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iLive intros two iPod boomboxes

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iLive has introduced its iBR2807DP and iBCD2817DP portable iPod speaker systems. Both the 2807DP and 2817DP are available in several colors and feature an integrated Dock, a blue backlit LCD display, AM/FM radio, Aux-In jack, A/V output, and AC/DC operation. The iBCD2817DP adds stereo front-firing speakers, a vertical CD player, and a full-function remote. The iLive iBR2807DP is priced at $70, the iBCD2817DP sells for $100.

beaTunes version 1.2 offers track identification

Tagtraum Industries has released beaTunes 1.2, the latest version of its iTunes library management tool. beaTunes offers color, BPM, and language analysis, and can intelligently create playlists of matching songs. New in version 1.2 is a track identification feature for songs without artist or title information that uses acoustic fingerprints provided by MusicIP’s MusicDNS service. Other improvements include new inspections, a full-screen album charts mode, and feature enhancements. beaTunes 1.2 is available as a 14-day trial for both Mac and Windows; a full license runs $25.

Vaja adds i-Volution Top, Top SP to iPhone case lineup

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Vaja has added the i-Volution Top Holster and i-Volution Top SP Holster to its lineup of cases for the Apple iPhone. The i-Volution Top and Top SP both feature a holster-style design with a front flap that folds up to protect the device’s face; the Top’s flap is a solid color, the Top SP’s flap features a contrast stripe. The Top and Top SP also offer access to all the iPhone’s buttons and ports, including the headphone jack, SIM card, power button, camera, vibrate/ring switch, volume keys, Dock Connector, speaker, and microphone. In addition, both are available with an optional clip system. The i-Volution Top Holster is available in a variety of custom colors and starts at $70; the i-Volution Top SP Holster is also available in many colors, and starts at $80. [Thanks, Spencer]

Mix: iLife, iPodHoodie, Temple, UK TV

  • August 8, 2007

Apple has posted a video from yesterday’s special event, at which Apple CEO Steve Jobs introduced iLife ‘08 with iPhone integration features, as well as a redesigned iMac.

iPodHoodie has introduced four new Hoodies featuring specially commissioned, limited edition artwork representing four different genres of music — “electro,” “hip hop,” “heavy metal,” and “hardcore.” The Hoodies are available now for £12.99, or around $26.

Internet hosting provider Media Temple has introduced an iPhone web hosting control panel, allowing customers to buy a domain, reboot servers, add email addresses, pay their hosting bill, and more, from the iPhone.

Ars Technica is reporting that TV shows and movies will soon appear on the UK iTunes Store. According to their sources, an announcement regarding the additions could come in the next few weeks.

Sumajin unveils iPhone Pocket Sleeve

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Sumajin has introduced its iPhone Pocket Sleeve, a simple pocket-style case that offers basic iPhone protection. The Pocket Sleeve is made of a soft neoprene material which provides durability, better grip, and prevents scratching of the iPhone during insertion and removal. The Sumajin iPhone Pocket Sleeve is available in grey neoprene and features one of eight differently colored prints. It sells for $7.

Macally ships TunePro speaker system for iPod

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Macally has announced the release of its TunePro flat panel stereo speaker for iPod. The TunePro features NXT flat-panel loudspeaker technology and SRS Labs’ SRS WOW audio enhancement technology for better sound. Other features include an integrated Universal iPod Dock, AM/FM alarm clock radio, and a line-in jack for other audio sources. “The TunePro for iPod is the ultimate flat panel stereo speaker system for consumers who want to enjoy rich sound via their iPod while enhancing the look of their home,” said Andrew Saldana, vice president of sales and marketing for Macally. In addition, Macally also revealed plans to offer a TunePro for iPhone in the fourth quarter. The Macally TunePro for iPod is available now for $130. For more information on the TunePro, check out our review.

Apple bonds .Mac, iPhone with Web Gallery (updated x2)

Updated (x3): During a special event primarily focused on the release of an updated, aluminum-bodied iMac computer, Apple CEO Steve Jobs today announced .Mac Web Gallery, a new feature of its subscription-based .Mac Internet service designed to ease photo and video sharing for users of iPhones and Apple’s iLife ‘08 suite of digital lifestyle software. Operating somewhat like photo-sharing site Flickr, .Mac Web Gallery is an extension of iPhoto ‘08 and iMovie ‘08 that publishes your photos and videos to the Internet with one click, enabling you and other users to view the content online in a special Web 2.0 interface, and add to the photo collection with a special e-mail address.

