iTunes 10 and Apple TV Bring In The New Updates

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Today at Apple’s “Special Event September 2010,” we got an introduction to the new version of iTunes. iTunes 10 has arrived, and will be available to download starting at 12:00 AM (that’s midnight) Pacific Time. Overall, there hasn’t been too much changed with the arrival of iTunes 10 (the easiest to notice, is the new icon).

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Aside from a few changes to the ways iTunes can display your library, the new big thing is iTunes Ping. Ping? Surely Apple isn’t trying to play off of Microsoft’s search engine Bing, right? Well, Ping isn’t a search engine. It’s a social network strictly for music! During today’s presentation, Steve had said “It’s like Facebook and Twitter meet iTunes. It’s all about the music.” I know what most people are thinking, and it’s probably along the lines of “Another social network? I already have Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare to keep up on!” Well, Apple’s made it fairly simple, and it really is all about the music!

You can find friends, family, artists, whoever, and see what they’ve been downloading recently from the iTunes store. It’s a great way to find new music, and keep up on artists that your friends are finding.It can also help you find concerts for your favorite bands, and will also be accessible from the iPhone/iPod Touch App Store, not just iTunes! Just like Twitter and Facebook, you can set your privacy settings to be completely public, or have to authorize friend requests for who can view your information.

This morning there was also an introduction to a brand new Apple TV. It’s been made, much, much smaller than the previous version (approximately 1/4th the size) and has been turned black. It’s very easy to fit into an entertainment center and extremely easy to set up. All you need is the power cord, and HDMI cable to connect to the TV, and then either connection to Ethernet or WiFi to cover most uses. There’s also the option of a USB port and an optical audio output.

The device has been made almost entirely silent, and no longer requires syncing of any sort. Nothing is actually stored on the Apple TV, but is all either streamed from the web, a computer, or even an iPad! If the rentable DVDs and TV episodes aren’t enough, you can also stream via Netflix, or access anything on YouTube or browse through Flickr. It’s starting to sound like a great device to hook up to your TV, and access music and videos on the web or your other devices right from the couch! Not to mention, the price has been drastically cut from $299, to only $99! though you’ll have to wait until October 4th to get your hands on one.

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