Apple announced today that it has partnered with Fox Broadcasting Company, Fox Interactive Media, 19 Entertainment, and FremantleMedia to allow customers to purchase performances from the Top 24 contestants on the hit series ‘American Idol’.
Music performances will be available for .99 cents a song, and viewers will be able to purchase the full video of Top 12 finalist performances for $1.99, starting March 11. In addition, beginning today, fans can pre-order performances of their favorite contestants from the iTunes Store, which will be automatically downloaded the day after the show airs.
“We’ve created a special section on the iTunes Store for ‘Idol’ fans with an incredible array of music and video performances from television’s most popular show,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s vice president of iTunes. “We think ‘American Idol’ viewers are going to love the ability to purchase and download ‘Idol’ performances from iTunes.”
Fans can still watch free streaming performances on American Idol.com – which will now have direct links to the iTunes store for those interested in purchasing their favorites.
Rumor: iPhone 1.1.4 and iPhone SDK imminent?
If you are still waiting around for the iPhone SDK, chances are, you won’t be waiting much longer. Steve Jobs said in October 2007 that the SDK would be released in February 2008; which only has about 2 weeks left! According to MacRumors, tiny-code.com, which is an online repository for Installer.app, has leaked a bit of information about iPhone firmware 1.1.4 and the iPhone SDK.
According to the Tiny Code website, “Tiny Code no longer produces fixes or applications for firmware 1.1.3. We can’t say much, but we are working with Apple and with their SDK for the next firmware release and SDK applications and we shouldn’t be missed for long. We will no longer update our Installer.app repo for legality reasons and you should see us soon on iTunes.”
Since that was posted, the website has been taken down (and strangely enough, now forwards to Apple’s iPhone Developer site). Macenstein has a screenshot of the site before it was taken down. The Tiny Code developer commented on the Mac Rumors Forums saying that Apple ordered them to take down the site because they violated their NDA with Apple
Recently, Apple submitted another patent for a GPS navigation system. The patent is for a software driven device. The system would allow the Podmap user to request directions from a starting location, and the results would be returned in the form of podcast media file which would include visual maps and step by step driving instructions. If you check out the Podmap patent, you will find this statement that I’ve included below.
“A computer-implemented method for forming a map-based media item, said method comprising:(a) receiving a request for a map-based media item pertaining to mapping a route from a start location to a destination location;(b) obtaining map information based on a determined route from the start location to the destination location, the map information including text directions and at least one map image;(c) causing the text directions to be converted into voice directions; and(d) forming the map-based media item using at least the voice directions and the at least one map image.”
The question is would Apple incorporate this into one of their existing products? Applying GPS into an existing device like the iPhone would make perfect sense. Many speculate that the iPhone 2 will have a GPS chip and a 3G connection. Last year Apple signed a deal with InterDigital. The amount was rumored to be for $20 million dollars plus royalties. InterDigital is a wireless technology company that has made contributions to 2g and 3G technology.
Perhaps when the iPhone 2 is released, we will see a GPS system? Maybe Podmap will be added to a new product line? It’s important to note that Podmap is just a patent. Apple might not be pursuing this, but giving the demand for GPS devices this seems highly unlikely.
It may look like a stealth bomber, but Kenwood’s new AS-IP300 iPod dock just connects to your iPod and fires your music out at 2W per channel. It’s also got a 3D sound option, remote control, and can take mains power or AA batteries for portability for about 8 hours of playback. Measuring 15 x 8.7 x 6.2 inches, it’s available in Japan late February in black or white. Cost is $140.
Smart Scroll X is a Preference Pane that brings smooth iPhone-like scrolling to the Mac desktop. For MacBook users, that means by activating 2-finger scrolling in the Keyboard & Mouse preferences, you can flick down webpages and multi-screen lists right from your trackpad.
Partial Leopard compatibility was added in the v2.7.5b3 update released this weekend.
A single user license costs USD$19.