Want to buy a video or game for your iPod from the iTunes Store? Apple’s the only distributor, but if you visit its popular online shop these days, one of the first things you’ll see is the equivalent of picket lines: numerous complaints from users regarding software compatibility and Store business practices, stacking up as negative ratings for various downloadable items. On other downloads, you’ll see ad hoc debate societies, with comments on the new iTunes offerings attracting more user attention than the downloads themselves.
Amongst the video gripes: numerous comments in the Store’s South Park Season 10 section angrily note that after paying in advance for the latest season of the popular Comedy Central cartoon, users then discovered that the Store had split the episodes into “Season 10A” and “Season 10B,” forcing subscribers to pay more to receive the second half of the season. “i am yet another person screwed out of the full season 10 that i bought months ago,” wrote one commenter to Season 10B, “now there are two season tens? i tunes conveniently left that out when they first offered the season pass. scammers.” Hundreds of users are registering opinions – “helpful” or “not helpful” – on the South Park comments, some disagreeing with characterizations of the season-splitting as “deceptive,” and others claiming that they have written to Apple to complain without receiving satisfactory responses. Additional details can be found by clicking on the link below.
Video quality also continues to be an issue for some users, despite recent Apple promises of near-DVD quality iTunes Store downloads. In the “most helpful” review for the Adam Sandler movie The Waterboy, a user named “Media_Frenzy” writes that the “movie quality is bad… Some scenes are extremely distorted from – I’m guessing – over compression. … I borrowed the Waterboy DVD from a friend who bought it at Walmart for $9.99. It’s sharp and clean. This can AND will effect my decision to make any more movie purchases via iTunes.” Other users added similar complaints, noting that voice synchronization and picture quality were off in their downloads.
Similarly, users are actively complaining about pricing and performance of iPod Games, with the most common complaints focused on users’ inability to play the new games on iPod nanos, in iTunes, or on older iPods. “i disagree with itunes on making this only [for] the ipod video,” said “crazyrocker” about Pac-Man, suggesting that it should be on the iPod nano as well, and that if other users agreed, they should ” ‘click yes this was helpful’ so itunes can [see] how many of us disagree with this.” Of the 5958 users who clicked, 5225 found it helpful; other comments in the games section routinely complain about high game price and refund problems, amongst other issues.
Not all of the comments are negative. In addition to numerous posts praising the content of some of the games, TV shows, and movies, users in the Store’s Movies section are debating the merits of paid video downloads versus DVD ripping, and coming to different conclusions. In the Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl reviews, a user named Pondo poses the question “Download or DVD?,” discussing the merits of full-featured DVD purchases versus simpler iTunes movie downloads, while another user, “Armageddon Man,” challenges the store to improve its offerings to compete with the movie’s Special Edition DVD, which costs only “a few bucks more.”
Have you had issues with game, TV show, or movie downloads from the iTunes Store? Or found them to be fantastic? Positive or negative, leave your comments in the section below – we’d like to hear your thoughts.