Wednesday, April 29, 2009

New iPhone 3.0 OS Beta 4 Comes With iTunes 8.2 Pre-Release

In keeping with the release schedule they’ve established, Apple yesterday let loose new versions of its iPhone 3.0 OS and accompanying SDK. This time around, developers got another goody, in the form of an early pre-release of iTunes 8.2. The new version of iTunes is apparently required for activating the new iPhone OS beta, build 7A300g. As always, users must also install the latest iPhone SDK (build 9M2732) in order for the update to work properly.

The new iTunes pre-release is stealing the spotlight this time around, thanks to a mention in the “About iTunes” legalese of Blu-ray among other formats mentioned in conjunction with Gracenote, the software used to gather track information when CDs or other media are played back in Apple’s media jukebox app. Many are speculating that this could foretell the coming of the sometimes maligned video disc format to the Mac platform.

Before you get too excited, though, realize (as Gizmodo points out) that the same legal content in iTunes 8.1.1 (the current version) didn’t list DVD, so the inclusion of Blu-ray doesn’t necessarily indicate anything. Unless, of course, it indicates an upcoming ability to play back (folding DVD Player into iTunes and getting rid of the separate app) and/or import from both sources, in addition to CDs. Now that’s tantalizing.

On the iPhone side, there are some nice new features that I actually am really happy to finally see included. The “Store” menu that showed up in previous builds, but that didn’t actually have any content, now lets you sign in and out of your iTunes account, and view and change your account payment details and credit card information. The less dependent on iTunes the iPhone becomes, the better, in my opinion, and this virtually cuts the cord. Now we just need wireless syncing.