News Roundup: DRM Sinking; iPhone Rising; Gates Trusts Vista with His Life; Porn Can Blind

News Roundup: DRM Sinking; iPhone Rising; Gates Trusts Vista with His Life; Porn Can Blind

Heavyweights pile on in DRM dust-up: Last week the recording-company giant EMI was reported to be floating the idea that DRM maybe wasn't such a good thing, and today comes news that a Yahoo Music exec Dave Goldberg agrees, saying that dropping DRM should boost music sales; one report suggests that Yahoo Music will be DRM-free by Christmas. In addition, Monster Cable's Head Monster, Noel Lee, says that he "shares Mr. Jobs' vision of breaking constraints for legal music downloads."

 

Apple invited to join DRM-interoperability group: Muddying the "DRM Must Die!" discussion is a letter from Jack Lacy, the president of the Coral Consortium, a coalition of consumer-electronics manufacturers and digital content creators that's trying to establish a unified DRM system that's open to all. In the letter, Lacy invites Apple to join in the effort. We agree, however, with the assessment of the smart folks at ArsTechnica, which essentially boils down to, "Fat frickin' chance!" Apple will either keep FairPlay proprietary, or do its best to destroy DRM altogether.

 

More news on the DRM front: With all the talk about dropping DRM, whatcha think Microsoft is doing? Yup, introducing an entirely new DRM format (albeit only for cell phones, and independent of file types). Spunky NexTune, on the other hand, is preparing to release software that allows DRM-protected content to be played on any digital-media player. (Let's see how long it takes for Apple Legal to pounce on that offering.) Amid all this brouhaha is proof that not all successful music purveyors use DRM. eMusic, for example, is doing just fine without it, thankyouverymuch - it's second only to the iTunes Store in online music sales.

 

iPhone Accused of being a copycat: Two separate phone manufacturers are calling the iPhone a rip-off of their touchscreen phones. Giant LG Electronics claims that Apple stole the design from their Prada phone, while little Neonode claims that the iPhone is mererly "following the lead" of its touchscreen N1 phone. Our take: Icons and softkeys have been around for ages - let the best touchscreen phone win. Our money would be firmly on the iPhone if it weren't crippled by Cingular's slow EDGE "broadband-lite" service.

 

Phone manufactures nervously claim that the iPhone is no big deal: One way to tell if a manufacturer is worried about a competitor is how loudly they say they're not. Palm's CEO Ed Colligan, for example, sniffs that his company doesn't "follow design fads." The co-CEO of RIM, the manufacturer of the Blackberry, dismisses the iPhone as "one more entrant into an already very busy space." Nokia's CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo challenges Apple to "turn mindshare into marketshare." To us, OPK (as he's known) sounds a wee bit jealous of all that mindshare. With all this whistling in the dark whistling round our ears, we're even more impressed with Samsung's response to the iPhone challenge: the fast, attractive Ultra Smart F520.

 

In non-DRM, non-iPhone news: Yes, other things are happing in the Mac universe. The head of Apple Corps, Neil Aspinall, has confirmed that Beatles tunes will be available online soon, and that they won't be offered exclusively on the iTunes Store. Apple is reportedly in talks with EA to spur development of games for the iPhone. Bill Gates would trust his mortal coil to a life-support system that runs on Windows Vista. The notMac challenge needs your help to develop a free replacement for .Mac. HardMac has published a nifty how-to on upgrading your Mac Pro to quad-core Xeon processors. Apple says that the rumors about a delay in Apple TV shipments are untrue. Finally, Apple has flexed its legal muscle to pull the plug on a Des Moines bar's weekly tradition, iPod Monday. Spoilsports.

 

And now, the porn: There's an old publishing guideline that says that if you mention something in a headline, you should make it easy for your readers to find it. So, porn: According to study conducted at Yale University, viewing porn can, indeed, make you go blind. No word from the Yalies, however, about whether the sensual effects of bathing in chocolate are salubrious or deleterious. In any case, happy Valentines Day - no matter how you choose to celebrate it.

 

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Elias

Im sick of hearing about the iPhone... its not even close to revolutionary,
the "phone" was invented before i was born. I will not support the iPhone because i can text just fine on my D807 and email perfectly from my imac computer. If i wanna check the weather i will step outside or click my mouse wheel and pop my wiget out.

What the hell is DRM?
They keep writing about it like i know what it means.

avatar

Anonymous

http://isp.webopedia.com/TERM/D/DRM.html

Digital Rights Management -> basically means what people put on their music to TRY and prevent it from being copied. Although there is entire groups dedicated to breaking DRM such as the breaking of HD-DVDs and stuff of that nature because they believe that "everything should be DRM free" as being restricted in your use of music or movies that you paid for is not right. For the most part I believe that it works, it takes a person that is a little more advanced with computers to copy most things, although it seems a lot of people do the Netflix + DVD Burner combo, or the iPod copy programs.

Also I really was looking forward to controlling that iBook robot around the MacAddict offices years ago... I think that project needs to be brought back.

avatar

Elias

THANKS ALOT MAN!
NOW I KNOW WHAT DRM MEANS!

well i think that music these days is out of control and it needs to be controlled... because if people have the money to buy a $300 ipod then they can afford to buy a $9.99 cd of their choice.

I always buy my music.

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