iPod, iTunes updates hide major new features | iLounge News


iPod, iTunes updates hide major new features

Coinciding with the Macworld Expo in San Francisco, Apple has released iPod Updater 2006-01-10 and iTunes 6.0.2, both classified as “point releases” of its key software packages for iPods, Macs, and PCs. Though the company originally had not published details on many of the new features of these programs, iLounge’s editors found several hidden treasures in each of them, most of which have now been confirmed on Apple’s web site.

imageiPod Updater 2006-01-10 upgrades the fifth-generation iPod and iPod nano to software versions 1.1, adding support for on-screen FM radio tuning, the display of accessory-specific color on-screen logo graphics on the Do Not Disconnect screen, and bug fixes. Bug fixes have also been implemented for both versions of the fourth-generation iPod (black-and-white/color), and iPod mini.

Originally described by Apple only as including “stability and performance improvements over iTunes 6.0.1,” iTunes 6.0.2 adds several major new features to the music management software. Most notably, iTunes now handles automatic H.264-format video conversion for the iPod without requiring the purchase of Apple’s QuickTime Pro software. Right-clicking on any video track now brings up a “Convert Selection for iPod” option. iTunes also allows users to stream audio wirelessly to multiple AirPort Express receivers at once, a feature previously found in standalone audio distribution systems such as Sonos’ ZonePlayers.

In less positive additions, Apple has created a mini iTunes Music Store (the “MiniStore”) which displays by default whenever you look at your Library or Playlists. The MiniStore analyzes the music you are listening to and suggests similar options for purchase, a feature that is already being described as unwelcome “spyware and adware” by several writers. You can turn off the MiniStore by selecting Edit > Hide MiniStore.

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Thanks iLounge! Someone found some other fixes in the nano. GO to the forums to see

Posted by Jonathan Keim in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 12:42 PM (CST)


Wow! I hate spyware and adware too, but this is the biggest over reaction i think I’ve ever seen. The spyware definition doesn’t even fit, and adware only barely.

Posted by J3 in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 1:17 PM (CST)


when someone figures out what formats are supported by this convert to ipod feature please let me know.  I just spent 10 minutes trying to get a .avi to even show up in iTunes.

Posted by Scott in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 1:21 PM (CST)


Unreal.  Two-plus million 3G owners are STILL WAITING FOR BUGFIXES.

I’ll never understand how a company can treat thier dedicated customers, the ones that made the iPod successful and put Apple back in play financially, how they can treat them so poorly.

Posted by stark23x in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 1:45 PM (CST)


go download divx and 3vix to get itunes to play nice with .avi files

Posted by Brandon M in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 1:45 PM (CST)


One big improvement in the 1.1 software for the vPod is vastly improved video forward and reverse scanning (hold down skip forward or skip back). With 1.0 software this feature worked extremely poorly. Version 1.1 makes it work great. You get a rapid sequence of still frames as you scan and when you let go it starts playback immediately at that point. Yeah!

Posted by sjonke in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 1:46 PM (CST)



it is the very definition of spyware!. An application that installs without your knowledge and reports back to it’s maker. How is it not spyware?

Posted by Xander in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 2:53 PM (CST)


I have mixed feelings about this feature being auto-activated. But I’m also a person who uses audioscrobbler and last.fm.

It’s actually pretty cool to have your musical tastes collaboratively filtered with other users to get some good suggestions on new bands. What’s uncool is not deciding on doing it yourself.

Posted by bill in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 3:00 PM (CST)


It’s not spyware!

As far as I can tell, the MiniStore doesn’t analyze your library or report back to Apple in any way.  Looking at it now, all I see is: New Releases, Today’s Top Songs, Today’s Top Albums.

Where is the spying?  If anything, the MiniStore is an optional convenience.

Posted by tralgatt in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 3:02 PM (CST)


Where is the ability to view lyrics in 4Gs???

Posted by Joe in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 3:40 PM (CST)


If you don’t like it, it’s easily turned off, so it’s not a big deal.  As for the 3G iPods, those are old news.  It’s obvious that support is basically dead on those, so it’s time to move on to a newer model if you want any updates.

Posted by SJR in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 4:04 PM (CST)


Well, at first I thought the addition of allowing me to classify my videos as TV SHOWS instead of movie or music video was great.  Then I realize since I can’t specify Show or Season, they no longer show up in the ipod without being put in a playlist. Gee, thanks.

Posted by Nick in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 4:17 PM (CST)


What exactly is so bad re: 3rd gen iPod that is requiring a software update even now?  I’ve still got 2 of ‘em and never had any sort of issue (15GB and 10GB).

Posted by huh in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 4:54 PM (CST)


yay! now i can select my friends episodes under TV Shows now! but it wont let me edit the title and season to show up on my ipod? whats wrong?

Posted by BlueSIm in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 5:15 PM (CST)


I noticed they took of the legal notes for video stuff.

Posted by Tad in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 5:45 PM (CST)


From the nano, that is

Posted by Tad in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 5:47 PM (CST)


I suppose the “Convert to iPod” won’t change the resolution at all

Posted by sno_cat219 in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 7:10 PM (CST)


(part 2)

There’s no easy way to move iTunes libraries to a different volume.

iTunes on Mac cannot store the library on a FAT volume (i.e. a network share) - if a song name contains an illegal character for FAT, iTunes will give up. Windoze iTunes takes care of this problem.

