Tag - Streaming
Apple is helping to fund the music videos of artists and bands, as part of its plan to gain exclusives for its streaming music service. Executives from both Apple and elsewhere in the industry advised to a report the iPhone producer has helped finance musical projects, including Drake's Hotline Bling and MIA's Borders videos, to not only get content for its subscribers not available anywhere else, but also to make Apple Music a more attractive place to be, in a similar vein to MTV in the 1990's.
[Update: outage resolved] Since at least 2:17 PM Pacific Time today, the iTunes and App Stores appear to be dysfunctional for at least some users. The problem appears to be most severe in the northeastern US and in England, but there are scattered reports from a number of other countries, though not all users are affected. For those that are, however, upgrades and purchases are not able to go through. This also is having an impact on Apple's streaming services and the ability of users to log into their iTunes accounts.
YouTube is stepping up its efforts to allow users to stream live over its service, with an upcoming update to its mobile app. Putting itself in direct competition with Facebook's own live-streaming service and the Twitter-owned Periscope, the Alphabet video site is slowly rolling out a change to its iOS app that will allow a small selection of users to broadcast video live to their subscribers, directly from their smartphone or tablet.
The ability to download Netflix shows and movies for viewing at a later time may be arriving this year, according to a report. The chief operating officer of Penthera, a firm that helps with delivering video content to mobile devices, believes the major streaming service is going to reverse its long-held policy of not offering downloads to its users, and instead will be permitting offline viewing of content for certain shows.
Spotify has broken a major milestone, with the streaming music service claiming it has now got more than 100 million active monthly subscribers. The Swedish streaming company advised earlier today that approximately 30 percent of its user base pay a monthly subscription fee, and the number of users of the service continues to grow at a rate of 1.8 million users per month, though at a cost to its bottom line.
Spotify may try to push more of its free users to become subscribers, by restricting some of its catalog to those paying the monthly fee. A report claims the music streaming service apparently came close to restricting an album on the day of its release to just paid users, preventing free users from listening at its launch last month, and though Spotify supposedly decided against going through with that course of action, it appears it may have been more for technical reasons than ideology.
Amazon is looking to compete more directly with music streaming services, such as Spotify and Apple Music, a report claims. The retailer is said to be finalizing licenses with labels to launch the service, which will allegedly operate separately from the Amazon Prime subscription, with the report suggesting it will cost consumers approximately $10 per month, roughly the same as its potential competition.
Apple on Friday updated its Worldwide Developer Conference app with a new version for the fourth-generation Apple TV that offers a new darker theme and live streaming on tvOS, while adding multitasking support for iPads on the iOS update. The app, intended for registered developer accounts, gives those who will be unable to attend the live event in San Francisco starting in 10 days time the ability to virtually attend sessions and events. The app also provides a schedule of events with "gag" names on some that include features, software, or hardware that is yet to be revealed.
TiVo has updated the Bolt DVR with a feature other devices in the range already provide: the ability to access recordings from mobile devices. Updates to the TiVo iOS and Android apps, as well as one applied to the TiVo Bolt itself over the next week, now allows users to watch streams of content stored on the DVR to their mobile devices, with the feature working both within the user's home network as well as outside the home.
Amazon is continuing to avoid putting the Apple TV on sale through its online store until Apple can provide "acceptable business terms," retailer CEO Jeff Bezos has confirmed. Speaking at the Code Conference yesterday, Bezos declined to answer why the Apple TV hasn't reappeared in the store since October last year, along with the Google Chromecast, but his response seems to suggest it has more to do with revenue generated by the app than increasing sales of its own streaming devices.
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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