Tag - Music Beta
Google is holding its special "These Go To Eleven" music event in Los Angeles. The company is expected to unveil a music store competitor to iTunes, Amazon MP3, and others, with Google+ song sharing and an Android link as its special features. Check our live coverage page for details as they happen, starting from 5PM Eastern.
Google gave a strong sign that its long-delayed music store is coming with an invitation sent to the media for a November 16 event. Titled just "These Go To Eleven," the gathering has few clues others than that it will be Android-focused, with those too far to attend in person encouraged to check a live stream at youtube.com/android. The event has an unusual afternoon start at 5PM Eastern and had its invites sent out by "Nigel Tufnel," a reference to Spinal Tap's fictional lead rocker.
RIM on Wednesday offered its first self-run music option in earnest with a promised launch for BBM Music. The finished version of the cloud music service should reach BlackBerry App World later in the day for Canada and the US. In both countries, it should cost about $5 per month, although RIM is temporarily giving a two-month free trial to help get users onboard.
Google may have given out its own clues that its own music store is imminent. Trying to visit music.google.com from an Android phone or tablet produces a splash page that, along with promoting the existing cloud storage service, it mentions the option to "shop millions of songs" that would be available directly from Android Market. Giveaways would play a significant role, as there would be "hundreds of free tracks," Google says.
Apple told developers late Wednesday that it was resetting their iTunes Match accounts for what's likely the last time before the end of October launch. Its need to upgrade the "overall quality and reliability" of the cloud music service would require that the existing accounts be reset on October 27. Those signed up in the beta phase have been told to turn off iTunes Match on all their computers and iOS devices to avoid connection problems during the shutdown.
A handful of more details about Google's music store may have emerged on Monday. The service is now thought by unofficial WSJ sources to be going live within the next two weeks, and possibly this week. "At least two" major labels are unlikely to have signed on, however, with only EMI probably onboard and Universal in discussions that might not make the release date.
Google's tentative music store plans may be launched with just a fraction of the music that Apple and Amazon have, music insiders divulged on Wednesday. In continuing its deadlock with majors, the search firm was reported by CNET as being willing to limit its music catalog to just independent labels. Only "close to a dozen" have signed on, the industry contacts said, and would leave all sides upset at the lost opportunity for sales and recognition.
Thanks to the newly-released gMusic: A native Google Music player app ($1.99, iTunes), iOS device owners can stream music from Google Music Beta rather than iTunes Match. Like the official Android app, it lets users access as many as 20,000 songs stored in the streaming music locker. An Offline mode caches store songs locally on the device's memory without having a data connection.
Google's fledgling Music Beta service reached a non-Android mobile platform for the first time Thursday with a web app intended for iOS devices. Visitors can stream any music they've uploaded to the cloud system through Safari, without having to use a native app or Flash. The only known limitation is the expected inability to pin tracks to the device for offline use.
Google sought to bring the limelight back to Music Beta once more late Wednesday with the appearance of its Magnifier blog. The page will highlight artists, ranging from interviews to genre delves and videos of live events. As an incentive to keep visiting, though, it plans to offer free songs every day that will automatically head to a listener's Music Beta cloud for listening elsewhere.
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE