Below: Podcasting in GarageBand.

Can’t handle suspense? Here’s a hit: get ready to run Logic on your superfast Mac laptop, podcasting on GarageBand to your iLife Website by no later than March. Consider this story spoiled.

CDM’s Lee Sherman is reporting to us live from inside the Macworld Expo. If Apple has anything of note for digital musicians, you’ll hear about it here (hit read more):

First big news: a new iLife (still $79, or $99 for a family pack, lots of new features), which includes a new GarageBand and podcast creation. Available today.

And now they’re talking computers. New iMacs will look and cost the same, but they’ll run 2-3 times faster, thanks to dual-core Intel brains. You’ll be running Logic as a native “universal” app for Intel by March, for a $49 crossgrade fee (along with all the other pro Apple apps). (Needless to say, CDM will follow this story very closely.)

One more thing now in progress . . . and it’s a new, ultrafast Intel PowerBook — now inexplicably called the MacBook Pro. (details after break, but hint: it’s 4-5x faster than the current PowerBook and is available next month)

First up, with no promises of accuracy as we’re doing this over IM, what Lee is hearing inside the keynote:

Hit reload for the latest updates . . . please wait 5-10 minutes between reloads so as not to kill our bandwidth! No crowding! -PK

Apple is dominating with its digital music lineup: (certainly for playback anyway)

26 million visitors last quarter
1st billion quarter
5.7 billion quarter
Ipod lineup best in world
4.5 million in holiday 2004
14 million last quarter
100 every minute
42 million total ipods sold, 32M in 2005

and listen up, musicians: iTunes is the online store to beat.

iTunes: 850 million songs
3M per day
1B a year run rate
83 percent marketshare
8M videos since October launch
Now, classic SNL

Auto integration is here!

Remote control with FM tuner accessory
Radio menu shows up in ipod
49 dollars on sale today
Chrysler iPod integration this year
In 2006 40 perceent of cars will offer ipod integration
Wynton Marsalis ad

Widgets update, 10.4.4 OS

1500 widgets available
New Apple widgets: Google, Address Book, iCal, ESPN
10.4.4 is available today (not all at once, musicians, lest you kill the project you’re working on due tomorrow! -PK)

GarageBand Does Podcasts, More

The new GarageBand will feature new themes, a podcast studio, an artwork track, and 200 royalty-free sound effects (the latter presumably similar to Apple’s Soundtrack Pro product.)

Demo . . .

You can use iChat for remote interviews.
Automatic “ducking” keeps your music from drowning out speech
A new World Music Jam Pack adds to Apple’s available loops

Get a New Lease on iLife

Now the rest of the iLife suite, for those of you who are interested . . .

New, faster iPhoto with fullscreen editing, one-click effects, improved printing options
Photocasting via RSS (no Mac needed) (I may be using this from NAMM, but don’t take away my Comic Life for the cartoon version — perhaps they can be combined? -PK)
iMovie: Animated themes, realtime FX, audio tools
Export movies to iPod
Multiple open files
iDVD now features widescreen menus, magic iDVD push-button creation, new themes, slideshows, and 3rd-party burner support
New iWeb app includes Apple templates, online photo albums, and the iLife Media Browser, for one-click publishing to .Mac
RSS feeds generated automatically
Ajax=based photo browser for modern browsers
Podcast subscriptions
Automatic pointers to iTunes Music Store for all songs dropped into website
Photocast subscriptions
1M subscribers to .Mac

New iWork

As predicted, 3D charts, advanced image editing, tables with calculation. And now, what you care about:

New Computers
“Intel is ready,” says Apple, for the Mac’s big transition to that Other Processor. Intel’s Paul Otellini says “1000 people” are working on the project. (Motorola and IBM, I guess, had 3 people and a talking parrot? Hmmm . . .)

The first Intel Mac is here, today: iMac. Same sizes, same design, same features, same prices (hey, no complaints there) . . . new brain.

2-3 times faster, according to Specmarks (32 over previous 10.2), floating point tests (27.1 over 13.0). And yes, kids, that will make a difference in Logic. I’ll be talking to the engineers next week for the official answer, but it’s a safe bet.

Tiger and Apple Apps native on core duo. “Everything is universal [binary],” meaning Apple’s software, and the keynote itself is running on Intel Macs.

Pro apps will be universal in March, including Logic, for a US$49 crossgrade. Rosetta runs most PowerPC apps transparently. (We’ll have the latest details on plug-ins, etc., here on CDM.)

As an indicator of how non-music apps are doing: Quark is in beta as a universal binary; Office is now, but Microsoft is pledging support.

New Mac Laptop

Apple promises the entire line will be on Intel by end of 2006, but in the meantime, here you go:

The fastest Mac notebook ever, the MacBook Pro with Intel. It’s slightly thinner, it has a built-in iSight camera, an ultra-bright display, but most importantly: its Intel brain runs 4 to 5x faster than the PowerBook G4. (For that, we’ll forgive the name that sounds like it was dreamed up by some cheap PC clone knockoff based in Korea.)

More new features:

IR sensor, built-in Apple Front Row and remote control
Magsafe, power adapter connected by magnets
1 inch thick
5.6 pounds
DVI out drives 30″ Cinema Display
US$1999, 2499
Ships February