Tag - IPod shuffle
Apple's official online shipping times for the iPod shuffle have improved in the UK, France, Germany, and several other European countries, reports say. Earlier this month, shipping times deteriorated to between seven to 10 days worldwide, prompting fears that Apple might be discontinuing the product. Sources claimed that Apple was just going through component supplier changes, however, and this may be borne out by the European Apple online stores, which is now seeing the media player ship in five to seven days. Delays have yet to improve in the US or Canada, but may follow suit in the near future.
In spite of fears to the contrary, Apple is not killing off the iPod shuffle, according to sources. Stocks of the player have dwindled considerably, leading to speculation that it might be going the same route as the iPod classic. The sources say that instead, Apple is simply going through component supplier changes that have temporarily interrupted Shuffle production.
Stock of Apple's original "wearable" device, the iPod shuffle, is drying up at both Apple's online store and its retail outlets, sources say - reports that are backed up by checks. The company is reportedly warning retail workers that Shuffle supplies will be low for an unspecified amount of time, so much so that shoppers looking to buy the product should be redirected to the online store. Even then, the US site is listing Shuffles as shipping in seven to 10 days, well beyond the 24-hour window quoted for the iPod touch or nano.
Apple has won a US patent on the design and construction of the fourth-generation iPod shuffle, says AppleInsider. The patent is actually titled Very small form factor consumer electronic product, but clearly shows the Shuffle in diagrams, and talks about a media player constructed with a single-piece housing and other signature Shuffle elements, such as the clip and clickwheel. Also mentioned are two co-pending applications, related to protection against moisture and electrostatic charges.
The ad for the new iPod lineup seen at the iPhone 5 unveiling last month has now been broadcast on television, and posted by Apple on its website and YouTube channel. The spot, which showcases the colorful lineup consisting of the refreshed iPod Touch, iPod nano and iPod shuffle, uses computer graphics to have the devices bounce and dance through a portion of the song "Yeah Yeah" by Willy Moon. The ads emphasize the new colors rather than any new features, even though both the Touch and Nano received significant updates.
Apple today overhauled its iPod line, updating the Nano to the seventh generation, and the Touch to the fifth. The new Nano is switching back to a tall design, but now has a 2.5-inch multi-touch screen, with a Home button as on iOS devices. The player is almost half as thin as its predecessor, and uses the new smaller Lightning connector also seen on the iPhone 5.
The new iPod touch should have a 1136x640 display like the iPhone 5, and is currently using an N78 codename, reports say. Developer Will Strafach -- better known as Chronic -- is claiming that the device will get an S5L8942X processor instead of an S5L8950X, which should finally upgrade the Touch to an A5-level chip, but still leave it behind the iPhone 5 in terms of performance. 9to5Mac sources say that Apple intends to keep the same base price point for the media player, on or around $200.
Beyond the iPhone 5, Apple's September 12th event will also see updates to the iPod touch, nano, and shuffle, according to 9to5Mac sources. The Touch lineup is thought to be getting some of the more interesting changes; while there will still be three models, the sources say that the cheapest one will be a tweaked version of the current-generation design, while the other two will be more substantially altered. The latter are linked to $299 and $399 pricetags, and are expected to come in several variations, though what that means isn't explained. It could imply real color options, instead of just black or white.
A fourth-generation iPod shuffle signed by Steve Jobs is now back on auction at eBay, its seller remarks. eBay is said to have accidentally ended the original sale, even as bidding reached up to $26,000. Although the company reportedly apologized to bidders, a new auction was needed. Bidding on the Shuffle is so far back up to $9,995 with over nine days left.
A fourth-generation iPod shuffle with a case autographed by Steve Jobs is currently up for auction on eBay. The seller says that as part of an "innovators of tomorrow" program, he and three colleagues were invited to an internal Apple event, before which they got free Apple products including Shuffles and iTunes credit. The event ultimately gave the seller and his group a chance to talk with Jobs, at which point they convinced Jobs to sign the iPods.
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French show carries on with iPhones
Following a prolonged power loss in a French TV studio, the crew was able to use a combination of limited studio lighting and a number of iPhones to continue taping the Saturday episode of talk show On n'est pas couché ("We're Still Awake"), using the resulting footage in the first edited episode. The Plus-model iPhones used for the impromptu shoot completion were either iPhone 6 Plusses (which shoot in 1080p) or 6s Plus models (which can shoot in 4K). The decision to use the iPhones to complete the show was made after a power outage at France 2's studio stretched to more than three hours. http://bit.ly/299wqDt
Scrivener for iOS to arrive in late July
For some long-time Scrivener users, to quote Paul Simon, "these are the days of miracle and wonders." As it marks its 10th anniversary in business, developer Keith Blount has announced that the long-awaited iOS version of his creative-writing tool Scrivener is to be submitted to the App Store, following strong praise from beta-testers. The program, expected in late July, will sell for $20 and work with both the iPad and iPhone. When we interviewed Blount last January, he added that Scrivener 3 for Mac would follow along shorty afterwards. http://bit.ly/2901XLE
WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu
Fifth Hong Kong store to open June 30
The 46th official Apple store in what the company calls the "Greater China" region will open at 10AM local time in Hong Kong's New Town Plaza in the Sha Tin district on Thursday, June 30, according to a new page on Apple's retail website. Despite slowing growth due to economic turmoil in China, the country is still Apple's fastest-growing market. The new story will be the fifth for Hong Kong, a lucrative market for Apple thanks to the high concentration of wealth there and a thriving "gray" market. Normal store hours for the new store will be 10AM to 10PM every day. http://apple.co/291diaT
Apple Music bug bites very short songs
There appears to be a reproducible bug in the current version of iTunes -- version 12.4.1, running on OS X 10.11.5, both the current non-beta versions of the respective software -- that causes a streamed song to become "stuck" in endless buffering if the streamed item just before this happened was 60 seconds or less in length. The problem appears to stem from code in iTunes that signals the next track to start downloading one minute before the currently-playing track is done, and thus songs shorter than one minute don't trigger the download. Locally-stored music is unaffected by the bug, and the problem does not appear to exist in either the macOS Sierra developer beta or versions of iTunes earlier than 12.4, and does not affect the iOS Music app at all. http://bit.ly/291cN0l