Apple Announces "iTunes Without DRM"

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News Posted: Tue, Jan 6 2009 10:43 PM

Apple today announced something rumored for a long time, and something several other music stores have already had: DRM-less music.  Of course, Apple was already selling DRM-less EMI music via its iTunes Plus store but now, according to Apple, everything will be DRM-free (well, as of the end of the quarter, anyway).

Eight million of iTunes' ten million songs are currently available
DRM-free, with the remaining to be "cleansed" by the end of Q1 09. Make
sure you note the "iTunes Plus" label to make sure the song / album is
DRM-free, if you want to be sure about something you want to buy.

Pricing?
Well, it is tiered, as the music labels finally get the variable pricing they wanted. There will be $0.69, $0.99, and $1.29 tiers. It's unclear how
exactly the tiers are determined, however, and the new tiered pricing
does not kick in until April.

Based on what they are saying, it might take until April to get everything figured out; their press release says:
And
beginning in April, based on what the music labels charge Apple, songs
on iTunes will be available at one of three price points: 69 cents, 99
cents and $1.29, with most albums still priced at $9.99.
Aha, negotiations are still in progress.  If Amazon MP3 and Wal-Mart are watching, hopefully they have a response for this move planned, as it eliminates the DRM-free advantage they held.



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3vi1 replied on Tue, Jan 6 2009 11:30 PM

Ding-dong, the witch is dead! Time for me to pull my iTunes account out of hock and show my support. BTW - works fine under Wine on Linux.

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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Intresting... but I still dislike Itunes

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What is DRM? I don't get it...

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Iria replied on Wed, Jan 7 2009 10:15 AM

DRM is digital-rights-management, or copy protection.

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shanewu replied on Wed, Jan 7 2009 1:55 PM

Digital RESTRICTIONS Management is more like it.

Imagine a big, juicy, smelly turd that doesn't let you do what you like with the media and e-books you purchase...that is what DRM is.

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Jeremy replied on Wed, Jan 7 2009 3:16 PM

Does this mean I can re-download stuff I've already bought from iTunes without DRM?

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shanewu replied on Wed, Jan 7 2009 3:20 PM

Jeremy - I read in one of the original rumors that you'd get a free DRM-free version of any DRM-crippled songs you have downloaded. Not sure if that's true though.

"Everyone always wants new things. Everybody likes new inventions, new technology. People will never be replaced by machines. In the end, life and business are about human connections. And computers are about trying to murder you in a lake. And to me, the choice is easy." - Michael Scott (The Office)

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Oh ok, makes sense. The interesting thing is, I didn't even know this was existing. I never though there was some protection. At least my songs weren't protected. ???

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Its about time Apple did this.

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shanewu replied on Thu, Jan 8 2009 2:10 PM

Well, peti, that depends on when and where you bought them. Most online music stores had DRM built in at one time (Wal-Mart, iTunes, Yahoo, etc). The only "major" one that never has is emusic, which is why I use that serice.

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