Real CEO hopes for Apple iPod opening

“It sounds like Rob Glaser is itching for an invite to Apple Computer’s digital music party. Glaser, chief executive of multimedia software giant RealNetworks, derided the way Apple’s top-selling iPod music player works only with Apple’s own top-selling iTunes Music Store — and doesn’t work with rival download stores like the RealPlayer Music Store. Glaser, whose Seattle company develops RealPlayer and owns the online music site Rhapsody, shared a panel at PC Forum in Scottsdale, Ariz., Tuesday with Shane Robison, Hewlett-Packard’s chief technology officer,” Jon Fortt reports for The Mercury News.

“HP plans to begin selling its own version of the iPod in a few weeks through a partnership with Apple, so Glaser asked Robison to work on getting Apple CEO Steve Jobs to open up the iPod to others in the industry, predicting that Cupertino-based Apple’s music player will lose market share otherwise,” Fortt reports.

“‘Consumers will say, ‘I bought an iPod and I can only shop in one store. What is this, the Soviet Union?” Glaser said. ‘Steve does understand this,’ Robison said. ‘It will evolve,'” Fortt reports.

Full article here.


  1. sounds like the death gasp. He’s looking for a life line from apple to save his online music store and share the wealth.

    Why doesn’t he use the same format uses?

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  2. Poor Rob, reduced to comparing Apple’s totally integrated music purchasing and management experience to Soviet Russia.

    And when will Microsoft or Real make their media software feature-equivalent cross-platform? And when will MS or Real make their servers available under OS X?

    What a total fscking hypocrite – between MS and their more blinkered developers and acolytes (Real included), they tried to run Apple into the ground, and now they want to be invited to the iPod party because they can’t design anything that the public wants.

    As for Robison saying that ‘things will evolve’ – it’s true, they will: Real will hopefully disappear into oblivion as MS continues to stab them in the back, and then they’ll cease to be a problem.

    Should have picked more trustworthy bedfellows, Rob.

  3. Before the AAC discussion reboots, I’d like to suggest that even if other people licensed FairPlay, that DRM is likely tied to the VENDOR. So if Apple allows songs from Apple on the iPod, that doesn’t mean songs from another vendor would work unless the two companies cooperate. A FairPlay AAC from another company would NOT have the Apple “code” or whatever. Apple CAN control their player and their music store, and they have done so. Real and others are kept out. For now, that makes good sense.

    Other companies are bound to try to do what iTunes has done, and some may survive in some form. But Apple’s in charge at the moment.

  4. Not Again! Ok from now on MDN is not allowed to report anything WMA related news! I can’t believe this. Every second day Real this and Napster that. WHO THE FSCK CARES!

  5. As long as Apple doesn’t tell the labels not to distribute through Napster, etal, then choice in the marketplace exists. For the say 92% of home users using Windows computers they have the freedom to choose the multitude of WMA-based services and players OR the integrated iTunes/iTMS/iPod experience. Glaser and the others are despirate.

    “As for Robison saying that ‘things will evolve’ – it’s true, they will: Real will hopefully disappear into oblivion as MS continues to stab them in the back, and then they’ll cease to be a problem.” This was too funny!

  6. One guy from Finland, how is this a WMA story. Rhapsody songs are encoded with AAC. It is just that they use a different DRM than Apple, so their stuff won’t work with iPod. It seems to me as if Apple needs to license their FairPlay DRM including access to it’s database to other vendors. (All licensing is kept on a central Apple server. Deleting a song from your hard drive does not allow you to listen to it on another computer. You must deauthorize it first.)

  7. Wal-Mart please tell your suppliers to sell me products at your cost so I can resell them cheaper then you and beat you out of the market. Please… 🙁

    Owners of the rest of the Dept stores not worth mentioning

  8. So why doesn’t ‘Real’ partner with Apple’s music store? You know, get together… add some more portals via Real into the iTMS stucture? I wonder if Steve would be open for that…

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