Lawmakers in France are considering a law that would, among other things, force Apple to open its FairPlay DRM, making the iPod and iTunes interoperable with other music players and online music outfits.
The Associated Press outlines Apple’s options if the law passes:
1. Apple could look for technical solutions to comply with the new law in France while maintaining its format exclusivity elsewhere. Sales from iTunes sites are already restricted to local markets using credit card details. But preventing newly interoperable iPods from being used outside the ‘walled garden’ would be much harder — although shipping them with French-only software could help.
2. Apple could simply drag its feet over compliance and wait to be sued. Court proceedings are long, damages relatively light, and class action lawsuits are impossible in France. Apple might figure that iPod + iTunes profits would dwarf the penalties it could face.
3. Apple could withdraw from France, Europe’s third-largest music download market, or threaten to withdraw while seeking a change in the law.
Full article here.
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