February 7, 2007Steve Jobs really said that???
Steve Jobs has written a statement 'Thoughts on Music' on the Apple website, in which he shares some quite staggering thoughts on the future of online music and Digital Rights Management in particular.
The biggest bombshell is that he calls for the record labels to drop DRM in favour of open licensable formats. Jobs says: "In such a world, any player can play music purchased from any store, and any store can sell music which is playable on all players. This is clearly the best alternative for consumers, and Apple would embrace it in a heartbeat."
My thoughts? Of course, it's easier for Apple to take this position than others since its core business is selling iPods, not music. However, that doesn't make Jobs wrong. As he points out, record labels are selling about 90% of their content in unrestricted (CD) format, so why spend so much time, effort and money trying to protect the remaining 10% - particularly since it's impossible to truly protect digital content in the long run.
February 2, 2007Music Subscription services will make sense - one day
An article in Reuters suggests that the music industry isn't keen on subscription services, as they are seen as replacement rather than incremental revenue. Well they'd better start getting used to the idea. As music continues to lose its value and CD sales continue to decline, bundling music subscription services with broadband, TV and/or mobile subscriptions may just be the best way to get some money from consumers. And on the basis that the new music economy won't be based on selling albums but on selling associated products such as concert tickets and various forms of merchandising, it makes sense to get something rather than nothing while building fan bases in the only way that really works - playing the music.