Amazon iPod touch deals

In case you are currently without an iPod touch, want to give one as a gift, or are looking to upgrade to the latest generation, there is no better time than Black Friday. As usual, Amazon has some excellent prices on the iPod touch, and with free shipping and no tax in most states, this may well be one of the better deals on the internet. Prices and links below:

Find any other great Amazon deals today? Post them in the comment thread.

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Most Wanted iOS 5 Features?

We may still have at least one iDevice in need of a hardware refresh before we see the software side of things jump a number, but the question is still valid: What do you wish to see in iOS 5?

The question is a bit more difficult than in years past. After all, there really no glaring omissions in iOS, what with multitasking being available to all iDevices now. Personally, my biggest complaint about the OS as it currently is is with the notifications. I hate them. So, my seething rage for Apple’s poor excuse of a notification system aside, what else is missing? I’ve compared my iPod touch 4 to my Droid Incredible (which runs Android; an OS that is often compared to iOS) and have come back with a pretty simple answer: not much. The two operating systems are very much in feature parity now, which is more and more obvious as relatively silly and meaningless specs now differentiate the top-tier of smartphones.

However, there is one interesting request brought up by TiPb: Yes, they want a built-in file browser, similar to iFile (available in the jailbreak scene). If you’re wondering, yes, this is something that I would love to see. I think a perfect usage case exists right on the iPad for this type of app, and right in our forums: Say you’ve encountered a strange new pop-up notifications (which, with any luck, will be eradicated from iOS 5 entirely). So, you do the logical thing: you try to upload it to our forums. But, uh-oh! there is no file manager, and you can’t upload the file because you can’t browse and select the file.

Your alternative? Upload the screenshot to a Twitter image service (TwitPic, for example), grab the link, and add it into a post. Poster child of simplicity? I think not.

So humans. What else do you see yourself wanting on your iDevice in the next year or so? Widgets at long last? Or something nobody saw coming? Sound off in the comments!

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Facilitate the Exchange of Contact Info with the Business Card Reader App

At a recent business luncheon, I was handed no less than six business cards from representatives of the same company. In the past, I would have felt overwhelmed with the mundane task of adding their contact information to my bloated database. Fortunately, I had recently purchased the Business Card Reader app ($3.99 on iTunes), and all that data was directly imported, and with fair accuracy to boot.  I just placed a business card on the table, opened up the app and centered the card in the camera crosshairs.  The app “scanned” the card and saved the information in appropriate fields.  It may not be as effective with super-stylized cards, and I wouldn’t want to try it with the Woz’s stainless steel business card (oh, that I would ever get the chance), but so far this little app has been supremely useful.  It does help to have very good lighting and a steady hand.

The app is compatible with the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad running iOS 3.1 or later.  It currently has a three star rating in iTunes.

For more apps like this, directed towards independent contractors, check out the “90 Awesome iOS Apps for Freelancers” from Appstorm.  The list includes apps for time tracking, invoice generating, expense tracking, databases, calendars, to-do lists and more.  Watch here for reviews of some of their recommendations.

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Beyond Guitar Hero: Learning Music Theory on Your iDevice

I used to tell people that I’ve played guitar since high school. Truth be told, I’ve owned a guitar since high school. The difference being that I haven’t actually played consistently over the years. Despite the decades, I am an admittedly novice player.  Scales, picking out a melody, open and bar chords are fairly easy, but progressing to the next level of intuitive playing and transposing on the fly has eluded me.  So of course, rather than practicing, I turn to technology.

Critics of game consoles have long belabored the detrimental effect of today’s youth playing virtual instruments versus live performance.  Instead of playing Guitar Hero, play the guitar, they cry.  And I wholeheartedly agree.  However, some music theory and concepts do transfer well, and are more easily grasped, when presented in an interactive format, rather than read or studied in a book (at least by novices like me).

(Read on if you’re interested how your iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad can help you learn musical theory.)


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Design Your Own iDevice Case Graphic

Most people like to protect their iDevices with a case.  For some, it’s all about protection, while others prefer something that reflects their personalities.  Ideally, a case does both.  Several manufacturers allow customers to choose from a variety of pre-made designs from sports logos to works by renowned artists, as well as the ability to create their own designs by uploading images or pictures.  Here are some options for preventing scratches and dings with style:

Skinit – Offering minimal protection, skins are adhesive vinyl stickers that are cut to precisely fit on the back of your device.  The advantage Skinit presents is skins for nearly the full spectrum of iDevices including the Classic, Nano, all generations of iPod Touch, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and iPad.  Prices for skins for the iPad are $29.99 with the option of an additional clear hard shell for $15.  Skins for the iPhones run $14.99.  Hard shells in black or white are $15.

