Apple Computer on Tuesday held the “It’s Showtime!” event to introduce new, upgraded iPod digital media players and second-generation iPod nanos, as well as announce the availability of movies for download from its uber-popular iTunes Music Store, MacCentral reports via Computerworld.com.
|Apple’s Steve Jobs|
First, Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs showed off the Cupertino, Calif.-based firm’s new and improved iPod with video functionality, which features a display that is 60 percent brighter than its predecessor and a video playback battery life of up to 75 percent longer than the previous iPod’s two hours of video play, according to MacCentral.
Jobs also touted the new iPod “earbud” design that he said took the company a year and a half to complete, MacCentral reports. In addition, the enhanced video iPod now includes a feature that allows users to search their video or music libraries using the device’s click wheel, according to MacCentral.
Two versions will be available in Apple’s signature white or black at $249 for a 30GB model and $349 for an 80GB version, MacCentral reports.
Apple’s popular flash-based iPod nanos—which Jobs called the “most popular MP3 player in the world”—also got an upgrade, according to MacCentral. The tiny digital media players will now be made out of aluminum to make them more scratch-resistant, and they’ll come in a handful of colors including blue, pink, green, silver and black, MacCentral reports.
|2nd-Gen iPod nanos|
The second-generation iPod nanos also feature extended battery life of nearly 24 hours of playback, compared with the 14-hour playback of its predecessor, according to MacCentral.
They’ll be available in a $149 2GB version, a $199 4GB model and a $249 8GB edition, MacCentral reports.
Apple also unveiled its newly designed, second-gen iPod shuffle, which is even smaller than the first-gen version and wears a price tag of $79 for a 1GB model, according to MacCentral. The new iPod shuffles will be available sometime in October, MacCentral reports.
|2nd-Gen iPod shuffle|
In perhaps the event’s most anticipated announcement, Jobs said the firm will now offer film downloads via its popular iTunes Music Store—which has been rebranded as the iTunes Store, as it offers users much more than music content, according to MacCentral.
“Today I want to talk about adding movies to the iTunes Store and the whole iTunes-iPod experience,” Jobs said, MacCentral reports. “Today we’re starting out with films from Disney, Pixar, Touchstone and Miramax—four studios owned by Walt Disney Co.”
iTunes users will be able to download 75 new and older titles on Tuesday, and Apple plans to soon build its film catalog, according to MacCentral. New films will sell for $12.99 for preorder and during the first week after they’re released, and they’ll become available on the same date the DVD hits retail stores, MacCentral reports. After the first week, they’ll bump up to $14.99, and older films will sell for $9.99, according to MacCentral.
Jobs said Apple expects to go international with the movie service in 2007, MacCentral reports.
The film download announcement comes at a time when more and more firms—and consumers—are looking to experiment with film download services. In July, Movielink said it would offer legal film downloads that can be burned onto DVD, and just last week, Amazon.com said it would sell film downloads, though its content cannot be burned onto DVDs. A few weeks earlier, AOL announced it would try its hand in the movie download space as well.
- CinemaNow to Offer Burnable Film Downloads