Apple hits 25 million iTunes downloads

By Julio Franco ยท 23 replies
Dec 16, 2003
  1. Apple Computer has nearly doubled sales of digital music through its iTunes music store since launching a Windows-compatible version of its iTunes software in October, the company said.

    Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple said Monday that customers have downloaded a total of 25 million songs from iTunes since April, when the online store opened, with 12 million songs purchased during the past two months alone.

    Read more: CNet News.
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +418

    Putting iTunes on the Windows platform was one of the greatest managerial decisions of Apple ever. Word of mouth advertising has amazing power - I'm not sure who downloaded it first in the IRC channel ( I think it was LNCPapa ) but within a couple days several of us had it. They made a good product, sure it takes up some RAM but most people have a bit of RAM to spare when they are not gaming.
    Only complaint is I can't find the song I want :) (and that includes all the illegal ways I know of too)
  3. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    I'm a bit unsure if this is good news or not...
    And no, it has nothing to do with it being an Apple product, nor much to do with the fact that most of the money goes straight to RIAA...

    But it has to do with the fact that all the music is DRM'ed in such a way that one no longer can do what one wants with it...
    The Reg has a piece on how drm affects the users of iTunes...

    So while I think the service is good, I just don't like the product... I get a sub-par quality product that is heavy with limitations... Sorry, but no thanks!
  4. Strakian

    Strakian TS Rookie Posts: 136

    If everyone listened to Death metal and Black Metal (like you should), then noone from the RIAA will come looking for you, lol.

    I've heard from a co-worker that they're really only after the poeple that say, Download the new Jay-Z album before street date, and try to sell them.

    Noone up top cares about Death metal, how can you crack down on someone for a band that doesn't make 'profit' from playing and doesn't have CD's available at every location in north america? Have you ever heard/listened to Disavowed, Dark Fortress, Burzum, Dies Irae, Aborted...

    My issue with the RIAA is that it's too much, too late. You don't wait 3 years until the deer feel 100% comfortable eating the rose bushes to suddenly shoot them with a shotgun... kinda see what I mean?

    Anyway, listen to Death and Black metal, it's the loop.
  5. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    Very intersting, and I can see where you are coming from. Most of those bands are garage bands who haven't really 'made' it yet in the industry.

    But as far as the iTunes problem with DRM I think that is absolutely ridiculous. But I can understand where they are coming from with it, because they are just trying to prevent the spreading of downloaded songs. Kind of a pain to only be able to listen to it in a few places, but it is a nice service none the less.
  6. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    Poert, most of those bands, are bands who care nothing about making it in the industry.

    Anyway, I haven't used iTunes to purchase any music, so I can't really judge that angle at all, but as far as the streaming radio portion, its pretty damn good. I was reluctant to try it, but its got at least a handfull of stations that you'd like, no matter what kind of music you're into.
    And yes, DRM has been a factor in the reason for me not partaking in the purchase of music from iTunes.
  7. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    Yeah I know, I was just stating whether they wanted to make it big or not, they haven't yet, and that is the reason they don't care.
  8. chuonthis

    chuonthis TS Rookie Posts: 38

    As is mentioned in many articles, Apple isn't trying to make money off of the music. They're just trying to break even with the songs. Instead, they want to sell iPods. They make it easy and cheap to buy the songs but how are people gonna play the songs on-the-go? With an iPod of course (and only with an iPod of course).

    Also, I don't see anything wrong with the protection that Apple has placed on the songs. Some people see the word DRM and instantly think it's a bad thing but have you guys actually read what your rights were to the song? The only restrictions that are imposed are that you can only have the song on 3 computers at one time and that you can only burn a playlist containing a protected song 10 times (but you can make a new playlist and burn that 10 more times). Other than that, you can pretty much do whatever you want with the song. (There are no limits to the amount of transfers to an iPod.) These conditions should be sufficient for normal use by anyone.
  9. will_is_awesome

    will_is_awesome TS Rookie

    How can iTunes be doing so well, and yet the recording industry does nothing to change it's methods, even seeing the process in its working form? You'd think they'd make more money offering online downloads than by sueing people.
  10. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    That seems like the smart thing to do, but then the RIAA wouldn't get their name out there near as much. It seems they have to keep sueing people and causing trouble for some reason. I think if they concentrated on imporving things instead of trying to fix things it would be much better.
  11. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    Well, maybe it's just that I'm norwegian, and used to being able to do whatever I want with what I buy, as long as I don't try to do anything illegal (sell copies of a cd, distribute a cp work to the world & the like)...

