Don’t expect to see “skins” proliferating for
Apple’s iTunes “music jukebox” application.
Skins are interface customizers that change the look and feel of such digital music applications as SoundJam. But Apple isn’t interesting in joining that party, Mike Shebanek, the company’s product line manager for the iMac, told MacCentral.
“We just feel that most skins aren’t practical,” he said. “People don’t want to have to learn new locations for an application’s control buttons, which often happens with skins. We wanted to simply offer the most user friendly, best looking interface up front.”
And while iTunes can play onscreen “visualization” patterns of songs as they play, there’s no need to develop extra “patterns” as such, Shebanek added.
“The patterns are generated on the fly with the music so there’s really no need,” he said.
As announced Wednesday, Apple has updated iTunes ahead of schedule, bringing support for over 25 third party CD-RW drives, Apple CEO Steve Jobs said during his Feb. 22 keynote at Macworld Tokyo.
When Apple unveiled its free “music jukebox” last month at Macworld San Francisco, it only worked with the built-in CD-RW drives of the new G4 desktops. At the time Apple promised support for the top three third party drives within 60-90 days. But Apple is adding support for more drives ahead of schedule (only 44 days) with the new iTunes 1.1, Jobs said.
iTunes lets Mac users import songs from their favorite CDs; compress them into the popular MP3 format and store them on their computer’s hard drive; organize their music using powerful searching, browsing and play list features; watch visualizations on their computer screen; and burn their own audio CDs — all in one integrated application. Exclusively for Mac users, iTunes is available as a
free download from Apple.
iTunes has been a major success. Jobs said that, to date, there have been over 750,000 downloads “and that number continues to rise.” And it should continue to do so, based on sales of CD-RW media. In Japan, over 200 million CD-RW blank media units were sold last year.
Mac OS 9.0.4 or Mac OS 9.1 is required for running iTunes. A Mac OS X version is in the works.