“The Apple iPod is just about the size of a pack of cigarettes, and just about as addictive.
‘Oh, it’s so addictive
MacObserver has discovered that Apple yesterday filed a patent for a “graphical user interface and methods of use thereof in a multimedia player.” The following is an abstract from the patent application.
“RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser has a message for Apple Computer chief Steve Jobs: Open iPod or shrivel. Glaser, the feisty founder of the Internet entertainment network, said during a panel discussion Tuesday at PC Forum here that Apple is creating problems for itself by using a file format that forces consumers to buy music from Apple’s own iTunes site. (CNET Networks, publisher of News.com, last week acquired EDventures, which sponsors PC Forum.)
Because Apple’s iPod music player does not support other proprietary music formats and does not license its own format to rivals, Real’s Rhapsody and other song sites are blocked from easily reaching iPod users.
‘Apple’s (market) share will go down if they continue to do this,’ Glaser said. ‘The only way to presently put songs on an iPod is to (buy) them from iTunes.’
‘There is a good opportunity to say to Steve, ‘You’ve done a good job of promoting this thing, but now one of two bad things will happen,’ Glaser said. ‘One, Apple’s market share will go down to its historical single-digit levels, or two, it will slow down the development of this market.’”
According to thepost.ie Aer Lingus has prohibited usage of the iPod on all flights. They also prohibit use of devices that utilize a laser such as portable CD-Players and CD-ROM drives. I called the customer service line to verify this and it is in fact true. They claim that it has to do with the frequency with which the iPod operates and the fact that it uses LEDs.
“Search for the word ‘iPod’ on New York’s craigslist classified ads and you open a fascinating window into the psyche of the city.
Naturally, a revealing search isn’t conducted in the “for sale” section, which simply brings up a pedestrian list of iPods for sale. A truly illuminating search must include the personal ads, which offer some insight into the culture of iPods, but reveal more about the city.
Last week, for example, a boy from Brooklyn wanted advice about his girlfriend, who had dismissed his gift of an expensive handbag: She wanted an iPod mini instead.”
MacUser UK has posted instructions and illustrations on how to replace your iPod’s battery. Both, old and new iPods are represented. Do not use a screw driver to pry off the back of the iPod’s case as instructed by MacUser. To avoid damage to the case, use several strong peices of thin plastic, like a guitar pick or similar. Please see the “Can I replace iPod’s battery myself?” FAQ for a list of vendors offering replacement batteries and repair services.
“Digital music player has been touted as a saviour. But are the numbers sustainable? [...]
Mr. Milunovich [analyst at Merrill Lynch & Co.] calculates that iPod and iTunes will contribute about US15 cents a share to Apple’s earnings this fiscal year, rising to US25 cents a share and revenue of $US2-billion by 2006.
But, as in the past, don’t expect it to be all clear sailing for Apple. Critics say the technology firm is going out on a limb by concentrating so much of its future on the iPod and the online music business, which is still in its infancy.
During the fiscal first quarter of 2004, 53% of Apple’s retail segment sales came from iPod, or other branded and third-party peripherals, software and services.”
MacNN reports that “MONEY Magazine’s article titled “Why iPod can’t save Apple” says the buzz on the digital music player and “swank” storefronts are masking an ebbing bottom line, noting reduced CPU sales (resulting a shrinking marketshare), decreased profits (in part due to the lower-margin iPod and little-to-no profit at the iTunes Music Store), failure of the iPod to drive CPU sales, failure of the retail stores to increase marketshare, hidden retail store costs, no operational income, and little value in the stock. [subscription required to view entire article; highlights posted below]”
KDLAB, a design firm in New York produced an astounding peice of work known as iSPEC or iPod3. Imagine you’re wearing 3D glasses with built-in earphones which immmerses you into a virtual reality environment of your choosing. In this case a reproduction of the Overlook Hotel’s lobby from the movie “The Shining” by Stanley Kubric. As you wear the glasses you manipulate the interface and environments appearing in the glasses by using wireless, finger mounted controls. We had recently placed this concept in our iPod Concepts gallery and have noticed it has appeared on several websites since. We emailed the producer, director and 3D designer/animator of iSPEC, Joseph Kosinski of KDLAB after viewing the concept video.
