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Windows/Mac/Linux: Open-source, Mozilla-powered media player Songbird just released their first beta of their newest release, adding official Windows 7 support, video playback, and support for syncing to devices that use SD cards for storage.
Windows/Linux: VLC gets a lot of praise around here, but its Achilles’ heel has long been a lack of hardware-accelerated playing, which means HD content choking up. A rough 1.1 preview offers GPU-accelerated video on Windows and Linux for curious testers.
Windows: The promised Amazon MP3 Store is still a week or so away, but doubleTwist has upgraded its Windows media manager with as-you-type search, native libraries without WMP or iTunes, and syncing with the latest iPhones and iPod touch models.
Windows only: SkiniTunes solves some of the deficiencies of iTunes’ mini player, adding album covers, lyrics, instant ratings, and a few other nice features. The $US5 pro edition, however, locks down the global hotkeys.
A bug that caused music to be deleted off some iPods has been fixed by the Songbird developers. The fixed and updated add-on has been uploaded to Songbird’s servers, and anyone with the add-on installed should be prompted for an update on launching or checking for it. Did you lose any tracks, even just temporarily, to Songbird’s confused database?
Jailbroken iPhone/iPod touch only: Free application vlc4iphone ports the popular open-source media player VLC—voted as one of the best desktop media players by Lifehacker readers—to your iPhone or iPod touch. Apart from supporting virtually any media type you throw at it (I’d recommend using an app like previously mentioned DiskAid to get media to your iPhone), the VLC port streams internet radio, and can even stream media over your network. If you’re dying to play unsupported file types on your device and aren’t eager to transcode them to do so, vlc4iphone can do the trick. vlc4iphone is free, requires a jailbroken iPhone or iPod touch. The app is still rough around the edges (some playback was buggy for me, and there’s no landscape mode), but it’s not a bad start. Thanks Niranjan! vlc4iphone [zodttd]
Weblog Simple Help details how to install and set up the free, open-source internet jukebox Jinzora on your Mac. Gina already showed you how to install Jinzora on your Windows PC so you can listen to your music anywhere over the internet, so if you were aching to try it out yourself on a Mac, Simple Help’s guide is for you. If you’ve been using Jinzora (or a similar solution) since we covered it, let’s hear how it’s working for you in the comments.How to install and setup Jinzora (streaming media server) in OS X [Simple Help]
Windows Mobile/Windows CE/Palm OS: Although development has halted on the project, The Core Pocket Media Player (TCPMP) remains a robust option for media playback on Windows and Palm-based mobile devices. TCPMP supports video streaming and a wide variety of video formats including AVI, MP4, ASF, MPEG 1 and 4, WMV, DivX and XviD, to name a few. TCPMP also plays back several digital audio file formats, including MP3, OGG, and WAV. TCPMP’s interface is simple and clean with emphasis on ease of playback and a light memory footprint. TCPMP is a free download for Windows Mobile/CE and Palm OS. The Core Pocket Media Player [via FreewarePPC]
The Tombuntu blog points out something many GNOME-based Linux users may not have known—the newest version of Totem (available in the Hardy Heron beta), the default multimedia player, can search and play YouTube videos directly through the video sharing site’s API. Simply head to Edit->Plugins->Configure plugins, then check the “YouTube” plugin. Want some of the higher-res goodies web viewers are getting? Go ahead and grab a H264 plugin and activate it the same way. From my experience, search runs a little slower, but I haven’t seen the occasional syncing/freezing problems once in Totem that I often spot at the Flash-based player.