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RealNetworks, AAC and DRM

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
51,578
13,194
CNet reports that RealNetworks will be launching a new download service with songs encoded in the MPEG4 Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) format.

However, the new service will pair RealNetworks' Helix Digital Rights Mangement (DRM) format with the open standard (AAC). As a result, these song files will be incompatible with Apple's iTunes and iPod (along with everything else). As the article explains, "For a song to play on a digital device, the gadget must both be able to play the underlying music format and to decode any proprietary content locks that protect against unauthorized copying."

Apple presently uses AAC + FairPlay Digital Rights Management (DRM) for their iTunes Music Store songs.
 

Nermal

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 7, 2002
19,027
1,488
New Zealand
Good to see another major player adopting AAC. It should help to push people away from MP3 and WMA.
 
Comment

Sir_Giggles

macrumors 6502a
Dec 18, 2003
507
0
Watch as Realplayer's new Helix-DRM AAC file format crashes and burns. You are seeing the beginning of its final stage of its demise. Good riddance.
 
Comment

JohnGillilan

macrumors regular
Oct 12, 2003
161
0
Los Angeles
I agree. That's a huge step for another company to adpot AAC. But will an AAC with Real DRM work on an iPod?? That's the question!! I realize this is currently not compatible, but I wonder if this will change when Real realizes that using their own DRM is self-defeating.
 
Comment

Waluigi

macrumors 6502
Apr 29, 2003
348
0
Connecticut
Why use an open standard AAC, and then propriety DRM? This is completely noncongruent? Am I missing something?

--Waluigi
 
Comment

wankle

macrumors newbie
Jan 5, 2004
14
0
Originally posted by Sir_Giggles
Watch as Realplayer's new Helix-DRM AAC file format crashes and burns. You are seeing the beginning of its final stage of its demise. Good riddance.

Riiight. F@#% Real, but Apple rules for doing almost the exact same thing. Apple has its own DRM, as does Real. No reason to vilify Real.

Technology hypocracy at its best.

As far as not being able to use it with other devices (like the article says) Real has a pretty advanced transcoding engine for portable devices, and will likely include the iPod.
 
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crees!

macrumors 68000
Jun 14, 2003
1,921
29
MD/VA/DC
Originally posted by JohnGillilan
I agree. That's a huge step for another company to adpot AAC. But will an AAC with Real DRM work on an iPod?? That's the question!!

The post stated it would not work with iPod. The question is Real Networks will have to create their own player or someone will have to adopt their DRM.
 
Comment

wankle

macrumors newbie
Jan 5, 2004
14
0
Originally posted by Waluigi
Why use an open standard AAC, and then propriety DRM? This is completely noncongruent? Am I missing something?

--Waluigi

Yes, you are missing something.

That's exactly what Apple does! Apple's DRM is 100% proprietary.

And since when is AAC open? You need to license it from Dolby. It's based on open standards but it's not truely open.
 
Comment

JohnGillilan

macrumors regular
Oct 12, 2003
161
0
Los Angeles
Originally posted by crees!
The post stated it would not work with iPod. The question is Real Networks will have to create their own player or someone will have to adopt their DRM.

Who would adopt that???? I don't see anyone supporting Real.
 
Comment

Waluigi

macrumors 6502
Apr 29, 2003
348
0
Connecticut
Originally posted by wankle
That's exactly what Apple does! Apple's DRM is 100% proprietary.

True, but Apple's AAC files they sell work on the iPod, and due to realnetwork's DRM, their files won't play on the iPod.

And since when is AAC open? You need to license it from Dolby. It's based on open standards but it's not truely open.

Compared to windows media files, AAC is more open then Jenna Jameson's legs.

--Waluigi

Edit: Spelling
 
Comment

Sabenth

macrumors 6502a
Jan 24, 2003
887
3
UK
Originally posted by JohnGillilan
Who would adopt that???? I don't see anyone supporting Real.
yea I agree seems a waiste of time..

watch as people state we apple adoopted it blah blah .. yea but they have the iPod can real afford to make a player.