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A new iPhone feature, “Send to Web Gallery,” enables iPhone users to wirelessly add photos to the Gallery from the road using the device’s Photos application; the feature mysteriously appeared as a new iPhone menu option, as shown above, hours after Jobs announcement. Galleries - including any video content that has been encoded using iMovie for viewing on an iPhone - can also be viewed using the iPhone’s Safari browser. In addition to requiring the $79 iLife ‘08 suite, a $100 annual subscription to .Mac will be needed to publish the Web Gallery.

Update 3: A hands-on report on .Mac Web Gallery’s integration with iPhone and iPhoto is available here.

Sony BMG releases Musika iPod game

  • August 7, 2007
  • iPod,

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Sony BMG has released its first iPod game, Musika. A music visualizer game, Musika was created by NanaOn-Sha president Masaya Matsuura, best known for his work on the music video game “PaRappa the Rapper.” The game utilizes a single button during normal gameplay, as it draws on the iPod’s music library by creating visualizations based on song titles. “The iPod is a device that revolutionized music and it is now poised to be a progressive gaming platform,” said Matsuura. “Many years ago Apple’s tools first opened my eyes to the power of music and multimedia, so it’s exciting to release my first game for this device.” Thomas Hesse, president of global digital business & U.S. sales for Sony BMG, added, “Musika is a natural extension of our existing relationship with the iPod and iTunes, and represents another step in our ongoing campaign to broaden our reach in the area of music-based mobile entertainment.” Musica is available now through iTunes for $5. To learn more about the game, see our first look article.

Analyst: iTunes to offer wireless downloads ‘within the year’

Pike & Fischer senior analyst Tim Deal is lead author on a new report that claims Apple will be forced to offer iTunes downloads in an over-the-air capacity, within the next year. The report argues that the step will be necessary for the iPhone to remain competitive as consumers “increasingly demand the ability to download music and video over the air.” “Consumer expectations will advance to the point where they will eschew reliance on a PC and cable to get content onto their iPhones and other portable devices,” says Deal. “Apple will therefore be forced to offer over-the-air downloads to remain competitive.” AT&T currently offers a music download service over its wireless network, but the service is currently not available on the iPhone.

Third-party native iPhone development continues

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Following last week’s appearance of the first third-party native iPhone application, developers have continued to pursue the building of new, unsanctioned programs for the device. Erica Sadun of TUAW has built both a voice recording app, VRecord, and a screenshot utility for the iPhone, and a native NES emulator, iphonenes, has appeared on Google Code. A video of the emulator in action can be found on YouTube. Unfortunately for most iPhone owners, installation of these and other upcoming applications still requires a “Jailbreak” of the device. iPhone modification programs such as iFuntastic — which recently added file browsing in version 2.5 — are making the process easier for the average user, but modification remains an “at your own risk” endeavor, and it is reasonable to assume that any future iPhone software update may override any changes you make to your phone.

Elgato Turbo.264 update brings iPhone support, more

Elgato has released version 1.1 of its complimentary software for the Elgato Turbo.264 video encoding accelerator. The new version includes support for iPhone, user-customizable settings for video conversion, manual selection of sound tracks from DVDs, improved widescreen detection, performance improvements, and bug fixes. Specifics of iPhone support include presets for 4:3 material, which produces 480x360 video, and 16:9 material, which is encoded as 480x270. The update is available as a free download from the company’s website.

Mix: iPhone, Fake Steve, Bluetooth, iFixit

  • August 6, 2007

Hackintosh forums member Sassha claims to have successfully managed to “unlock” the iPhone by using a variety of detailed steps to trick the iPhone into using a non-AT&T SIM card.

The writer of the popular weblog The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs has been revealed. The New York Times reports that Forbes editor Daniel Lyons is the man behind “Fake Steve.” “I’m stunned that it’s taken this long,” said Lyons.

The Bluetooth Special Interest Group has announced unanimous approval of its latest standard, Bluetooth 2.1+ EDR. The new standard focuses on consistent scanning, pairing, security and authentication when using Bluetooth.

iFixit has launched its iPhone parts store, offering batteries, displays, case components, logic boards, and more, as well as an iPhone Fixit Guide that provides part replacement instructions.

