News Roundup: Why Did the iPod Cross the Road? (and More)

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News Roundup: Why Did the iPod Cross the Road? (and More)

No ped X-ing with iPod? If you travel to or live in New York, you might soon have to hang up your cell phone or take out your iPod earbuds as you cross the street. New York State Sen. Carl Kruger plans to introduce legislation to ban the use of cell phones, music players, and other potentially distracting gadgets by pedestrians as they cross busy intersections. Calling the issue a "major public safety crisis," Kruger cited three deaths in Brooklyn that resulted when cars struck and killed gadget-carrying pedestrians as they crossed a street - despite warnings to "watch out." Peds X-ing while illegally using a handheld device could be fined $100. (Apparently, it's just too much trouble to ask NY drivers to obey traffic laws granting pedestrians right of way.)

 

Amazon Unbox unwrapped. A day after Wal-Mart announced its movie download service, Amazon and TiVo officially announced a similar service. The companies have been beta-testing the Amazon Unbox service with a "select group of TiVo subscribers" since September; the service will be available to all broadband-ready TiVo boxes "soon." Amazon Unbox lets TiVo subscribers download a huge array of movies and TV shows and integrates the content into the Now Playing list of recorded programming. The service could pose an even bigger threat to the iTunes Store's movie sales - not to mention give potential Apple TV purchasers pause - than Wal-Mart's service. And Amazon's prices seem right: TV shows cost $1.99, most movies cost between $9.99 and $14.99 to purchase, and movie rentals start at $1.99.

 

Who thought of the accelerometer first? One of the iPhone's hallmark features is its ability to change to widescreen view when you tilt it counter-clockwise - a feature that lets you view album covers in full-color glory via Cover Flow or watch The Pirates of the Caribbean until salt water seeps out of your ears in its intended wide-but-tiny-screen orientation. But it appears that Sony Ericsson was issued a patent last summer on technology allowing a handheld device's screen to change orientation when the user changes its angle. No word yet on whether Sony Ericsson will sic its lawyers on Jobs and Co. (And you can bet it's not the first, or last, you'll hear of previously filed patents on key iPhone features.)

 

Apple Stores headed Down Under. Aussies clamoring for Apple stores are closer to getting their wish. Sydney will be first, with a Melbourne store not far behind. Depending on how quickly those stores open, employees may receive T-shirts from Apple that read, "Go Beyond Vista." In a move showing that it's not going to let up on Vista, Apple added directives to the training manual encouraging Apple Store employees to go out of their way to emphasizes the Mac's advantages over Windows PCs running Vista.

 

Get ready for Apple WWDC. Email invitations to Apple developers with a Leopard Time Machine theme went out yesterday, asking recipients to mark their calendars for the week of June 11-15. We don't know if we can wait four whole months for Leopard - during which the inevitable Vista vs. Leopard comparisons will no doubt multiply like rabbits - so we really hope Apple throws us a bone and releases it pre-WWDC.

 

Fun 'n' games. Yahoo's trying to get in good with the kidz with Brand Universe, a constellation of websites aimed at users of specific products. To start, they're targeting Nintento Wii addicts with wii.yahoo.com. The site includes contests, news, photos from the Wii group on Flickr, and answers to frequently asked Wii questions. Meanwhile, Roto-Rooter (of all companies) has decked out a toilet with tech whiz-bang and is giving it away to one lucky U.S. resident in a sweepstakes taking place on its website between now and April 2. Best of luck to all contestants!

 

 

 

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Anonymous

Ipods are having large amount of storage capacity that make them better along with good visual ads.Ipod Downloads are really easy to made that make the things more and more interesting.

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Dan Peterson

Unrelated to the article but where's the RSS??? Last time I asked someone said "soon" or something similarly vague. I guess I just got spoiled from having it before the name change but man this sucks now that it's gone. Please if at all possible make it a priority to try and get that back, it's sorely missed.

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Rik

Well, we've got the technology in place - I'm just looking for a free nanosecond to implement it. I've got a helluva week ahead of me, but possibly I'll find time to get it implemented next week; if not, then early the following week. Sorry for the delay.

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Dan Peterson

No problem, thanks for the response. I really look forward to seeing that back :)

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