I stil wont be using this service i dont have real player ..... NOT ANYMORE!!!
 
Comment

wankle

macrumors newbie
Jan 5, 2004
14
0
Originally posted by Waluigi
True, but Apple's AAC files they sell work on the iPod, and due to realnetwork's DRM, their files won't play on the iPod.



Compared to windows media files, AAC is more open then Jenna Jameson's legs.

--Waluigi

Edit: Spelling
[/QUOTE]

:eek: OK, I suppose it is, but the poster was talking about AAC, and was very misinformed. Apple uses a closed codec and closed DRM... just like Real.

And when it comes to the iPod, just wait and see, I would be willing to bet that users can transcode and play songs on the iPod. The article doesn't mention that, but just wait and see.
 
Comment

johnnyjibbs

macrumors 68030
Sep 18, 2003
2,959
119
London, UK
So, enter the RealOnePod?

Hopefully it will offer compatibility in future for the iPod and hopefully Apple will be smart enough not to dismiss it. Although it would be competition for the iTunes Music Store, it would add more weight to the iPod. iPod may be big at the moment, but so too is Apple's head.
 
Comment

elgruga

macrumors 6502
Dec 31, 2001
434
0
Canada
Guys its 4 in the morning - is everyone staying up for the show?

As for the RealNetworks stuff - well who gives a ****?

Bring on ITMS for Canada and the new ipods and GarageBand. (whatever the hell garageband is?!)

I'm going to bed - I'm losing it.
 
Comment

Waluigi

macrumors 6502
Apr 29, 2003
348
0
Connecticut
Originally posted by elgruga
Guys its 4 in the morning - is everyone staying up for the show?

I'm going to bed - I'm losing it.

I'm going to work at 7 or 8 depending on how lazy I get. I'm just not going to sleep tonight. Besides, sleeping is overrated. Seriously though, your right about the realnetwork ****, it is really trivial.

--Waluigi
 
Comment

Swift

macrumors 68000
Feb 18, 2003
1,763
922
Los Angeles
RealNetworks a bizarre phenomenon

Their video quality is fine, and they were the first in the market. You know what sucks about the company? Deception. They advertise a free player, but you have to navigate past three screens to find tiny print to get to it. And I signed on for Gold, then realized that anything I really wanted would entail another, independent subscription, so I cancelled. Well, it took me an actual phone call, and half an hour confirming my cancellation, to get them out of my hair. You end up hating them, no matter what they do technically. That's why their AAC service will flop. Technically, they're not bad, though those OS 9 players that glommed your entire machine kind of sucked. But it's commercially that they alienate and disgust the consumer.
 
Comment

CrackedButter

macrumors 68040
Jan 15, 2003
3,221
0
51st State of America
This is getting stupid now, it seems everybody's music store won't work with each others players... this isn't going to work even if they are the same format. Talk about a standards war!

I'm glad now that the iTunes music store hasn't arrived in my country, i can sit back and realise its not really worth it.

I'll continue to buy CD's for now and only when they are in a sale.
 
Comment

Sailfish

macrumors regular
Oct 13, 2003
121
0
Cd's aren't safe anymore either, copy protection is coming to them as well.

I like that Real is taking on Microsloth, but they are going to need a player to back their DRM.

I don't think many hardware manufacturers is going to take them seriously as a long term player.

By the way Apples DRM is called "Fairplay" and is a third party product.

Free to be licensed and used by anyone.

Which is what Real should have done if they just want to sell music. Because iPod owners would use the service.

I wish them good luck, any enemy of my enemy (Microsloth) is my friend.
 
Comment

amnesiac1984

macrumors 6502a
Jun 9, 2002
760
0
Europe
Originally posted by Sailfish
Cd's aren't safe anymore either, copy protection is coming to them as well.

I like that Real is taking on Microsloth, but they are going to need a player to back their DRM.

I don't think many hardware manufacturers is going to take them seriously as a long term player.

By the way Apples DRM is called "Fairplay" and is a third party product.

Free to be licensed and used by anyone.

