AfterDawn: Tech news goes DRM-free in the UK

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 13 Feb 2008 18:56 User comments (5) goes DRM-free in the UK The decently popular website has begun offering high quality, DRM-free MP3 music downloads for the relatively low price of 65p in the UK, and the company says it will start with about one million tracks from EMI and indie labels.
The files, which will be 320kbps, should be playable on most if not all media devices on the market, due to its MP3 format. Apple already offers EMI tracks DRM-free as well but in AAC format which is mainly supported by its iPod line. The price is also cheaper and a spokesperson has said that "we're going to be cheaper than [Apple's] iTunes. Whatever price iTunes goes down to, we'll be looking to go lower."

In a recent decision, the EU has told Apple it must standardize its prices across Europe and so the tracks are expected to drop from its high 79p current price. should also see competition from Amazon MP3 which already undercuts Apple's track prices and offers DRM-free music from all major labels. So far Amazon MP3 is only in the US but it will hit the UK later this year.

The company says it is talking to the other major labels, "and if one or more had been quicker we might have held off the launch. We think that within the year, the others will be on board."

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5 user comments

114.2.2008 2:54

Yeah, I am really sick of iTunes protected MP3s. I think everyone should go unprotected.

214.2.2008 2:56

Originally posted by Ludikhris:
Yeah, I am really sick of iTunes protected MP3s. I think everyone should go unprotected.
for starters Ludikhris get your facts straight as it was the RIAA members excluding EMI that have denied apple the right to sell DRM free music on its store!

At last a service that offers DRM free good bit rate, but not lossless and reasonably priced.

Does anyone else see this as a stab in the back to apple because they refused to raise prices for the global price fixers from the RIAA? Never the less its still good for consumers and DRM free works on those cool iPods.

BTW this article failed to mention that the EU blamed the big for record labels of the RIAA for forcing Apple to price fix across Europe not apple itself.
Originally posted by link:
The EU blames record labels, apparently considering Apple to be more or less a conduit of the record companies' wrongs rather than an active violator. An EU spokesperson said "this is an arrangement imposed on Apple by the record companies [...] The main focus of our attention is the major record companies."

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 14 Feb 2008 @ 2:59

314.2.2008 3:11

Still they don't give the option for reasonably priced lossless.

The pirates will continue unabated.

You know why the riaa tried forcing their hand with apple? Higher prices mean more for them, not the artists who still get paid at the same flat rate per download..

Why don't apple become a record label.. oh yeah.. The Beatles..(who??) 38 years since they had any say in music surely.

It's time for a serious rethink, especially among the music retailers..
Back when there were lots and lots of small independent record labels who could pay their artists what they wanted and sell at any price they saw fit.. what happened to them? Surely we are now in a far simpler world for the independent music releasing business..

When a good home studio is no more than a reasonable PC, and a music release portal is just a website with something like a seedbox server somewhere what is stopping them? Oh yeah.. greed of the big 4.. You get a good couple of acts selling well and suddenly these greedy bastards are there with their bottomless wallets and drm and pricefixing and media saturation with kickbacks to broadcasters.

It is they who are killing music, not the pirates.

Remember the pirate radio stations in the 60's and 70's?.. they only went away when the major broadcasters gave the public what they wanted. Exactly the same problem now.. The riaa have pretty much killed internet radio because they demanded huge payments.. they only care about one thing.. huge wallets for business execs.. oh and RIAA.. where is my royalties cheque dating back to 1988? You collected my money, but you don't want to pay out do you.. not big enough to fight you eh? Watch and learn how it is done.. MP3Lizard anybody?

49.4.2008 1:15

Originally posted by Ludikhris:
Yeah, I am really sick of iTunes protected MP3s. I think everyone should go unprotected.
We have been all waiting for this and this has been occuring now and companies have made the change. They have to give consumers what they want.

52.1.2009 5:25

spam edited by ddp

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 03 Jan 2009 @ 16:53

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