Samsung will launch its first true rival to the market leading iPod Touch at the CES event next month, dubbing the device the Galaxy Player.
Just like the iPod Touch is almost identical to the iPhone (without the phone and 3G capabilities), the Galaxy Player will be based on the popular Galaxy S smartphone.
The Galaxy Player will run on Android 2.2, come in 8, 16 and 32GB models, and include a standard 3.2MP camera and a 1.3MP front-side camera.
There are no current media players running Android, so the Samsung player should have an advantage over those competitors right out of the gate, due to the Android Market and its 100,000 apps. Apple, on the other hand, will be no pushover.
Samsung lacks retail presence like Apple has, as well as a brand-loyal fanbase. Furthermore, Samsung lacks a music/movie store like iTunes so it is unclear what store will come built-in.
Result for: itunes
Apple’s recently released quarterly earnings revealed that the company sold 250,000 Apple TV set-top devices as of the end of September, three weeks after its launch.
Says CEO Steve Jobs: “We’re happy with how it’s turned out.”
Jobs says he expects sales to pick up with the release of iOS 4.2, which will allow owners to stream their own content in addition to the content they downloaded from iTunes.
Available for $99, the updated Apple TV drops the hard drive of its predecessor and is now small enough to fit in your hand.
The device streams movies from the Web or from smartphones/tablets directly to your HDTV.
Additionally, the second-generation device streams movies from Netflix’s ever expanding “Watch Instantly” catalog and HD movies purchased through iTunes.
The Apple TV has built-in Wi-Fi and an HDMI output.
Result for: itunes
Before Apple’s much-hyped media event on the 1st, it was reported that CEO Steve Jobs was actively trying to get iTunes Store track samples extended to 60, or even 90 seconds, from the current 30.
The event came and passed, and nothing about the time lengths of the samples was discussed by Jobs or the country.
Cnet says today that licensing issues are holding up the process, but that Jobs is still in active discussions to get the samples extended to 90 seconds.
Says Hanna Pantle, a spokeswoman for BMI, one of the organizations that collects royalties for publishers and songwriters: “We are in active negotiations with Apple.”
Furthermore, Apple has already received the go ahead to extend the samples, from the record labels. Their existing contract with the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) also allows for 90 seconds, so it appears to be just a couple of holdouts keeping the update from occurring.