Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?

This week in Apple news

In the past week, Apple has taken several steps to restrict usage of its popular iTunes music store.

Dawn Kawamoto Former Staff writer, CNET News
Dawn Kawamoto covered enterprise security and financial news relating to technology for CNET News.
Dawn Kawamoto
2 min read
In the past week, Apple has taken several steps to restrict usage of its popular iTunes music store.

The company announced it would require customers of older versions of iTunes to upgrade to more recent versions if they want to continue purchasing Apple's online music. That move affected users of iTunes 4.2; those users were forced to upgrade to versions 4.7, 4.6 or 4.5.

Apple also disabled its iTunes plug-in for transferring songs off the iPod with the latest version of iTunes 4.7. That feature allowed iPod owners to copy songs from the music player to an iTunes library, a feature Apple did not support. In the past, the computer maker has used its latest iTunes versions to disable support for third-party software that adds unintended file-sharing capabilities to the popular jukebox software.

Apple also is keeping a tight rein on the list of products that customers can review at its online Apple Store. The store sells both Apple-made products, such as computers and the popular iPod, and non-Apple products, such as Canon digital cameras and iPod accessories. But Apple prohibits customers from posting reviews of Apple-made products on its store site. The company briefly posted a notice on its site, where it gave itself a "5 Apples" rating on all its products, before removing it. The company previously had posted the comment, "We give all Apple products a rating of '5 Apples' because we think they're great...Would you trust us to display less-than-perfect ratings on our own products? We didn't think so."

Also on the iPod front, music lovers checking into fine hotels may find in-room iPods as part of the hotel amenities. A new four-star hotel in Manhattan is one of the latest boutique hotels to offer guests the use of Apple's popular music gadget during their stay. The iPods come preloaded with as many as 2,000 songs and are available for each of the hotel's 200 rooms. Out West, The Crescent in Beverly Hills features an iPod Music Minibar in each guest room. The 40-room hotel, which has a lounge-bar theme, introduced the gadgets, and installed speakers, last year. The devices there also come preloaded with music, with a focus on jazz, lounge and electronica.

Apple is also finding that push sometimes comes to shove. The company, when threatening to push longtime Mac developer Arlo Rose's product aside, prompted the developer to jump ship to Windows with his Konfabulator. The Konfabulator software allows easy access to a variety of small applications called widgets.