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Apple's iTunes cloud playback from MobileMe iDisk gets noticed

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Nearly a month after Apple added support for background audio playback from its MobileMe service to the free iOS iDisk app, a flurry of interest has swirled around the feature.

AppleInsider noted the new feature when iDisk was updated early last month. The new version enabled background support for audio playback of files copied to a user's MobileMe iDisk, providing users with a new cloud-based music storage service.

MobileMe's iDisk feature enables users to copy local files from their desktop computer to their own personal online file share in the cloud, and then access those files from the web, from Mac OS X's built in support for iDisk, or through the iDisk app on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

The updated iDisk mobile app also allows users to open files directly in an app that is registered to handle them, enabling iPad users to open Pages or Keynote documents in those apps, for example. Media files opened from a user's iDisk play through the standard iOS QuickTime player, and iDisk supports the iOS 4 Background Audio feature, enabling users to continue listening to music while switching to another app.




The manual iTunes cloud

User Michel Robertson recently profiled the cloud-based background music feature on iOS devices, noting that while it's "not iTunes in the cloud" it is "definitely moving the Cupertino company in that direction." Various media outlets covered the mention; Apple does not prominently feature the capability in its marketing of the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch or its MobileMe service.

Unlike Calendars, Contacts, or Bookmarks, there's no support in Apple's iTunes or MobileMe tools for automatically syncing media files to iDisk, nor is there any support for using playlists or browsing metadata or album art in the iDisk app. It's currently purely a manual file copy process that allows users to remotely access cloud-based media files on their iOS devices.

However, the built in public file sharing feature of iDisk can make it easy for users to copy up their own unprotected media files and make them available to anyone (via their Public Folder), or to specific users via a password. That feature may get the attention of the studios and labels, who earlier quashed unlimited Internet file sharing from iTunes due to piracy concerns.

It is widely believed that Apple's official cloud sharing services are being held up by negotiations needed to work out licensing between Apple and the studios and labels, which want additional fees if Apple allows users to host their own songs online for remote playback.
post #2 of 22
You can play music in the background with the mail app too
post #3 of 22
I don't use MobileMe, but this is a very cool feature, and I might have to investigate MobileMe just so I can use this. I guess I should wait ’til we see whether those idiots at the RIAA object and make Apple retract this feature ’cause then I would have no interest in MobileMe (as is currently the case).
post #4 of 22
Works good... not slow and choppy like these things can be.
post #5 of 22
Tried watching a short clip that I uploaded to drop box and it nearly drove me crazy ... I like this - MobileMe is slowing getting better and better.
post #6 of 22
What is the big deal about this? I had MobileMe until this May and you could play music and video since the first day the iDisk app was released. The only difference is background audio.

I think others arelooking too deep into this.
post #7 of 22
he article says no Playlists but it doesn’t really go to the limitations of using the app. Just to be clear, it will stop after each song requiring you to queue up each song as needed. This seems a trivial thing to add but I don’t think they will add it. I think Apple will opt to make their iTunes streaming service accessible via the iPod app and only from the iPod app.

PS: Dropbox also has added backgrounding of audio, but they suffer from the same limitation as Apple’s app. Months ago I requested that they add an option to make folders act as Playlists. So far, nothing.



Quote:
Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post

What is the big deal about this? I had MobileMe until this May and you could play music and video since the first day the iDisk app was released. The only difference is background audio.

I think others arelooking too deep into this.

I think so too.

The first thing i tried when the MobileMe app launched was to covert an AVI to H.264 which offloaded to my local iDisk which then uploaded to the server which I could then play all within a half hour or so on my phone over 3G. This makes it easy to catch up on last night’s TV shows if you are stuck at the DMV or something equally hair pulling.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #8 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

he article says no Playlists but it doesn’t really go to the limitations of using the app. Just to be clear, it will stop after each song requiring you to queue up each song as needed. This seems a trivial thing to add but I don’t think they will add it. I think Apple will opt to make their iTunes streaming service accessible via the iPod app and only from the iPod app.

PS: Dropbox also has added backgrounding of audio, but they suffer from the same limitation as Apple’s app. Months ago I requested that they add an option to make folders act as Playlists. So far, nothing.





I think so too.

The first thing i tried when the MobileMe app launched was to covert an AVI to H.264 which offloaded to my local iDisk which then uploaded to the server which I could then play all within a half hour or so on my phone over 3G. This makes it easy to catch up on last night’s TV shows if you are stuck at the DMV or something equally hair pulling.


