Below is a complete transcript of iLounge’s live coverage from Apple’s “Let’s Rock” special event held Tuesday, September 9th 2008. Updates appear in reverse chronological order.
10:49 AM: iPod + iTunes. Best lineup we’ve ever had, says Steve. Shuffle is shown in the lineup, unchanged. Musical guest now about to perform. That’s it for the news, apparently. We’ll update you on who the performer is. Sold over 16 million albums. Tour was one of the hottest tickets this summer. #1 selling male artist in iTunes history: Jack Johnson. Playing acoustic guitar. We think we’re going to stop coverage at this point; plan for more photos of the new iPods and additional details from iLounge shortly. Thanks for reading!
10:47 AM: They’re trying to push it that way for sure. New iPod touch has new iPod touch 2.1 software. What if you have the first-generation iPod touch – free update from 2.0. If not upgraded, $9.95 upgrade from 1.x. Updates available today. If you have an iPhone, 2.1 software update. Fixes lots of bugs. Fewer call drops, significantly better battery life, no problems with lots of apps on the phone, backing up to iTunes is faster. People applauding for bug fixes. Free for all iPhone owners, available this Friday.
10:46 AM: Here’s the ad. iPod touch shown with Moto Chaser, Monkey Ball, other games being played. Is this Apple trying to market as a games machine?
10:45 AM: “The funnest iPod ever.” Three models: 8GB – $229. 16GB model – $299. 32GB model – $399. Available starting today.
10:44 AM: Steve’s back out. Works with new headphones and microphone for the iPod touch, 36 hours of music, 6 hours of video. Environmentally like the nano.
10:42 AM: Need for Speed Undercover shown for the first time on iPhone. Transport a “package” across town avoiding authorities, pick from real cars inc. Mustang, Porsche. He’s customizing a Porsche for a mission. 3-D interface is very edgy. angled screen, racing through city with nitro and flipover effects. Ramming police cars before getting pulled over. Coming this November.
10:40 AM: Real Soccer 09 (aka Real Football 09). This is a 3-D soccer game. Pick uniforms, teams, real team data for the actual international teams. Clean 3-D visuals. You can use on-screen D-pad and buttons that are transparent, or also use gestures. Scores a goal, audience cheering.
10:37 AM: Phil will be showing three new games. Spore Origins (EA), Real Soccer 09 (Gameloft). And Need For Speed (EA). Doing a demo of Spore, which was previously shown at Apple’s events. iLounge has already reviewed Spore Origins for the iPhone + iPod touch, posted last night.
10:34 AM: It’s only been open for 60 days. 700 games on the App Store today. Games have something for everybody. App Store now in 62 countries. Pretty amazing. Demo. New iPod touch has a more obvious polished metal front bezel. Showing movie Iron Man playing on iPod touch. Phil Schiller coming up on stage.
10:33 AM: Creating Genius playlists is obviously easy. And App Store… users have downloaded 100 million apps from Store. (does this count bugfixes?)
10:32 AM: Built in Nike + iPod. (!!) Software is built in. No need for a receiver for the iPod touch. All you need is the shoe transmitter.
10:29 AM: iPod touch. Incredible product (past one). This year, even better. Same screen. Even thinner. It has the same shape as the iPhone 3G but made from polished steel. Volume buttons on the side. Built in speaker! For casual listening, he notes. Not for audiophiles. Genius playlist creation. New UI is slightly enhanced with better detail etc. Better UI for audiobooks.
10:28 AM: New ad. Computer-rendered iPods tumbling into a line. Nothing is being shown with games. Nanos drip with colored paint.
10:25 AM: Nano-chromatic. Colors – best we’ve ever done. Silver, purple, bue, green, yellow, orange, red, pink, black. There are 9 colors. $149 price for 8GB model. 16GB version for $199. Shipping out of factories today. 8 should be in stock next few days, 16 weekend or early next week at latest. Accessories: armband. New headphones sold separately have a pause and play button plus track skip plus volume. Back side has a microphone that works with the voice recording app in the nano. $29 in October. New in-ear headphones – finally got these right, Apple thinks. Dual-driver. $79 in October. Look like Shures mixed with Apple design.
10:24 AM: Battery life: 24 hours for music, 4 hours for video. Huh? We want to be really environmentally sensitive with these products. Environmental checklist: arsenic-free glass, BFR-free, Mercury-free, PVC free, and highly recyclable materials. “Really trying our best.”
10:23 AM: Shake sound has a little chime that plays. The new UI is displaying photos that rotate and fade in. Nice little effects.
10:20 AM: The bottom of the main screen scrolls with album art as you select from a plain 2G-style menu on the top of the screen. Interface seems faster than before. Just looks like a more polished version of the nano 3G interface, minus the stuff on the right of the screen. The color of the nano that’s being shown is like a dark silver – not as bright as the prior one, but lighter than the charcoal black version from last year. Shake your iPod nano to make it shuffle. People are actually cheering for that.
