“Never before has Apple sold songs without attaching antipiracy software–the digital rights management systems that prevent file sharing and are hated by many music fans. If successful, Apple’s bold gamble to do away with digital rights management, or DRM, could act as a whirlpool that sucks the rest of the music industry into DRM-free music, say analysts,” Sandoval reports.
“Apple on Wednesday began selling unprotected MP3s from record label EMI. Shoppers have the option to purchase either a 256kbps AAC-encoded DRM-free song for $1.29 via iTunes Plus, or the usual 128kbps AAC-encoded DRM version for 99 cents,” Sandoval reports.
Sandoval reports, “The move is important on many levels… For the record industry, it once again may find itself being herded into a direction of Apple’s choosing… Even Microsoft is following Apple’s lead. Immediately after CEO Steve Jobs issued his February letter calling for an end to DRM, Microsoft said the total abolition of such protections would be irresponsible since they are needed for subscription music and other new business models. But the company reversed itself in April and announced plans to offer DRM-free music from EMI and others.”
Full article here.