Tag Archive: Apple


Dropbox acquires Mailbox – battle for the mobile cloud begins

Fast moving cloud player Dropbox revealed a new acquisition that indicates its destiny lies in the direction of the mobile cloud with the purchase of mobile mail startup Mailbox. This is in addition to other recent acquisitions that include mobile cloud music service Audiogalaxy, tablet advertising platform TapEngage and photo service Snapjoy.

Dropbox, which counts over 100m users worldwide and which plans to create up to 40 new jobs in Dublin is assembling many of the components it needs to become a next generation IT giant.

Dropbox is a free cloud service that lets users bring all photos, docs and videos into a folder that can be accessed on any PC, Mac, iOS, BlackBerry or Android device and across a variety of web browsers.

MIT graduates Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi began work on Dropbox in 2007, as a Y Combinator start-up. It emerged in April last year that U2’s Bono and the Edge took part in a US$250m second-round funding of Dropbox. Read more here: http://bit.ly/15aOFgq

The mobile cloud is the cloud

Writing in the Dropbox blog, founders Houston and Ferdowsi said not had they fallen in love with the Mailbox app, they said they felt it actually was one of the few mail apps to actually deliver on the promise of helping users with their overflowing inboxes.

They said that Dropbox and Mailbox were a natural fit.

“We all quickly realised that together we could save millions of people a lot of pain.

“Dropbox doesn’t replace your folders or your hard drive: it makes them better. The same is true with Mailbox. It doesn’t replace your email: it makes it better. Whether it’s your Dropbox or your Mailbox, we want to find ways to simplify your life.

“We’re all looking forward to making Mailbox even better and getting it into as many people’s hands as possible. There’s so much to do and we’re excited to get started,” Houston and Ferdowsi wrote.

 

Regardless if you’re a musician or music consumer, your music life is about to change. Slowly but surely digital music distribution has been evolving from downloads to streaming, but that transition has been really picking up speed over the last 12 months. With Spotify leading the way thanks to reams of publicity, more and more consumers are finding that the joy of renting music beats owning it by a long shot.

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While it’s been long rumored that Apple has their own streaming service up their sleeve, several developments reveal the change that is about to come.

First is the fact that Jimmy Iovine’s Daisy project (named after the first computer generated song) just received a $60 million injection from the likes of Warner Music Group’s owner Len BlavatnikFort Worth billionaire Lee Bass and Australian financier James Packer. This is a serious investment by some deep pockets that know what they’re doing and don’t like to lose. Then comes word that Apple’s Tim Cook recently took a meeting with Iovine to be briefed on the project. Does that mean a collaboration? We don’t know, but at the very least, Apple has a good working relationship with Iovine, since he was one of the first to sign Universal Music onto iTunes back in 2001. Together they’d be a powerhouse, a true 1200 pound gorilla. Chances are that Apple will chose to go it alone and just stay at 800 pounds though. It doesn’t need a partner, but if there’s something there worth buying, they have lots of money.

Then comes word that Google has been quietly making deals with all the major labels for their own YouTube-based subscription streaming service to be launched later in the year.

If all this were happening a couple of years ago we would’ve looked to only one of these prospective services to be left standing at some point, with the others falling by the wayside. But this is a different time, with the streaming business far more mature thanks to the likes of Spotify, Pandora, Rdio, Slacker, et al. It’s now probably possible that all of these new services survive if they’re at least half-way decent in their user operation and offerings.

This is definitely going to be a big win for consumers, with nearly an unlimited selection of songs available for a relatively small monthly fee (not sure what the price point will end up being, but $9.95 keeps being mentioned). Consumers are quickly seeing the advantages of renting their music.

It will be a different story for artists and songwriters however. By now everyone knows how little the royalty can be from a stream, with stories abounding about income lost by the writer and artist. Although a full transition to streaming will be a godsend for the labels, with steady monthly income actually bolstering their bottom line, you can bet that not much of that will trickle down to the artists – at least at first.

It’s not going to happen overnight, but within a matter of time, you’ll see the entirety of the management and law categories of the music business devise a better way to get paid, and eventually force the labels to fall in line. And when that happens, it will trickle down to the DIYers who insist on doing it their way. To what degree this all takes place, we’ll have to wait and see.

While we’re currently in the era of Music 3.0, we’re about to see the next stage of the music business. Welcome to Music 3.5! Read more here: http://bit.ly/X6Yx7o

In Rainbows

Thom Yorke, the ethereal-voiced lead singer of the music group Radiohead, isn’t a fan of what Apple, Google, and other technology companies are doing to media. In an interview with UK-publication The Guardian, Yorke lamented what he said were attempts by tech companies to turn songs into commodities.

