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Let's Rock: The Liveblog


Welcome to TUAW's live blog of today's "Let's Rock" Apple event. We'll be metaliveblogging all the events as they happen. So sit back, grab some pretzels and enjoy as we discover what new and exciting products and services Apple will be pulling out of their steve sleeve.

We'll be metaliveblogging using the following source sites:

10:50. And as Porky Pig would say, th' th' th' that's all folks. AAPL: 153.10 -4.82 (-3.05 percent). No tablet (surprise!) and no iTunes unlimited.

10:50. Sounds like wrap-up. One more thing. Please one more thing. Please... Er, no. Her comes the music. Jack Johnson. #1 selling male artist in iTunes history according to Engadget.

10:50. Ars: Backing up to iTunes is dramatically faster, less crashing. Improved battery life, etc. 2.1 update available for iPhone too. Victor: "So no voice recorder/genius for iPhone?" I'm betting on genius for iPhone but probably not voice recorder.

10:50. Firmware 2.1 Available today. Free update from 2.0. $9.95 from 1.x. Victor A. "So it won't crash like a [redacted] with more than 12 apps." Not-so-hidden message of this lengthly demo according to Macworld: iPods make swell Christmas gifts.

10:45. iPod touch: 36 hours of music, 6 hours of video, environmentally sound design. Arsenic-free glass, BFR-free, mercury-free, PVC-free, highly recyclable. "This is the funnest iPod ever!" -- S. Jobs. They should use that in a new iPod touch ad. All models available today -- and they're playing a new ad right now, which sadly does not have the Jobs money quote. The iPod touch can use those new headphones too. Steve: "It's the best portable device for playing games. Hmmm. Spinning the iPod touch as a...gaming device?

10:45. Isn't it odd that Jobs whipped through the iPods and iTunes so fast -- and is spending all this time on games? Need for Speed -- you transport a package across town.

10:40. Ars: Now demoing Gameloft, "Real Soccer 2009" brand new game shipping today. Schramm: "Gameloft is a little better than EA but they're still not real iPhone developers." I'm still waiting for the tablet. Sure, let me just hold my breath...not. Caolo: "I like spore. It's fun." Schramm: "You can have fun with spore but if I was going to show off a game at a huge demo it wouldn't be my choice." Now demoing an EA game "Need for Speed" for touch and phone. Due out later this year.

10:40. Phil really likes Spore. Go fig. Schramm: "we better get a damn iphone update -- no way the nano and touch are cooler than my phone"

10:35. AAPL: 154.19 -3.73 (-2.36 percent). Gruber on voice recording dismay. Time for boring Phil Schiller games demo. Robert: "Phil will demonstrate "iMullet" which keeps track of hockey scores. You can also use it to field dress a moose." Mike does his Schiller impression. "Thanks Steve!" Actual demo: Spore Origins. Schramm: "Why not demo a game from a REAL mac developer?"

10:35. App Store users have downloaded 100 MILLION applications so far. More. App Store in 62 countries. About 700 games on App Store. Half of them are Sudoku. (Still no purple iPhones. But there's always custom coloration.)

10:30. NEW TOUCH. Same shape as 3G. Made from polished steel (finger prints!). Volume buttons on the side. Robert P: "C'mon whispernet!" Same display, thinner. Robert: "Papa NEEDS whispernet!" Ars: built-in speaker like on the iPhone, "really hard for something this thin, for casual listening" - Integrated volume controls into the side like on the iPhone. Nike+ built in to the touch. (Bing!) AppStore built in. Genius playlist built-in. 802.11 b/g. (oh NICE!)

10:30. Twitter Laugh: Looking at this picture of iPod Nanos reminds me of every "group picture of bridesmaids" I've ever seen.

10:25. Headphones cost $79 -- available next month. In-ear versions for $79 in October. "We think we really go it right this time" -- Ars. Shiny! Showing the new ad now. In it, nanos fly together to form the lineup -- because you'll want to buy one of each color and carry them around on a special belt.

10:25. Ars: New headphones have a little thing on the cable like from the iPhone, if you double click it, goes to next song, single click pause, triple click previous song. That sounds to me that they've added the clicker from the iPhone.

10:25. Engadget: Bright blue, purple, orange,m green, pink. These look pretty slick. "Entry price of $149 for 8GB, $199 for 16GB. Ships today. 8GB in stock now (or soon), 16GB next weekend or early next week at the latest. Nano-chromatic! Robert P. "How many meetings did it take to agree on THAT phrase?"

10:20. Shake to shuffle! The rumor was TRUE! Wow, someone is so getting fired today. Schramm: "Silly" Caolo: "Wow, cool!" Victor: "What happens when you go jogging and shake it by accident?" That's it for nano: 24 hours for music, 4 hours for video, great new features, great battery life. AAPL: 155.43 -2.49 (-1.58 percent) Ars: New iPods are looking great: arsenic-free glass, BFR-free, mercury-free, PVC-free, highly recyclable

10:20. Robert P. "MacWorld's photo of Steve makes me think he's looking a lot better than last time."

10:20. Accelerometer! Ars: "Turn it sideways and see full-size album art, see photos in landscape mode, video." Nano has a voice recording feature when it detects a microphone -- like the iPod classics. Offers coverflow in landscape orientation, and video. Voice Recorder, Calendar, now being demoed. Stopwatch, etc.

10:15. Wow, he's going fast. Either this is going to be a short session or something else is coming up. 4G Nano: Thinnest iPod ever made, Oval shape, fits beautifully with the line of 1st/2nd gen portrait mode. Exactly the same display. AAPL: 157.37 -0.55 (-0.35 percent) Rumors were totally right on the nano.

