Cupertino, Calif. – At a media event on Wednesday, Apple (NASD: AAPL) CEO
Steve Jobs unveiled new designs for all of its iPods, a new version of iTunes
with a music social network called Ping, the second generation of its Apple TV
streaming video device, and a new iTunes Store movie and TV show rentals
service. The new $99 Apple TV is one-fourth the size of the first model, and
now exclusively supports a new rental model for movies and TV shows.
iTunes features the largest library of HD movies — available day-and-date with
DVD for $4.99 — as well as all of Netflix’s (NASD: NFLX) Instant Streaming library for
subscribers to that service.
Jobs unveiled new designs for all of
Apple’s iPods, which to date have now sold 270 million units worldwide.
iPod nano has eliminated all buttons in favor of a multi-touch screen, like the
iPhone and iPad, and is now almost half as small and light as its predecessor
— small enough that it features a clip like the iPod shuffle. The
now-square-shaped device will sell for $149 (8GB) or $179 (16GB).
Jobs said the iPod touch is the top-selling iPod, and is now the top-selling
portable game player — outselling Nintendo and Sony handheld game systems
device now features the "retina display" and Apple A4 chip found in
the iPhone 4, a 3-axis gyro, an HD video camera, a front-facing camera and
FaceTime — the new video chat feature on the iPhone. The new iPod touch will
sell in 8GB ($229), 32GB ($299) and 64GB ($399) models.
A new iPod shuffle is smaller than the previous model, comes in five
colors, features voice-over and playlist creation, and will sell for $49. All the new iPods are
available for pre-order today, and will begin shipping next week.
introduced iTunes 10, an update to its software and store that has to date served
11.7 billion songs, 450 million TV epiodes, 100 million movies and 35 million
books. The iTunes 10 software logo loses the CD icon — as next year the store
is expected to overtake CD sales.
The iTunes Store update focuses on music
discovery, with a new music-focused social network called "Ping."
Built into iTunes, Ping will let iTunes’ 160 million users follow friends and
favorite artists, on computers as well as the iPhone and iPod touch.
activity on the store by friends, as well as Twitter-like posts and photos from
artists, appear in a "news feed" stream. Ping also provides a custom
top-ten chart based on what a user’s friends are downloading on iTunes.
provided a live stream of the event from its website — but only made it
available for customers of its products — as the stream required either a Mac,
iPhone, iPod touch or iPad running the company’s Safari browser to view.
event ended with a live performance from Coldplay’s Chris Martin.
Clarification: A PR representative from Apple rival Amazon.com contacted DMW to ask if we’d clarify that Apple’s 35 million e-books figure refers to downloads served — not sold — from the iTunes Store, as the number includes free titles.