    I have this odd opinion that companies are there for the customers, and not the other way around... And that when I buy something, it's mine... No company comes around to tell me what to do with it, nor tries to impose a set of rules I have to obey if I want to use their products...

    I got righteously pissed off at Symentec the other day, as they only allows me to download the product I buy once, unless I buy an extra package... Gee, thanks! Escpecially when the computer I had downloaded it to the first time had decided to die... Why else would I want to download the program again?
    But when I sendt of an email to them, they were very courteous, and gave me a link from which to download the program again...
    And at least Symantec tells you up front that you'll only be allowed to download it once...

    But a quick browse of iTunes doesn't tell me much about the limitations....

  12. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    I have that same problem. I also suffer from an affliction that causes me to want products and services to be desirable, not tolerable. But thats me, I'm a bit stubborn like that.
  13. chuonthis

    chuonthis TS Rookie Posts: 38

    But doesn't fixing things inherently improve things?

    I'm not trying to make any point here cuz I'm not thinking right now, but what if the RIAA is just trying to teach the public some morals. Maybe it isn't about the money (ha!). No matter what, downloading copyrighted music without the consent of the artist is stealing. Is it wrong for the RIAA cracking down on people who steal music?

    Maybe owning music was meant to be a luxury. Maybe people who don't want to pay for music or think music is too expensive should just listen to it on the radio. Maybe music should be free and in the public domain. Maybe music artists really need millions of dollars to support their lifestyles.

    MrGaribaldi, I'd also like to believe that when I buy something, its mine to keep and do whatever I want to with. But the truth is, there are end-user license agreements and terms of service attached to things such as iTunes music and Symantec products. When you buy from them, you are agreeing to their terms. If you do not agree with their terms, no one is forcing you to buy from them. I believe when you register for an iTunes account, you are presented with the terms of service and the restrictions on the music downloaded. By signing up with them and downloading music, you are agreeing to those terms.
  14. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +418

    I agree, its not that bad of a thing, I know you purchased it and people think they should be able to do anything they want with it, but you pretty much can. Do you need a song on 4 computers at once? 3 seems to be a pretty good number, plus if you really were concerned you could set up a way to record it as a wav or mp3 to another computer from playing it on the other.
  15. Strakian

    Strakian TS Rookie Posts: 136

    Just wanted to make a note that these bands ARE huge in the metal world. This is my point... They tour the world, play for their fans, get signed, etc. But these guys are in the 'industry' to get their music out there, not make it rich quick. At the end of the tour they go back to their salesman positions, factory work, and all the things non-rockstars do until the next tour.

    In comparison, Evanescence or Godsmack and whoever else jumped into a heavily saturated market of popular music. The record label picked them up with the intention of making mad money off of them, and paying the band. Not to promote their music and get them more fans. Now they live the rich lifestyle, and people who want to download just song A and song D are getting punished for not getting the whole CD.

    It's kind of amusing, because DM/BM bands have been interviewed on this subject, and most of them are all about peer 2 peer sharing. The band makes money of the Merch sold at shows, the label gets the majority from CD sales, so more fans means more merch customers. This is the way it should be anyway, because it's about the band and supporting THEIR music.

    Let me ask you, how many of your favorite bands do you get to hang out with after they play a set? Do you get to talk with them while they man their own merch table? or do you watch them on stage with security guards and then watch them leave without really trying to talk to the people that came for them. The labels are obsessed with safety and protecting their 'investment'.

