apple · ios · ipad · iphone · itunes · mac · mac os x · windows

Apple Releases iTunes 10.3 with iCloud Beta Support

iTunes 10.3, available now for Mac OS X and Windows PC, brings some of the new features unveiled yesterday at WWDC to you now – no waiting until the “fall.”

iTunes 10.3 adds Automatic Downloads, Download Previous Purchases, the ability to browse and purchase books for iBooks from iTunes, and our first taste of Apple’s new iCloud service which seamlessly syncs music purchases to all of your devices regardless of which device purchased the music.

I’m interested in playing with the iCloud sync feature on my iPad, MacBook Pro, and Windows 7 PCs (one at home and one at work).  I also want to play around with the Download Previous Purchases feature because somewhere along the way, I upgraded Documents To Go on my iPhone 2G, and since it is running iOS 3.1.2 (yes, it’s jailbroken/unlocked so I can use it as an iPod touch) I can’t install the current release on it.  I’d like to install the older, compatible version again if possible because I did not manually make a backup of the old software.

The new features of iCloud, iOS 5, and Mac OS X look really cool, and I can’t wait until September to have all of this cool software.  At least we can get Mac OS X 10.7 Lion next month.

apple · ios · mac os x · mobileme

No New MobileMe Accounts Being Accepted

While I haven’t gotten to the part of today’s WWDC keynote introducing iCloud yet, after seeing that there is a new Find My iPhone/iPad/iPod touch app out today, I went looking for what services are being offered.

Looks like we can forget MobileMe becoming a free service.  She’s done for in her current form and iCloud will completely replace it.  I’m going to have to watch the stream on this one and decide if I’m interested in using the new iCloud service.  I would have gone in on MobileMe if it was free or cheaper than $99/year, but I’m not really one for streaming content if I have the option to download it to a Mac or PC on my home network.

Existing MobileMe customers can still access their accounts from the MobileMe.com website.

app store · apple · mac · mac os x · macbook pro

Mac OS X 10.7 Lion Impressions

Apple is packing 250 new features into the next version of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, and most prominent among them are muli-touch gestures.

With iOS, we have been taught how to interact with a computer through touch.  With Mac OS X Lion, Apple is bringing all of the same core concepts to our MacBooks, and desktop Macs via the Magic Mouse and Magic TrackPad.

Interestingly, Apple reporting that well over 60% of their Mac sales are MacBooks, so if you feel that all this muti-touch stuff favors the notebook family — I’d have to agree with you.  I’m not sure how how well these new features will play out, say with a Magic Mouse which looks to have about half of the surface area as the track pad on my 17-inch MacBook Pro.

Regardless, of how you interact with your Mac, I’m less worried that Apple is trying to “dumb down” Mac OS X to work more like the iPhone.  I think today’s announcement of new Mac OS X features are impressive and that I’d most of them.

In addition to Multi-Touch, Apple demoed nine other tent pole features, including: Full-Screen Apps, Misson Control, the new Mac App Store,  Launchpad, Resume, Auto Save, Versions, AirDrop, and a redesigned Mail application.  Mac OS X 10.7 Lion will go on sale in July for $29.99 and will be sold exclusively via the Mac App Store.  Once you purchase Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, you will be able to install it on any Mac that you own and have setup your Apple ID account on.  Additionally, for those people who need it, Mac OS X Server is now a separate applications bundle you buy from the Mac App Store.  The server bundle is expected to cost about $50 and it is no longer a separate operating system that you have to purchase.

apple · ios · itunes · mac os x · mobileme

30-second Initial Reaction to Apple’s WWDC Announcements

I was stuck in a staff meeting during the live steam of Apple’s WWDC keynote today, so I’ve gone through great lengths to avoid media coverage and my Apple loving family, friends, and co-workers so I can go in cold when I watch the video steam of today’s event.

After spending about 30 seconds on Apple’s website, here is my initial reaction to today’s news.

  • iOS 5.0 and iCloud will go live this fall.
  • Mac OS X 10.7 Lion will go on sale in July for $30; appears to be electronic download only.
  • There is no iTunes or other Mac OS X software updates available today.
  • From the Apple.com website, it wasn’t clear if there was any changes to MobileMe starting today.
Like I said, this is a 30 second impression from quickly skimming the Apple website and taking a look at what updates appeared in the Mac OS X Software Update control panel and what is being featured in the Mac App Store.

You can watch today’s keynote address now as a steaming video from the Apple website.

I’ll have more impressions and comments as soon as I can sit down and watch today’s WWDC keynote address.
hp · palm os · web os

HP Replaces Palm.com with HPwebOS.com

The Palm brand, my dear friends, has come to an end.

While the Palm brand has been around for a very long time, today, HP has taken down the main palm.com website and replaced it with the HPwebOS.com website.  The new site shares the same black styling as the main HP.com website.  (I’m not a fan of HP’s website, just for the record.)

While the main Palm site is gone, the blog.palm.com and developer.palm.com websites are still active, however, it is clearly only a matter of time before HP’s web design team swoops in and changes things around there too.

This is kind of a sad day, really.  I’m going to miss the Palm brand.

amazon · android · apps · google

PopCap Plants vs. Zombies Free in Amazon Android App Store

Amazon.com is offering PopCap’s zombie shooter, Plants vs. Zombies for Google Android devices free today only.

Normally, $2.99, Amazon is giving away copies for Plants vs. Zombies for people who sign up for their new AppStore for Android.  To get started, you need to enter your phone’s telephone number or email address from the Amazon.com website.  You will receive a new text message or email with the link to download and install the Appstore for Android application on your device and then you can download the game.

Plants vs. Zombies is a fun game in which you plant flowers and other forms of vegetation to prevent the zombie horde from making it inside your house.  I’m not exactly what you call a zombie or horror film fan, but don’t let the name of this app scare you away.  The plants and zombies that show up through out the game are loads of cartoon-y fun.

A word of caution before you go hog wild downloading and installing applications on your Droid smartphone.  To install the Appstore for Android application, you must first turn on the ability to install applications for other sources than the Google Android Market.  While this step is not dangerous in and of itself, it does require that you be more vigilant about what software you install on your device because you are turning of a feature that Google perceived to be a security concern; if it the security is to address customer lock-in to the Android Market.

For more details and to download Plants vs. Zombies, head over to Appstore for Amazon website.