Apple’s iTunes, iPod, iTunes Store is a success. Is it Open or Closed, as some competitors claim?
I’m convinced that Apple needs to open the iTunes, iPod wall for all players. Kate MacKenzie disagrees.
It’s a simple and straightforward situation and not difficult to understand the benefits for the industry, for customers.
Apple publishes iTunes for Mac and Windows. Apple produces iPods for Mac and Windows.
The iTunes Store works using iTunes and sells music and other media which only play on Apple’s iTunes or iPods, using Apple’s Fairplay digital rights management system.
It all works well as Apple’s 70-percent to 80-percent market share seems to demonstrate.
Customers like iTunes, they like iPods, and they’re buying media from iTunes Store. No other competitor is even close.
You’re probably thinking, “
What’s the problem, Jack
?” I’m a customer and I’m not satisfied.
Apple’s end to end closed architecture makes for a compelling system of media management, but I’m locked to Apple.
I have to jump through hoops to use a different player for music; perhaps one that’s better than iPods.
Jack, it’s the end to end system that makes it work as it should. Look at the PlaysForSure (it doesn’t) systems.
It’s not end to end, customers don’t like it, they vote with their pocketbook or wallet for a better experience.
Better experience is in the eye of the beholder. Sansa has some very attractive media players. Sorry, I’m using iTunes.
I’m literally stuck using an iPod, and there are other players with more features at attractive prices.
Apparently, the public doesn’t think so. Sansa has what? 10-percent market share? All iPod killers have come and gone.
Why should you be allowed to play music from Apple’s iTunes Store on other players?
Because I want to. Apple makes money across the board, on every component of the chain, yet they’re afraid of hardware competition.
All they have to do is license the rights to Fairplay to Sansa, Creative, and others. Then I can buy the player I want and not get stuck “Apple Only.”
You’ve been reading too much about DVD Jon, the guy who cracked Apple’s DRM code and wants to sell it to others.
RealNetworks hacked Apple’s code with Harmony. It still lets Real’s music play on iPods. No one cares. It was a dud.
That’s the other way around from what I’m proposing. I want music from the iTunes Store to play on other players.
I want to use iTunes and have it sync with other players.
That’s wishful thinking. It doesn’t even work well with Microsoft’s PlaysForSure on competitors to the iPod. Why mess with something that works?
Besides, you can buy music from iTunes Store, rip it to an MP3 and run it on whatever player you want. It’s just easier Apple’s way.
Kate, it’s time for a universal media format that just works everywhere, all players, all the time, digital rights management included.
Apple is both selfish and paranoid. Customer be damned.
It’s Apple’s way or the highway
What do you mean by “
The definition I’d use is the same as that in Business Week.
That doesn’t exist. Apple has become a Goliath monopoly of sorts, inhibiting the industry, frustrating customers. They’ll get the Microsoft Curse soon enough.
Would you say that the
for desktop computing is Windows? Probably not. You love Macs now.
In video and audio there are dozens of digital formats and standards.
In audio, it’s MP3 that rules, Windows or Mac. For video, it’s Microsoft video or MPEG2, such as in DVDs.
And many other formats too messy to list. A universal format for anything digital won’t happen. The industry changes too fast.
A universal format is needed. It can happen. It should.
There’s a universal format for hard drives, for screens, for components, for CPUs, for CDs, for DVDs, and so on.
Some compete, yes. Some are speciality, yes. That doesn’t mean users wouldn’t embrace a defacto standard for digital music and media.
They already have. It’s Apple’s iTunes, iPod, iTunes Store. If 70-percent or 80-percent isn’t a defacto standard among a world of formats, I don’t know what is.
It’s an age old argument. What’s your view? Join the discussion in the Forums.