“Apple Computer said Wednesday that about 5 million free songs have been given away through a Pepsi promotion, far fewer than the 100 million tracks that could have been redeemed.
An Apple representative said the music giveaway was probably the biggest ever of its kind but admitted that the company gave away fewer songs than it had intended.
‘We had hoped the redemptions would have been higher,’ said Katie Cotton, Apple’s vice president of worldwide corporate communications. Customers with winning bottle caps have until Friday to redeem their free music tracks.”
“Among other additions Apple Computer made to its iTunes software, the Mac maker has plugged a hole that allowed some people to download music from another computer.
Apple’s iTunes allows Macintosh and PC users to play music stored on other PCs on a network. The music is streamed off the other computer. But file-swapping enthusiasts quickly created other programs, such as MyTunes, to capture the songs and allow them to be saved to the computer’s hard drive. With the latest iteration
“According to a handful of very preliminary reports, it appears that new Mac OS X code, which is included as part of the iTunes 4.5 installer, cripples the vast majority of DRM-removing applications that have surfaced in recent weeks.
“I just downloaded the freebie song from iTunes, by the Foo Fighters, and when I tried to pass it through iMovie or FairTunes, I received an error message stating that my computer was not authorized to play the song,” one iTunes user said.”
“Apple Computer Inc.‘s online music store, iTunes, recorded a small profit in the current quarter, according to Chief Executive Steve Jobs (news - web sites).
ITunes is now selling 2.7 million songs a week, or a rate of 140 million songs a year. The company boasts a market share of more than 70 percent in legal online music.
The Cupertino, Calif., company will resist adding video capabilities to its iPod music player.
“It’s the music, stupid,” Jobs said, adding that listening to music can be done in combination with another activity else, while video is a “foreground” activity.”
Head to MacMinute.com for live coverage of the iTunes Music Store anniversary conference call. There is an extensive list of news briefs from the call.
Some highlights courtesy of MacMinute:
- Jobs: The iTMS had a small profit this past quarter—0-70 million in one year is a good figure.
- Jobs: Music is background activity—movies are foreground activity—music is the revolution here.
- Jobs: we have to stay focused on the fact that people are buying iPods for music.
- Jobs: (joking): next big step is we want iPod to make toast. Toying with refrigeration, too.
- Jobs: upward trend in iPod sales—Apple is the only company in world offers unbeatable combo of iPod, iTunes and iTunes Music Store.
- Jobs: subscription services not succeeding—$1 to listen to a song for the rest of your life. People want to own music, not rent it—you own it… subscriptions make you pay over and over.
- HP expects to ship 8 million copies of iTunes on their desktops this year.
- Labels never asked for iTMS downloads to play on any other device besides iPod, says Jobs.
- Price is remaining 99 cents per song
- “Gonna help us a lot in the Windows market,” says Jobs. (WMA to AAC converter)
- Jobs: “Largest online catalog in the world. “Number one online music service in the world,” so “exceeded our wildest expectations”
“Give your students easy access to iTunes
Jim Heid, author of the forthcoming “The Macintosh iLife ‘04” book and DVD, has published an in-depth look at iTunes 4.5 on his Macilife.com Web site.
iTunes 4.5 has been announced by Apple within the iTunes Music Store.
What’s new in iTunes:
Free Downloads/Single of the Week
iMix - Publish Your Playlists
CD Insert Printing
Import WMA Files (Windows)
Links to Music Store (Requires iTunes 4.5)
“The number of U.S. music fans downloading music online increased by 27 percent between November 2003 and March 2004, research claims. Pew Internet & American Life Project ran a survey among 1371 Internet users to reach its estimates, which include users of file sharing networks (LimeWire, Kazaa) and legal services, such as Apple Computer’s ITunes Music Store. Downloaders rose from 18 million to 23 million in the period. [...]
“While online music services like ITunes are far from trumping the popularity of file-sharing networks, 17 percent of current music downloaders say they are using these paid services. Overall, 7 percent of Internet users say they have bought music at these new services at one time or another, including 3 percent who currently use paid services.” [...]
“ITunes, which reached more than 2.3 million Americans in March, has added nearly a million unique visitors since October 2003,” the report states.”
