There’s something very ironic about an optical drive for the upcoming space-shaped  Mac Pro, like adding a fax machine to an iPhone. Better still is the fact that it’s not just any old optical drive, but a bag-of-hurt Blu-ray drive. And best of all is that this USB-connected optical drive is shaped to fit neatly underneath the Mac Pro as if it wasn’t there.
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Blockbuster has today unveiled a new iOS app that allows customers who still subscribe to its traditional disc rental service to manage their rentals on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The app also allows you to check stock availability at your local Blockbuster store, and more.
What’s better: 1080p iTunes videos or Blu-Ray? Blu-Ray, without a doubt, but it’s actually not as big a gulf in quality as you might think.
There are a couple of solutions on the market that combine simple hardware with an iOS app to take control of your entertainment system, but Peel is probably the coolest and most easy to use solution that we’ve played with. Peel invisibly controls your entire entertainment system — TV, cable box, Blu-ray player, AV receiver, Apple TV, and more — without the extra hassles of plugging stuff into your phone and dealing with network passwords. Normally the Peel system retails for $99, but for the next 3 days you can pick one up from Fab.com for only $45.
Sony CEO Howard Stringer recently revealed the company’s intentions to launch a revolutionary new television before Apple, and according to The Wall Street Journal, it will be a web-based alternative to the traditional set that will allow users to avoid the cable companies.
You might not be able to watch a Blu-Ray DVD on your Mac, but Pioneer’s just unveiled a new line of 3D Blu-Ray players which not only feature DTS-HD and Dolby TrueHD surround as well as 1080p video upscaling… but come with a new app called iControlAV that will allow you to control your new Pioneer player from the comfort of your iDevice. If you want one, it’ll cost you somewhere between $299 and $499.
Steve Jobs has been on the record for months that he thinks Blu-Ray is a format that is in the process of being murdered by streaming video, so Microsoft’s latest ad taking a jab at the Mac for its lack of Blu-Ray support feels a little limp… but to give credit where its due, the pseudo stop motion animation (which is really CGI) that they are using to make that point is pretty cute.