Songbird 1.8.0 adds support for more devices
Nearly three months after the last update, the Songbird developers have released version 1.8.0 of their open source media player, code named "Orbital". According to Songbird Senior Product Manager Rand Fitzpatrick, the latest stable release of the cross-platform media player includes a number of performance improvements and new features, such as support for USB mass storage device class (also known as USB MSC or UMS) on Mac OS X systems.
Support for USB MSC synchronisation comes in the form of an updated MSC device support add-on that enables Mac OS X users to manage media on an external USB device, such as a USB flash drive. Songbird 1.8.0 also features a complete overhaul of the Service Pane, both to the user interface (UI) and under the hood, and adds support for a variety of additional devices. Newly supported devices include RIM's BlackBerry Storm smartphone, the HTC Evo, Magic and Tattoo, LG's KU990i Viewty and Nokia's N85, N96 and N97 devices.
In early April of this year, the Songbird project announced that it would be dropping support for Linux, citing prioritisation issues. VP of Engineering Georges Auberger said that the small engineering team have decided to focus on the Windows and Mac versions as the Linux version of Songbird was falling behind. Following the announcement, a group of developers decided to create Nightingale, an in-development Linux fork of Songbird. The first major release of Nightingale is expected to be based on Songbird 1.8.0.
Further information about the latest Songbird release, including a full list of bug fixes and known issues, can be found in a post on the Songbird blog and in the release notes. Songbird 1.8.0 is available to download for Mac OS X and Windows XP or later. Unsupported Linux builds are provided on the project's wiki. Songbird is licensed under version 2 of the GNU General Public Licence (GPLv2).
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