Apple: There is no authentication or DRM in iPod shuffle headphone interface

“Just spoke with Apple, and confirmed there’s no authentication or DRM in the iPod shuffle’s headphones,” Michael Gartenberg reports via his GartenBlog.

“There is a license fee, as part of the ‘Made for iPod’ accessory logo that applies to lots of devices and accessories for vendors who want to make headphones that work with the new Shuffle,” Gartenberg reports.

Full article here.

Joel Johnson reports for Boing Boing Gadgets, “Sources at a headphone manufacturer confirmed today to BBG that new iPod headphones do use a proprietary chip available exclusively through Apple. However, it’s described as a ‘transmission’ chip, suggesting that its role is not authentication or digital rights management, even if the result is to encourage manufacturers to pay an ‘Apple Tax’ to license technology that allows their products to be used with iPod equipment.”

MacDailyNews Take: Again, Apple simply wants to ensure that third-party products designed to be used with their products actually work.

Johnson continues, “For the record, we do not believe that the new iPod headphones with in-line remote use DRM that affects audio playback in any way.”

“There is no encryption or authentication on the chip, so clones could conceivably be made, just not with ‘Made for iPod’ official certification,” Johnson reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We contend that the chip, like the “Made for iPod” program itself, is there more to eliminate the specter of junky 2-cent crapphones that would not work properly and only serve to bilk and frustrate customers (see: Microsoft’s Windows platform) than to serve as the nefarious foundation of Apple’s evil quest for worldwide earbud domination (which, look around, they already pretty much have anyway).

MacDailyNews Note: Remember also that the iPod shuffle is a special case in that it uses that one jack for everything: headphones, battery charging, and communication (syncing).

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