Which is what Real should have done if they just want to sell music. Because iPod owners would use the service.

I wish them good luck, any enemy of my enemy (Microsloth) is my friend.

Exactly, thats what should be done, a free amrket for downloading music so you get a choice and prices get competitive. At the moment, if oyu buy an iPod you have to buy your music from Apple (or a cd).
 
Comment

elmimmo

macrumors 6502
Apr 18, 2002
265
0
Spain
I do not really have a clue of how free and /or open AAC, Fairplay, and Helix are now or are going to be in the future, but I do remember this piece of niews where the Helix brand is being related to an open source initiative by Real, although I did not grasp to what extent.

Could anyone with real knowledge on the field explain really how open and/or free (both as in speech and as in beer) to implement are those technologies?
 
Comment

gunnmjk

macrumors member
May 25, 2003
56
0
Bay Area, CA
Originally posted by Sailfish
[B...
By the way Apples DRM is called "Fairplay" and is a third party product.

Free to be licensed and used by anyone.

Which is what Real should have done if they just want to sell music. Because iPod owners would use the service.
[/B]

Real using Fairplay so that it could work on iPods?! Get real! Who in their right mind with an iPod would download music from REAL when they have iTunes?

The product is obviously going to be aimed at PC users. REAL has always been propriority, and would never sink to license WMA. So this format is obviously their only logical choice.

I'm sure they will try to sell some kind of MP3 player with it. I mean, even my Creative speakers have an m-port to plug in an MP3 player!
 
Comment

amnesiac1984

macrumors 6502a
Jun 9, 2002
760
0
Europe
Originally posted by gunnmjk
Real using Fairplay so that it could work on iPods?! Get real! Who in their right mind with an iPod would download music from REAL when they have iTunes?

The product is obviously going to be aimed at PC users. REAL has always been propriority, and would never sink to license WMA. So this format is obviously their only logical choice.

I'm sure they will try to sell some kind of MP3 player with it. I mean, even my Creative speakers have an m-port to plug in an MP3 player!

What is this mport I wonder? Is it not just a standard audio input called something different so you buy these speakers thinking they are mp3 player compatiblr where in reality every speaker with some kind of analogue input is compatible.
 
Comment

gunnmjk

macrumors member
May 25, 2003
56
0
Bay Area, CA
Originally posted by amnesiac1984
What is this mport I wonder?

It's a USB port they put onto the volume remote, that I believe is to allow the speakers to stream music from "compatible Creative NOMAD® MuVo™ players."

Yeah, I think it's lame too The remote also has audio-in and audio-out ports, which make it kind of useless.
 
Comment

sinisterdesign

macrumors 6502
Dec 10, 2003
422
3
atlanta
CDs & DRM

i agree, sailfish, CDs are far from safe now, too. has anyone else run into Universal's DRM and trashed their Mac? this was over a year ago, but i popped in my 'O Brother Where Art Thou' soundtrack to rip it to iTunes and my computer crashed. i rebooted to a flashing '?' (that's always a good feeling). after trying for an hour to get Norton to find the hard drive, i gave up & went to bed. the next morning at work i thought, "well, i haven't heard my CD yet", so i popped it into my work computer.
CRASH & '?'

i had to take out the hard drives, take them to a Mac repair shop & have them recover as much data as they could. i lost email, addresses, Quicken data, etc. not to MENTION a day of work & hours spent trying to fix it myself. i still won't buy a Universal CD if i notice that they're the label.

...and i haven't crashed my computer once from an ITMS download...
 
Comment

wordmunger

macrumors 603
Sep 3, 2003
5,124
2
North Carolina
Re: CDs & DRM

Originally posted by sinisterdesign
i agree, sailfish, CDs are far from safe now, too. has anyone else run into Universal's DRM and trashed their Mac? this was over a year ago, but i popped in my 'O Brother Where Art Thou' soundtrack to rip it to iTunes and my computer crashed

Damn! I have that CD! Luckily I never put it into my computer. Anyone know where there's a list of DRMd CDs so we know what's safe to rip?
 
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