So, what IS “Vingle?” - Macenstein

So, what IS “Vingle?”

Posted by Helper Monkey

So, what is “Vingle”?

That’s the question everyone has been asking themselves since yesterday’s reports on Apple’s recently-filed-for-trademark. The Mac community is abuzz with speculation on what exactly “Vingle” is. While at first it sounds like something one might find in a Dr. Seuss book, our best guess from reading the trademark applications is “Vingle” is a bastardized concatenation of the words “video” and “signal”, and it hints at great things.

Apple seemingly is attempting to patent some sort of technology that applies to almost every method of of transmitting almost any kind of media for use on almost every type of device known to man. In fact, Apple has submitted 3 different trademarks in attempts to describe “Vingle”. We won’t go into the legal mumbo jumbo here, MacosXrumors has already done a good job of that. Here’s a quick sum up.

Trademark 1: This trademark request seems to describe a service for distributing and storing all sorts of digital media via Apple’s retail stores.
Trademark 2: This trademark request seems to describe the methods of digital transmission of the aforementioned digital media, and goes on to list almost every type of media (“entertainment, music, concerts, videos, radio, television, film, news, sports, games and cultural events; web casting services; delivery of messages by electronic transmission;”). It also seems to cover online chat and forums relating to those types of media
Trademark 3: This trademark request is where Apple gets a bit crazy, and tries to file for a trademark covering everything except toasters. “Computers; computer hardware; computer peripherals; hand held computers; computer terminals; personal digital assistants; electronic organizers; electronic notepads; apparatus for recording, transmission and reproduction of sounds, images, or other data; portable and handheld digital electronic devices for recording, organizing, transmitting, manipulating, and reviewing audio, video and still images files; magnetic data carriers; mobile digital electronic devices; telephones; computer gaming machines; monitors, displays, keyboards, cables, modems, printers, videophones, disk drives; cameras; computer software; computer software for use in authoring, downloading, transmitting, receiving, editing, extracting, encoding, decoding, playing, storing and organizing audio, video and still images; computer software for DVD authoring; prerecorded computer programs for personal information management; database management software; computer programs for accessing, browsing and searching online databases; blank computer and consumer electronic storage media; computer and electronic games; user manuals sold as a unit with the aforementioned goods�

Our best guess is this is pretty much all related to the underlying technologies involved in the iTunes Music Store. By listing all of these various types of media, and the myriad of possible media players, Apple is likely hinting at a few things.

First, we will see iTunes become licensed to more and more devices. Motorola’s ROKR phone is the first example, with more phones to follow. However, it seems PDAs, game machines (like the PS3 and XBOX) and portable devices (such as the PSP) could all very well see iTunes in one form or another in the future. We feel licensing of the technology is more likely than Apple coming out with its own PDAs, and game machines at this point. Obviously Microsoft has their own plans for global media domination, so it will take some complicated licensing issues and failures on Microsoft’s part before we expect to see itunes on an XBOX. A PS3 (or PS4) seems more likely.

The second thing these filings hint at, is the “iTunes Music store” will soon need a name change. It looks as though available content will be moving away from solely music, and becomes a source for downloading video games, films, as well as streaming content like live concerts, news, and sporting events. Again, not all content is suitable for the video iPod. There are only so many games that can rely on the click wheel. Whether games that are downloaded via the iTunes software are for play on computers or future hand held devices remains to be seen.

Of course the biggest excitement surrounding these filings is the hinted eventual distribution of full length movies via the iTunes store. We can’t imagine Apple plans for customers to download movies to their diminutive video iPod screens. Wednesday’s introduction of Apple’s Front Row application tells us the long rumored “Apple Set Top box” is not far away. While Front Row is nice enough, having an iMac in your living room next to your TV is not for everyone. While in the past Steve Jobs has pushed for a separation between TVs and computers, obviously Apple has seen there is quite a bit of money to be made on hardware sales on devices for playback of entertainment media. It would appear Apple has future plans for an “On Demand”-type content service with “Vingle”. Apple would likely plan to create the content delivery system infrastructure, and then license that technology to other manufacturers who would build the actual boxes. While Apple is still primarily a hardware company, an undertaking this vast, (the domination of the home entertainment market) cannot be won by Apple alone. Apple will need partners, such as Sony, Panasonic, Samsung or others, to add the “Vingle” technology to their future devices. We’re thinking networked Blu-Ray DVD players with hard drives.

So, are we inferring too much from the “Vingle” filings?


But as Mac fans, that’s what we do.

4 Responses to “So, what IS “Vingle?””
  1. Get An Ax says:

    as a fan of Apple’s I would love to see this, yet at the same time I am sick of paying so much for content…Internet,satellite,cell phone, DVD rentals, movies….

    do I really need another media format to become addicted to?

  2. Trump's Baby says:

    I doubt we’ll see anything mentioning Vingle for 2 years.

    Boy, that is a really bad name….

  3. Aurélien says:

    What about a single on vinyl? Do you think Apple would really go into the music business and show they don’t care anymore about Apple Corp and the Beatles?

  4. Mario says:

    Video + Single = ‘Vingle’
    I think, now with the capability of selling music videos, Apple will try to standarize the new name, and this way promoting music video sales in its music store.
    For example, you could buy some artist’s new music ‘single’ OR buy the same aritis’s, same song’s ‘vingle’.
    That’s what I think.
    Could be totally wrong, though. =P

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