in a research report obtained by iLounge. The analyst believes the delay of the new iPod nano lies in a SOC (system-on-chip) chip change, while new video iPod development is being hindered by battery life issues. Click below to read Wu’s analysis of the iPod delays.

Mix: iSlang, Shuffle woes, PodShop, Spider-Man 3

Leander Kahney of Wired News has rounded up several iPod-related slang terms such as iPizzle, iPodyssey, Podestrian, iPodolatry, iPlode, and Pod snob.

PC World notes the ongoing problems iPod shuffle owners have been having since last year. “A single topic on Apple’s iPod Shuffle support forum has garnered more than 36,000 visits since late October, according to statistics posted on the forum index page. Dubbed ‘Green and Orange flashing lights,’ the thread stretches on for more than 550 posts.”

Reminder: iPods Around the World milestone contest

This is a reminder to note that the posting of the 4,000th photo in our iPods Around the World photo gallery is nearing and that the associated milestone giveaway winner will also be announced soon. As previously stated, the iLounger who posts the 4,000th validated photo in the iPods Around the World gallery will win a custom-colorized iPod nano.

Coca-Cola teaming up with Apple for UK iTunes promo

Coca-Cola is reportedly in talks with Apple to offer Coke-sponsored content on the iTunes Music Store in the UK. As part of a promotion for its new Coke Zero brand, the company also plans to offer iTunes discounts to consumers. “The deal follows the closure of download site Mycokemusic last week,” notes DigitalBulletin. “The site, which launched in 2004, featured more than 250,000 songs, but music files downloaded from it were not compatible with Apple’s iPod. Music has been one of the key battlegrounds between Coca-Cola and arch-rival Pepsi, and insiders believe the iTunes tie-up could help Coca-Cola maintain its edge in the competitive UK soft-drinks market.” Apple previously launched two massive promotions with Pepsi in the U.S.

Avanquest releases iGadget software for iPods

Avanquest Software has announced the release of iGadget, new software which the company calls the “ultimate tool and companion for your iPod.” The $30 software allows users to move iPod music files and playlists to and from any PC, as well as download Outlook e-mails, contacts and appointments, RSS news feeds, Podcasts, driving directions, weather forecasts, horoscopes, movie showtimes and more to an iPod for on-the-go viewing. iGadget works with Windows 98/2000/XP and requires Outlook 2002/Office XP or later for Outlook integration. The company said the software is compatible with all iPod models in the marketplace.

iLockr iPod security cases announced

i2 Electronics has introduced its iLockr line of anti-theft iPod security devices. The iLockr is a slide-in case made from aircraft-grade aluminum that allows users to lock their iPod to nearly any object. The Lockr features a combination lock that can be personalized, and comes in black, white, camo, pink, and green. The iLockr is available in sizes to fit the iPod nano, iPod mini, 30GB fifth-generation iPod, and 20GB fourth-generation iPod. Each sells for $40.

New Incase Folios celebrate Sapporo Apple Store opening

Continuing its series of limited edition Apple Store opening cases, Incase has announced its Sapporo Folios for iPod 5G ($40) and nano ($35), which are available for sale exclusively at Apple’s newly opened Sapporo, Japan location, on the northern island of Hokkaido. The black and red Sapporo Folios feature artwork of a bear eating a fish, which the company says is “reflective of Hokkaido and the indigenous Ainu people,” and follow in the tradition of Incase’s earlier St. George‚Äôs Cross (London), Maple Leaf (Toronto), Hachiko (Shibuya, Japan), and NYC Landmark (New York City) limited edition designs.

Foxconn admits breaking Chinese labor laws

Foxconn, Apple’s iPod manufacturing partner, has admitted that it has broken some Chinese labor laws. After initially denying that its factories force long hours, low pay and poor working conditions, the company said today that its employees work about 80 extra hours each month. According to labor laws in the country, employees are not to work more than 36 extra hours each month. However, Foxconn spokesperson Li Zong said the company has paid the workers according to the minimum salary requirements of the local government. Li also said that Apple has sent a special team to investigate the claims, but has found no problem with Foxconn.

Mix: Walkman, Wimbledon, Secrecy, WWDC

Sony president Ryoji Chubachi said today that Sony’s Walkman digital music players continue to struggle against the iPod despite the introduction of new models over the past year. “We miscalculated with the Walkman,” Chubachi said, without elaborating.

Expodition has released the free Wimbledon Pod SnapShot, a downloadable iPod guide with information about the championships and the players. “It lists all players and wildcards, and contains detailed player profiles and statistics as well as seeding information. In addition, the Pod SnapShot includes profiles of legendary players and details classic Wimbledon championships.”

Clerks II director commentary track to be offered on iTMS

Director Kevin Smith has recorded a commentary track for the upcoming Clerks II movie, which he says will be available as a free download from the iTunes Music Store. Smith said the commentary download will allow fans of the movie to take their iPods to the theater and hear the directors thoughts in sync with the scenes in the movie. Clerks II is the sequel to Smith’s 1994 movie Clerks, a low-budget, black and white cult comedy with characters such as Dante, Randal, and Jay and Silent Bob. It received an eight-minute standing ovation at the Cannes Film Festival, and will hit theaters on July 21st.

