Macworld Expo keynote coverage, updated live

MacCentral's live keynote coverage has ended. For more details about Tuesday's announcements, please visit MacCentral's home page. For a blow-by-blow account of Steve Jobs keynote, read on! This account was done in reverse chronological order, with the oldest content at the bottom.

"We're starting out with tremendous momentum...with Panther. We've got a lot of new apps," said Jobs. "The G5 has great momentum with some great stuff coming this year."

iPod mini also comes in colors: Gold, blue, pink and green anodized aluminum. Apple expects to ship in February in US, elsewhere in April.

iPod mini: 4GB of memory. 0.5 inches. Sells for $249. The size of a business card. Uses the same user interface as the "big" iPod. Solid state scroll wheel. Buttons have been added right to scroll wheel. FireWire and USB 2.0, either interface charges from the battery, connects via a dock-like connector.

The second member of the iPod family, to go after the flash market. iPod Mini.

Jobs claims the high-end flash-based MP3 player market is about the same as the iPod -- about 31 percent.

iPod updated to 15GB on the low end for $299, starting today. Also offering Apple in-ear headphones for $39, available today.

iPod: Last quarter, Apple sold 730,000 iPods, to push Apple over the 2 million mark. Apple claims 31 percent of market share for Oct - Nov. #1 in units and revenues in the MP3 market, worldwide. "We think the December numbers are going to be even higher."

Jobs then showed a promotional video for iLife featuring celebrity endorsements from Elijah Wood, Tony Hawk, Sheryl Crow.

Jam Pack for GarageBand: more than 2000 more loops, 15 guitar amps, more presets and instruments. $99. Apple will resell M-Audio 49 key keyboard for $99. January 16th.

iLife 04 costs $49. Free with every new Mac. Available January 16th.

Mayer then demonstrated GarageBand's ability to simulate vintage and modern guitar sounds using a MIDI-connected guitar. Mayer also demonstrated a GarageBand composition combining recording, loops and his own live performance. Also supports direct export to iTunes.

A new fifth app: GarageBand. "A major new Pro music tool, but it's for everyone." You can digitally mix up to 64 tracks, play over 50 software instruments, play with a USB or MIDI keyboard. 1000 professional audio loops, a la Soundtrack. You can record live audio performances, more than 200 audio effects, pick from vintage or modern guitar amps. Musician John Mayer helps Jobs to demonstrate GarageBand using a MIDI keyboard. Mayer complimented the quality of GarageBand's guitar simulation on the keyboard.

iDVD: 20 new Hollywood-quality themes have been added. Enhanced menus with nicer transitions. Navigation maps. Enhanced slideshows. Better encoding -- 2 hours of content per DVD. Jobs demonstrated key features.

iMovie: You can trim clips nondestructively directly in the timeline. Audio scrubbing. Alignment guides (like Keynote) are supported. New and enhanced titles. Video can be imported direct from an iSight. "We've made sharing even easier."

iLife 04: Includes latest iTunes release, "works seamlessly" with other iLife apps. iPhoto: The "number one feature" is that it supports up to 25,000 photos with "zero waiting." Time based organization, smart albums, fast preview, Rendezvous photo sharing, rating, enhanced slideshow. Jobs demonstrated new features. Books and prints will be available in Japan later this month and in March in Europe.

iLife: Launched a year ago. iLife 04 introduced today. "Microsoft Office for the rest of your life." (When you're not at work).

iTunes "fun things coming up": February 1st brings 100 million song giveaway from Pepsi and Apple. One in three is a winner. Pepsi will run a SuperBowl ad for it.

500,000 songs available for download and purchase today. "That makes iTunes the largest online music stores in the world." Jobs disputes competitors' half-million claims because they're not available for download.

New features for iTunes: Billboard charts -- 1946 to present, available from the home page. More Billboard charts will be added for specific genres as time goes on. 12,000 classical tracks are being added today from leading classical music publishers.

