Tired Of Being “Held To Ransom By Apple” – Could Sony Pull It’s Track From iTunes?

image from www.blog.wareseeker.com Statements this from a senior Sony executive hint that the end game for its new Music Unlimited service may not be just to compete with iTunes, but rather to replace it. Late last year, Sony unveiled its online store and music service in Europe and promises to bring it to many more countries in 2011. 

Music Unlimited is the entertainment and technology giant's late-to-market attempt to integrate content and devices as Apple has for a decade. 

''If we do [get mass take up] then does Sony Music need to provide content to iTunes?'' Chief Executive Officer of Sony Computer Entertainment, Michael Ephraim asked rhetorical in an interview with Australia's Sydney Morning Herald. "Currently we do. We have to provide it to iTunes as that's the format right now".

"Publishers are being held to ransom by Apple and they are looking for other delivery systems, and we are waiting to see what the next three to five years will hold.''

It might seem inconceivable that a major music company would  pull out of iTunes.  But Ephram's statements point to the level of frustration with Apple's dominance that exists within the content community, as well as,  just how contentious the fight for control channels of distribution may become.

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  1. I’d love to know how they are being held “hostage”. What a disgusting triviality of the word. iTunes sells music and pays Sony. Reliably. Sony has been free to build their own store before iTunes appeared, since, and in the future. Oh, that’s right, iTunes is popular. What does that mean? People like it, so they use it. Why couldn’t Sony make something that people like? That sounds like the real issue here. And not just in music retail.
    Also- Headline. Proofread, maybe?

  2. @Bizzaro
    Sony saying they’re being held to ransom by Apple is in reference to not owning fan details such as e-mail addresses and location based on IP etc. With this kind of info sony could use the data to concentrate its marketing efforts, much the same as plenty of DIY artists are doing with the different platforms available (Topspin, Bandcamp etc.). Basically Sony knows they can drive a lot more sales from this information and want to maximise profitability.
    Any way I don’t know how well this will go, Sony aren’t known as the most open company in recent years, generally resulting in an inconvenience for the user and we all know where that would leave them again… Know anyone that had a Mac and Sony MD? Probably not since the Sony software only worked on PC, then follow that with the tracks being encoded in a Sony owned format that would not work with other players (unless they paid for a licence) which led to market segregation and a dead format… They may have changed their ways but I remain skeptical.

  3. I won’t ever go with sony. Every sony product I’ve owned has had some proprietary tech that completely limited it’s use ( if not prevented it altogether ). I’m sure they’ll come out with a DAW that only exports to sony devices or something.

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