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New iPhone app streams iTunes collections anywhere


The developer of desktop software that lets users listen to their iTunes libraries from any broadband Internet connection now has a similar tool for the iPhone and iPod touch that eliminates storage limits.

Called SimplifyMedia (App Store), the app by the company of the same name uses a companion app for Mac, Linux, or Windows systems to share iTunes songs and playlists from both the user's own computer and any of 30 friends the user marks as friends.

Using the iPhone app itself is characterized as seamless and attaches visual song data as well, including album art and lyrics associated with each track.

Importantly, the software isn't limited to a Wi-Fi connection and will work (albeit not as quickly) over 2G and 3G cellular Internet access.

The software is potentially controversial for granting access to music that isn't owned by the user, though the company on its website claims it's legal; songs are only streamed and are only shared between a specific group of users rather than the public at large. DRM-protected iTunes purchases also won't stream through the program.

Hoping to spur a strong early reaction, Simplify Media is offering the iPhone edition of its utility for free to the first 100,000 to download it but will charge $3.99 per copy afterwards. The computer-based software is and remains free, regardless of platform.

SimplifyMedia for iPhone delivers on a remote streaming concept similar to one recently outlined in an Apple patent filing.