Leander Kahney has a report about Apple axing iTunes’ Internet sharing feature and how developers are answering back by programming new solutions to keep the sharing feature alive and well. Two software solutions and a tip are presented in the report, including iCommune 401(ok), Andromeda and author Jim Heid’s simple solution to use both iTunes 4.0 and 4.0.1 on one Mac.
John Gruber of Daring Fireball has weighed in on the iTunes Internet Sharing issue, offering a sound rebuttal to the several digital pundits levying criticism against Apple for disabling the feature in iTunes 4.01.
It seems that Amazon might soon be jumping on the iTunes Music Store band wagon. Tim Arango at the New York Post reports Apple and Amazon are negotiating a deal to make iTMS available on Amazon.com.
“The parties are in advanced talks and a deal is expected, though sources warn that negotiations might still unravel.
At Amazon’s annual meeting last week in Seattle, Jeff Bezos, the company’s chief executive officer, talked about opening a digital music store, telling reporters, ‘We’ve been looking at it for years.’”
“In a masterstroke of technological and marketing acumen, Apple Computer appeared to have seized the digital music industry last month by boldly creating its own retail download service.
The Macintosh maker, diagnosed being near death in the 1990s, seemed to have pulled off another miracle: Its iTunes Music Store sold 2 million songs in its first 16 days, dwarfing rival download services and drawing raves from Silicon Valley to Hollywood. Yet even before the initial euphoria could subside, the company began hearing familiar rumblings from points north—namely, Microsoft headquarters in Redmond, Wash.”
Author Jim Heid of Avondale Media has posted a great tip on keeping iTunes 4.0 Internet sharing capabilities with the recent release of 4.0.1.
“Anyone who listens to AAC audio will want to upgrade to iTunes 4.0.1, since it fixes a playback problem that existed in version 4.0.
But you may have become fond of iTunes 4’s Internet sharing features, which, as I wrote yesterday, are no more.
The solution? Keep both versions—they’ll coexist on your hard drive.
Before installing version 4.0.1, simply drag the iTunes application icon out of the Applications folder and into a different folder. Then install the 4.0.1 update.
When you want Internet sharing, simply launch version 4.0.”
Note: Jim also has some good info on what’s new in 4.0.1 and how it handles sharing.
‘The Pop Life’ columnist, Neil Strauss writes about Apple’s success with iTunes Music Store and the recent disabling of iTunes Internet sharing capabilities.
“In just its first month of operation the service, by the company’s estimate, has sold three million songs online, at 99 cents each. This is an impressive figure considering the limited access that music fans now have to the service.
“We designed it to allow friends and family to easily stream (not copy) their music between computers at home or in a small group setting, and it does this well,” the statement said. “But some people are taking advantage of it to stream music over the Internet to people they do not even know. This was never the intent.” A spokesman for Apple, Chris Bell, said the company made the decision by itself.”
Apple’s iTunes Music Store is to face competition from Real Networks, which will today announce a music download service for only 79 cents a track. According to the Wall Street Journal, the service will be based on the Rhapsody service from listen.com, which Real bought last month.
The move means Real won’t push Musicnet any more, a joint venture between it and major firms EMI, AOL and Bertelsmann. But the Journal points out that Real Networks owns 40 per cent of Musicnet and has already plunged an estimated $4 million into the service. Most people are waiting to see what Microsoft will do, as the race to sell music online gathers pace.
Ian Fried, staff writer for CNET News.com reports on the latest iTunes upgrade which limits sharing to local networks.
“‘The new iTunes 4.0.1 update limits Rendezvous music sharing to work only between computers on a local network (its intended use) and disables music sharing over the Internet,’ Apple said in a statement provided to CNET News.com.
‘Rendezvous music sharing…has been used by some in ways that have surprised and disappointed us,’ Apple said. ‘We designed it to allow friends and family to easily stream (not copy) their music between computers at home or in a small group setting, and it does this well. But some people are taking advantage of it to stream music over the Internet to people they do not even know.’”
Apple has released iTunes 4.01, a small upgrade, with “a number of performance and network access enhancements”, some AppleScript changes and, most notably, the disabling of Internet Sharing.
On Tuesday, May 20 at 7 p.m. Eastern, The Screen Savers cable show will have Gary Valan, Director, Computer Audio Initiative (Dolby Laboratories) talking about MPEG-4 and AAC. This episode can also be watched on Wed., May 21 at 8 a.m. and 12 p.m. Eastern.
Paul Roberts, IDG News Service for PC World reports on iTunes sharing/swapping, and websites offering a catalog of users sharing their iTunes library.
“Only days after the appearance of Internet-based music streaming services that capitalize on Apple’s ITunes technology, many of the Web sites that hosted them have removed the feature, citing concerns about piracy.
Within days of its first public release, however, programmers outside of the company found ways to expand ITunes’ reach. They harnessed an ITunes client feature called Rendezvous that enables Mac users to share downloaded songs with other systems on a LAN or over the Internet.”
Gunnar Van Vliet has written Part 2 of his “REPORT ON THE RELATIVE QUALITY OF AAC AUDIO TO MP3” at RecordStoreReview.com.
Apple has recently posted a new Knowledge Base article for iTunes 4: Tips & Tricks. Here is a sampling of 3 of the 14 tips and tricks listed:
- To quickly add a song from a CD to an existing playlist, insert the CD, then drag the song from the CD (in the Source list) to the playlist. The song is automatically imported into your library and added to the playlist. To add a song from a CD to a new playlist, drag the song from the CD to the white area below the items in the Source list. The song is imported into your library and added to a new playlist.
- To open a playlist in a new window, double-click the playlist icon in the Source list.
- To quickly create a playlist containing an album in your library, click Library and choose Edit > Show Browser (if you see only Hide Browser, then the Browser is already visible). Drag an album from the Album list in the top-right section of the library to the white area below the items in your Source list. A playlist named after the album is created.
ShareiTunes has added a new keyword search feature, which searches share name, genres, artists, albums, and songs and returns all the shares that match. ShareiTunes offers a catalog of members sharing their iTunes playlist for others to find. iTunes sharing on the Interent has become the hot topic in recent news. Though it isn’t illegal to share a streaming playlist from iTunes, many are finding ways to exploit the stream with software to capture and download the song to their hard drive, which is illegal.
Los Angeles Times staff writer Jon Healey writes about the brewing debate over the Internet sharing capabilities of iTunes.
Share iTunes has added playlist browsing to its list of features. Click on “View Playlist” and you can browse any persons song collection by Artist and songs. There are also links provided to search the iTunes Music Store or Amazon Music Store for any given Artist or songs.
Gunnar Van Vliet has written an informative article at RecordStoreReview.com comparing the quality of AAC vs. MP3. Although the tests were unscientific, Vliet posted the results of one songs performance compressed at 96, 128, 160 and 192Kbps in both AAC and MP3 formats. He rated each test group for tonal accuracy, imaging/soundstage, naturality, and musicality.