If free ad-supported music services aren't going to make it financially, what about paid subscription services? Rhapsody and RealNetworks continue to soldier along, but RealNetworks is apparently looking for investors to take some portion of the Rhapsody business off its hands, and we haven't heard much about Napster since Best Buy, which acquired it a little over a year ago, slashed subscription prices in May in a bid to build membership.
Secret Guide 2: How to Pass the Real Estate Exam offers some brief common sense explanations for taking the test, but not much useful information. Anyone studying for this test should be able to find better information out there.
We were immediately disappointed by this program's interface, not because it was only a PDF document, but because it was only nine pages long. We didn't think this was long enough to give in-depth assistance for such an important test. Unfortunately, we were right. The bulk of the study tips and test-taking advice are things most people will know … Read more
The more time I spend with my Zune HD, the more I like it. Sound quality aside--and I know opinions differ dramatically here, but I'm stuck with my ears and my preferences--there are a bunch of features that make Apple's products seem like they've fallen behind the curve. Here are five things in particular that I miss when I use my iPhone or one of my iPods:
Zune Pass Apple has long maintained that people want to own rather than rent their music. I counter that a subscription-based music service, combined with a state-of-the-art player, is one … Read more
Microsoft's Zune HD portable media player has been sitting in a sealed box on my desk for two weeks now. Don't worry, I haven't lost my professional fascination with portable media players. The only reason the box has stayed sealed is because the Zune HD is little more than a $219 paperweight if it doesn't have the Zune 4.0 software client to connect to.
When I tried Spotify, the free on-demand music-streaming service currently available only in Europe, I was impressed by its iTunes-like user interface and how fast the songs loaded. So when I saw Monday's news that Spotify has submitted an iPhone app to Apple for consideration, I got excited.
Then I read more closely: to use the mobile version of Spotify, you'll need a premium subscription. The service isn't available in the United States yet, but a premium subscription in the United Kingdom costs 10 pounds a month, which translates to about $16.50 at today's exchange … Read more
The group overseeing MSN Music in the United Kingdom seems to be operating off in its own little bubble, totally out of step with Microsoft's broader music and digital entertainment strategy.
First, they launched MSN Unsigned, a half-hearted attempt to let unsigned bands promote their music on MSN. (It's devolved since then: the button on the MSN Unsigned page to "send us your music" launches your e-mail application with a barely configured note--just a subject header. Apparently you're supposed to attach something, but darned if I can find any instructions on the site.) Then they … Read more
Jokes are funny things.
Sometimes the same joke works with one person and falls flat with another. Sometimes, though, the joke just isn't funny at all.
That can be forgotten when it's made in the company of friends over a gin, a tonic, and a country club bar.
Perhaps, though, it is less easily forgotten when it is made on Facebook. What is said on Facebook stays on Facebook. Often for quite some time.
You see, according to a report by WIS10 TV in Columbia, S.C., Rusty DePass, a prominent Republican Party activist, happened to see a … Read more
MB Moon Phase is a program that lets you calculate a moon's phase on a particular date, but that's its lone feature. According to the publisher's description, the program is free, but further inspection revealed a trial of 30 days and a donation once the trial expires.
When first installed, we were greeted with a ridiculously cluttered window full of donation requests. We had to root through the clutter to find the button that would let us continue with the program. From there, we were greeted with yet another cluttered interface. We entered a specific date and … Read more
WhoopieCushion is a free and extremely simple app that attempts to replicate the classic, red-rubber toy of the same name. Like the original toy itself, there are countless competing imitations--offering everything from timers to motion sensors--so shop around to find the right flatulence simulator for you. WhoopieCushion stands out because of its price (it is free) and its clean interface: you just tap the photo of the "Whoopee Cushion" on your iPhone or iPod Touch screen, and the app will randomly produce one of a handful of "Bronx cheer" noises. No similar app--this one included--can quite … Read more
Scosche, makers of the Kickback iPhone case--that I had to get my grubby mits on before I understood just how useful it actually was--are not slowing down in its support of the iPod and iPhone platforms. The company recently announced its 2009 accessories lineup for the Apples platforms.
First up in their "Listen" line are the IDR400M and IDR600 earbuds and the HZ5 TuneStream Bluetooth headphones.
According to Scosche, both the ID400M and earbuds are noise isolating and the ID400M features a hands free mic. The IDR600 also has a sliding magnetic cable management system.
The HZ5 TuneStream … Read more