Target scores exclusive JBL On Time edition

In what appears to be a first for an iPod speaker manufacturer, JBL has announced the release of On Time - Aluminum, a Target store-exclusive third color of its popular iPod speaker dock and clock radio combination (iLounge rating: B+). According to JBL, On Time - Aluminum “is now on active display in all their 1,400 stores in the US. It’s our first color venture with an iPod speaker other than white and black, which so far has been very well accepted.” Target has previously negotiated aesthetic exclusives with companies such as Nintendo, which issued special editions of several Game Boy models using unique colors and packaging. Like its white and black predecessors, the Aluminum-colored On Time is made from plastic, not metal, and sells for the same price of $250.

Mix: DashJack, Google, BridePods, Stevie Nicks

DashJack, an in-car iPod integration startup, has filed a patent application for a car stereo head unit that accepts an iPod through an opening in the front, allowing users to play and control music stored on the device through the stereo.

Google is now streaming some of its commercial videos for free as part of an ad-supported test run. reports: “Among the free videos are movies that include ‘Billy the Kid’ and Charlie Chaplin classics, classic cartoons that viewers were charged $1.99 for previously, episodes of ‘The Charlie Rose Show,’ and wrestling matches.”

Hitch enables iPod-to-iPod file transfers

Sima Products has announced Hitch, a new USB device that allows users to transfer files between portable devices without using a computer. Hitch can transfer music, video, photos and documents between USB devices such as portable audio players (including iPods), digital cameras, portable video players, and flash drives. Sima says the $150 device can transfer a music album in 80 seconds, a digital photo in 3 seconds, and a two-hour video in 12 minutes. Hitch features a backlit LCD display and scroll-wheel navigation, can charge any USB-chargeable device, and is compliant with Digital Rights Management (DRM) copy-protection.

DLO debuts FlipFolio case for iPod nano

Digital Lifestyle Outfitters has announced the FlipFolio case for the iPod nano. The leather case features a reversible design that allows owners to wear their nano with the headphone port either on top or on the bottom of the case—“right-side up or up-side down.” The FlipFolio features a play-through clear plastic front, sewn-in belt clip, and comes in black, white and pink with contrasting stitching. The case is available now for $25.

Music in Apple Lossless format coming to iTunes Music Store?

An updated version of Apple’s music encoding software for record labels suggests that the iTunes Music Store could soon offer tracks in the Apple Lossless format. According to an AppleInsider report, a note accompanying the iTunes Producer 1.4 update released this week said the application “now encodes music in Apple Lossless format, which produces larger audio files and will increase upload time.” The Apple Lossless format, which the company says offers CD-quality sound in “about half the storage space,” has been supported in iTunes since version 4.5. iTunes Producer is provided to record labels for encoding and submitting their music for inclusion on the iTunes Music Store. Songs sold on iTunes are currently only available in the Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) format.

Speck debuts sneaker-inspired Canvas Sport cases

Speck Products has announced its new Canvas Sport line of iPod cases. Inspired by classic sneakers, the cases are made of canvas and rubber, and come in sizes to fit the fifth-generation iPod and iPod nano. The $35 cases feature a belt-clip and a sewn-in clear plastic screen protector, and come in black, white or pink styles. “Even a trusty pair of sneakers can be inspiration for great product design at Speck Products,” said Speck. “The Canvas Sport cases for our favorite new gadgets are instant classics and are in a league of their own.”

Mix: iSpazz, CL Sound Machine, Steve Jobs, Coolgorilla

iSpazz is an iTunes plug-in for Mac OS X that contols the keyboard backlighting on MacBook Pros, allowing the keyboard to light up to the beats of the music playing.

The CL Sound Machine is a cabinet-style vinyl record player with iPod connectivity, CD player, and 12-bottle wine rack. The CL also has a gramophone-inspired speaker and an 8-inch subwoofer.

Tivoli unveils iYiYi audio system

Tivoli Audio has introduced the new iYiYi home speaker system. Available in black or white, the iYiYi features a built-in universal docking station for use with all dockable iPods, as well as a digital AM/FM radio, built-in alarm and digital clock. The system also sports two 3” full-range drivers, a remote control, auto-brightness blue backlit LCD display, rubberized knobs, Radio Data System (RDS) support, an auxiliary input, and stereo headphone output. Tivoli said the iYiYi—which apparently gets its name from the Yiddish phrase contextually translated as “what will they think of next?”—will be available this Fall for $300.

French lawmakers agree on compromise to iTunes law

French lawmakers agreed today to soften the draft copyright law that had threatened the future of the iPod and iTunes Music Store in France. “The compromise text, which is subject to a final vote in both houses before becoming law, still asserts that companies should share the data essential to such interoperability,” reports the Associated Press. “But in what could be a significant loophole, it allows compatibility restrictions on music and video downloads to be decided by the copyright holders—potentially allowing Apple and others to sidestep the information requirement by striking deals with record labels and artists.” In March, the French assembly backed proposals to force companies to share their copy-protection technologies with rivals who want to offer compatible players and services.

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