“They have to keep commodifying things to keep the share price up,” Yorke said. “But in doing so they have made all content, including music and newspapers, worthless in order to make their billions. And this is what we want? I still think it will be undermined in some way.”

Five years ago, Yorke and Radiohead became Internet heroes when they self released the album In Rainbows over the Web and told fans to pay what they wanted for the work. In the interview, Yorke sounded more skeptical about that kind of distribution now. http://bit.ly/YXV1j4

 

<p>iTunes</p>

Credit: Apple
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The answer to the trivia question will be: “Monkey Drums (Goskel Vancin Remix) by Chase Buch.” That’s the 25-billionth song purchased on iTunes.
Apple announced the sales milestone in a news release Wednesday. The company says Phillip Lupke of Germany purchased and downloaded Buch’s song and will receive an iTunes gift card worth 10,000 euros, or about $13, 500.
It took the Cupertino, Calif., company almost 10 years to reach the milestone. Customers download an average of 15,000 songs a minute from the iTunes music store, which was launched in April 2003. The digital retailer’s catalog is 26 million songs deep.
Copyright (2013) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Source from hitfix.com. 

 

Biffy Clyro score first ever Official UK Number One album

Photo: Press

Biffy Clyro have scored their first ever Official UK Album Chart Number One with ‘Opposites’. The Scottish rockers sixth studio album sold an impressive 75,000 copies in its first week, eclipsing the 43,000 previous album ‘Only Revolutions‘ sold, to debut in at the top, according to the Official Charts Company.

The double album is the highest selling new entry of 2013 so far and has knocked ‘Les Miserables: The Motion Picture Cast Recording’ down to Number Two in the Official UK Album Chart.

Meanwhile, thirty five years after its original release, Fleetwood Mac‘s ‘Rumours‘ is back in the charts. The seminal album, which has been reissued, enters the chart at Number 3. Emeli Sande‘s ‘Our Version Of Events’ is at Number Four and Justin Bieber‘s ‘Believe’ is at Number Five.

For more on Biffy Clyro and the story behind ‘Opposites’, pick up a copy of this week’s NME digitally or at newsstands now or read here: http://bit.ly/UjeXhg

The Strokes
NEW MUSIC FROM THE STROKES

New album coverhey guys,

it sure has been a while. lots going on these days…

first off, the new album. it’s got a title (Comedown Machine). it’s got artwork (see right). it’s got a release date (3/26 in the U.S. and 3/25 in the U.K. for other international release dates, best to check your local media for upcoming news). you can also preorder it in the band’s store. head over to thestrokes.com for more.

next up, the single…

the first official single is called “all the time” and we’ll have it ready for you on 2/19 when it will be available as an instant download for anyone that preorders “Comedown Machine” @ iTunes or the strokes store.

hopefully you’ll be hearing it on the radio before then though. if not, call your local radio stations and ask them to play “all the time”… they’ll have the track in house by valentine’s day, but probably not before.

last but not least, free music

Free Downloadthat’s right, free. in case you haven’t heard, last friday, we posted a free song from “Comedown Machine” atthestrokes.com. it’s called “one way trigger”. it won’t be free forever so go download your copy now or you’ll have to wait for the full-length album to come out soon.

oh, and if you’re one of the new folks to join our list through this promo, now’s probably a good a time as any to say “welcome!” from all of us. so, welcome! you’ll be hearing from me plenty more as we get closer to 3/26, though i think that’s just about enough for now.

in the meantime, all news can be followed at thestrokes.com

until next time…

-ryan
wiz kid mgmt.

 

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Whether you’re running Android or iOS, 2012 was a great year for the advancement of apps. With the return of some old favorites on iOS (Google Maps: distance indeed made the heart grow fonder…) and some amazing newcomers like my new personal favorite, Paper, we’ve taken the time to rank our 10 favorite. List yours in the comment box below.

10. Simplenote
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This is a cloud-based note-taking app that’s elegant in its simplicity. It syncs with a number of different desktop/laptop note-taking apps (I sync mine with the minimalist Notational Velocity), and ensures that whatever notes you take on the road will be there for you when you return to your home computer, and vice versa.—George Howard

9. Phraseology
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A tablet would never be my first choice for writing or editing, but when I’m in a pickle Phraseology makes it work. It’s a smartly designed word processor app that lets me shuttle words, sentences and paragraphs around with ease. It also lists more stats than a baseball card, running down my word count, my total characters, my average number of words per sentences, and more. It’s still awkward typing on a virtual keyboard, but even without a keyboard attachment Phraseology is a useful little writing app.—Garrett Martin