    On a whack side note, did yo uknow Clay Aiken (American Idol...) was told to write song A B C D E.... V W X Y Z because THEY wanted to make the money off his talents? Of course not, why would a huge record label want people to know they wanted Clay to dance their jig. He didn't go with it by the way, and made HIS own music, not what they told him to. As a result he sold more CD's then the American Idol winner... it's all about the music. I applaude Clay for that. Moving on...

    I think the RIAA brought down the hammer because corporations are loosing money, and bands like metalica brought down the hammer because they were losing money. It all comes down to the dollar, and that's not how music should be.

  16. tripleione

    tripleione TS Rookie Posts: 154

    Please don't take offense, MrGaribaldi, but I have to agree with chuonthis about this matter.

    While I can see where you are coming from--if you pay money for a product/item, you feel that you should be entitled to say what you can and can't do with that product... not someone else saying it--but DRM isn't really restricting much of anything that you can do with your song.

    For example, why would you need copies of one song in three different computers in your house? I'm sure there are people out there that would want to have the ability to copy the same song to more than three computers, but no doubt there are less than the people who don't. Same thing goes for the CD limitations. Unless you are burning 10 copies of the same song for 10 of your friends, what's the point?

    I feel it's better to take a stand on this issue (which Apple is apparently doing) than just letting it go by itself and pretend it will disappear. Maybe one day we won't need limitations like this on our songs but for now it seems like it's a decent workaround to the fight against piracy.
  17. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    The problem is in fact that what they are limiting it to right now isn't so bad...
    Had it been, there would be much more of a public outcry than it is now...

    But what happens in a couple of years when DRM is hardware encoded into our machines? Could it be used (like was mentioned in the UbiSoft thread) to force you to only play music on a given brand? Or a given OS?

    It has the potential to limit what programs you can run, which would mean (more or less) the end of small software businesses who can't afford to "get with the program"... Or what about linux? Wouldn't it be nice for MS to strike a deal with Intel & AMD so that the cpu's will only run MS' Os?

    The point I'm trying to make here is that something that starts out like a good idea to stop piracy might turn into a way to control how we use our computers in the future...

    But over to the computer limits... What happens if my harddrive suddenly died... What then? One of the 3 computers I could use the music on is gone, and I now only can use it on 2 other machines...
    And a harddrive dying isn't something that happens once in a blue moon anymore, but is becoming more and more of "regular" problem... And what when my laptop is stolen... That just leaves one computer doesn't it...

    So the problem isn't just the limitations, but the fact that there are so many outside influations which can turn what wasn't so bad into a nightmare if they happen...

    As for taking a stand.... Yes Apple is taking a stand, saying that we'll "suffer" DRM and giving most of the money from music sales to the RIAA in the hopes of making money off the iPod's...

    And I'm taking a stand too... I will not support DRM, until I see greater limitations incorporated into it, which will make the future problems I outlined above (and others) , which makes it nigh impossible for a small group to control it...

  18. Curl

    Curl TS Rookie

    I bought 1 track from apple just to see what I could do with it, and man, did they lay on the protection thick
  19. khosw

    khosw TS Rookie Posts: 36

    iTunes is good for those albums with 2 good songs where you save $10, but then that's where P2P comes in for me...
  20. chuonthis

    chuonthis TS Rookie Posts: 38

    If Apple were to make a mistake and decided to do this, users can simply not buy music from iTunes. No one is forcing you to. There are other legal means of purchasing music. What if all online music stores had these limitations and then retail CDs had them too? In this case, consumers might turn to piracy but the music industry would not allow this to happen unless they really are corporate pigs.
    This isn't likely because the government will become involved in this situation due to MS trying to create a monopoly.
    What would happen if you went out to a store and bought a CD? What if that was stolen? You'd have lost your music. But of course you ripped it to an MP3 on your computer for backup right? But what if your hard drive died too? Then the situation is as bad as if you had bought the song from iTunes with its limitations.

