Spotify launched in the United States less than two weeks ago and it is already the target of a patent infringement lawsuit. A firm called PacketVideo is suing and alleges that Spotify is infringing on patent 5,646,276 for “a device for the distribution of music information in digital form.” The patent describes a method of accessing music through a “central memory device” that is connected to a “communications network and has a databank of digitized music information.” Surely, your computer, mobile devices and the cloud are all “central memory devices” that can be used to access Spotify over communications networks, but the lawsuit sounds a bit far fetched to us. After all, there are dozens of competing services such as Rhapsody, Apple iCloud, Amazon, Pandora and Slacker that offer a similar experience. According to TechDirt, PacketVideo purchased the patent in question in 1995. More →
Samsung announced on Wednesday that it will hold an event on August 3rd during which all Galaxy Tab 10.1 owners can bring in their tablets to have them updated to the latest software build. The update will add Samsung’s custom TouchWiz user interface, which includes live panels and mini apps, as well as a redesigned Samsung Hub application. It will also install Words with Friends, Amazon’s Cloud Player for music and Amazon’s Kindle software. Galaxy Tab 10.1 owners in the New York area can bring their units to the Samsung Experience Store at Columbus Circle between 1:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. to have their devices updated for free. Those outside the New York metropolitan area will receive an over-the-air update “soon.”
Custom music steaming company Spotify on Wednesday announced that it will soon launch its popular service in the U.S. The company has been rumored to be in negotiations with major U.S. music labels for more than a year now, and it looks like those negotiations finally panned out. “The award-winning music service that’s taken Europe by storm will soon be landing on US shores,” the company said in a statement on its website. “Millions of tracks ready to play instantly, on your computer and your phone.” In markets where the service is currently available, Spotify allows users to stream music on demand for free to PCs. For a monthly fee, the service adds additional features and supports more devices, such as the iPhone, iPad and Android devices. Pricing and other details for the U.S. market have not yet been announced. More →
Moments ago, Microsoft officially released its new cloud-based Office product, Office 365, which will compete directly with Google Docs. The Office 365 suite, which has been in public beta for awhile now, is being targeted at the enterprise market and plans for the entire suite cost between $10 and $27 each month depending on the feature set chosen. Small and medium-sized businesses can also choose a more cost effective $6 option that only includes Office Web Apps and Microsoft Exchange. Those options, however, are all more expensive than the $50 annual fee that Google charges corporate users for access to its Google Docs suite. Microsoft’s full press release follows below. More →
Apple’s senior manager in charge of its new iCloud solution has left the company to join online healthcare startup HealthTeacher. John Herbold held senior positions on the iCloud team and the MobileMe team before that, and he worked on a number of other projects while at Apple. Herbold joins HealthTeacher as Vice President of Product, focusing on digital engagement. “John has a proven background of engaging audiences across the devices we use to learn,play, socialize and be entertained,” said Scott McQuigg, CEO of HealthTeacher, in a statement. “Applying his experience developing world-class interactive products, John will lead our efforts tobroaden digital engagement with kids, their families and their teachers, all focused on measurably improving youth health.” HealthTeacher, according to the company’s website, is a service for school teachers that helps them provide health promotion, disease prevention, social/emotional wellness and safety resources to students. HealthTeacher’s full press release follows below. More →
Apple’s new iCloud service — announced during Steve Jobs’ WWDC keynote on Monday — will not launch in the United Kingdom until at least the first quarter of 2012. A representative from the Performing Right Society (PRS), an association of songwriters, music publishers, and composers in the United Kingdom told The Telegraph that negotiations with Apple are still at a “very early stage.”