“Aimed at retail establishments, bars, salons & caf
Yahoo and Doritos have recently announced giveaways to win iPod minis, iPod, and iTunes gift certificates. Yahoo is giving away an iPod mini a day for 30 days. No purchase necessary and give away ends April 8, 2004. See rules for details. Frito-Lay is giving away a 40GB iPod and $150 iTunes gift certificate as the grand prize in its Doritos Soundbites’ Download it Sweepstakes promotion. Two daily winners will get $20 iTunes gift certificates. You can enter the sweepstakes daily to increase your chances. Ends April 1, 2004. See rules for details.
MacMinute reports on a story published at SiliconeValley.com describing Apple’s strategy to sell more iPods while making less profits overall.
“In the coming months, Apple will begin to unfurl its strategy of making a little less profit on the average iPod, but selling a lot more of them. A Hewlett-Packard branded version of the iPod is due in a few weeks, and HP will pocket some of the profit from that version. The new iPod mini will bring Apple less profit per sale than previous iPod models, because its parts make up a larger portion of its $249 price tag.
Success for Apple will mean selling so many of the music players that the slimmer profits don’t matter, and paying lower prices for the iPod’s building blocks. Apple will begin to show success or failure in the spring”
A reader has informed us that he has created several icons for Mac OS X depicting the silhouetted dancers from the iPod ads. Free download available at MacMonkies.com
Vfxsoup has posted an interesting interview with Alex Brodie, who produced the silhouettes for the iPod ads. The interview also has two before and after photos of the people that became silhouettes in the rock version of the iPod commercials.
Update: At the request of Apple, the site has removed all references to the iPod ads since our posting.
Software developers, StartBrite Solutions after being pressured by Apple’s legal department have removed the pPod/pBop iPod emulator software for PocketPC PDAs from its website. “Due to legal pressure from Apple we are no longer able to distribute this application. Sorry for any inconvenience.”
MacMinute.com reports that “Apple’s iPod marketing team has transformed the St. George subway station in downtown Toronto into an ‘Apple dreamland,’ local resident Jonathan Ta-Min told MacMinute. He noted that iPod ads adorn nearly every object of the station
“A French association representing recorded music rights holders threatened Wednesday to take Apple Computer Inc. to court in a dispute over lost music royalties.
The argument centers on a fee levied in France on sales of blank CDs, tapes, hard disks, and other hardware that can be used to copy music. The proceeds go to musicians and other rights holders who lose money to piracy.
The Society of Music Creators, Composers and Publishers, or Sacem, accuses Apple of consistently refusing to pay the levy on sales of its iPod music player, which contains a hard disk drive.”
“If you thought you liked the iPod because of its looks, think again. It could, according to one academic, be a way of regaining your personal space.
To Dr Michael Bull, portable music players are ‘multi-faceted transformative devices’, a ‘tool whereby users manage space, time and the boundaries around the self.’
Dr. Bull is one of the few academics, possibly the only one, to spend time researching what owners of iPods and other music players do with their gadgets, why they listen to them and what difference they make to their lives.”
“Gearing up for the fourth annual Civic Tour, American Honda Motor Co., is pleased to announce this year’s tour headliner, Dashboard Confessional. The nationwide tour will launch on May 13 in Portland, ME.
The band chose to have the Civic Coupe (one of Honda’s top selling models) painted and designed with a unique and vibrant look. Included in this year’s customized Civics are state-of-the-art, premium audio components from Alpine Electronics. The system features a 500-watt DVD mobile multimedia system with DVD/CD/MP3/WMA/CDR/CDRW playback and satellite-linked navigation. High-performance Type-S speakers, subwoofers and V12 amps complete the system. Each vehicle will also include an Apple iPOD that can be controlled directly from the in-dash receiver using Alpine’s new interface.
Back this year, by popular demand, is the traveling Civic Tour Non-Stop Music Lounge presented by Alpine Electronics, where the customized Dashboard Confessional Civic will be showcased as well as provide a cool spot for fans to visit before and after the show. The new Civic will be on tour with the band, giving fans an up-close-and-personal look at the highly customized machine autographed by Dashboard Confessional. A total of 10 of these unique Civics will be awarded through national and local media promotions, one of which will be given away through civictour.com.”