iTunes 4.6 is due out later this week and will be released as a free download in both Mac and Windows versions, according to Apple Computer. iTunes 4.6 will be able to automatically detect remote speakers and stream music to them securely at full quality from a distance of up to 150 feet using Apple’s AirTunes technology, Apple said. Apple today announced its AirPort Express base station which can support up to 10 simultaneous users, and the device can act as a wireless bridge with another Express or AirPort Extreme base station to extend the range of the wireless network. The AirPort Express also has a USB port for connecting to a printer, which can then be shared by all the computers on the wireless network.
“Apple has been investing heavily in both music technology and wireless, said Greg Joswiak, the company’s vice president of hardware marketing,” Ina Fried reports for CNET News. “‘This is a product that really combines those two worlds,’ Joswiak said.”
“Apple introduced the original 802.11g AirPort Extreme wireless base station in January 2003. Joswiak said Apple will continue to sell that $249 device, which lacks the music option but has other features, such as a built-in modem and support for up to 50 simultaneous users. However, most consumers are likely to opt for the new device, he said. ‘This will clearly become the mainstream,’ Joswiak said, adding that schools and other institutional customers in need of a wireless base station will still probably choose the original device,” Fried reports.
“The AirPort Express will work with Macs running at least Mac OS X 10.1.5, however, the AirTunes feature requires Mac OS X 10.3 Panther. PCs need Windows XP. The PC or Mac need not have an 802.11g card; AirPort Express will also work with computers that have an 802.11b card, such as the original AirPort card, Joswiak said,” Fried reports.
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