Navigation for large content needs improvement. Right now, scrolling is either too slow or too fast. I have over 300 CDs, and over 400 artists. Scrolling to a specific one is difficult. Perhaps auto-expanding “folders” A-Z, scroll to the letter, pause and the artists beginning with that letter are shown, along with prior and post “folders.” The thumb is placed at the top or bottom of the expanded folder, depending upon the direction it was approached from i.e. If you scrolled from “L to “M” and paused, the list would expand as below, and “Milli-Vanilli” would be selected. If you scrolled from “N” to “M” and paused, “Mozart” would be selected.
Mothers of Invention
When you scroll past an expanded folder, it collapses. This way, one can quickly navigate between the 28? (one each before and after the alpha folders) “folders,” greatly speeding navigation. This method could be a configurable choice, or provided only if the number of songs/artists/??? exceeds some threshold.

It would be useful to have a “file under artist” multiple line field, to be used instead of “artist” on iPod/iTunes. “Artist” is a standard mp3 field, and should accurately reflect the artist(s) on the song. However, there are a lot of songs/albums with more than one artist:

Jerry Garcia
Jerry Garcia Band
Jerry Garcia and David Grisman
Jerry Garcia and Friends
Jerry Garcia and Merle Saunders

I would like to be able to file all such songs/albums under “Jerry Garcia.” I might also like to file a similar set of songs under “David Grisman.” Songs by “Jerry Garcia and David Grisman” would appear in iPod/iTunes in BOTH locations. So I might have a song with a “file under artist” field containing “Jerry Garcia, David Grisman” to achieve this.

An easy “play this album” method is needed. Example: I’m playing a playlist or random shuffle, and hear a song I particularly like and I want to hear that album. I should be able to easily tell the iPod to play that album in full from the beginning, without having to navigate through the tree to find it. (hold down “select” and press “play?”

The scroll wheel is much too sensitive when doing a song rating, it can be very difficult to not overshoot.

Posted by m.s. in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 7:13 PM (CST)


>>What exactly is so bad re: 3rd gen iPod that is requiring a software update even now?

When navigating forward on a playlist (>>| button), you can only move “x” songs, then have to wait until the iPod loads songs (or more of the playlist?) and catches up. The iPod knows the playlist, the user should be able to move to any song, and then _after the user stops_, the iPod spins up the hard drive and catches up. If it’s loading the playlist, more should be cached (at least 20 songs).

When navigating as above, frequently when you stop on a song, the iPod will spin up the hard drive, and the song which was cued is skipped - the iPod begins playing the following song. When this happens, you can “|<<” and the desired song begins playing immediately. This doesn’t always happen, so I suspect there’s a timer, where if the song isn’t loaded in “x” seconds, it gets skipped and goes to the next. That timer may not be large enough for the hard drive to spin up every time. I’ve run into this on both FAT and HFS formatted iPods - it seems to happen more consistently on FAT.

Settings should be kept per connection type. i.e. 10 second backlight while on battery, always on backlight when connected to a charging source.

When connected to a car adapter, the iPod should pause when power goes away (it does this with the right adapter, but Belkin didn’t use the correct resistor “accessory indicator?” on some units). It should also _resume_ play when the power comes back, the user shouldn’t have to start it playing - so it works like every car CD player in the world.

Contrast on the Gen 3 screens is poor, much too light. The contrast went dim with one of the updates, and has never recovered. There are numerous reports of needing to keep the contrast set to near maximum to have a readable screen.

The LCD screens do not offer sufficient speed. Scrolling text is totally unreadable, why even bother - it is worse than not scrolling (seeing the beginning of the title is better than seeing none)? Slow down the scrolling to make it readable.

Cannot move to next song when in “song navigate” mode (I’m calling the “select” modes volume/song navigate/song rating) The “>>|” button does nothing when in “song navigate” mode - this is annoying and counter-intuitive.

Movement between modes is inconsistent. Sometimes have to press select 3 times to get to “song rating” mode. This happens if you move to “song navigate” mode, move within the song with the scroll wheel, then press select - it takes you back to “volume” mode!!! Consistency requires that select ALWAYS move in the same order between modes - volume>navigate>rating>volume….

The iPod should NOT go into deep sleep when connected to a charging source, ever.

iTunes needs better support for multiple users under OS-X. Currently, when setup for multiple accounts, each user also has their own iTunes library. If users share an account, then they are forced to share iTunes library selections, too. A sophisticated *nix user can configure accounts and iTunes to support a shared library, but there is no way for songs imported by one user to automatically be made available to another user (i.e. “New tunes have been added to this computer, would you like to choose which ones you would like to have appear in your library?”), except by telling them about the new songs and having the other user manually “add to library.” There is nothing to prevent duplicates (multiple users importing the same CD). There is nothing to protect songs from other users (only the importer should be able to delete the songs from the hard disk, but other users should be able to add/delete songs from their personal library. Some of this can be done now through manual processes by sophisticated *nix users, but it should be automatic and easy. We have 4 iPods and 4 users in our family - make it easier!

Posted by m.s. in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 7:15 PM (CST)


What video formats are convertible?  WMV? AVI? DIVX? MPEG? VOB? Or merely Quicktime MOV?

Posted by jazmaan in East Amherst, NY, USA on January 11, 2006 at 7:15 PM (CST)

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