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Today in Apple history: Revolutionary MP3 format gets its name

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iPod
The MP3 made the iPod possible.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

July 14: Today in Apple history: Revolutionary MP3 format gets its name July 14, 1995: The MP3 file format receives its official name as the new .bit file extension gets changed to .mp3. The technology allows compression of a standard CD .wav file to one-tenth its original size, courtesy of some smart algorithms.

The format will revolutionize the music industry — and put Apple on the road to world dominance.

How to rip and save audio from YouTube videos with your iPhone

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rip youtube audio
This screen represents YouTube, and the telephone represents audio. Or something.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Editor’s note: As of Feb. 10, 2010, the tip outlined below no longer works. However, we published a new post about an iOS shortcut that currently does work: “Finally — a YouTube download shortcut for iOS that actually works.” Enjoy.

YouTube isn’t just for video. Lots of folks use it to post audio files, only they gum up the songs with slideshows so they can upload them to the video-publishing service. There are all kinds of apps that let you convert a YouTube video back into an MP3, but today we’re going to see how to convert a video to an MP3 right in Safari, using Apple’a own Workflow/Shortcuts app.

How to convert any video (or song) into an MP3

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convert MP3 iPhone workflow
With a couple of taps, you can convert any audio or video file to MP3
Photo: Cult of Mac

Converting an audio track to MP3 on the Mac is dead easy. Just open it with iTunes, and choose the File > Convert option from the menu bar. On iOS, though, there’s no native way to do this. There are lots of shonky-looking apps in the App Store that offer to create MP3s for you, but it’s likely that you already have the answer installed on your iPhone or iPad.

That’s right. Apple’s own WorkFlow app can quickly and easily convert any audio (or video) file to MP3.

End of an era: MP3 format officially dead

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iPod
The iPod played a big role in popularizing the MP3.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

The MP3, the iconic music compressions format partly popularized by the iPod, has been declared dead by its creators.

Licensing of the technology has been the responsibility of German company the Fraunhofer Institute. In a statement, the institute revealed that it is terminating licensing patents and software related to MP3. It’s the end of an era!

Remove DRM from iTunes and Apple Music to play your audio on any device

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Apple Music Converter
This app converts audio files into MP3, removing their DRM restrictions so you can play them on any device.
Photo: Convertanymusic.com

This post is brought to you by Convertanymusic.com, maker of Apple Music Converter.

When we download music from iTunes, or audiobooks from Audible, the files that get onto our devices are DRM-protected. That means they can’t be played on “unauthorized” devices. This, let’s face it, is pretty inconvenient.

Download and convert YouTube videos for free with MacX Video Converter Pro

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Digiarty celebrates five years of creating great video download software with a fantastic free offer.
Digiarty celebrates five years of great video download software with a fantastic free offer.
Photo: Digiarty

This post is brought to you by Digiarty, creator of MacX Video Converter Pro.

Sometimes you see a great video online and you’ve just got to have your very own copy. MacX YouTube Downloader, a free tool from Digiarty, can make that happen. And if you want to take things a little further, companion software MacX Video Converter Pro can transform the videos you’ve downloaded into files that will work on all your devices.

Possibly the best part? Digiarty is celebrating its fifth birthday in style this week by giving away MacX Video Converter Pro!

Amazon Snubs The App Store, Makes MP3 Store Available Through Mobile Safari

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Amazon has today launched a new web app for the iPhone and iPod touch that allows users to purchase more than 22 million tracks directly from the retail giant’s MP3 store. Amazon says the HTML5 app has been optimized to work seamlessly inside Apple’s mobile Safari browser, and any music you purchase will be transferred instantly to your Cloud Player library.

Scosche Realm RH656 Headphones: Good Sound Without Fuss [Review]

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These Scosche Realm RH656 ($130) headphones compete in the same league as with headphones like the Beats (formerly Monster) Solo HD, the Incase Reflex and the Fanny Wang 1000 Series. These ‘phones have a lot in common: they have smallish earcups that sit on the ear, instead of over; they all have track and volume controls (remember though that the volume control won’t work on Android devices); and they’ve all had a dash of fashion added.

But there are some key differences too. And as you’re about to find out, the RH656 does pretty well against its competition.