If you’re sick of using iTunes as your default music player, but love its interface, you may want to start exploring the nest of Songbird. It is a program created by a group called Pioneers of theInevitable, which is made up of former Firefox creators and programmers among others. Thus, it’s being pushed by the open-source community just like Firefox was when it took off. It runs on theFirefox browser engine which is something entirely new for a music player. Songbird works using XUL and an open-source platform to help it stay very customizable. Users will have the ability to skinSongbird to their liking and customize features so that it feels like their own personal music player.
Songbird is currently only available for Windows and is still in early stages at Version 0.1. in proof-of-concept form. However, the software, like Firefox,plans to be cross-platform and will be available soon for Linux and Mac OS X. It plays all popular media formats from MP3 to Ogg Vorbis to AAC to WMA. But what about DRM-enabled music files? Songbirdwill be able to play some at first and promises to play more such as Apple’s iTunes Music Store format if an API is released. Also, Songbird currently doesn’t support external music players such asthe iPod or Zen, so don’t go throwing away your old software just yet. Expect Songbird to start gaining attention and become more developed over the next few months.
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