Apple(R) today launched iTunes(R) Plus -- DRM-free music tracks featuring high quality 256 kbps AAC encoding for audio quality virtually indistinguishable from the original recordings -- for just $1.29 per song. iTunes Plus is launching with EMI's digital catalog of outstanding recordings, including singles and albums from Coldplay, The Rolling Stones, Norah Jones, Frank Sinatra, Joss Stone, Pink Floyd, John Coltrane and more than a dozen of Paul McCartney's classic albums available on iTunes for the first time. iTunes will continue to offer its entire catalog, currently over five million songs, in the same versions as today -- 128 kbps AAC encoding with DRM -- at the same price of 99 cents per song, alongside the higher quality iTunes Plus versions when available. In addition, iTunes customers can now easily upgrade their library of previously purchased EMI content to iTunes Plus tracks for just 30 cents a song and $3.00 for most albums. "Our customers are very excited about the freedom and amazing sound quality of iTunes Plus," said Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. "We expect more than half of the songs on iTunes will be offered in iTunes Plus versions by the end of this year." "This is a tremendous milestone for digital music," said Eric Nicoli, CEO of EMI Group. "Consumers are going to love listening to higher quality iTunes Plus tracks from their favorite EMI artists with no usage restrictions."
It ain't really music unless you can feel the bass, but hearing specialists say your ears can't handle all that. Stated on Sohh.com, "We're seeing the kind of hearing loss in younger people that's typically found in aging adults," said Dean Garstecki, an audiologist and professor at Northwestern University. The popularity of the iPod may actually be contributing to the growing problem. "Unfortunately, the ear buds are even more likely to cause hearing loss than the muff-type earphones that were used on Walkman and portable CD players," Garstecki said. In a study published last year in the journal, Ear and Hearing, Harvard Medical School researchers found that the smaller the earphones, the higher their output levels.
According to a posting on Apple's technical support Web site, some of their iPod digital music players shipped in the past month carry a computer virus. Apple said since September 12, less than 1 percent of Video iPods left the company's contract manufacturer carrying the virus RavMonE.exe. The virus affects computers running Microsoft's Windows operating system. "So far we have seen less than 25 reports concerning this problem. The iPod nano, iPod shuffle and Mac OS X are not affected, and all Video iPods now shipping are virus free," the company said on the site. An Apple spokesman declined to name the contract manufacturer or specify how many iPods were affected. Apple said the virus can be detected and removed using many popular anti-virus software programs. It said that Microsoft and Apple shared the blame for shipping the virus. "As you might imagine, we are upset at Windows for not being more hardy against such viruses, and even more upset with ourselves for not catching it," Apple said on its Web site. Microsoft fired back in a statement, saying the virus does not appear to take advantage of a Windows vulnerability. "We encourage all third party vendors to follow best practices and help protect their users regardless of platform through careful scanning of the software they ship, so that they do not expose their customers to unnecessary risk from malicious software," the company said. Source: Yahoo News