Ok Folks, just download OPERA 10.6 and stream your itunes for FREE..
after installing the latest OPERA browser just click on Opera UNITE and install the app and thats it!!
you can now play your itunes music folder from ANYWHERE in the world you have an internet connection.. of course you computer at home has to be on for this all to work, since OPERA needs to 'phone home' and see your itunes music folder.. but hey you don't have to pay APPLE ANY $$$ FOR THIS ITS FREE!!! (ONLY PROBLEM IS YOU HAVE TO select each song to play it .. so thats the caveat)
post #9 of 22
The ability to stream music from your idisk is definitely not a new feature as I have streamed mp3s, but it may be a new feature that this can be done in the background while using other apps.

Actually, one of the mp3s I streamed was an interview with Stanley Kubrick - highly recommended
post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac_Keeper_Fan_Mod View Post

The ability to stream music from your idisk is definitely not a new feature as I have streamed mp3s, but it may be a new feature that this can be done in the background while using other apps.

Actually, one of the mp3s I streamed was an interview with Stanley Kubrick - highly recommended

If you're going to highly recommend an interview it would be nice if you linked to it. Just saying...
post #11 of 22
I have been playing music from my iDisk app for about 1.5 years, as soon as the app first appeared.

I've been playing iDisk music on road trips etc. This does not seem new. Perhaps I am missing something.
post #12 of 22
Dan, I agree with the other posters. This isn't news. You click on a media file and plays in quicktime. So what? I don't think this says anything about Apple moving in the direction of a cloud based service. (I'm not saying they aren't, but this has no relation) I can't imagine ever releasing something that is as awkward to use as this.

I normally really enjoy your articles because you have a lot of great insight into how these companies think. This one was a big disappointment.
post #13 of 22
This is just more pathetic buzz created by Apple fanboys.

I love my Apple computers, but that doesn't make me an idiot like most other Apple consumers.
post #14 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sofabutt View Post

This is just more pathetic buzz created by Apple fanboys.

I love my Apple computers, but that doesn't make me an idiot like most other Apple consumers.

Get some knowledge. The original story came from CNET who is known to historically have a Windows bias.

I get the feeling they printed tgisstory because they were too busy using "Windows" machines to notice the difference until now.
post #15 of 22
Hi all,

This works with Safari as well, just put in the address bar the URL of any mp3 file in the web (http or ftp).

I would guess that the quicktime player is the one doing all the background play. Springboard is just using the icon of the application from where the player was launched.

Cheers,

Gusano.
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by gusano View Post

Hi all,

This works with Safari as well, just put in the address bar the URL of any mp3 file in the web (http or ftp).

I would guess that the quicktime player is the one doing all the background play. Summerboard is just using the icon of the application from where the player was launched.

Cheers,

Gusano.

Works with YouTube and safari videos too if you tap on the video to play, lock the device and press play on the headphones/double tap home button and press play.
post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

studios and labels, which want additional fees if Apple allows users to host their own songs online for remote playback.

I'm surprised the records companies don't want extra money off me when I take my CD's out the house and play them in my car. It's just a different use for something I already own. They really don't get it.
post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

However, the built in public file sharing feature of iDisk can make it easy for users to copy up their own unprotected media files and make them available to anyone (via their Public Folder), or to specific users via a password. That feature may get the attention of the studios and labels, who earlier quashed unlimited Internet file sharing from iTunes due to piracy concerns.
.

This is complete crap. Every file sharing program in the world provides the exact same capability. Nothing new here to freak out over.
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parsec View Post

I'm surprised the records companies don't want extra money off me when I take my CD's out the house and play them in my car. It's just a different use for something I already own. They really don't get it.

They do want that, and was the point behind the creation of DRM, but it never got that far as it was far, far too crazy even for the mainstream public who will accept anything.
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmz View Post

They do want that, and was the point behind the creation of DRM, but it never got that far as it was far, far too crazy even for the mainstream public who will accept anything.

Including ideas about the RIAA stealing babies and setting fires to people's homes while they're sleeping? Yep, you sure are a gullible lot.

Funny how much bitching goes on about $1 songs & how unfair DRM was, but no complaints about the 'copy protection' chips in the printer cartridges?

Those tend to cost magnitudes greater and don't last anywhere near as long.

Or is the cost for printer ink not factored into these music DRM roleplaying adventures, because it's really Mommy who buys that for your school supplies?
post #21 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Months ago I requested that they add an option to make folders act as Playlists. So far, nothing.

You should have told them you have over 17k posts.
post #22 of 22
Has anyone used ZumoDrive? It looks like it would be a better solution than this MobileMe iDisk thing for streaming your media from the cloud.
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