Top spender on iTunes Music Store has spent $29,500. (Not identified) 50,000 audiobooks have been solid in the first quarter. 100,000 gift certificates have been sold since October.

iTunes: "We have crossed our 30 millionth song." "Moving in on 100 million songs a year." Neilsen Soundscan -- iTunes has 70 percent of the legal download market. "It feels great to get above that five percent, doesn't it?"

"We also ought to update its companion product, the Xserve RAID." Added new features including 3.5TB of online storage - 30 percent increase. SFP connectors built in for Fibre Channel. RAID set slicing up to 16 per RAID, on the file expansion without repartitioning. Now qualified new Fibre Channel switches. Certified on XP Pro and Windows 2003 Server and various Linux versions.

G5 Xserve: Single and dual 2.0GHz G5 processors, ECC memory, DDR 400 up to 8GB, up to 250GB of storage. Dual GB ethernet, FireWire 800, USB 2.0. Ship with Mac OS X v10.3 Server 10.3 and unlimited user license. Basic server 2.0GHz single processor for $2,999, dual 2.0GHz for $3,999, "compute node" version for $2,999.

Jobs then showed a video featuring the Virginia Tech project team. "What they probably wished they could have used was Xserves, but Xserves used G4s...until today."

Jobs: "The G5 is our future roadmap in can't really talk about the G5 without talking about Virginia Tech." Jobs then sketched in broad outlines the university's $5.2m supercomputer project, the third fastest in the world, made entirely of Mac. He also acknowledged and apologized for shipping the company's first 1,100 Dual 2.0GHz G5s off the assembly line to Virginia Tech, saying that Apple's aware that it "pissed off" some customers.

Ho: "Technology Guarantee Program" guarantees Office v.X owners will get free upgrade to Office 2004 if they buy it starting today. Office 2004 will be released in the spring. [Please check MacCentral's in-depth preview of Office 2004, due to be posted at 1:30PM today.]

Lead program manager Kris Barton showed new features, including Word Notebook View, which simplifes how users can use word to take notes. Formatting palette uses Quartz to become transparent/translucent. Word also uses QuickTime 4 MPEG codec to record audio notes attached to notes. Excel incorporates Page Layout View retains ability to edit content while providing users with a more realistic idea of how their Excel charts and spreadsheets look in real-time. Project Center allows you to easily keep track and share projects you've created using Office.

Microsoft Office 2004 announced. Jobs introduced MacBU GM Roz Ho. Ho acknowledged that Microsoft brought Word, Excel and PowerPoint to the Macintosh first.

Jobs: Final Cut Express 2: $99 upgrade, $299, available today.

Richard Kerris: "All about real-time performance for DV editors." Leverages RT Extreme for real-time video effects. Demonstrated by showing a piece of video that used four different video elements, all rendered in real time -- no waiting.

Final Cut Express 2: "Pro video editing for everyone." It's based on Final Cut Pro 4 technology. Five DV streams can composite in real time. Real time filters and effects.

"The transition is now over," said Jobs, referring to the transition to Mac OS X. 10,000 native applications.

"We're ahead of the rest of the industry [with Mac OS X]. Microsoft's copying us again, it feels great!" Jobs provided an overview of key features of Mac OS X v10.3 "Panther." Over 9.3 million active Mac OS X users -- approaching 40 percent of Apple's installed base, according to Jobs.

"We're going to make something of this year. We're working on some incredible products for this year." Jobs said they'll make announcements throughout the year to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Macintosh.

Jobs talked about the legendary 1984 ad, which he said is widely acknowledged as the best ad ever made. He then showed it to the audience. Following the ad's playback, the crowd roared and cheered. Jobs then introduced Lee Clow, the "driving force" between that ad.

"It's hard for those of us to remember how things were in 1984 when the Mac came out, which is 20 years ago this year. People were using command line interfaces -- it was very weird. The Mac came out and changed everything."

"Welcome to Macworld 2004...We have over 60,000 viewers connected with broadband coming in from over 100 countries."

Steve Jobs has just taken the stage.

This story, "Macworld Expo keynote coverage, updated live" was originally published by PCWorld.

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