Music Labels to Offer Enhanced Album Format to Compete With Apple's 'Cocktail'?

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The Times reported over the weekend that the "big four" record labels are planning a November launch of a new digital album format known as "CMX" that will compete with Apple's rumored "Cocktail" offering reportedly scheduled for a September release.
The world's big four record companies are to go head-to-head with Apple with the launch of a new form of album download that will include a digitised version of a record sleeve.

Sony, Warner, Universal and EMI are putting the finishing touches to an album format that will give music fans a computerised version of the sleeve notes that come as standard with a CD, including lyrics and artwork, and videos.
The report puts a different spin on the developments than that revealed in the initial report about Cocktail from the Financial Times. While the earlier report suggested that Apple and the record labels were working closely together on Cocktail, The Times now claims that Apple rebuffed the record labels' suggestion of the project and only began developing Cocktail once the labels decided to press ahead with their own CMX project.
It is understood that the record labels approached Apple, maker of the iPod, about 18 months ago with the plan to revitalise album downloads by bundling together extra features in a single download.

Industry insiders say that their project, with the working title CMX, was rebuffed by Apple. The technology giant is now understood to be working on its own format, codenamed Cocktail, which it hopes to launch within two months.

One senior record label insider said: "Apple at first told us that they were not interested, but now they have decided to do their own, in case ours catches on."
The CMX project reportedly is looking to develop album "files" that when opened will provide a "launch page" offering access to an album's tracks, as well as related artwork, video, and mobile content.

Article Link: Music Labels to Offer Enhanced Album Format to Compete With Apple's 'Cocktail'?
 

Xavier

macrumors 68030
Mar 23, 2006
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1,169
Columbus
What I take from it is that they are creating digital "CD Cases".

Whats the point, is all I have to say.
 

old-wiz

macrumors G3
Mar 26, 2008
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West Suburban Boston Ma
And there's no doubt it will have it's own proprietary DRM, and probably some advertising as well. "Your music will begin after this message from our sponsor". Maybe they will even add a "call home" to go to their servers and make sure you have a valid purchase (so they can delete it if it's not valid) and interrupt your music with some new advertising. blah.
 

capoeirista

macrumors 6502
Jan 21, 2007
448
0
As with apple's offering, not interested. I loved reading liner notes/studying CD covers/looking at band photos back in the day. However, times have changed and this simply isn't relevant any more. I can get this information for free (if I want it at all).

All I want is the music at a fair price and DRM free.
 

grapemac

macrumors regular
Jul 10, 2008
107
0
Euch, this sounds awful. When I buy music, that's all I want. Yes, I'm sure this will be an option as opposed to the only digital release, but it sounds like a lot of wasted HD space. The music and one cover image is all I want/need when I download music.
 

lewisdorigo

macrumors member
Sep 19, 2008
77
0
Ayrshire, Scotland
Sony, Warner, Universal and EMI are putting the finishing touches to an album format that will give music fans a computerised version of the sleeve notes that come as standard with a CD, including lyrics and artwork, and videos.
So the CD sleeve comes with lyrics and artwork, and videos? Is it a flick-book type thing you do to make that one work? :lol:
 

Kwill

macrumors 68000
Mar 10, 2003
1,595
1
Apple Shaft Formula

Goal: Loosen Apple stranglehold on music format
  1. Big four negotiate with Apple for new format.
  2. Apple demonstrates new concepts.
  3. Both sides agree on new format.
  4. Apple begins transitioning its iTunes and new hardware.
  5. Big four show Apple concepts to new designers for modification.
  6. Big four partner with Linux and Microsoft.
  7. New format is introduced to consumers from multiple vendors simultaneously.
 

macduke

macrumors G4
Jun 27, 2007
11,037
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Central U.S.
Granted, it's been awhile since I've purchased an actual CD, but didn't they used to have something like this 10 years or so ago that played a bunch of extra content when you put the cd into your cd-rom drive on your computer? I thought it was cool at first, but then all that content was available online over the next few years with broadband, and it was free, so then nobody cared.

I can't really say that I can see this catching on much. You can find album scans all over the Internet...along with band interviews, videos, and photos. Just go to your favorite band's website.

All I want is their music without being sued by the RIAA. Is that too much to ask for??
 

slcoss

macrumors newbie
Sep 3, 2008
28
1
Wouldn't Apple need approval from the record companies in order to put lyrics, album art and that stuff into the Albums? Which would mean that there's no format war, as the Record Companies could simply deny Apple the chance to put their ideas out... right?