Read on for additional vendors.


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Greenpois0n, Limera1n to Support 4.2.1 Soon

It looks like users waiting to upgrade to and jailbreak the lastest version of iOS won’t have to wait long, as both major jailbreaking tools will be updated to support 4.2.1 very, very soon.

via @p0sixninja

GreenPois0n should be updated to support 4.2.1 (tethered or semitethered) within a few days.

What’s more, the Dev-Team has just posted a summary of what today’s iOS release means for users, and it looks like limera1n is a-go for 4.2.1, and an updated version should be available later today (“barring any unforeseen problems”).

The best news of all is for owners of iPhone3G, older iPhone3GS, and non-MC iPod touch 2G. Due to a combination of our original pwnage2 exploit, the arm7_go exploit, 24kpwn, and limera1n, your device is “just as jailbreakable as ever.” You reap the full benefit of an untethered 4.2.1 jailbreak.

Next are the owners of all the more recent devices. The good news there is that due to geohot’s limera1n exploit, all recent devices can be jailbroken (this will be true until Apple released new hardware that fixes geohot’s limerain exploit in the bootrom).

So when does all this 4.2.1 jailbreak action happen? Well if you’re a JB developer or tinkerer, you’ve already probably used the redsn0w mentioned in our last post to jailbreak 4.2.1 and at least get SSH working. But beyond that, there are still some last minute issues with MobileSubstrate and comex’s kernel patches that are being fixed. We’ll tweet and post a blog update when it’s all available (we hate to give ETAs, but barring any unforeseen problems, probably later today).

Remember, backup your SHSH blobs using TinyUmbrella (which will be updated tonight).

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iOS 4.2.1 Available Today, iPad Users Sing in Harmony

Here’s a little something that’ll make the Monday so much better: iOS 4.2.1 has been released to the public!

Seriously though: how many tablets do you know that get even more magical as time goes on?

Regardless your answer, go fire up iTunes, and get your update on!

Update: Not working for you? Update iTunes, and wait; it’s rolling out as we speak.

Update 2: The ‘Find My iPhone’ app will also be free after you update, i.e. no ridiculous MobileMe subscription needed. You can log in using that interesting log in screen we reported on earlier this month.

Just for kicks, I’ve included the press release after the break!


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Redsn0w 0.9.6b3 Released

The Dev-Team has just released the third update for redsn0w, which now works on the latest iOS 4.2.1 GM build. Users will need to compile Cydia on their own if they choose to use this program, so it’s not for the faint of heart.

redsn0w has also been updated to recognize the 4.2.1GM IPSWs. *However*, as noted above, the 4.2.x jailbreak is not yet untethered for most devices! That means until someone like @comex comes up with a way to untether it, you must use redsn0w (or a similar utility) to boot your device into a jailbroken 4.2.1 state. (The only exceptions to this are the iPhone3G, non-MC iPod touch 2G, and old-bootrom iPhone3GS. redsn0w will jailbreak those untethered!)

Please, read through the blog post in its entirety, and peruse the comments if you have any questions. This release is not a simple one-click jailbreak.


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Thanksgiving Apps for Kids Bring Facts and Fun to the Holiday

Like many, our family Thanksgiving traditions involve watching the Thanksgiving Day parade in our pajamas as the delicious smells of roasting tukey and baking pies fill the house.  But we all get bored with the pun-filled inane commentary by the parade hosts, the “special appearances” by stars of various television shows we’ll never watch, and the poorly lip-synced numbers from Broadway musicals we’ll never see.  When it comes time to wrangle the crowd around the table after being induced into a feeding frenzy from festive fumes eminating from the kitchen, you may need to buy some time while awaiting the presentation of the feast.  Here are a few free apps to keep the kiddies entertained and bring a little humor and insight into the holiday…


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Hulu Plus Now $7.99

Hulu Plus, the not-very-popular premium video service from Hulu, has just reduced the monthly subscription price from $9.99 to $7.99 as a part of its official public launch. This price change may allow it to keep up with alternatives such as Netflix, which recently announced a streaming-only plan for the same $7.99 price.. If you are already a paying member, the price change will be reflected in your next bill, and if you are a new user who would like to test out the service, there is a one-week free trial period available.

There is a Hulu Plus client application available in the App Store for newer devices running 4.0 and higher. (And please note that the iPad version does work over 3g.)


Read on for the full press release.


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