Tag - ITunes Store
Canadian users visiting the country's version of the iTunes store now have the option of donating to the Canadian Red Cross for disaster relief in Fort McMurray, Alberta, a town best known as the center of the country's oilsands industry. Wildfires in nearby areas have grown to cover 620 square miles -- about the size of the whole of New York City -- and forced the evacuation of over 80,000 people. On the US iTunes Store, the American Red Cross continues to focus on donations for earthquake relief in Japan and Ecuador.
An outage earlier today has since been corrected, but affected users around the world with a roughly two-hour disruption of the various App Stores, some iCloud services, and related features such as Apple Maps. As of 11AM ET, the problem has been fixed and all services are reporting operational again, but no explanation of the nature of the outage or the percentage of users affected has been reported by Apple. The downtime struck for about two hours from around 10AM Eastern Time until noon.
Though the year isn't quite over yet, Apple's iTunes Stores staff have posted their picks for the best (as well as top-selling, which are often different) apps, music, e-books and movies/TV shows for 2015 on its various stories. Twitter's live video app Periscope won App of the Year, with Lara Croft GO winning Game of the year, while the company set up small collections of winners for most other categories as the "best" in other areas. "A Little Life," a novel by Hanya Yanagihara was singled out as Apple's favorite fiction book of the year.
A new follow-up to the Beatles: 1 collection, originally launched in 2000, has now appeared exclusively on the iTunes Store. The new 1+ collection consists entirely of promotional films and music videos for 50 of the Beatles' hit singles, often filmed for cinemas in Europe and other reasons after the band stopped touring. The $27 download collection includes videos for the 27 number-one hit singles for the band, along with 23 other films, including some alternate versions.
[Update: outage has ended] Some of Apple's online services are down, for at least some users, in a prolonged attack that started around 8:30PM Pacific Time on Wednesday and is currently ongoing. Prior to that, 0.6 percent of iCloud users were cut off from iCloud Tabs and iCloud Keychain services for about an hour and 45 minutes, beginning around 7PM PT. At the time of writing, Apple's System Status page shows the App Store, Apple TV, the iBookstore, iTunes Store, Mac App Store and Volume Purchase Program are either slow or down entirely for some percentage of users.
While the news will come as a surprise to those outside China, the country is only just today getting its own Apple Music service and some of the various iTunes Stores, including Movies and the iBookstore for the first time. The various stores will, as is the case in most other countries, emphasize native artists at least as much as western acts. Local heroes such as G.E.M. and Eason Chan will be seen in the Music store alongside popular western artists. The Movies store will feature Chinese cinema and Hollywood films, while the iBookstore will offer a wide selection of native-language e-books.
A widespread but apparently brief outage was reported to have affected Apples online digital storefronts this morning, such as the App Store, iTunes Store and Mac App Store. The problem appeared to occur worldwide, but Apple's System Status Page did not acknowledge the issue until hours after it was resolved, which occurred at approximately 8:30AM Pacific. The company suffered a much longer and more severe outage just two weeks ago.
[Update: Apple acknowledges issues] A range of Apple's online services are experiencing issues, with the majority of problems relating to the company's online stores. The iTunes Store, App Store, and Mac App Store are all apparently having issues loading up elements of some store pages, though the issues are also apparently affecting back-end services as well as those on the consumer side.
Apple has launched a new area on the iTunes Store in the US, simply dubbed "Free on iTunes." rel='nofollow' The section highlights free song and TV downloads. Some musical examples include singles from Waters, Sharon Van Etten, The Babies, and Penguin Prison. TV content includes episodes from Backstrom, 12 Monkeys, The Musketeers, and other shows.
As was the case last year, Canadians are once again getting a sale on selected albums in iTunes as part of a "Boxing Day" event, part of a traditional observance throughout Canada and a number of other Commonwealth countries. The UK iTunes Store is also having a sale on hit albums, but doesn't label the event as a "Boxing Day" sale. US users don't get a sale, but are instead enjoying special holiday channels on iTunes Radio, which remains unavailable in the UK and Canada.