MW EXPO: Apple's iLife suite integrates digital hub apps
Apple has introduced updated versions of the company's lauded "iApps" (iPhoto 2, iMovie 3, and iDVD 3). The company also introduced Keynote, a presentation application for a wide range of users.Apple is also bundling iTunes, iPhoto 2, iMovie 3, and iDVD 3 together in a new bundle – iLife – that promises tighter than ever integration between all the solutions. It will be available January 25 for £39 (including VAT). The first three will still be bundled with all new Macs and available for free download. But Jobs said that iDVD was simply too big for most users to download. The themes themselves were huge, he added. iLife includes new versions of iPhoto, iMovie and iDVD with several new features, all integrated. For example, users can now select music from their iTunes library to use in their iPhoto slideshows, movies or DVD menus from directly within iPhoto 2, iMovie 3 or iDVD 3 – without interrupting the creative process by having to switch between applications, according to Jobs. iPhoto 2 now includes one-click photo Enhance, which can improve less-than-perfect pictures; a new Retouch tool for removing scratches, hair, lens dirt, and so on; archiving to a CD or DVD to preserve and share an iPhoto library; and the ability to e-mail photos with one click using Mac OS X Mail, Eudora, Entourage, and AOL. iMovie 3 features professional-quality special effects, including the new "Ken Burns" effect for adding motion to still photos; new audio-editing tools and sound effects from Skywalker Sound's seven-time Academy Award winner Gary Rydstrom; special video effects such as Aged Film, Letterbox and Earthquake; and the ability to add chapter markers to movies for DVD navigation and scene selection. iDVD 3 includes 24 new professional-quality, Apple-designed, customizable DVD menu themes; automatically created DVD scene selection menus from iMovie chapter markers; and the ability to personalize iDVD 3 themes with personal photos, music, and movies using iDVD Drop Zones. Apple is also lowering the price of blank DVD discs to $3 each. And Jobs predicted the price would hit a $1 per disc within 24 months.Keynote
Keynote was described by Apple CEO Jobs as "built for me. I needed an application that could build the kind of slideshows I wanted for my own keynotes."Keynote includes professionally designed themes; typography; high-quality image resizing; animated charts and tables that can be created in seconds; and cinematic-quality transitions, according to Jobs. Available immediately for £79 (including VAT), Keynote imports and exports PowerPoint, QuickTime, and PDF files. The application includes 12 Apple-designed themes featuring coordinated backgrounds, fonts, colours, bullets, tables, and charts. Users can change the theme of a presentation any number of times, modify an existing theme to their liking, or create custom themes to give presentations a unique look. Keynote takes advantage of Mac OS X's Quartz graphics technology, as well as OpenGL, to create presentations with pro-quality graphic elements such as fully anti-aliased text, transparency, dynamic drop shadows and cinematic-quality transitions between slides. Users can drag-&-drop graphics, digital photos, QuickTime movies, and audio into their slides. Alignment guides and rulers ensure that all text and graphic elements are placed precisely where users want them, Jobs explained. Users can choose from eight flexible chart types, progressively disclose chart and table information, and create animations, shadows, and labels on any chart or table. Chart and table data can be imported from applications such as Microsoft Excel and AppleWorks or organized directly in Keynote's Chart Data Editor. For large slide shows, Keynote's Navigator offers a quick visual overview of the whole slideshow at all times. Slide thumbnails can be grouped into sections that can be collapsed or expanded. For text-oriented presentations, Keynote provides a text outline view and speaker's notes.
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