No clouds for me, please.
I prefer clear sky, thank you very much.
Amazon's cloudy music service is filling up with every CD you ever bought, ready to play back on as many as 10 approved devices along with your MP3 collection. The service is called "AutoRip" and is US-only for the moment, but where available it creates digital versions of CDs in the cloud so as soon as the purchase is made …
Most services start in one territory before expanding/being rolled out worldwide, so why single this one out for criticism? I can only assume that you are disappointed that you won't be getting a downloadable copy of 2 Unlimited's hit, if you bought on its release before 1998. Besides, prior to then, Amazon mostly sold books.
That does seem to be the rationale behind Ultra-violet [loosen the restrictions on the user so that they hardly notice them] but how well it works it practice is yet to be seen. I do know people who have home-servers that can stream ripped Blu-rays to any sufficiently connected device anywhere, but the less-dedicated consumer could benefit from just buying a Blu-ray, and stream it to a TV from somebody else's server when they visit friends.
Being able to watch a legitimately-purchased DVD without sitting through anti-piracy advertisements would be a good start. In the mean time there is [software name deleted] and [software name deleted] and a nice note from Seagate thanking you for your continued custom.
Amazon offer this too and like with Apple you have to pay for it.
Google offer it free for 20000 tracks and Microsoft do something similar which they don't seem to tell people about so I have very few details. I can access a large portion of my personal music collection stored on my Windows 8 PC on my Windows 8 laptop and on my Windows 8 phone but at no point did I set anything up I'm just using the same MS account on all three devices.
I guess it depends what devices you have, if you're on an iDevice then iTunes is probably best, for a Kindle use Amazon, for Android you can use Google and if you're all Windows you can use Microsoft.
US only = fail.
Just did a search on a few albums / artists and there is a LOT not available = fail.
If it's CDs you already bought you have probably already loaded them into Media Player / iTunes etc. If it's new music you are buying you will probably just buy the digital version anyway so can't really see the point = fail.
A lot of music gets gifted so the digital versions will be in the purchasers Amazon cloud drive not the recipient of the gift = fail.
Only real point in this that I can see is that you can listen to the tracks as soon as you purchase the CD. Ripping a CD takes less than 10 minutes even if you're being really careful with your tagging and ripping and most people want to be able to put the tracks on their phone or mp3 player which this isn't going to allow unless your phone supports Amazon's chosen DRM.
Still, it's a nice idea.
Why do people actually want the 'CD" (physical media) at all - it's a bit like eating the pizza and wanting to keep the box - these days you will either get the music digitally in the first place or if you do get a 'CD" you would just bang it into iTunes then have the hassle of storing it probably never to see the light of day again.
Because we like to have a physical proof that we're entitled to play the music?
Because we want to be able to let whoever inherits our stuff to also be able to legally play it?
Because we don't want to be the victim of yet another online service shutdown?
Mine's the coat with the 2TB drive in the pocket...
Because I like the artwork and liner notes having grown up on the scale of vinyl albums that weren't just music but also an artistic production.
Because I get the tracks in the order the artist intended.
Because the quality is far superior (usually) to mp3 and I can rip the discs to FLAC myself.
Because I have an easily stored hard backup of my data for the same price as not having one!
Because they play in my car.
I buy CDs because I only have a CD player in my car. Mind you, as soon as I get them, I rip them to MP3/FLAC, after all, what if my car got nicked etc?
That said, over the last year or so I've moved towards buying MP3s (mainly from Amazon as it happens), but at the end of the day, every single one gets backed up to an external drive, I don't trust someone else's cloud.
Nice! Particularly as, here in the UK, it's being mooted to 'legalise' the historically unrealistic ripping-your-own-CD for your-own-use technically is/was considered as being copyright 'piracy'. So now it looks like the content is to cost 50% less AND home recording (old terminology) or ripping (new terminology) no longer closet-illegal. Just need to find a download-liking friend with the same musical tastes. Rock On 2013 ...it could be a good year for a change;~)
Does Amazon honestly think that I'm so goddamn' impatient that I can't wait a business day or two for my CD to arrive?
Let's assume for a moment that I would even buy a CD from Amazon (never mind that most of the stuff I'm after wouldn't be carried on Amazon, or probably hasn't even been reissued on CD). What if I don't need or want the CD I just bought to be "auto-ripped"? Will they blow me off and just keep piling up auto-ripped tracks in their cloud until it hits the limit and they start charging me? P'wah, "auto-ripoff", more like.
Besides, I'm not so friggin' incompetent that I can't slip a CD into my computer, fire up iTunes, and rip the tracks to 320k mp3, or wav, or use my FLAC converter myself, thankyuhvurymuch.
Yeah, I'm sure there's a bunch of people who will totally go for this, but, hey, you can't fix stupid.
"I'm going to make a bunch of unfounded assumptions about the service doing things I hate, and then become violently angry with the service because it's doing things I hate.
I also feel it necessary to point out that I am smarter than other people and therefore take it as a personal affront that you offer others a service that I personally find unnecessary.
Additionally, I believe it is important to point out that I am aware that there are formats which are higher quality and, frankly, cooler, to use than mp3. Just in case I haven't made my contempt for anyone who disagrees with me clear enough already, by the way, I include 'thankyuhvurymuch' in a pseudo-dimwit accent, to drive home the fact that I consider those who created or use this service to be inbred descendants of moonshiners, and who probably don't even know how to set up their own email servers.
