‘4: John Paul George Ringo’ EP available now for free from Apple’s iTunes Store

Interested iTunes users can download “4”, a free digital EP from Apple’s iTunes Store and experience a taste of the individual brilliance of John, Paul, George and Ringo. They each followed a unique and distinctive solo musical path creating a wealth of extraordinary music.

“4” includes John Lennon’s gorgeous piano ballad “Love” (from 1970’s John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band), the collection includes Paul McCartney’s simmering “Call Me Back Again” (a highlight from Wings’ 1975 Venus and Mars), George Harrison’s explosive “Let It Down” (off 1970’s All Things Must Pass), and Ringo Starr’s lush “Walk With You” (from 2010’s Y Not).

Download “4” via Apple’s iTunes Store here.

24 Comments

  1. question about the link in the MDN article used to jump to the album in iTunes.
    when i click on the link the link takes me first to the expected page in itunes.apple.com which is an explanatory page within the safari browser. but then it jumps automatically to a page within iTunes app itself.
    this is new behaviour for links.
    i have also noticed this same thing happening within the past 2 weeks with certain Mac App Store links that now can jump automatically to the app within he Mac App Store.
    This really surprises me that this can do this as it goes directly beyond a password entry screen and as long as you are logged into either iTunes or the Mac App Store it can place you directly on the Purchase page.
    isn’t this new? or, why hasn’t this been the behaviour for most links in the past?
    is there some kind of Trusted partner that apple allows this?

    1. It’s been the behavior for quite a while now, and is browser dependent. It calls the following tag:

      As long as iTunes has been installed after the browser and the browser supports this tag, it can open the URL in the application. This works for other applications as well.

      That you were logged in in just coincidental. It would’ve taken you to the same location in iTunes had you not been logged in.

      If you want to do this, copy the URL you want to link to. Go to the page in iTunes and right/option click the album cover art. Select “copy link”. If you use just that URL you’ll just go to the website listing. If you use that URL and append “?uo=8&at=10lody&at=10lody” to it, you’ll go the the website and if the browser is helper-app enabled, it will load iTunes to that page.

      1. thanks i appreciate your reply.
        so what you are saying is essentially this:

        web links can open apps such as iTunes and Mac App Store.
        and, there is no easily accessible preference to stop this behaviour in either safari or otherwise in mac os X.

        wow. this is just waiting for an exploit…

        1. I’m not sure how is this more susceptible to an exploit than any other type of link that launches an application (and there are many). While most such links launch an embedded plug-in (such as Flash or PDF), browsers can easily be set up to launch applications automatically. Unlike most other cases, where the link points to some type of a document, this one points to a specific path on Apple’s iTunes server, so unless someone hacks into iTunes database and positions malware there, I can’t see how it could be exploited.

        2. “web links can open apps such as iTunes and Mac App Store.
          and, there is no easily accessible preference to stop this behaviour in either safari or otherwise in mac os X. “

          Yes, but this really isn’t anything new. This goes back to at least Netscape 1.1. The idea is that you shouldn’t have to download a file, and then as a separate action open a file and determine what app should open the file. Instead, there’s a MIME associated with the file and your browser will connect it with the appropriate app.

          Most of the time, the MIME association is asked for by the browser. Firefox, Chrome, and IE for example will ask to allow the association to iTunes, and then once granted they don’t need to ask again.

          Browsers also have default associations that come with them. Safari, being an OS X application has already set up iTunes and the App Store as associations, since these are all a part of OS X.

          You can still break this association, but it needs to be done at the OS level (just create an ITMS file and then set it to open to Other for all files). Whereas on other browsers, this would be done in Preferences.

          The other thing going on here is that it’s not just a straight link to the helper app. It’s linking to a web page and that page is then triggering the helper app. This is done through Javascript. So you could disable Javascript all together, or selectively by site, or even just restrict “Onload”.

          I don’t see how this can be an exploit though. There’s certainly nothing exploitable with opening up iTunes or the App Store as Predrag explained. For other apps (as malware) to be used in an exploitable manner, you’d need to download the app, get past GateKeeper, install it, run it, authorize the app to do any damage that it would want to do, then visit a website that would trigger the app, and then allow the browser to make the association.

          The thing is, once you’ve gotten to the point where you’ve run the app and authorized its actions, you’d already be screwed and there’s really no need for a website to link-open the app.

  2. They got it right this time. Unlike the U2 thing. Even though I would have welcomed The Beatles in my already Beatiful Library, I appreciate it’s a notice of a gift and not stuffed into my playlist as Bono was.

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