“If you like to download the latest episodes of ‘Heroes’ or other NBC shows from BitTorrent, maybe you shouldn’t buy a Microsoft Zune to watch them on,” Saul Hansell reports for The New York Times.
“A future update of the software for Microsoft’s portable media player may well include a feature that will block unauthorized copies of copyrighted videos from being played on it,” Hansell reports.
“Tuesday, Microsoft announced that it would start selling video programming for the Zune, mainly TV shows. These include programs from NBC Universal, which has pulled its shows off Apple’s iTunes Store,” Hansell reports.
“Late Tuesday afternoon I reached J. B. Perrette, the president of digital distribution for NBC Universal, to ask why NBC found Microsoft’s video store more appealing than Apple’s,” Hansell reports. “He explained that NBC, like most studios, would like the broadest distribution possible for its programming. But it has two disputes with Apple.”
“First, Apple insists that all TV shows have an identical wholesale price so that it can sell all of them at $1.99. NBC wants to sell its programs for whatever price it chooses,” Hansell reports. “Second, Apple refused to cooperate with NBC on building filters into its iPod player to remove pirated movies and videos.”
“Microsoft, by contrast, will accept NBC’s pricing scheme and will work with it to try to develop a copyright ‘cop’ to be installed on its devices,” Hansell reports.
Full article here.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Jack” for the heads up.]
Microsoft is desperate. Apple is not. And this is yet another reason not to buy a Zune, as if another one was needed. NBC can keep dicking around until the cows come home for all Apple cares. iPod and iTunes sales continue unabated with or without also-ran NBC TV shows. P2P just keeps on serving up NBC shows at very nice prices, iPod- and Mac- compatible, thanks. NBC will come crawling back to Apple in due time.
[UPDATE: 8:59pm EDT: According to CNET, “Microsoft denies putting ‘copyright cop’ in Zune.“]