10:18 AM: Curved aluminum design, curved glass. Very durable. Enhanced UI with new features. Accelerometer from iPhone/touch now into the nano. Genius playlist creation right from the nano, even when not created in iTunes. See picture being sent to our flickr page. Rotate on the side and it looks like Cover Flow mode from nano 3G. Photos, etc rotate for the display. Now playing – hold down center button for a new menu to browse the album, artist, crete genius list. Voice recording program built in as before.
10:16 AM: Nano has gone through 1st, 2nd, 3rd generation. Now 4th generation. It looks like the images we’ve shown; there is a more conspicuous hold switch at the top. Thinnest iPod ever made. Top has a swirled hold switch. New interface has cover art icons at the bottom of the screen. Interface looks unlike the faked shots shown online earlier.
10:15 AM: Updates and new products. iPod classic. Two models have been offered – no more thick one. 80GB for $249—now 120GB at $249. No more 160GB model. Now is 30,000 songs in your pocket. That’s it. Silver shown.
10:14 AM: iPod. Latest data shows iPod at 73.4% marketshare in US. #2 is “other” at 15.4%. #3 is Sandisk. #4 is Microsoft with 2.6%. Over 5,000 iPod accessories. They announce products before we want them to – it’s “funny.” 90% of all cars in US offer iPod integration. Cumulative iPod sales are now over 160m.
10:13 AM: The demo is dragging a lot. Audience basically silent. iTunes 8 available today.
10:11 AM: Long demo of the Genius feature. Gives you the ability to limit how many songs get picked for the playlist, refresh the list with different picks, and then save the playlist.
10:10 AM: Plays a clip of HD episode of The Office. Jim answering Dwight’s phone, taking an order.
10:08 AM: Genius Results are tailored to your music library. It’s all opt-in. Updated once a week automatically. The new icon looks atomic, somewhat like the logo for the Genius Bar at Apple Stores.
10:06 AM: Genius. Auto makes playlists from songs in your library that go great together, with just one click. Helps you rediscover music in your library. And it works well. Select a song, new Genius button in bottom right corner gets pressed and creates new genius list. Genius sidebar appears to recommend more stuff from the iTunes Store for things you might want to buy. Appears to the right of the main window. Apple-developed Genius Algorithms go out to the iTunes Store, taking info about your library and sending it to Apple to let them learn about your tastes. Sent completely anonymously. At no time is your ID kept around. It’s information from the millions of iTunes users combined together to make smarter choices.
10:04 AM: iTunes 8. A ton of new stuff. Few main pieces: HD TV shows. Accessibility – requests for voiceover and other tech fulfilled. New browsing and Genius. Browsing of albums has been weak. Grid-style display of album covers now appears, and a bar at the top lets you pick albums, artists, genres, composers, just like in iPhoto. You can pick scale. Works with TV shows, movies, podcasts.
10:02 AM: 65,000,000 accounts with credit cards in iTunes. Number one music distributor in any format in the US. New content getting added. HD TV shows. SD $1.99, HD $2.99. Watch on your computer. And Apple TV. NBC is coming back to iTunes. The Office, Monk, Battlestar Galactica. 30 Rock, Heroes. They’re coming back in SD and HD.
10:01 AM: Music is the topic today. Fun new offerings. iTunes image from NBC! Office + Heroes shown as banners. 8.5 million songs now in the store. 125,000 podcasts. 30,000 episodes of TV shows. 2,600 Hollywood movies. 3,000 applications for iPod touch and iPhone.
10:00 AM: The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated. Nuff said.
10:00 AM: Lights are dimming. Music ends. Steve Jobs takes stage. He’s looking thin but moving fine. Really exciting stuff to share.
9:58 AM: Two iMacs on stage along with water bottles. Very small crowd here today.
9:57 AM: So far, not a single song from the last decade or two. All of the pre-event music is classic rock, such as The Doors (playing now).
9:54 AM: A pre-event chat with XtremeMac yielded some interesting news for those interested in the clock radio Luna X2—it’s still coming, along with Luna Voyager, the prior model. Sounds like the most recently revised October date will hold.
9:51 AM: We’ve heard that the new lineup of nanos will be introduced with an image showing them literally dripping with colorful paint. There will be many color choices this time. A source told us that the new colors are brighter tones than the prior lineup of colors, plus ones taken from the iPod shuffle lineup (e.g. purple, orange).
9:50 AM: We noticed Barbarian Group representatives outside. They developed Magnetosphere, the awesome visualizer that was featured on iLounge Backstage and in our Books. It sounds like Magnetosphere was purchased by Apple for integration into iTunes 8.
9:48 AM: Classic rock is playing as we’re waiting. Old rock was playing at WWDC when the iPhone 3G was announced, as well.
9:46 AM: We’re in the event. Apple has actually, amazingly provided laptop power strips, so we won’t have a mid-event power interruption.