Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

An Apple Gift for the Holidays: Free Beatles (Book) on iTunes

More than a year after the Beatles came to iTunes, Apple’s digital store remains the only place you can legally download the band’s music. And now, if you want some Beatles but don’t want to pay for it, Apple can help you there, too: The company is giving away a free Beatles e-book.

Yellow Submarine” is just what it sounds like — an illustrated version of the band’s 1968 movie, which is both trippy and kid-friendly (so British!). The book was first published in 2004, but the new version features interactive goodies like song samples and bits from the animated movie.

It’s a bunch of fun and will work on both iPads and iPhones, but you’re really better off enjoying this one on the former.

If you wanted to be churlish, you could note that the free book also serves as a promotion for a compilation album based on songs featured in the book.

Less churlish: Worth noting, yet again, that a year-plus exclusive is unheard of in digital music. Apple says it has sold 10 million songs and 1.8 million albums during that time; still love to know what they paid for that privilege.

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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus