Microsoft rebrands PlaysForSure

By on December 12, 2007, 5:25 PM
PlaysForSure is a certification given by Microsoft to portable devices and content services that have been tested against several compatibility and performance requirements. While it has become largely used among music stores other than iTunes, content providers aren’t particularly thrilled about it since it is not compatible with the ubiquitous iPod.

Adding insult to injury, when Microsoft decided to enter the digital media player market with the Zune, the company itself did not embrace the PlaysForSure platform, instead going for an almost identical but still incompatible system to power its music player and store.

Now, Microsoft has added even more confusion to the DRM ecosystem by changing the PlaysForSure branding to “Certified for Windows Vista.” The obvious problem here is that PlaysForSure works not only on Vista but on XP too. On top of that, plenty of things – including Microsoft’s Zune – are “Certified for Windows Vista” but not necessary compatible with PlaysForSure. Talk about confusing the ordinary consumer.

User Comments: 4

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canadian said:
If they got sued for Vista Capable stickers, then this should be an easy way to get some money from them.
windmill007 said:
Stupid Stupid Microsoft.... Give up on pushing Vista will ya!
dalesun said:
Microsoft likes getting spanked by Apple. If not, they better learn to like it, because they keep positioning themselves to be a better target.I'm a happy subscription music user. It's a great option if you like to explore lots of new music (if you don't, it's not). However, Microsoft hasn't been successful promoting it, and this is another bad move. Although I've spent hundreds of dollars happily renting music for years, I've never purchased DRMed music and never will.Forking PlaysforSure into incompatible Zune was a bad and disturbing move, but it didn't affect me directly. Changing it to "Certified for Windows Vista" is so foolish--it's hard to see it surviving much longer. I guess I should start looking for alternatives.Microsoft's Redmond Reality-Distortion Field (RRDF) apparently allows them to convince themselves that Vista will soon be ubiquitous. And, they should prepare for and encourage this by giving Vista more visibility; Vista-branding all the Zunes and music they'll soon be selling, even forcing music partners to use Vista branding ('till they're extinguished by Zune). Its crazy; and Microsoft don't appear to be coming up for air anytime soon.[Edited by dalesun on 2007-12-13 10:42:08]
Nirkon said:
they do something smart and then they royally screw up something else...
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