Apple’s Media Plans

Robert Cringely writes:

…the Mac rumor site seems quite sure that Apple will announce a video locker strategy of sorts at the January MacWorld show.

Apple’s take on enhanced Digital Rights Management, according to Thinksecret, is never actually allowing copyrighted bits to be stored on the user’s machine. Instead, when you buy or rent a movie from iTunes, the video will sit on Apple’s server and be accessible to the purchaser or renter in accordance with the rules of that particular transaction. If you don’t have the bits on your machine, the theory goes, you can’t steal them.

Yes and no.

It is a clever plan and one that actually makes a lot of economic sense because Apple isn’t saddled with Oboe’s task of keeping five million different copies of Louie-Louie on its server. The Apple system can keep only a few copies and simply assign access rights. For storage, Apple’s reported plan is a winner, then. It works well for bandwidth, too, in part because the data only ever travels in one direction, unlike Oboe, which has to pay to receive it from the subscriber then pay again to serve it back.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.