Apple announced the iTunes 10 today at the special music event, and I was able to download it just before 10PM Eastern Time. As compared to earlier version of iTunes, iTunes 10 is only about 72.2MB in size.
The installation of iTunes went fairly well, and it was up and running in a few minutes. The new interface in iTunes 10 is almost similar to iTunes 9.2, however, Apple has used a pretty weird looking icon for iTunes 10 and has also changed the buttons and other icons. Overall, I did not like the new look for iTunes 10.
After downloading and installing iTunes 10, I spent some time looking at it and found it to be pretty OK as compared to what was expected of it. Here are some of my views about the new features in iTunes 10.
TV Show Rentals
iTunes 10 has added a new feature where users could rent out TV shows for 99c. They offer episodes from the latest TV shows and also some classic TV shows. Shows include the usual suspects like Family Guy, Glee, The Cleveland Show, Prison Break, Bones and so on. However, you will also find similar shows for free on Hulu.com.
I tried to watch a free TV show, 30 Rock Recap Special and the download in itself was set to take 20-30 minutes, so it could not be done in time for the review. This is particularly annoying on an high speed network. I will update this review with my views on the quality of the videos.
Update: The TV Show finally downloaded and the quality is pretty good and definitely on par with Hulu.
iTunes TV rentals will allow you to watch the TV shows within 30 days of you renting it, however, once you start watching a show, you have to finish it within 48 hours or else you will not be able to watch it again. The TV shows can be watched on either you PC, iPhone or iPod Touch. There is no option for iPad users, but iPad users will also get the ability with iOS 4.2 for iPad and AirPlay.
Apple introduced iTunes Ping today, a social networking for music lovers and probably a Facebook rival. I tried out Ping and found it to be pretty decent. Ping can be accessed from the left sidebar of iTunes and requires you to use your Apple account to login.
Once you have logged in, you will be shown a series of screens that ask for your profile information. Once you have logged in, you will see a list of people to follow, which is something typical to what you will see with Facebook and Twitter.
iTunes Ping also allows you to connect with your Facebook friends who are using Ping. Just like any other social networking, the key to Ping is people. So you will have to start following people to see their activity, music recommendations and more.
One thing I noticed is that Ping is quite buggy and you will notice quite a few problems while using different features with it. For example, I had to try several times before I could connect my Facebook account with Ping. Also the navigation is buggy, sometimes clicking on page numbers will do nothing and so on. However, this service is quite new and will be polished with time.
Another downside to Ping is that, since it has launched today, I could not find many people to find or follow. I will leave it at it and see how it works when I have more people to follow and recommend music to.
Faster Synching With Devices
Apple promised faster synching and more real-time storage indicators with iTunes 10. I tried synching my device by adding some music and sync was definitely more faster than what I have seen on earlier version of iTunes. However, I had some problems with iTunes recognizing my device and it took unplugs and iTunes restarts to see the device in iTunes.
These are just some of the new features I have toured in iTunes 10, of course might be several more enhancements in it, but these are the core features that you should be looking at if you want to upgrade to iTunes 10. Also Apple might require users to upgrade to iTunes 10 to install future updates. So go ahead and give it a try, you can download iTunes 10 by visiting http://www.apple.com/itunes