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Apple has completed its second major international rollout for iTunes Match since its U.S. launch in November. The service is now available in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Guatemala, Honduras, Latvia, Lithuania, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, and Venezuela. Apple has been moving fast considering most of these countries only gained access to the iTunes Music Store back in December.
The launch means Apple's music locker is now available in 37 countries around the world, after an initial expansion that included only Brazil followed by mostly European countries. The $25-a-year subscription service scans your entire music library and compares it against some 20 million songs in Apple's database so that any matches -- even if ripped from CDs or acquired illegally -- will become available for download onto your Apple devices as high quality 256kbps AAC files. Songs not found in Apple's catalog will be uploaded to your digital locker.
Apple's iTunes Match is integrated with the iCloud platform, which taps into the cloud to synchronize files, content, and apps between Apple devices. Although iCloud doesn't technically "stream" music to you on demand, it uses a simultaneous listen and download approach to create the same effect.
You can clear music you've downloaded at any time if you want to free up space and re-download later. The service includes a 25,000 song limit, although iTunes Store purchases don't count towards the total.
A full list detailing iTunes Match and other Apple services availability by country can be found here.
The iPhone 4S looks identical to last year's model but comes in a new 64GB flavor and upgrades the camera to include an 8-megapixel sensor with improved low-light performance and 1080p video capture. In terms of performance the new iPhone is reportedly up to 2x faster and is also capable of running on faster HSPA+ networks, reaching theoretical download speeds of up to 14.4Mbps.
The iPad 2 improves on the original in many ways, including a significantly faster dual-core CPU, improved graphics and a thinner footprint. The iPad 2 also manages to shave off 0.2 pounds for a total weight of 1.33 pounds on the Wi-Fi only model. Apple has included two cameras on the iPad 2 – a VGA-quality front facing lens for FaceTime and a rear-facing camera capable of recording 720p video.
The 13-inch MacBook Air models get a 1.7GHz Intel Core i5-2637M processor, 4GB of RAM, and either 128GB or 256GB of flash storage for $1,299 or $1,599, respectively. Configure to order options include a 1.8 GHz Core i7-2677M processor and additional flash storage, but unfortunately no discrete graphics, only the built-in HD 3000 from Intel.
The Apple iMac 27 inch / Spring 2011 Edition is outfitted with a 2560x1440 and 1080p LED-backlit display, a 2.5GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor, an AMD Radeon HJD 6750M discrete graphics chip, and a 500GB 7200RPM HDD. It features a built-in "FaceTime HD" camera, integrated speakers, a slot-loading DVD burner, an IR receiver, an SDXC card slot, four USB 2.0 ports, audio in/out jacks, one FireWire 800 port, Gigabit Ethernet, as well as 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1. Last but not least, it is equipped with two Thunderbolt ports.
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