December 18, 2013 Last Updated 7:22 am

Media updates: Apple releases ton of updates as it clears load before holiday shutdown

The holidays are upon us and many businesses will be shutting down for a time around Christmas through New Years. Apple is no different as iTunes Connect, the mechanism that manages apps and books, is shut down starting on Saturday, December 21. That means that developers and publishers have until Friday to submit their updates and new submissions – though it is already too late to submit anything brand new and see it approved before the holidays.

For the past couple of weeks things have been a bit crazy inside iTunes, with subcategories not working, and apps and books not getting released. Though it is probably unrelated, the release of Beyonce’s new album coincides with more app updates appearing.

screen480x480-1My own eBook, Talking Digital, which was supposed to be a minor project, has ended up being more trouble than it will be worth. The book was submitted to Apple on December 3 and I fully expected it to be released into the iBooks Store as a pre-order within 24 to 48 hours, the same time it took both A Darker Sun and One Person Rally to appear. But for two weeks I heard nothing – then this morning I got notified that it had been finally reviewed.

It appeared something was up yesterday as a ton of updates suddenly appeared. This morning was the same.

Hearst’s update for Esquire has appeared. The update gives readers archiving options, as well as fixes some bugs.

Canadian publisher Rogers Publishing has updated Marketing Magazine. The digital edition remains a replica, but the update adds in progressive downloads for instant reading, and a way for print subscribers to log into their accounts to access the issues.

seo_cw_productSporting News is now up to version 3.0. The update makes the iPhone version work on all models, and there are updates to notifications and social media log-ins. There are also new news feeds.

Popular apps for Netflix and Flipboard were also updated. While the Netflix update is simply about bugs, the Flipboard update adds in some sharing options. With version 2.2 one can now get notified when other people on Flipboard are sharing a story with you.

One can probably expect the rest of the week to be filled with more updates as the deadline approaches. Developers and publishers can begin submitting content to iTunes Connect again starting on December 28, though they would probably be better off waiting until Monday, the 30th in case they need phone support from Apple.

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