Audiobooks

Our first look at the Apple Books app on iOS 12

Apple Books is the new name for the iBooks app for iOS. First announced at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), the update includes a number of improvements that should make buying and reading books more fun and yes, easier too. Here’s a first look at Apple Books on iOS 12.

Speed up or slow down iTunes playback for podcasts, audiobooks, and music with Speed-Up

Still enjoying iTunes despite the beautiful mess it has become on macOS? If the answer is yes, perhaps listen up for this one. Every once in a while, seemingly low-key and low-price apps pop up in the market, claiming to have identified an imperfection or gap in Apple’s software, and in the next breath promising the fix for it. Some of these apps are superfluous to the user for the simple reason that the touted feature is already in place in Apple’s mothership software (in some shape or form), other apps are gimmicky or overly flawed.

Speed-Up for Mac firmly sits in the opposite camp, the one where ostensibly small apps are extremely wholesome and deliver on the promised goods. So what does it promise you ask? Put simply, to speed up or slow down your iTunes playback, an option otherwise notably absent on macOS. If this sounds surprisingly succinct or sober to you, that’s because it is.

Speed-Up treasures simplicity over bells & whistles, and is probably worth a look if you have ever caught yourself wishing for a speed lever in the thick of an Audiobook or Podcast session on your MacBook.

Amazon and Apple end Audible exclusivity deal to avoid antitrust probe by German government

Quietly announced two weeks ago following discussions with both the European Commission and the German Federal Cartel Office, Apple and Amazon have decided to end their deal which made Amazon-owned Audible an exclusive provider of audiobooks for iTunes.

According to a Reuters report Thursday, the move puts an end to antitrust complaints by the German government and is likely to boost competition.

The agreement had been in place for over a decade, since 2003.