What’s new from Apple… The story
2005 at 12.44 pm posted by Veerle Pieters
Great excitement this evening at 7pm for the Apple special Music Event. Rumors were flying and stock was real high again. Since Apple doesn’t give us a stream we followed everything like in the good old days on IRC ;-)
First it was the usual PR stuff that we are so familiar with during these events. Steve talked about iTunes Music store and that they have 82% market share in the US etc. But let's begin with the bad news shall we ;-)
Motorola ROKR E1
The rumored Motorola phone is there at last but If you still had a little sprinkle of hope that it would have an Apple design I have to disappoint you. It is a rather plain looking Motorola phone called ROKR E1. What a cool and inspiring name! I'm not at all exited about this thing. But then again I still associate mobile phones with work and being disturbed and not at all the device to enjoy and relax with on the beach for example.
So to trick me into being one, it should sport a classy design form Jonathan Ive and a Mac OS X like interface. Well I guess I should dream a little longer ;-)
But there is good news too. iTunes 5 is out with a streamlined look, which I love but Apple should follow its own guidelines and not throw in 57 different styles :o) There is a new "Search Bar". It enables you to find stuff fast and refine your search with the handy new Search Bar. You now have "Smart Shuffle" because people told Apple that iPod shuffle didn't really shuffle. You can adjust random playback to hear what you want. There are Playlist folders so that you can organize all your playlists into folders. Windows Users can now sync their iPod with Outlook and Outlook Express. And for the Harry Potter fans you have all six audiobooks or the Digital Box Set and there is also the collector's iPod with Hogwarts crest. iTunes 5 can sync music to the Motorola ROKR E1. Apple also added 1,000 album reviews. Steve also had an iChat AV talk with Madonna, the material girl has finally agreed to put all 15 albums online in the ITMS. She was holding out because she was against the idea that people could buy seperate songs. Well now you can!
One more thing....
iPod nano, 1000 songs. Impossibly small...
So you love an iPod but find it rather big? So how small did you imagine it? I bet you're wrong. Take everything you love about iPod and shrink it. Now shrink it again (3.5 x 1.6 x 0.27 inches - 8,9 x 4 x 0,7 cm). It is thinner than a pencil (0.27 inch - 0,7 cm) and is featherweight (only 1.5 ounces - 42,5 gr). So I guess the rumors Apple buying more then half of the stock of Samsung's flash memory are true.
But wait is doesn't stop there... it has a color display to show your album art on it. iPod nano's Click Wheel puts music under your thumb, the touch sensitive surface lets you control volume and browse your music. It displays the color album art for the song you're listening to and it carries your photos, podcasts and audiobooks. Of course there are fashionable accessories for this new digital buddy too. This little white or black fellow gives you up to 14 hours of music playback. That's amazing compared to my mini, which BTW has been dropped/retired... Makes me considering to sell mine ;-)
- 2GB iPod nano (500 songs) : US$ 199 / 209 Euro (VAT included)
- 4GB iPod nano (1,000 songs US$ 249 / 259 Euro (VAT included)
My initial reaction was when I was following things that this would be a lame and rather stupid press event... luckily I was wrong. This iPod nano makes up for it, it is a beauty. You can admire it here, but please don't dribble on your keyboard ;-) And I just discovered that you get a free laser engraving too. Cool! Now... what should I put on it ? :-D
UPDATE: Apple has put the QuickTime stream of the Music Event online now so you can watch Stevie in action ;-)
John Gruber has a very funny perception of the new look of iTunes. A must read!