At MacWorld in January 2008, Apple announced the shift from purchasing videos through iTunes to renting them (from the US store for now, with other countries to certainly follow). At the same time, they introduced updates to the software for iPods, iPhones and the Apple TV to make it all work together. And the other big news was the introduction of a digital copy on certain DVDs you can buy in stores (in North America). At about the same time, the “war” between HD-DVD and Blu-Ray is (already? / finally?) coming to an end with the solution backed by Sony in the lead. Having (almost) all the devices that form the iTunes ecosystem, I needed to give it a try.
Continue reading iTunes / AppleTV movie rentals: a user point of view
2007 has seen a major shift related to digital music sales. Yes, it was possible to purchase DRM-free songs from various sites such as eMusic, but the big majors were noticably away from it. Then, Apple and EMI got to their senses and started offering music in high-quality without any digital rights management associated to them. The good news is: it doesn’t seem to affect sales in a negative way as the other majors are starting to embrace un-protected digital music sales over the Internet.
The two next steps are for other types of contents to be available DRM-free (TV shows, movies, audio-books, eBooks, …) and for the removal of country borders for digital sales and subscriptions… DVDs and Blu-Rays / HD-DVDs are region-encoded, but even more annoyingly, you cannot buy DRM-free music legally from Amazon.com and you cannot watch shows on hulu.com if you are outside the United States of America!
Why not make the digital content sold online available simultaneously world-wide… record companies and movie studios should consider this as another “virtual” country around the world, just like other physical countries / geographies. I would love to see the reaction of the press and blogosphere if there was a killer content available everywhere but in the US.
It’s not that I don’t want to pay for my content, it’s just that I can’t do it legally from where I live… I believe that this is really wrong.
PS: When is the iPhone coming out in Canada? 😉
First, European states look at (or are) taking action against Apple because of the tight integration between iTunes and iPod (especially the Digital Rights Management for the music sold online), then Steve Jobs posts an open letter to the music industry on February 6, 2007, and now I am hoping that my favorite artists are all signed by EMI and not the other majors… and it’s not because of DRM
I’ve never been a big fan of purchasing music online. Yes, DRM has always been a key element playing against purchasing songs online, but more importantly, the sound quality was just not good enough. I was ready to continue purchasing CDs and encode them at 192-256 kbps AAC myself, to then pile the new physical media somewhere and never touch it again. The only things I’ve purchased online are those I wasn’t able to find in the physical world (there are quite a few exclusives on the iTunes Store). But now, with the recent Apple / EMI announcement, looks like I won’t need to purchase (certain) CDs anymore.
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Continue reading So who is an EMI artist after all?