JupiterResearch analyst blows it: ‘AAC isn’t supported by majority of digital music players’

“Now I’ve had a little while to digest the detail of the Apple / EMI announcement, a couple of additional points come to mind. Firstly the fact that the high quality albums retail for the same price as DRM-ed albums is a really important tactic to offset the bias of digital music purchasing towards individual tracks,” Mark Mulligan blogs for JupiterResearch.

Mulligan, writes, “Secondly, and more controversially, this doesn’t actually do a huge amount to address interoperability with regards to Apple. The DRM free tracks on iTunes are in AAC format, which isn’t supported by the majority of digital music players. Jobs has played a very smart game: AAC is not a closed format, other manufacturers could license it if they so choose, and they are begining to. But currenly they predominately don’t and most of the installed base of players doesn’t support it.”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Maximus” for the heads up.]
Mark, you should’ve spent a little while longer digesting. AAC is supported by the vast majority of digital music players. They’re called “iPods.” Look them up, if you’re not familiar with the product line. It’s painfully obvious that most of the installed base of players support AAC.

In addition, numerous also-ran devices also support AAC, including SanDisk Sansa e200R, Sony PlayStation Portable (PSP), Sony Walkman S series (and A and E series with firmware update), Sony Ericsson, Motorola, Samsung, BenQ-Siemens, Philips, Nokia Nseries and other Nokia multimedia phones, Palm OS PDAs, even the hapless Microsoft Zune, among others. We won’t even get into the wide array of software applications that support AAC. More info here.

Next time, Mr. Mulligan, do your research before blogging.

Related articles:
Apple’s DRM-free EMI deal ‘a master stroke that should cement Apple’s dominance’ – April 03, 2007
In Apple’s DRM-free EMI music deal, the big loser may be Microsoft – April 03, 2007
Apple’s DRM-free iTunes play trumps Microsoft’s huge bet on DRM – April 02, 2007
Norwegian Consumer Council senior advisor applauds Apple’s iTunes Store DRM-free music – April 02, 2007
CNBC video: Apple CEO Steve Jobs and EMI Group CEO Eric Nicoli – April 02, 2007
EMI’s Nicoli on DRM-free iTunes: ‘We have to trust our consumers,’ Apple’s Jobs: ‘right thing to do’ – April 02, 2007
Kudos to Steve Jobs and Apple for having courage to call for end of DRM and making it happen – April 02, 2007
Analyst Gartenberg: iTunes Store’s DRM-free music ‘a great win for Apple’ – April 02, 2007
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Apple: Higher quality 256 kbps AAC DRM-free music on iTunes Store coming in May – April 02, 2007
Warner’s DRM-loving Middlebronfman warns wireless industry it may lose music market to Apple iPhone – February 14, 2007
Monster Cable announces full support of Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ call for DRM-free music – February 13, 2007
BBC columnist doesn’t believe Steve Jobs’ Apple would stop using DRM if music labels would allow it – February 12, 2007
EMI may sell entire music catalog DRM-free – February 09, 2007
Recording Industry Association of America wants their DRM, calls for Apple to license FairPlay – February 08, 2007
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Apple’s Jobs jolts music industry; Zune exec calls Jobs’ call for DRM-free music ‘irresponsible’ – February 07, 2007
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  1. What a fool/tool. I can’t decide which one fits better. Oh, that’s right, they both do. A truly blithering idiot that some village is missing.

    MW=Kept as in he should have Kept his blog to himself.

  2. mulligan |ˈməligən| noun informal

    1 (also mulligan stew) a stew made from odds and ends of food.

    2 (in informal golf) an extra stroke allowed after a poor shot, not counted on the scorecard. ORIGIN early 20th cent.: apparently from the surname Mulligan.

  3. This is so huge!!!!!

    Cha Ching in a huge way! Soon even I will be buying music just for the convenience! I think a lot of people don’t buy for the quality of the music and the pain-in-the-ass system of not being able to share it. Apple hits it i 1 shot!



  4. Its possible that the “majority” of also ran devices do not (yet) support AAC, and if true, that sort of proves his point. He’s not really attackng Apple for this but rather calling it a smart tactic to cement AAC as the de facto standard, which it just very well might do.

    If there’s numerous devices that dont have AAC support yet but they quickly add it tomorrow, then that shows that Apple drove the standard (and not Microsoft).

    This is more about format war than about the iPod, for winning the format war will help Apple more in the long run than anything short term helps iPods. Remember Apple sells Apple TV, iPods, and soon iPhones. Possibly more in the future. The more AAC out there and the less Windows Media crap the better, IMO.

  5. One thing I’ve always hated about the Jupiter site is that the analysts are allowed to put whatever they want out there, and there is no way to respond to them.

    Jupiter does not get the Internet, not in the least.

  6. Can we just start calling it MP4 now – please? When MP3 players first started arriving on the market, and I learned that most of them only played MP3’s (at that time) AND that they were not upgradable, I was flabbergasted. Knowing that, when MP3 took off, better compression algorhythms would inevitably be written, it was impossible for me to comprehend a non-upgradable MP3 player.

    Now, lets talk about MPEG2 – When are satellite distributors like DirecTV and DishNet, etc. going to move to MP4 [H.264], hmmmm? The smaller file sizes of MP4 video, at lower bit rates, look measurably better than high bit rate MPEG2.

  7. Not to mention that if you don’t like AAC … and since these tracks won’t be DRM then there is a little menu in iTunes that says “CONVERT TO MP3”

    feel free to degrade the quality of your own music by doing this Mr. Mulligan. Just chose the button that says 128 and enjoy your MP3 that works on the majority of the non-majority MP3 player of your choice.

  8. We’ve got to get the word out that AAC is *not* a proprietary Apple format.

    People are so used to dealing with MS, that they assume there’s some hidden “screw you” in every seemingly good announcement.

    AAC is an audio *standard* and can be readily adopted by anyone.

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