Developers of MP3 player and encoder software at Macworld Expo San Francisco reacted positively to the release of Apples iTunes this week, welcoming the increased awareness of MP3 technology Apple’s software will bring to consumers. Apple’s digital music player and MP3 encoder will also allow users to create their own music CDs if they own a CD-R or CD-RW drive.
was announced as a free download during Tuesday’s keynote address.
Casady & Greene
president Terry Kunysz noted that while anybody releasing a product for free is likely to cut into competitors’ sales, Apple has the advertising budget to educate a larger audience about MP3 technology. Casady & Greene publishes SoundJam MP Plus and SoundJam MP Free.
“This is an evolving market, and we need to get away from thinking about MP3s as only being about kids pirating music,” said Kunysz. Steve Jobs is right about expanding people’s imagination, making them aware of how these new technologies are relevant to them.”
SoundJam MP was the first MP3 encoder to take advantage of multiple processors and the G4’s Velocity Engine. Along with MP3 encoding and playback, as well as line-in recording, SoundJam MP can also be used to broadcast streaming MP3 files over the Internet. Some features, such as MP3 encoding, are restricted to a 14-day trial in the free version.
Proteron, developers of the N2MP3 Professional audio encoder, said that the release of iTunes fits in perfectly with their new development strategy. “We made a decision three months ago to focus on the high-end MP3 market, rather than the consumer end of things, and iTunes confirmed that we were happy we did that,” said Mathew Caughron, Proteron co-founder.
As part of Proteron’s new approach, N2MP3 Professional includes three separate MP3 encoding algorithms, and features Mpeg2 audio compression as well as the patent-free Ogg Vorbis audio codec as non-MP3 encoding options. N2MP3 Professional also supports line-in recording and encoding in real time.
released new free and “Plus” versions of MusicMatch Jukebox 2.0 for the Macintosh this week, and Jennifer Roberts, MusicMatch PR Manager, was happy to see Steve Jobs highlight the importance of digital music during his opening keynote. “It validates the category for us,” said Roberts, “And we’re no stranger to competition. This will just make for a better future for the consumer, and drive product development forward.”
New MusicMatch Jukebox 2.0 features include an AutoDJ that can create playlists based on mood or situation and support for AppleScript. The Plus version further adds support for CD burning through Toast and line-in recording, and MusicMatch also runs a music recommendation service that can suggest new music to users based on their current favorites.