In conclusion, anyone who doesn't agree with me or doesn't want the same things I want is an idiot."
> Does Amazon honestly think that I'm so goddamn' impatient that I can't wait a business day or two for my CD to arrive?
Does it matter? You still get the CD, and they give you the download for free.
> (never mind that most of the stuff I'm after wouldn't be carried on Amazon, or probably hasn't even been reissued on CD)
Then this doesn't affect you at all, so no need to worry.
> Will they blow me off and just keep piling up auto-ripped tracks in their cloud until it hits the limit and they start charging me?
When you buy music from Amazon, it doesn't take up any of your paid-for space, you get it added free.
> P'wah, "auto-ripoff", more like.
auto-freebies, more like.
> Besides, I'm not so friggin' incompetent that I can't slip a CD into my computer, fire up iTunes, and rip the tracks to 320k mp3, or wav, or use my FLAC converter myself, thankyuhvurymuch.
And you still can. They haven't taken anything away, just added things.
> you can't fix stupid.
Argh wrote: "Does it matter? You still get the CD, and they give you the download for free?"
YES! It does matter. Because Amazon is a business and it costs them money to run this service that could otherwise be devoted to things actually useful to me like decent packaging for my items and better wages for the warehouse staff.
Just a limit on the number of devices you can register with it. Since it uses your Amazon account, you'd be an idiot to share the login details with friends and family. Can't see too many people having more than 10 devices they'd want to access their music from.
I signed up primarily to get an online backup for my music collection, which includes a lot of downloads from eMusic who would charge me to re-download the tracks. I can also now access my entire music collection from my Android phone, including downloading the tracks to my device (as MP3 files without DRM). I can buy tracks (and hopefully soon CDs) while on a train and listen to them virtually immediately. Assuming I'm not in a tunnel.
Getting CDs purchased added automatically will save me having to rip them. The quality may not be perfect, but there's always a trade off between quality and file size. Anyway, how much better would FLAC sound on a mobile device with traffic/train/tube noise in the background?
Why do they think that anyone buying a CD these days will want an MP3 encoded copy? Anyone old enough to want a CD is probably ripping it to a lossless format like flac.
What Amazon is actually attempting is to seduce the diehard CD buyers away from the format by showing them the "joy & convenience" of pure digital files ... As usual they've failed to spot that the reason people still buy CD is not just because they want a shiny disc but because they want the biterate that Amazon won't provide via mp3!
so when I buy a CD, the e-CD will be ready and waiting for me in the cloud,
but when I buy a (paper) book, the e-Book won't be available and I need to fork out extra if I want the same book in the cloud... not exactly consistent, amazon.
As far as I know, I have a "UK" amazon account, but I was informed this morning that some tracks had been added into my cloud player by AutoRip or whatever it's called. It was an album by Livingston Taylor. I bought the album (on CD) around 5 years ago. Maybe I bought it from Amazon.com but it's unlikely.
So I'm very confused by this "only in USA" thing... I have 397 tracks in my Amazon cloud player, all added by Amazon as a result of my album purchases since around 1998/1999 to the present day.
In my personal collection, I have some 50GB of music, the vast majority from my personal CD collection, all loving ripped, and correctly tagged/indexed by yours truly over the years. For $24.99 a year, it's quite tempting to pay the fee and upload the entire lot to Amazon and let them worry about maintaining it, because, quite frankly, it's always been a pain in the rear to copy it and back it up. And the though of losing it all and having to start again doesn't bear thinking about.
I recently saw the benefit of the cloud player when I retired my HTC desire and started with my Samsung S3 - I installed the Amazon cloud player and there were all my albums, no space taken up on my phone, and no copying of files between phones/SD card malarky.
$25 buck a year seems a reasonable price. What the chances that it will be £25 *pounds* in the UK :-(
Jessops, Comet, Plays For Sure, Apricot / ACT, Nixdorf, DEC, Compaq, Wang, Polariod, Kodak, Prestel, Ceefax, Geocites ...
Will Amazon be around in 5, 10, 20 years?
Will they ever accidentally lose stuff?
Will they change the Business Model?
What if you forget or can't pay on time?
What if you lose your Internet connection?
Sorry, but cloudy services (= Shared Server + Client, as old as Timeshared Servers and online Access) are no substitute for having your own copies. Can sometimes be an complement. I have loads of websites. Do I trust the "Cloud" / Hosting? Even they recommend backups. I have running copies of it all in the attic., with a backup too.
I put about 10,000 tracks on both Amazon and Google about a year ago (I have a lot of CDs and a robotic ripper...), but have since given up on both of them.
They work OK when they do, but too often they ignore the perfectly good metadata and cover art and misidentify what I've uploaded as something entirely different. Believe me, you don't want to be listening to a playlist at the office and having the cover art for "101 Strings Plays Your Favorite Porn Themes" pop up on the screen. And I have no idea what either service would do with digitized copies of vinyl or tapes.
As for AutoRip, that's very nice when I buy something on Amazon. In the US. From Amazon. It doesn't appear to work for Amazon Marketplace purchases. Forget about amazon.somewhere-else. But when it works, it's nice to be able to listen immediately.
It's was easier for me to set up a Subsonic server, "uploads" take close to zero time, I can rip to FLAC and it transcodes to MP3 on the fly, I can only blame myself for bad metadata, and I get to choose what's available to listen to and not Amazon, Google, Apple, or some other company that basically doesn't have my musical interests at heart.
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