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Microsoft's Zune Won't Play Protected Windows Media, Ironic?
vitos
post Sep 22 2006, 10:59
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Microsoft's Zune Won't Play Protected Windows Media

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Microsoft's Zune will not play protected Windows Media Audio and Video purchased or "rented" from Napster 2.0, Rhapsody, Yahoo! Unlimited, Movielink, Cinemanow, or any other online media service. That's right -- the media that Microsoft promised would Play For Sure doesn't even play on Microsoft's own device. Buried in footnote 4 of its press release, Microsoft clearly states that "Zune software can import audio files in unprotected WMA, MP3, AAC; photos in JPEG; and videos in WMV, MPEG-4, H.264" -- protected WMA and WMV (not to mention iTunes DRMed AAC) are conspicuously absent.


Microsoft really believe their player will be competetive enough, so they can abandon their own standard. Irrational and ironic for me.


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MedO
post Sep 22 2006, 13:25
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http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20060724

'nuff said.
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Jimmy_Neuron
post Sep 22 2006, 14:00
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QUOTE (MedO @ Sep 22 2006, 14:25) *


Superb! laugh.gif
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ilikedirtthe2nd
post Sep 22 2006, 14:36
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The most proprietary shit wins? I don't hope so.
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eofor
post Sep 22 2006, 15:12
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Is this actually confirmed by someone, or is it still speculation based on a possible omission from a press release? Press releases are notoriously vague on technical details.
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evereux
post Sep 22 2006, 15:45
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I can confirm that footnote 4 from the presspack available here (download Fact Sheet) says the following:
QUOTE
Zune software can import audio files in unprotected WMA, MP3, AAC; photos in JPEG; and videos in WMV, MPEG-4, H.264.


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saratoga
post Sep 22 2006, 16:30
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Where does that say it can't import protected files?
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guruboolez
post Sep 22 2006, 16:33
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Is the presspack wrong or even Microsoft's future devices won't support WMAPro?
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grommet
post Sep 22 2006, 16:45
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This is "confirmed", though I disagree with the choice personally. Zune is NOT a PlaysForSure compliant device and that's by design.

There are probably multiple reasons they did this. One, officially, is the "WiFi beam the song to somebody for 3 days/3 plays" feature. If it supported DRM content not supplied by Zune, not all content could be shared due to licensing chaos. So, the end user experience would less than optimal. Forcing Zune to only support unprotected and Zune subscription/purchased content allows the sharing function to work for every song loaded. "Just works."

And more generally, there are less things to support and less things that could go wrong and confuse users. A lot more like Apple did... less choice, easier to use.

This post has been edited by grommet: Sep 22 2006, 18:54
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