    With music purchased from iTunes, you can burn the songs to CDs and it's not like the "10 burns each playlist" restriction is that limiting because you can just make a new playlist with the same songs. After it's on a CD, you can listen to it wherever you want.

    I'm as cheap as anyone else here and I don't like the idea of being ripped off, but I also wouldn't want to rip someone else off to save a couple bucks. Users have been allowed to pirate music (and software) for too long and now that things are being set right, people are reluctant to accept having to pay.

    This country is full of smart people. If someone were to try to take advantage of us, we'd take action against them. For example, with operating systems, Linux is actively being developed to offer people a competitive free alternative to Windows. Likewise, smaller bands that offer cheap/free music will gain more attention if popular artists allow their music to be sold unjustly.
  21. will_is_awesome

    will_is_awesome TS Rookie

    While I understand that you aren't really being 100% serious, a company that thrives off of ripping off the artists is probably the last who would start suing for morals. Have you ever read any accounts of the actual artists dealing with the RIAA? The way record contracts are created leaves artists with such little funding and chance of hope it's ridiculous. Not to mention how little control they have on what they do.
  22. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    Well, I find that a bit strange of a sentiment, as we've all seen the "harsh" punishments that the government gave MS in the last case...

    There was a distinct shift on what th Attorney General was going for from the Clinton administration and Bush'...

    So I'm no longer buying that one...

    So the RIAA isn't a corporate pig? That's news to me...

    My point is that no-one will accept all the limitations that DRM brings all at once, but that if you slowly implement them, no-one will think twice about it, as all they care for is here and now... Or they thhink that if the corporations go too far, the government will do something about it...

    But take a look at your history... How often has the government gotten involved when businesses has overstepped the line? It isnt' nearly as often as it should be... But then USA is, imo, a bit to confident in the market and thus aren't using the controls they have to make sure it stays healthy...

    I'm not so sure about that... Read my previous post about MS being able to control what OS would be allowed to run on your hardware due to DRM restrictions...

    Yes, there would be work-arounds, but they wouldn't be easily accesible to "regular people"... So you would end up with a one OS to rule them all...

    But let's say that MS doens't get control over DRM, but that it's licensed out to anyone who wants to use it...
    How would a Linux distro be able to pay for the DRM license if it was given away for free? And why buy a linux with DRM limitations, if what you really wanted was to get away from just those limitations....

    I think you've gotten my stance on that dead wrong... I'm perfectly willing to pay for anything that I download!
    And I'm not interested in ripping off the artist...
    But if I'm going to buy something, it has to be worth the price... And that is were we differ...
    I feel ripped off by the fact that most, if not all, of the money ends up with the RIAA and not the artist..
    I feel ripped off by having to accept sub-par quality sound in the files on sale... (IF I buy something, it should have at least 256kbps quality)
    I feel ripped off by having to accept limitations that isnt' there when I buy the cd in a regular store...
  23. chuonthis

    chuonthis TS Rookie Posts: 38

    MrGaribaldi, I think I understand where you're coming from now. DRM is evil but its the only countermeasure against piracy. Sure, some consumers are taking a hit from it but for the most part, the restrictions are lenient enough for normal use.

    I just wanted to mention that iTunes should be praised for its efforts to offer an alternative way of purchasing music that is convenient and may also help reduce piracy with its low prices. On top of that, CDs are now using copy protection schemes that are worse than iTunes' restrictions (although many can now be bypassed). You may not even be able to listen to songs from a CD on more than one computer (if you can even listen to it on a computer at all).
  24. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,704

    I concur, iTunes is an excellent music service, you don't have to buy a whole CD to listen to the songs you want, and you can avoid the filler that so many artists are reverting to these days. iTunes apparently makes everyone happy: the RIAA and the artists, because they're both making money (which is all they really care about anyway :rolleyes: ); and the user, because they still get to download music, at a reasonable price, and it's legal. And it shows with iTunes' success, 25 million songs and counting!
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