Apple ends Palm Pre's iTunes charade
'Falsely pretending' devices disabled
Updated Apple released an update to its iTunes music-management app on Wednesday that prevents Palm's Pre smartphone from appearing to be an iPod when connected to a Mac or PC.
An Apple spokesman told The Reg that "iTunes 8.2.1 is a free software update that provides a number of important bug fixes. It also disables devices falsely pretending to be iPods, including the Palm Pre."
He added that "As we've said before, newer versions of iTunes software may no longer provide syncing functionality with unsupported digital media players."
Palm did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
"Falsely pretending" may sound a bit harsh, but it's accurate. When you plug a Pre into your Mac or PC running a version of iTunes earlier than 8.2.1, it communicates with iTunes exactly as if it were an iPod - even to the point of an iPod graphic appearing in the iTunes Summary tab.
Without access through iTunes, loading music onto the Pre is still a simple matter - you merely connect your Pre to your computer as a USB drive, drag your tunes onto it, and the Pre's Music app finds them and displays them in its listing, ready for playback.
Nevertheless, disabling iTunes support does strike a blow against the Pre's ease-of-use, especially for unsophisticated users for whom connecting a USB drive is akin to rocket science.
It was never clear whether the Pre's access to iTunes was worked out in an agreement between Palm and Apple. Now it appears that Palm was acting on its own.
And Apple has chosen not to reward their resourcefulness. ®
A Palm spokeswoman has provided us with the following comment: "Palm's media sync works with iTunes 8.2. If Apple chooses to disable media sync in iTunes, it will be a direct blow to users who will be deprived of a seamless synchronization experience. However, people will have options. They can stay with the iTunes version that works to sync their music on their Pre, they can transfer the music via USB, and there are other third-party applications we can consider."
I love how i supported Microsoft from early dos, all the way to XP, and I was fine. I switch to Mac and I'm suddenly a brainless, clueless zombie, with no right to an opinion.
I hated iTunes when I ran XP, it froze, it slowed down, it was a complete ball of crap. I refused to touch it. It was better than Musicmatch Jukebox, but that was about it. I ran my Windows iPods on Annapod from Redchair software.
Two years ago, I went Mac for my primary machines, and I really didn't want to use iTunes. After a lot of hunting around I found no good non iTunes alternatives. At the time Songbird was not ready, and I didn't want to run an XP box just to support the iPod, so I grudgingly gave iTunes another try, and in OSX it gives me no problems at all. Yet when I work on people's Winboxes it goes back to being sluggish, crash happy crap.
I have the latest iTunes running under Leopard on a dual 500 G4 tower for my entertainment center, it runs all my media, coverflow is smooth, and controls from my phone. Its trouble free.
Blame Apple, or blame Microsoft, I don't care. But I agree that the iTunes experience IN WINDOWS leaves a great deal to be desired. I don't blame a single Windows user for not running it. If you run Windows and you need iTunes, you are just out of luck. May I suggest a different player? Go buy that Zune everyone seems to love so much. I won't stop you. Go get a Palm Pre and enjoy. But the iTunes issues I've had to support are almost always WINDOWS iTune issues. I've had plenty of experience with both, and they are not the same in reliability or usability.
I just don't use my Winbox for the iPod. Problem solved. Not my fault you run Windows. I've seen too many applications that hemorrhage memory in Windows, but run fine in Mac. Sadville being a great example. You can actually watch it slow to a crawl. You can spot the Windows users by seeing who crashes every 45 minutes and complains constantly about the lag.
re: Jack Evans
Cheers, but as I said it's a 2nd gen Nano - Rockbox doesn't support it (firmware is encrypted, so only able to use that which is delivered by iTunes). I'll give Floola another bash anyway.
what I am saying some program/s I use on the macbook must have memory leaks its is not the OS's fault but the programs I rebooted the mac this morning, I have finder and firefox showing as running only and though firefox is a bit of a hog (220MB on one tab) its still on 1.20 GB used that's about 300 Meg missing in a few hours
Blame the programs not the OS