From music to MacBooks, these gifts will resonate with students. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
You might think college students are tricky to shop for, but in reality that couldn’t be further from the truth. Since they’re constantly swamped with homework and simultaneously managing a busy social life, all they want is stuff that makes their lives easier and more fun.
If you’re stressing about what to get the student in your life this holiday season, never fear. We’ve collected some great gift ideas, handpicked by college students for college students:
Uber and Spotify are teaming up. Screenshot: Cult of Mac
Update: Uber and Spotify have confirmed a partnership that will let Spotify Premium subscribers become backseat DJs in Uber cars in 10 cities. The service starts Friday in London, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Nashville, New York, San Francisco, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney and Toronto.
“The integration couldn’t be easier,” the companies said in a press release. “Simply connect your Spotify account via the Uber app, request a ride, and when you get matched up with a Spotify-enabled Uber, select music that suits your mood. Your tunes will be playing when your Uber arrives, and you can change it up at any time.”
In a much-requested feature, paying Spotify users can now use their iPhone or iPad to control the songs playing on their desktop computer.
Thanks to the update, you can now easily switch between desktop and mobile — perhaps using your iPad to skip and change tracks at a party, or shutting down your laptop, and then picking up listening on your iPhone from exactly where you left off on your phone.
Downloads are dead, long live music streams. Photo: Kobalt/TechCrunch
If you’re searching for further evidence that music streaming is overtaking downloads, look no further than a new report claiming that over the last quarter European revenue from Spotify streams were 13% higher than revenues from iTunes downloads.
The report comes from Kobalt, a company that helps collect music royalties on behalf of thousands of big-name artist. Currently it only collects earnings from Spotify streams in Europe — which means it’s unknown if similar figures are true in the U.S.
This time last year, iTunes’ earnings were 32% higher than that of Spotify in Europe, although streaming revenues have tripled over the past two years.
For the last year or two, Spotify’s iPad app has been sadly, pathetically ignored. Like Twitter for Mac and Tweetbot for iPad, the app has lagged behind the iPhone version so badly that it almost feels like using a different service.
Beats Music may have Apple’s support behind it, but it’s still got a long way to go before it tops the crowded online marketplace.
According to new figures from app analytics firm App Annie, Beats is currently trailing industry leaders Pandora and Spotify. In September, both of those services racked up more downloads and earned more revenue than Beats, across both the App Store and Google Play.
Beats was the ninth most downloaded music app in September, with once again Pandora and Spotify taking the lead — but also the likes of Shazam, SoundCloud and even Apple’s own GarageBand receiving more downloads.
This week: the iPad Air 2 reviews are in, and not everyone’s feeling the love; Cult of Mac spends a day with Apple Pay; Yosemite and iOS 8.1 Continuity features delight; a potential cure for the painful #6PlusPinch; some welcome changes rumored for Beats Music; and we wrap with our favorite movie trilogies of all time on an all-new Get To Know Your Cultist.
Titter your way through each week’s best Apple stories! Stream or download new and past episodes of The CultCast now on your Mac or iDevice by subscribing on iTunes, or hit play below and let the chuckles begin.
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Beats Music could cost as little as $5 per month. Photo: Beats/Apple
Having helped pioneer the concept of the $0.99 music track on iTunes, Apple is now trying to bring down the price of streaming music.
According to a new report published by Re/code, Apple is pushing music labels for extensive price cuts that would bring the cost of a Beats Music subscription from its current $10 price point all the way down to $5.
Apple delivers U2’s Songs of Innocence to millions of iTunes users, but not everybody’s buying the hype. Photo: Roberto Baldwin/The Next Web
Thousands of angry iPhone users have found an album they weren’t looking for: U2’s Songs of Innocence.
Instead of making the band’s mediocre new album an opt-in freebie, Apple jammed it down the throats of a half-billion iTunes Store customers, enraging some of the company’s most loyal fans. Whether they wanted the album or not, it’s now showing up as “purchased” in individuals’ iTunes libraries on their computers and phones.
When Tim Cook trotted out the Irish rockers for a limp finale to Tuesday’s big Apple Watch announcement, he called giving away the band’s new record “the largest album release of all time” — but now it looks like one of the dumbest.