The licensing team at the PRS have started talks with Apple, but are a long way off from any deals being signed … It is very much the early stages of the negotiations and is similar to the launch of iTunes – which began in the US and took a while to roll out to other countries
iCloud will launch in tandem with iOS 5 in the United States this fall. More →
Welcome one and all to BGR’s live coverage of Apple’s WWDC 2011 keynote! Apple CEO Steve Jobs is on hand to unveil the latest Apple has to offer, and we’re expecting a huge event despite the fact that Apple is not expected to reveal a new iPhone model at the show this year. Instead, Apple will focus on software, with the big addition being the company’s new iCloud service. Apple will also show off more OS X Lion details during the keynote, but we have to admit: we’re much more anxious to see Apple show off iOS 5 for the first time. We think iOS 5 is going to be the most significant update to the platform since Apple introduced the App Store alongside iOS 2.0. A completely rebuilt notification system, basic widget functionality, a new automatic app update delivery mechanism and deep social integration are among the changes we’ll be looking for, but we’re certain that Apple has a few surprises up its sleeve as well. Hit the break for our live coverage of Apple’s WWDC 2011 keynote for the latest updates! More →
BGR has landed on the left coast to bring you live coverage of one of the most anticipated tech events of the year: Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference 2011 keynote. Apple CEO Steve Jobs will be on hand with the usual suspects at his side to give the world its first look at the future of Apple software. In uncharacteristic fashion, Apple let the cat out of the bag ahead of the show this year — well, part of the cat, at least — so we know we’re in store for some goodies surrounding iOS 5, Mac OS X Lion and of course, iCloud. We’re sure the crew from Cupertino has a few surprises up its sleeve, of course, so be sure to tune in for all the latest news as it breaks.
Bookmark this link and make sure to head there for our live coverage of Steve Jobs’ keynote! Coverage starts at or around 12:30 p.m. EDT / 9:30 a.m. PDT.
That’s right, we’ll be at Moscone in downtown San Francisco on Monday covering Apple’s annual WWDC conference live! Apple already tipped its hat as to what Steve Jobs and co. will be speaking on, but let’s not kid ourselves… it’s sure to be the biggest WWDC keynote in recent years. Mac OS X Lion 10.7 will be shown, iOS 5 will be revealed for the first time — most likely with major, major changes — and Apple’s iCloud service will make its debut among other announcements. Make sure to follow along with our liveblog starting around 9:30 a.m. PDT / 12:30 p.m. EDT on Monday at the address below (it won’t be live until then!).
Apple confirmed on Tuesday that CEO Steve Jobs will be on hand at the company’s Worldwide Developer Conference next week to unveil Apple’s next-generation software. Jobs and other Apple executives will finally take the wraps off iOS 5, the highly anticipated software update iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users around the world have been clamoring for. Among the enhancements expected to be revealed are widgets and a completely revamped notification system. Apple will also detail its new iCloud offering, and while the company did not elaborate on the offering, it is expected to be a suite of cloud-based services that will include a streaming music service backed by major record labels in the U.S. Finally, Apple said it will provide new details surrounding Lion, the eighth major release of the Mac OS X operating system. Hit the break for Apple’s full press release.
Apple is expected to finally unveil its cloud-based music service next month at its annual Worldwide Developer Conference in San Francisco. Unlike similar products recently introduced by Google and Amazon that feature limited utility, Apple is thought to have deals in place with major record labels that will allow it to offer a paid service and a simplified library building process. The service has been rumored to be in development for years, and now Bloomberg Businessweek has supposedly spilled the beans, detailing exactly how the offering will work. Citing anonymous sources who were briefed on Apple’s talks with record labels, Apple’s cloud music service will constantly scan a user’s iTunes library and mirror the songs on Apple servers. The user will then be able to stream the music to any PC, iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, and some day, even to a car. While the appeal of such a service might be questionable due to the ever-increasing storage capacity of Apple’s portable iOS devices, it is believed that Apple plans to charge a monthly fee for the service. More →
Google has updated its brand new Google Music application for Android application with one change that will be welcome to many users. It’s now possible to delete songs directly from your microSD card — an option that was frustratingly missing from the original launch — and it should include bug fixes as well. The search engine announced Google Music in tandem with its new Music Beta cloud storage platform earlier this month, and if you haven’t given it a try yet we highly suggest that you do. The app’s user interface is a large improvement over the default Android music player. The update is free and is available in the Android Market now.
mSpot just took the wraps off of its new Radio Spotter Beta app for Android, which will allow users to listen to their own cloud-based music, as well as tunes from streaming radio stations. It works like this: you can match any song you’re playing from your own collection to a radio station to continue playing similar music, or you can select a specific radio station based on genre directly from the application itself. There’s even a new mSpot Music Android application with the built-in Radio Spotter support, so you can take your stations on the go, too. mSpot provides 5GB of space free to new users, but you can sign up for 40GB for $3.99 per month if you have a larger music collection. The company says an iPhone version of the application with Radio Spotter support will launch later this year. Hit the jump for the full release from mSpot. More →