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BACH Technology developing new audio file format for online music outlets

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 22 Jan 2010 18:44 User comments (8)

BACH Technology developing new audio file format for online music outlets BACH Technology, a technology company based in Norway, Germany and China, which also has the Fraunhofer Institute for Digital Media Technology as a partner, is pushing a new digital music file format that could be used with legal online music stores. MusicDNA focuses on embedding more content into the file, such as song lyrics and images, as well as making them capable of receiving media updates through the Internet.
The proposed file format has the backing of the original MP3 file inventor (who is a BACH investor). It would store MP3 audio but provide additional content to those that legally purchased it through the Internet. The original artist or record labels could "send" updates to the music file over time, whether it is information on tour dates or links to new content available on the Internet.

The user would be able to control the type of content that it would receive. Users that download the file illegally would not be able to tap its additional content features. The file would work as a normal MP3 file in a portable media player. BACH is in contact with record labels, rights holders and technology companies to plot a path forward for MusicDNA.

"We are getting very good feedback and the fact we are looking to include everyone in this, and not competing against them, helps," Chief Executive Stefan Kohlmeyer told Reuters. "What we are bringing back to the end user is the entire emotional experience of music. We think it got lost in the transition to the digital era. We think a beautiful piece of audio has been reduced to a number code. We want to enrich it again."

The music industry has been struck by digital music piracy over the past decade, fueled by the growth of broadband Internet connections. The idea behind MusicDNA is to offer consumers exclusive content for individual songs that wouldn't be gotten with illegally acquired files, but whether it will be good enough to entice people from free music downloads, even being illegal, is very uncertain at least.

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8 user comments

122.1.2010 19:54

update on a song that for the most part has a 10 month shelf life on the charts ??? and lets not forget if you share the song file the updates might be able to track the user by ip adderss . this seams like a candy covered way to sniff out people who get songs for free(nice way to say steal) and make them pay for it

222.1.2010 21:11

Sounds like another DRM'd format to me.

322.1.2010 23:07

Perhapse not as bad as least when they turn off these servers, you still have MP3s.

I am still not sure it brings much to the table...MP3 ID3 already has the capacity to hold a wealth of information and multiple pages of cover art. The reason this is not often used to capacity is that the ID3 tag can easily become larger than the MP3 audio...and the whole point of MP3 is small file size (otherwise we would all be using FLAC). The only difference here is the ability to get updates, and I assume that requires some kind of special player software...

...but at least it isnt DRM.

423.1.2010 11:00


Good luck with this! if your computer has the internet access to update song data, why is it not sufficient to create a plug-in that will provide the same function? Why do I need to know tour dates when my internet is disconnected?

Seems like a pretty obviously bad reason to create a new container to me xD

523.1.2010 15:12

Do we really need yet another file format? Seriously? It's ridiculous how many there already are right now. And as far as this new format being some kind of game changer in the fight against piracy, I think anyone who thinks that way is a fool. There's nothing here at least from my interpritatation of the article that leads me to believe it will do anything. As another poster mentioned, album/artist info can already be added to mp3's. And if you're a big enough fan of a badn then you'll have no problem taking the time to lookup when and where their next show is.

624.1.2010 21:42

The fact that it streams info to the file what is stopping it from collecting info and using it against you. Worse than DRM :)

725.1.2010 16:51

"What we are bringing back to the end user"
I see what you did there.

In any event, this is a plate full o fail. If I want song lyrics I know just where to go. Oh, but they want to control THAT as well. Some time in the future some RIAA goon will jump out from behind the bushes and yell "hey you! Thats copyrighted!" if you break wind to one of "their" tunes.

828.1.2010 11:54

I do not know how we have lived with out this! Music ought to be 90% useless garbage. 20 pics of each artist plus their complete bio. That way you need to buy bigger portables. I am sure they will want to keep crappy bits rates. I can't figure out why they didn't team up with Zune.

We are getting very good feedback

These are your enemies you fools!

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