The Foreshadowing & The Aftermath Of The iPhone 5
It is in the air, a flying mass of dark matter hovering over the music industry. The iCloud, a lofty idea that ensures us free music all the time forever. Idealistic? Yes, some might agree, others are approaching it much like they blindly bought into Napster.
“A specter is haunting the music business: the prospect of listeners getting the music they want directly from the Internet, free of charge. Right now, all it takes to make a recording executive nervous is the mention of MP3, a powerful piece of software that allows users to zap music all over the Internet, unchecked and un-tithed.” – Paul Parales (New York Times, 2011)
This foreboding gear of the future has finally come to fruition. These days an iCloud service could now be in the offing as soon as September, meanwhile Steve Jobs has pitched to press the idea. Deeply touched by his words until the end of his slideshow. There were many questions that arose and were unanswered upon his conclusion.
Here is a twist: One claimed that the cloud service would initially be free to people who bought their music from the iTunes store, but Apple is said to be considering a $25 dollar per year service charge sometimein the future. Many have seen this before, the tried and true promissory note with a twist.
When a website links us to what seems too good to be true, websurfers hasten through links like scavengers until ending up at the Credit Card information page (or the border toll) the inevitable pain of payment.
Apple is making no initial prompts for payment…just promises of free service until a year comes the $25 dollar charge or face losing everything the cloud lent you.
How are music businesses complying with a offer? Let’s do the math. 70 percent of revenue is divvied out to the labels, while 12 percent go to the music publishers– which when cut and spread leaves less then 5 percent to the artists who actually created the music. Apple keeps the 18 percent remaining.
A few labels are already on board, Warner Music Group, EMI Music Group, Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment. These are the largest of the major record companies. And would give Apple recorded-music rights to most of the deemed “popular” music out there. And then come the laborious negotiating. The labels own the recording rights but not the publishing rights. So selling an album would require jumping through hoops; the retailer would have to pay the publishing company what is known as mechanical licensing fee, if in fact the retailer intends on selling said album iCloud services are new. There’s no precedent for how to license them.
Publishers and Apple must figure out terms for the cloud and do it from scratch, which could result in legal disparities. There is already enough tension between labels and publishing companies, why must Apple intervene with a loose ended and shady deal? It has been suggested that this is a negotiating ploy and that Apple is trying to pit the labels and publishers against each other. But labels and publishers are putting their trust (and their money) into cloud blindly, of course, since there is no way of telling whether consumers will pay. A novel idea some might say… for Apple to try to end illegal downloads.
But are the attempts futile – setting us all up for controversy and legal suits? One can only hold their breath and wait for the sky to clear.
That was then- what seems like ages ago- when the cloud made its debut. Since the new system came out is is is is reported that even more problems have disrupted its projected smooth operations.
Apple’s iCloud services are now fully operational again according to the iCloud status page, but some problems may linger for new (thats you and everyone you know) users.
For the past few days, a large number of iCloud users had been hit with an outage that prevented them from using their e-mail accounts. In some cases the problem resulted in delayed e-mail messages that would arrive hours after being sent, but in other cases no mail would get through at all.
When the problem happened Apple did not offer much information on what was causing the outage, and only mentioned in a terse status update on its Web site that about 1-2 percent of users were affected and that the company would be fixing the problem as soon as humanly possible.
“On September 30, Apple did make a change to users’ iCloud accounts; however, to users’ surprise, instead of a lowered storage level, their iCloud accounts kept the same 25GB of space and furthermore showed the expiration for the storage had been pushed back to 2050.” CNET reported.
“When they accept, they are then asked to agree to them again and again. As a result, new purchases and downloads from iTunes in the Cloud cannot be made. The issue appears to be affecting all purchases from the App Store and iTunes store on both IOS and the Mac, as well as the Mac App Store and iTunes Match. It’s also affecting the viewing of purchased items on the Apple TV.” MacRumors recently reported.
This could all be speculation, or maybe it is just change that people don’t like right away but eventually grow accustomed to… or perhaps it is the human condition to never be satisfied until perfection (something yet to be defined.)
MacRumors.com- Reviews- Sept 2012- Undisclosed Author
CNET.com- Reviews- Sept 2012- Undisclosed Author
Paul Pareles, New York Times, Business, Sept 18, 2011
Apple.com/products Products reviews Sept 2012