Apple sued over iPhone keyboard

St. Petersburg, Fla.-based SP Technologies has filed suit against Apple, alleging that the iPhone’s touchscreen-based keyboard violates an SP patent. The suit claims “Apple has infringed, and is now infringing” the patent “through the use, sale, [and] offer for sale of its iPhone product and system.” The patent, U.S. patent number 6,784,873 B1, describes a “method and medium for a computer readable keyboard display incapable of user termination.” Physician Peter V. Boesen is listed as the inventor. Boesen was sentenced to prison in May after being convicted of defrauding Iowa’s Medicare and Medicaid programs by filing false claims, but is currently free pending an appeal.

iPhoneBrowser offers GUI-based access to iPhone files

A GUI-based iPhone file browser utility for Windows has been released by an independent developer. iPhoneBrowser features drag and drop support, automatic preview of text, .png, and .jpg files, and the ability to make backups of existing iPhone files, both automatically and manually. The program requires a “jailbreak” of the iPhone before use, as well as the .NET libraries and Manzana.dll. iPhoneBrowser is currently still in beta phase, and is a free download.

Blue Raven intros Maestro 1070 iPod speaker system

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Blue Raven Technologies has introduced its Maestro 1070 iPod speaker system. The 1070 features 70 watts of total power, a five-inch center subwoofer, two three-inch speakers, an Universal iPod Dock, auxiliary-in, included remote control, and video out. “We see a large gap in the marketplace for high performance iPod speakers, that have the flexibility to play to and from other devices, at a reasonable price,” said Blue Raven’s President Glen Kashgegian. The 18-pound Maestro 1070 iPod speaker system is available now for $200.

Apple adds iPhone iPod Hi-Fi Tone Control support

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Along with documented security and Safari bug patches, and several undocumented but user-discovered changes to other applications, Apple has updated the iPhone’s software in version 1.0.1 to enhance iPod accessory compatibility. When docked in an iPod Hi-Fi speaker system, an iPod Hi-Fi menu now appears under Settings, enabling the iPhone to access the same Treble Boost and Bass Boost “Tone Control” settings found on iPods and iPod nanos. This feature, originally designed to simplify iPod Hi-Fi sound tweaks through an additional main menu option, has remained unavailable to third-party developers since Hi-Fi’s release.

Additionally, The Wall Street Journal’s Walt Mossberg claims in his blog that, following the 1.0.1 update, the “iPhone can now play music through many previously incompatible car adapters and other external speakers originally designed for the iPod.” Though iLounge’s editors have had no success getting iPhone to work properly with their favorite car adapters, we would be interested in hearing new reader experiences based on version 1.0.1. Please let us know what you’ve discovered, pro or con.

Mix: PDO, Paper clip, Nike+, John

  • August 3, 2007

PDO has released its Screen Protector for the iPhone. The protectors, which adhere to the device’s screen via static, come in packs of two, are cut specifically for the iPhone, and offer protection for the entire screen. They are available now for $9/2 pack.

Humorously, Apple is including a paper clip with replacement iPhones, to be used when inserting the SIM card. [via DF]

Athletic retailer The Finish Line has announced a new marketing campaign for Nike+ running shoes that includes 700,000 free iTunes downloads for customer try-ons.

Speaking with The Sun, Sir Elton John has stated that he believes the internet is detrimental to music. “We’re talking about things that are going to change the world and change the way people listen to music, and that’s not going to happen with people blogging on the internet,” said John. He went on to suggest that the internet shut down for five years to see how it would affect the production of music.

First third-party native iPhone app appears

The first third-party native iPhone application has appeared on Google Code. The application, MobileTerminal.app, is a terminal emulator for iPhone. Being a native application, MobileTerminal appears on the iPhone’s home screen, along with the device’s default apps. A video of the application in action has been posted to YouTube. While the application itself is rather minimal, its importance as the first third-party native iPhone graphical application is substantial, as it represents what may be a turning point in the ongoing efforts of hackers and enthusiasts to open the device up for uses beyond the phone’s Apple-sanctioned applications.

iSkin unveils Cerulean X1 Earphones

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iSkin has introduced its Cerulean X1 In-Ear Noise Isolating Earphones. The Cerulean X1 earphones feature 9mm neodymium drivers in specially designed bass-enhancing chambers, three sets of interchangeable silicone comfort buds to provide optimal fit and noise isolation, and come in Onyx (black) or Blizzard (white). The iSkin Cerulean X1 In-Ear Noise Isolating Earphones are available now for $100.

Apple patent describes ‘multi-touch dictionary’

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A new Apple patent application for a “multi-touch gesture dictionary” has been found online. The application, dated January 3, 2007, describes different gestures, or “chords,” which could be used on a multi-touch system to trigger different events. The patent application covers both a dictionary to provide a guide and system of applying user-selected actions to the gestures, and a dictionary application running on its own or in the background, to detect such movements and take the appropriate action. It is possible such a system could be used on the iPhone to implement requested features like text selection and cut and paste. Whether any of the systems described in the patent appear on the iPhone is not certain. [via Engadget]

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