Drobo has been out for quite some time and serves the purpose of a “set-it-and-forget-it” backup solution. Drobo has added a few apps that bring a nice “value-add” to their storage capability. Data Robotics has released 19 applications for Drobo, and they seem to be highlighting three of those specifically due to their value to the average consumer. First, there’s the DroboApps Admin Utility, which allows you to manage your DroboApps via a web interface. The second is Yoics, which gives you remote access to your Drobo and DroboShare from a web browser or mobile device like the iPhone. Lastly, they are highlighting the Firefly iTunes Media Server that allows you to store all of your music, TV, and video content on the Drobo, and then serve that content to iTunes devices or computers around your home.
If you don’t yet have a storage solution and need a very reliable backup which also serves your media, then you should check out Drobo. They range in price from $349 to $1049 and offer USB 2.0 and Firewire depending on the model you choose. In order to take advantage of the apps, you’ll also need the DroboShare NAS module, which will run you $199, on top of the cost of the Drobo itself.
Read More | Drobo
I have been using Lala for about a week and the service turns out to be one of the best ways to get all of your music from wherever you are. The concept is quite simple, allow access to songs you already purchased and also bring a music store to the cloud for 10 cents a song. You can further purchase songs for download at around 90 cents per song. The best part of the service is you can listen to a full album prior to purchasing it online. That’s right, full quality MP3s for free, as long as you are listening to them on Lala.
The library is over 5 miillion songs and is updated every Tuesday when new content comes out. Lala also allows you to import your entire purchased collection of music from iTunes or any other music folder you may have on your current Mac or PC with a downloadable importing utility. There is no monthly fee and all you need to do is sign up and you’re in. You can then invite people to join and network, sort of like Facebook or Myspace, but it keeps track of what you and your friends listen to and gives suggestions based off what they listen to. The whole thing seems too good to be true, but it certainly doesn’t disappoint. This is one site that could provide itself as the next big thing in music as long as the RIAA continues to think it okay.
Read More | Lala
We thought we were the only ones with issues with some of these smaller iTunes 8 issues, but obviously enough people were complaining that Apple has pushed out a new version, iTunes 8.0.1, to address these things. We are happy that Genius is getting fixed, along with App Store update checking. Here’s the full list:
- Seamlessly plays the current song when creating a new Genius playlist.
- Improves syncing spoken menus to iPod nano.
- Addresses an issue of deleting HD TV episodes when downloading.
- Improves checking for updates from the App Store
- Improves accessibility with VoiceOver.
- Addresses problems syncing Genius results to iPod.
Let us know how it goes for you.
Read More | iTunes
If you are tired of hearing us talk about all the Apple news of the day, maybe you’d prefer listening to Steve Jobs himself deliver the news. If that is the case, you’ll be happy to know that the Let’s Rock keynote is now available online for your viewing pleasure. You can stream is now from the Apple Special Event page. If downloading is more your thing, we are sure it will be hitting iTunes 8 shortly.
Read More | Let's Rock event video
iTunes 8 was announced this morning as part of the whole Let’s Rock Apple announcement festivities, and there were a few nice pieces of news. First, NBC is back on iTunes with shows like The Office, 30 Rock, and Ballestar Galactics. What’s more, though, is that iTunes will now be selling TV shows in high definition. Aside from the feeling that I know my wallet is about to be drained, this is a very welcome addition. My only hope is that they allow those of us who have purchased shows in SD to “upgrade” to the HD versions at a discount. It’s only fair, right?
In other news, Apple has added “Genius” to iTunes - that being a recommendation engine that looks at the track you are listening to, and recommends other tracks in the iTunes store that it believes you would like. In addition, Genius can also create truly customized playlists on the fly, again, just by sampling what you are listening to. It will pull other songs from your iTunes library that it believes would complement your selection, without any work to be done on your part. We must admit, it looks slick. Speaking of which, they’ve also included a new visualizer, which is just off the hook. You’ve gotta see it to believe it.
iTunes 8 is available now.
Read More | iTunes
Rumors of Sony’s new NW-E series Walkmen have reached the surface. The 8.5mm slim devices weigh only 50g each. Each has a 2.0-inch QVGA TFT LCD screen with 262,144 colors. The player supports MP3/ WMA/ AAC/Linear PCM and has an FM tuner. The device uses drag and drop, and each is compatible with both WMP and iTunes. The 2GB NWZ-E435 comes in black or pink, the 4GB NWZ-E436 will be available in black, blue, pink or red, and the 8GB NWZ-E438 is simply black.
Read More | Sony Insider
Okay, Apple, we know that you’ve had some trouble getting your act together since the iPhone 3G launch, but when you list two different prices in different areas of iTunes for the same app, that is when it is just getting ridiculous. Case in point, Dashbuster. I downloaded the free version from the App Store about a week ago, as it sounded fantastic to be able to manage my Netflix queue from the iPhone. The app, however, was missing a couple of features that I wanted - namely, the ability to add movies to the queue, select the format of the disc, etc. That was to come in the pad version.
Well, due to the fact that Apple has been unable to push updates out in a timely fashion, the paid version was finished, but I had to wait about a week for it to hit the App Store. I searched for the app, saw it was available for $5, and proceeded to download it. I then saw that there was a bug in the app, where it wouldn’t show my queue at all. I emailed the developer, and he responded (almost immediately) offering help. He also mentioned that the app should have been $3.99, not $4.99 like I paid.
Read More | Gallery: Dashbuster pricing screwed up
DirectVoxx’s pocket-sized Muso can be plugged into your iPod or iPhone and allows access to music with voice commands. It syncs with the iTunes library and the company promises the learning curve is almost non-existent. Portable and self-powered, the battery will last up to 10 hours of usage. The Muso comes with remote and a sync/charge cable and will be available beginning in December for $159.00. You can also pre-order now at the DirectVoxx site.
Read More | DirectVoxx
UPDATE: Watch the full video of our iPhone 3G line experience.
We had no idea that our quest to grab a few iPhone 3G units at launch here in the Seattle area would turn out to be an utter fiasco. Last year, when the original iPhone launched, we had a much longer wait in line (over 19 hours versus just over 8 hours) last year, and were further back in the line to boot. However, it was a complete failure on both Apple and AT&T’s part in making sure that the experience went as smoothly as possible.
Oh, sure, we finally have our iPhone 3Gs working and in good shape, but it took much, much longer to get them in that condition than it should have. Read on as we relive the events that took place earlier this afternoon at the Alderwood Mall Apple Store. Oh, and credit for that photo of Sparky walking out after being first in line goes to Jim Valley.
Use iTunes 7.7 to sync music, video, and more with iPhone 3G, and download applications from the iTunes Store exclusively designed for iPhone and iPod touch with software version 2.0 or later. Also use the new Remote application for iPhone or iPod touch to control iTunes playback from anywhere in your home — a free download from the App Store.
The App Store isn’t open yet, but give it a few hours.