I bet Apple didn't approve the original idea but probably offered another [better] alternative, I'd like to see some album art included with the Album...
 

telecomm

macrumors 65816
Nov 30, 2003
1,372
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Rome
This sounds unappealing, sort of like a web interface for your music. Ugh.

I guess they'd be happy to add another layer between the user and the actual files, lest anyone want to exert control over how they access their music.
 

GoCubsGo

macrumors Nehalem
Feb 19, 2005
35,741
147
When I buy digital music I have zero desire for all the other stuff usually. I may change my mind as I said I'd never download music either, but at this point I am unsure how this will really work out in the long run.
 

Bistroengine

macrumors regular
Jan 16, 2004
238
166
At least the record labels are realistic about their own capabilities.
Yeah, usually when Apple decides to implement their idea of how something should be done, it's because they know they can do it better. Not because they're worried about the other guys idea 'catching on'.
 

synthetic88

macrumors newbie
Jan 30, 2009
6
0
God forbid they would provide higher quality music files. It's 2009 and audio quality keeps getting WORSE.
 

andiwm2003

macrumors 601
Mar 29, 2004
4,346
406
Boston, MA
i voted negative because this is just another marketing trick. music is a commodity and single MP3 or AAC are an industry standard. they should not deviate from that. every player can use these formats. this will lead just to another atempt to get a proprietary format injected into the market in order to control the market. sort of a DRM via the backdoor.
 

Stike

macrumors 65816
Jan 31, 2002
1,010
4
Germany
If this stuff is DRM'd (and it probably will be) I am out.

... not to forget that the labels WILL use this "feature" to increase the prices.
 

robbyx

Suspended
Oct 18, 2005
1,152
1,128
As with apple's offering, not interested. I loved reading liner notes/studying CD covers/looking at band photos back in the day. However, times have changed and this simply isn't relevant any more. I can get this information for free (if I want it at all).

All I want is the music at a fair price and DRM free.
Agreed 100%. I'm not interested in a(nother) new format. I'm only interested in purchasing DRM-free content in open and widely supported formats. Or ripping into those formats.

I can imagine "flipping" through a digital booklet on a widescreen multi-touch tablet from the couch. That's about it.

If music is still delivered in standard DRM-free AAC, but somehow wrapped inside an interactive bundle, that's cool. I don't know how much I'll care about the extras, ultimately, but I'd be happy to have them. It feels a lot like DVD extras. Some people love them. Others (like me, 90% of the time) couldn't care less.

It would be nice to see the both industries - technology and media - cooperate on one *standard* digital album booklet. I'd like to know more about why Apple rebuffed the industry. Was the industry making certain demands? I just hope these dual booklet formats don't lead to a lot of confusion and frustration for the consumer. And Micro$oft hasn't even gotten into the game (yet)...
 

DTphonehome

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Apr 4, 2003
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Xavier said:
What I take from it is that they are creating digital "CD Cases".

Whats the point, is all I have to say.
Exactly. I'm amazed the labels fail to grasp what it is consumers want. They don't care about sitting around looking at liner notes. They don't want to buy all the crap songs. They just want quick access to the songs they like at an affordable price. That's it!
 

robbyx

Suspended
Oct 18, 2005
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i voted negative because this is just another marketing trick. music is a commodity and single MP3 or AAC are an industry standard. they should not deviate from that. every player can use these formats. this will lead just to another atempt to get a proprietary format injected into the market in order to control the market. sort of a DRM via the backdoor.
Do we know for sure, though, that either Apple's "Cocktail" or the industry's CMX use a format other than MP3, AAC or some other standard? Is the digital booklet a bundle or wrapper around a bunch of different files or perhaps some kind of supplemental file that iTunes loads when requested? If so, fine.

So long as my music is still delivered in DRM-free AAC, I don't care if they want to pretty it up. Do we have any indication of how the music will be delivered or is the suggestion of a *new* format just speculation?
 

aristotle

macrumors 68000
Mar 13, 2007
1,768
5
Canada
I have no interest in either proposal. I'm not interested in paying for webpage content or having songs in a format that I cannot use for my own fair use in home videos, as ringtones etc...

Just give me my damn songs DRM free.
 
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