Who says central banking is boring? The European Central Bank, now grappling with safeguarding the survival of the euro zone, has made it to iTunes, with its monetary policy app "€conomia". It challenges iPhone and iPad users with -- you guessed it -- keeping inflation at just under 2 percent. The new app is the on-the-go version of "The Monetary Policy Game" that has been available on its website for some time.
from Tales from the Trail:
Not a great day for US-Russia relations. The United States won the extradition of Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout from Thailand against Moscow’s vehement objections. The Russian government said the extradition of the man known as the “Merchant of Death” was not only illegal but also the result of “unprecedented political pressure from the United States.” Earlier this month we had news that a key Russian spymaster and double agent had defected to the United States after unmasking the spy ring here. And then to top it all off, Republicans signaled they would block ratification of the START Treaty this year. It looks like more of a meltdown than a reset in US-Russia relations.
Music industry types must have had been reaching for their tranquilizers this afternoon, following a report that Apple is in early stage talks to buy Spotify. The report spread quickly, as these things do, and some thought it made a lot of sense. So Apple, maker of the world's most popular music device, the iPod, which already owns the No.1 music download retailer iTunes, would be buying Spotify --the much-loved and critically acclaimed music streaming service, just as it's finalizing deals to launch in the U.S.? This would be too much to handle for many music executives, who think Apple already holds way too much power.
Amie Street, the digital music site which made its name with a dynamic pricing model for songs, has signed up Sony Music as its first major music label. It means songs from acts like Beyonce (pictured), Outkast, Kings of Leon and The Ting Tings are now available on the site as well as plenty of catalog albums.
It should probably come as no surprise, but Apple has again cut off iTunes syncing privileges for Palm's Pre, the latest dig in their tit-for-tat over Palm's smartphone. Apple's newest version of iTunes, launched yesterday, disables the sync.
Britain's Sky News caused a bit of a stir on the blogosphere on Tuesday after it cited John Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono, as saying the Beatles back catalog was finally going for sale on iTunes: seemingly confirming a longstanding rumor that had gained momentum ahead of a widely watched Sept 9 Apple music-entertainment event.