In the midst of Apple and ebook publishers collusion allegations brought forth by the Department of Justice (DoJ), Massachusetts Attorney General, Martha Coakley (Democrat), is tossing in her hat by filing a civil antitrust lawsuit. Three book publishers are shelling out over $69 million, $2 million of which is going to Massachusetts customers, to settle out of court. The ongoing lawsuit alleges that Apple got together with publishers and devised a plan to raise ebook prices in Apple's own iBookstore, which is in direct competition with Amazon's Kindle ebook store. Amazon is known for selling it's ebooks at rock-bottom prices, often at the expense of publishers and authors. So, although it appears that the DoJ's lawsuit greatly benefits consumers, who it really benefits is Amazon. Look at it this way: Amazon makes its lion share of money from many different sources, therefore, it can afford to sell ebooks at a loss since consumers buying through Amazon Kindle are exposed to advertisement promoting everything else they sell. Meanwhile, other booksellers are going out of business unable to compete, inadvertently creating a monopoly where Amazon reigns supreme. In the long run, who is this really benefiting? The way I see it, the DoJ lawsuit, although good intentioned, will eventually have the opposite effect of what its trying to achieve; and while now it appears to benefit consumers, in the end, Amazon wins.
Ebook publishers Macmillan and Penguin have not settled and Apple vowed to fight the allegations in court.
Read More | Boston Globe
In a move that's far overdue, Apple has finally launched Hulu Plus on the Apple TV. A software update was released early this morning that adds the Hulu Plus app to the second- and third-generation Apple set-top-box, but it's a behind-the-scenes update. All you need to do is restart your Apple TV if you don't see Hulu Plus on the home screen.
Users can get a 1-week trial, log in with their existing Hulu Plus account, or subscribe right from the Apple TV using their connected iTunes account.
Read More | Hulu
Macotakara is reporting that Apple is set to redesign is iPod nano line, getting rid of the small clip form factor in favor of a more traditional horizontal design. The next iPod nano will purportedly also be about 1/4 shorter than the previous horizontal design, and will also feature a home button, similar to what's found on iOS devices like the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.
Read More | Macotakara
Apple's Ping, the music-based social network that has struggled to find any sort of dedicated fanbase, is set to be killed off with the next iTunes update and the public release of iOS 6, according to The Wall Street Journal. According to the publication:
Ping, which still exists today in iTunes 10.6.3 and the iOS 6 beta - where it doesn't work, will be gone with the software's next major release, likely scheduled for this fall. And at that point Apple's social networking offerings will shift to Twitter and new partner Facebook entirely.
We don't know too many people who'll miss it. Ping has been a far too barren wasteland for far too long. If its something you enjoy, though, then start saying your goodbyes.
Read More | WSJ
Read More | iTunes
In addition to the announcement that there have been over 30 billion App Store downloads, Apple has also announced a couple of other stats during its WWDC 2012 keynote. First, there are over 650,000 apps available for download, with 225,000 of them specifically written for the iPad. Apple made sure to mention that this is compared to just a few hundred that are available for Android and other competing tablets. Also, there are now over 400 million iTunes accounts with credit cards and one-click buying affiliated with them. Lastly, App Store sales have resulted in over $5 billion being paid out to developers. This is definitely a force to be reckoned with.
Apple appears ready to kick off its annual Back to School promo, continuing where it left off last year by offering a $100 iTunes Store gift card with the purchase of a new Mac computer. Additionally, and for the first time, student who purchase an iPad during the promotion will also receive a gift card--this one for $50. The credit is good towards anything you can buy or rent on iTunes, the App Store, the iBookstore, and the Mac App Store. We expect a bunch of new Mac hardware to be announced later this morning during the WWDC 2012 keynote.
Read More | MacRumors
Apple has released a carrier settings update for the iPad. The one we're running if the Verizon LTE 3rd generation model, so your mileage may vary. Plug in and check iTunes to see if it's available for you. If it is, the download and update will take all of just a few seconds, and you're done! Also, if you haven't seen it, check out our new iPad review.
In this episode of Unboxing Live, we give you a look at the new 2012 Apple TV. The main feature of the updated Apple TV is that it can display 1080p content. iTunes has been updated to support the 1080p resolution as well, which makes renting and buying content from iTunes at the highest quality look great on the new Apple TV and the new iPad as well. Netflix has also been updated to stream 1080p with the new device, which is powered by a single-core A5 processor. You can pick up the new Apple TV for $99.
- Fixes several issues that may cause iTunes to unexpectedly quit while playing videos, changing artwork size in Grid view, and syncing photos to devices.
- Addresses an issue where some iTunes interface elements are incorrectly described by VoiceOver and WindowEyes.
- Fixes a problem where iTunes may become unresponsive while syncing iPod nano or iPod shuffle.
- Resolves an ordering problem while browsing TV episodes in your iTunes library on Apple TV.
You can grab the update now through Software Update, or at http://apple.com/itunes.
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