8. Viggle
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If you love getting punch cards at restaurants and coffee shops, you’ll love Viggle. Viggle is a television loyalty-rewards app that “checks-in” users to shows. Once Viggle magically confirms that you are indeed watching a show on your television, you’ll immediately begin to rack up Viggle points that you can eventually spend on rewards like gift cards and even a free month of Hulu Plus. It seems a bit hokey at first, but in the era of television streaming, Viggle is a noble attempt to get people back in front of their TVs and watching their shows together in community. Plus, who else has ever offered you free stuff just for watching TV?—Luke Larsen

7. Pocket (Formerly Read It Later)
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Pocket is a complete revamp of the now-familiar Read It Later service, complete with a name change and a new interface that allows video and photos to be saved for later. And we’re not talking about simply aggregating a list of virtual bookmarks; Pocket caches all your content (outside of video) so it’s all available offline. This handy service works across Android and iOS devices, as well as computers. It’s easy to use and it’s got an interface that makes Instapaper feel a little dated. But Pocket isn’t interested in competing with Instapaper; one is for text and one is for multimedia. Pocket is great at what it does, and comes highly recommended.—Luke Larsen

6. The Magazine
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The Magazine, developed by Marco Arment (who also created Instapaper and kicked off the read-it-later trend), finally gave me a good reason to use the Newsstand feature of iOS. It’s an entirely digital magazine, covering topics from achieving the perfect wet shave to the Tour de France, with an issue every two weeks. Originally written for geeks by geeks, The Magazine continues broadening its scope and embracing more and more variety as it grows. Subscribing costs $1.99/month, and each issue comes with four to six articles for your perusal. The user interface is beautifully intuitive; it’s so easy to use that many people have suggested the app is re-inventing what a digital magazine should look like. 8-ball says that might be true!—Nathan Snelgrove

5. Clear
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Clear is nothing more than a to-do list. You can make tasks, rename them, reorder them, and delete them. That’s it. However, the success of Clear speaks to the real purpose behind these things we call “apps”—especially the things we call “productivity apps”. Clear doesn’t just make tasks fun—it has actually made me more productive. In the most intuitive and beautiful way possible, this app does exactly what it promises: cuts out all the extra baggage that most productivity apps pile on and leaves you with a clear view of your tasks at hand.—Luke Larsen

4. Flipboard
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Flipboard didn’t debut in 2012, but it did expand its wings this year to devices beyond its iPad and iPhone origins and embrace Android devices. Flipboard has been the killer app for news aggregation on the go for two years ago, and that claim has only solidified this year. Integration with Facebook, Twitter, and yourRSS Feeds make it the perfect way to get news. Beyond that, though, the Flipboard team started experimenting with in-app advertising. At this point, you’ve probably noticed the full-page glossy-style advertising that seems like it’s been ripped straight from a real magazine. But beyond that, Levi’s was the first to take advantage of a Flipboard catalogue in September, a first for a mobile app. Flipboard’s approach to advertising may be in-your-face compared to some of their competitors, but it’s working for them and users seem to actually enjoy it. And those pageflips!—Nathan Snelgrove

3. Paper
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It’s always the apps that are built from the ground-up with a specific device in mind that feel the most intuitive. In that way, Paper for the iPad seems like a no-brainer. Paper is the simplest painting app imaginable. No menu of tools and brushes — just a single brush and the blank white canvas to start off with. Paper’s limited tools will definitely force you to use your imagination but in a world dominated by software like Photoshop and Microsoft Word, the limitations are a breathe of fresh air. With Paper, less is definitely more — and we couldn’t be happier about it.—Luke Larsen

2. Figure
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Media consumption dominates so much of what smartphone and tablets users do on their devices. That’s why when an app as beautiful and fun to play with as Figure comes around, we should all pay attention. And who better to make a miniature synth sequencer than Propellerhead, the creators of the industry standard MIDI sequencing software Reason? But Figure is more than just a bite-sized Reason. It is simplified, but it’s also an incredibly satisfying new way to create beats and loops. Hit record and you might just be a few swipes away from your next big single.—Luke Larsen

1. Google Maps
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Under the direction of Tim Cook and Scott Forstall, 2012 was going to be the year that Apple would finally release itself from Google’s hold on map and GPS services on their devices. Instead, Apple ended up making of their biggest software blunders in recent memory and left iPhone users wondering if Android users really were better off. Fortunately, Google released Google Maps—the best iOS app they’ve ever made. It features a superb UI, turn-by-turn voice navigation, and some very snappy new vector-based maps. If you still need proof that Google knows UI just as well as it knows algorithms, look no further. Most importantly though, iPhone users will no longer be driving around completely lost screaming into their phones.—Luke Larsen

 

— articles by tyler kane for pastemagazine.com

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