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Thursday, September 10, 2009, 04:50 am PT (07:50 am ET)

With iTunes 9, Apple again disables Palm Pre sync

The tug of war between Apple and Palm continues, as the latest update to iTunes has once again blocked the Palm Pre from syncing with a users' iTunes library.

When the Palm Pre was first released, it, by default, would transfer media from iTunes by incorrectly identifying itself as an iPod. Apple struck back in July with iTunes 8.2.1, which broke sync capabilities, but only temporarily.

A week later, Palm fired back with webOS 1.1, a software update that again enabled the Pre to access media from iTunes. In a jab at Apple, Palm announced the fix at the end of a blog post by stating "Oh, and one more thing," just as the iPod maker often does when it introduces new products at a keynote.

According to Precentral.net, when sync initially worked, the Pre identified itself as a "mass storage device" called an iPod. Then, to get it working the second time, Palm had the device identify itself as a "mass storage device manufactured by Apple" called an iPod.

Given the back-and-forth nature of the ongoing dispute, it's likely safe to assume that Palm will once again issue a webOS update and circumvent Apple's latest blocking method. The latest update, webOS 1.2, was expected to be released this week, but has been quietly delayed.

In other Palm news, the handset maker this week unveiled the Pixi, the second smartphone built on the webOS platform. It is coming to Sprint later this year.

The timing of Palm's announcement has once again seen the company overshadowed by Apple, with the iPod maker announced new media players this week. Earlier this summer, the Pre launched just as Apple announced the iPhone 3GS.