This week marks the one year anniversary of the iTunes Music Store. Apple’s CEO, Steve Jobs will be holding a special conference call with press and analysts on Wednesday, April 28 at 11:30 a.m. ET, the official anniversary date.
Teenage writer, coder, and hacker Aaron Swartz has published a technical article on the behind-the-scenes look at the iTunes Music Store, including how Apple implements the FairPlay DRM (Digital Rights Management). “This document explains how the iTunes Music Store works. This information is useful to computer science researchers, cryptographers, and politicians, who may be curious to understand the largest deployed DRM system to date.”
“Teaming up to offer the leading collection of digital music for kids, teens and families, Apple and Walt Disney Records today announced that the catalog of Walt Disney Records, including soundtracks from Disney’s classic animated films and Disney/Pixar’s computer-animated films, is now available exclusively on the iTunes Music Store through September 30th.
A new “Disney” genre page within the iTunes Music Store will feature a wide range of family entertainment including the soundtracks from animated films such as Alice in Wonderland, Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Snow White and The Little Mermaid; Disney/Pixar’s Toy Story, Toy Story 2, A Bug’s Life, Monsters, Inc. and Finding Nemo; plus, Disney audio storytellers, theatrical cast recordings and music from up-and-coming stars Raven and Jesse McCartney.”
MacMinute reports Apple’s iTunes Music Store is up for three Webby Awards this year. Presented by The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, the awards are given to the world’s best Web sites for 2004. The iTunes Music Store is nominated in the Commerce, Music, and Services categories.
Ben & Jerry’s is making ice cream lovers an offer they can’t refuse - free ice cream, free music, and the opportunity to have a voice in the next presidential election. On Tuesday, April 27th, from noon to 8:00 p.m., in Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Shops across the country and around the world, ice cream lovers can enjoy a free cup or cone of their favorite flavor all day long!
And as if getting free ice cream wasn’t cool enough, this year Ben & Jerry’s is adding a new twist to Free Cone Day that they’re calling “ETOV - Turn it around!” Through a partnership with Rock the Vote, ice cream lovers can register to vote in their local Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Shops. Still want more? Ben & Jerry’s is also offering an exciting sweepstakes and free song download offer, and encouraging voters to take an online “Oath to Vote” at www.benjerry.com
“‘When we launch in Europe, we want to do it well. There can be no compromise on the ease of use, the depth of the catalog or the responsiveness (of the Web site),’ Apple’s European chief Pascal Cagni told Reuters in a telephone interview.
He added that a delay of a few months was acceptable because the store was going to be an important outlet for many years.
‘This is going to be so important for the future that a few months’ delay is not essential,’ he said. ‘But it will come. Absolutely,’ he added, when asked if he was sticking to the launch target year of 2004.”
Tilt. Twist. Redeem. A USC freshman takes the iTunes-Pepsi tilt to heart. “As a USC freshman, I am forced to have a meal plan. This plan gives me $2500 “dining dollars” to spend over the semester. Given that it is incredibly difficult to purchase $2500 worth of food in such a short time, I realized I could turn this “money” into free songs on iTunes by purchasing Pepsi.” This person may hold the record for most iTunes-Pepsi bottles purchased at one time for a chance to win music.
The PlayFair project, which removes fair-use restrictions from music purchased through Apple’s [iTunes] online store, has become the latest victim of offshoring. Actually, that’s not quite true: only the hosting provider has moved to India. Not surprisingly, Apple has used the Digital Millenium Copyright Act to ask SourceForge to remove the project. SourceForge declined to use the Safe Harbor provisions of the Act. [...] The new location for PlayFair is at Sarovar, a hosting company for software libre projects based in Trivandrum, India.
SiteLink Network recently launched “Tune-Watch”, an advanced web portal to the iTunes Music Store, implementing an easy-to-use interface that allows users to browse the Store’s latest additions, new releases, and top songs and albums without actually launching Apple’s iTunes software. Tune-Watch also provides direct links to the Store through iTunes for purchase or more detailed browsing.
“The Digital Media Project’s Green Paper, iTunes: How Copyright, Contract, and Technology Shape the Business of Digital Media, provides an in-depth look at this service from the perspective of comparative law. Members of the Digital Media Team