Now this is all just a theory, not a rumor, certainly not a fact, just an idea.
That said, does any remember Lala.com? That little company that Apple bought out and then shutdown, which let you stream your music library to any computer using your web browser. Pretty sweet stuff.
Of course everyone thought iTunes 10 was going to bring Lala’s streaming framework into play, but that didn’t happen. Apple did announce AirPlay which lets you stream media from your iPhone/iPad to AirPlay compatible devices (such as the AppleTV), while cool, this isn’t quite what the masses had hoped for. At least the people that I know.
Enter AirPlay+. Here’s my theory, Apple wanted to get the media streaming down in a local area network type setting, where they don’t face the same bandwidth constraint / requirements as with internet streaming before they even touched it. Admittedly this isn’t much of an issue with music, but what if AirPlay+ let you stream videos as well?
Once they get things working well in that environment I expect us to see Apple roll out AirPlay+, probably as a $9.99 a month subscription based service that allows you to stream any media purchased through your iTunes account to any iOS device, or computer with iTunes installed. We’re talking movies and music videos, as well as your music library. At the same time we’ll see a refresh to the AppleTV software that will enable the same streaming functionality.
This would also be a prime opportunity to increase the value of MobileMe, by including AirPlay+ at no additional charge to MobileMe subscribers. And if we’re lucky, wireless syncing for iPhone/iPod touch/iPad will debut at or around the same time.
Just a quick post to shed some light on an issue some may be having with their iTunes album artwork. The last time I moved my entire iTunes library from one computer to another, I noticed some of my artwork didn’t show up. On doing some research, it seems that ever since iTunes 7, it actually stores the artwork in a separate library file, and doesn’t attach it to the actual music files themselves. While there are some programs like TuneUp that our very own Dave Sack reviewed that will go through your entire collection and change that, an easy and free way to make sure the artwork is attached to any new song you import or purchase is this:
1 – Right-click on the track, and click Get Info
2 – Click on the Art tab on the far right
3 – Click on the artwork once and Control-C to copy (Command-C on Mac)
4 – Press Delete, which will erase the artwork you see
5 – Press Control-V (Command-V) and paste the copied art back in
6 – Press OK
This painfully simple process will actually attach the artwork to the file tag so the artwork will now travel with the file where ever it may go.
Also, if you’d like to embed artwork for an entire album, just select all of the tracks, right-click and go to ‘Get Info’, then paste the artwork into the ‘Artwork’ box… your artwork will be applied to all of the tracks.
Are you one of those people who rip CDs without taking the time to name each track? Or maybe you are one of those individuals who doesn’t exactly buy most of your CDs, you simply acquire them from various locations online, which can lead to a very jumbled messed up music library. Perhaps you have a friend who gave you a large collection of music, but he labels it all differently than you do.
Whatever the case, there’s a number of ways your digital music library can get screwed up beyond all recognition. I know mine is, and it’s due to all of the reasons I listed above. Enter TuneUp.
I don’t remember how I stumbled across this iTunes plug-in (now also for WMP), but it’s freakin’ awesome. I threw everything I had at this thing and it probably fixed over 90% of it with ease, some of the albums were ‘Unknown Artist – Track 01’ and it still found the right CD, correctly updated the metadata, added the cover, and even gave me a few YouTube links about the artist. I emphasize the word correctly because I tried other programs and ended up having a number of my CDs mislabeled, which only complicated matters. The few times TuneUp missed on it’s first try, it gave me a few options of possible matches, and I was able to get it set straight right away. You can even customize the program to fit your desired naming system. I haven’t gotten through my entire collection yet, but it was almost unmanageable before, and this makes pretty quick work of it, all with drag and drop ease.
You can try out the demo, it will help you through 100 song clean-ups and up to 50 cover art saves. I can safely tell you though, if you have a library that needs some work, you will fall in love with this plug-in before the demo runs out. I don’t like paying for computer programs, but this is definitely worth the price. They’ve even provide quick and timely customer service.
I can’t imagine how long it would have taken me to get through my entire music collection, if you want to whip your music collection into shape in a hurry without the headache, don’t bother with anything else, go get TuneUp for PC or Mac.