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back to article Media standard backers attempt Apple-less solo run

Computer and entertainment companies have announced a plan to standardise video and music files so that they play on any device. The ambitious plan has not been backed by the dominant force in digital downloads, Apple. Through its iTunes software and online shop, Apple is the largest distributor of legal music online, and is …

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all ready standards

my mp3's play on every device I have seen why do we need another?

divx and xvid apear to be becoming the same for vids

(I think we need a silly standards icon)

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Any device?

"a plan to standardise video and music files so that they play on any device."

Any device? If that's true, then they're gonna have to standardise on a format which "any device" can already play, which basically means MP3 for audio. Is there a video format that "any device" can play already? I think not...

Most likely they actually mean "any future device after the standard is finalised". In which case manufacturers will have to build support for this new "standardised" format into future devices.

I doubt they will release firmware/software updates for all the existing digital music/video players, mobile phones, computers etc. They'll just expect consumers to fork out more money to buy a new device which can play this new format.

We'll just end up with yet another proprietary DRM format which only those companies who are part of the consortium support - thereby diluting the market with more incompatible devices and confusion for the consumer.

Microsoft and Sony appear to be the only device manufacturers in the list, and their market share of players is very small. Where's SanDisk , Creative, Samsung etc?

Sounds very much like the failed "PlaysForSure" initiative by Microsoft.

I thought the move was towards no DRM anyway?

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Stop

Buy once play anywhere ? Don't make me laugh....

Quote : "DECE is taking the lessons learned from the successful 'buy once, play anywhere' experience that we enjoy with CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray today, and using a similar approach in developing the next generation digital media experience."

Correct me if i'm wrong, but don't most commercial DVD's and Blu-ray discs have region coding ? Which means you can't play them anywhere and it's not as though they haven't tried to bork CD's to stop them being playable on computers and other non-approved devices.

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lessons learned?

"we're learning from the buy once, play anywhere model of CDs, DVDs and BluRay"

Um, whut? So the region locking on the latter two don't exist? I can't buy my DVD in Europe and then play it anywhere in the world unless I have hardware or software that gets around or simply ignores the region lock in.

I hold little hope of this working if they are oblivious to the dirty practice of region locks.

Make it truely play anywhere by GETTING RID OF REGIONAL LOCKS you fecking twunts!

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What is this ?

Is this a new file format or yet another container with a new DRM ?

If the DRM is at least standardised, then that's a better situation, but eschewing DRM would be better still. That's what Apple claims to want, but most of the labels (and none of the studios) won't let them sell without DRM.

A genuine standard container seems at first glance to be a good idea.

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I agree with Singer

This will push iTunes users to the niche of proprietary technology and then to history, where it belongs. Remeber Sony's own ATRAC format and software?

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Ahem!

"DECE is taking the lessons learned from the successful 'buy once, play anywhere' experience that we enjoy with CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray..."

That'd be region-coded, copy-protected DVD and Blu-ray 'buy once, play anywhere' experience then?

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Their attempts to break Apple's monopoly

Just goes to show that Apple is just as monopolistic as any other company (in-fact more so IMO) when it gets the chance.

Unfortunately the only people who download from iTunes with DRM are the technically unsavy and don't realise the poor quality or the fact they can't take their music to other devices until it's too late after spending hundreds of pounds.

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Paris Hilton

More Format Wars?

Eh. This seems like one last desperate bid for Microsoft to push whatever format it currently fancies at the expense of any other non-Mircosoft format. Like in the good old days where they tried to kill the Quicktime format, or more recently the whole WMA fiasco. Chaps. Apple own this sphere. iTunes won. Leave it. There will be plenty more formats battles to be fought and won but this one you lost. Get over it. I have to wonder if Mircrosoft learnt anything from HD-DVD. People don't like format wars. We like our iPods and mp3 players. Jesus, I'm beginning to think that H.264 isn't so bad. No more format wars. FFS.

Paris. Cos she's got form at. Doing stuff

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the real story

So they want a universal DRM. Like Plays For Sure.... look how that ended

Of course Apple arent showing any interest in this - they're against DRM, for music at least. Good on them too, more legal music for everyone.

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@ all ready standards

i assume they mean DRM that will work on any device rather than video or music that will play on any device, as we have had these standards for ages.

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heh

Unless their new format plays on iPods it's going to bomb, a lesson MS knows all to well given that it's usually the one giving it.

Why reinvent the wheel when we already have MPEG-4 (AKA AAC): "No licenses or payments are required to be able to stream or distribute content in AAC format." so while you could argue manufactures don't like adding 20c to the costs of their players it's hard to see an incentive for content producers to push another standard when they already have one with CD like freedoms*, unless that was all bullshit and the new standard turns out to be crippled in some manner but I'm sure that won't be the case at all.

*Fairplay, the DRM most labels still insist Apple applies to their content is simply an extension to AAC, the format works just fine without it, eg EMI content at iTunes.

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Oh yeah ?

Play anywhere ? I doubt it !

"... lessons learned from the successful 'buy once, play anywhere' experience that we enjoy with CDs ..."

Probably means, learn where we went wrong in not locking this stuff down properly and start again with a better lock.

Me a cynic, nah, what makes you think that ?

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Jobs Horns

Do they not learn from history?

About de facto and de re standards. The Beast of Redmond has already shown how to stomp over the latter, and Apple's shoes will go easily in the indentations it has left behind.

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yawn

without itunes this is going nowhere

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i-tunes is the weakest link

Yes, things are changing, and yes, Apple is the 400kg download gorrilla.

I'm sure the others are hoping that Apple will stumble with an i-Tunes update, and open the door. One slip with advertising or usability might reveal customer loyalty to be skin-deep.

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don't get it

iTunes don't lock me in at all. I can burn my music back to cd which I can play anywhere or if so desired rip again!

It won't go away as the integration is very good and straight forward, you can call names like technically unsavvy but some of us just like to enjoy life and our media without manually fiddling about. My iTunes library is perfectly synchronized across 3 computers, two iPods, two iPhones, one apple tv whilst each user can maintain it's own ratings.

This just won't work and is a waste of time.

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re: don't get it

Technically illegal in the UK, that.

Until they upped the law to make "profiting from copyright infringement" no longer a point to damages for copyright infringement and then "forgot" to allow fair use, this was not a problem: you could be sued for the total damage of £0.00p because you didn't cost them a thing when copying for private use.

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