10:15. New classic: 120 (?) GB for $249. No more 160GB model. 30,000 songs in your pocket. They show the silver model. Nano ready for (bing!) 4th generation.

10:15. So is Genius based off an algorithm or user data on playcounts? iPod is currently holding at 73.4% marketshare. Over 5000 accessories, thriving ecosystem. Steve Jobs: "They announce products before we want them to -- so funny!"

10:15. iTunes 8 available today as a free download.

10:10. Genius updates appear to be pushed, yes. "I'm Sorry, Dave. I cannot recommend that song for you. Daisy, daisy, give me your answer true..."

10:10. People, we have the boom.

10:10. Demoing HD TV shows right now. (The Office). Cory: "OMG OMG Shiny happy HD content in iTunes!" Album view now resembles events view in iPhoto. BOOM!

10:10. Genius will match the current song to 25, 50, 75 or 100 recommendations from the iTunes store. Implemented with a new "Genius Algorithms". Robert: "Sounds like a privacy nightmare about to happen. mean, I don't want people to know I secretly love Dave Matthews." Demo: "Just one click!" Results tailored to your music library, all opt-in. Updated once a week automaticaly. Button in right hand lower corner makes genius playlist, with a drop-down for track limit. Funny, all of Cory's recommendations are for Barry Manilow. Wonder why?

10:05. At the mention of Battlestar Galactica in High Def, Dave Caolo went a little glassy eyed with happiness. AAPL is up 2.03, or about 1.29%. En: Genius' -- it allows you to make playlists from songs in your library that go together. It helps you rediscover music in your library. And it really works well." i.e. Exactly what we've been hearing the last few days. Boy, the rumor mill was right on on this.

10:05. En: "Old browsing wasn't efficient, in iTunes 8 you can look by album cover, and this new bar at the top let's you look at anything graphically in little tiles."Macworld: Wonder what kind of deal they made with NBC to get that?

10:05. New stuff in iTunes 8: HD TV Shows, accessibility -- requests for voice over and other accessibility tech is there. New Browsing. Genius (ping!).

10:05. NBC shows are back. SD shows still $1.99. iTunes 8. (TUAW correct-meter goes ping. You can watch HD/SD both on AppleTV and Mac /PC.

10:00. Steve is there: thin but there. He's joking about the obit -- standard black turtleneck and jeans. Skinny but energetic. "Reports of my death greatly exaggerated." Music is the main topic today (secondary topics? YAY!) -- First up iTunes. 65 MILLION iTunes accounts with credit cards. iTunes: Number 1 music distributer in any format in US. Adding HD TV Shows. HD Shows cost $2.99 and can watch them on the computer not just AppleTV like movies.

10:00. For a "small" event, it's packed with newsfolk, bloggers, etc. Two iMacs on stage plus water bottles. Not a single song from the last decade or two. The Doors playing now. Cory: "Why 2 iMacs at an iPod event?" My guess: iTunes. Lights going down

10:00. More confirmation about Magnetosphere with the Barbarian Group reps at the event. We're guessing that Apple bought Magnetosphere for iTunes 8 integration. TUAW previous Magnetosphere coverage here.

9:55. Let's Rock! Cory is still looking for Bowser -- we're pointing out gently that this is an Apple event and Princess Peach is nowhere to be found here today. And now the Rolling Stones. We're hoping for a Mick Jagger special edition "Losing my (iPod) touch"

9:55. People are so split on twitter -- half the people are like "this is going to be awesome!" the other half are like "this isn't that awesome." What's your call? Hot? Or Not? Slash: "Whoever loaned their iPod to the PA team obviously loves their rock music - we've had Cream's "Sunshine of your Love" and Credence Clearwater Revival's "Fortunate Son" so far" Apple played oldies rock at WWDC as well. Rolling Stones, Hendrix, etc.

9:50. TUAW reader Zachary H has set up an IRC chat room: #letsrocksf @ Slash: "Unfortunately, Apple seem to be cracking down on photography - there's a roped-off area for broadcast media and photographers, but everyone else isn't allowed to take pictures" Reader question: "Are you expecting Steve today?" Answer: Probably not -- and we're sending him good thoughts for a speedy return to health. TUAW source inside the room: Credence Clearwater Revival in the hall

9:45. Awesome! Mike Rose made it to the party -- at 120 mph. He's on Amtrak.

9:40. Hearing lots of WiFi sync buzz. Will it pan out? WiFi Nano?Mike S: "The whole Nano Accelerometer thing is just silly" Live coverage en Espanol here and of course on

9:35. Is this the new Nano interface?

9:30. TUAW's favorite rumor countdown: 5. iTunes 8.0 with genius and ultimate. 4. Kevin Rose iPod Nano, with Nike accelerometer support. 3. iTunes Ultimate subscription style music. 2. Nano with integrated accelerometer support. 1. The iUnicorn: The Newton Tablet Reborn. Also ran: Apple TV refresh. iPhone Firmware 2.1 seems a gimme too.

9:25. SlashGear: Apple PR people are saying it'll be a tight squeeze inside - sounds like the room was smaller than they anticipated. Robert: "If they're quick, they might be able to book an overflow room in the main hall at Moscone." iLounge sees Barbarian Group tshirts outside the event. Mike S. thinks that the Magnetosphere Viz rumors are probably right.

9:20. We're all ready to start liveblogging. So what are you predictions? What do you think Apple will announce this time? New nano? Almost certainly. What about iTunes ultimate? iTunes 8? New HD TV and Rentals? AppleTV refresh? Let us know in the comments.

9:15. Via Slashdot: a live Qik video of the street outside the event.

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