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June 21, 2006



"This won’t happen, not because it’s too expensive or difficult, but because Apple must restrict content portability to maintain their precious syndication arrangements."

I wouldn't be surprised to see some sort of wireless implementation in an iPod (be it WIFI or bluetooth) in the next year. Sure this will freak out the RIAA, (what doesn't?) but shouldn't be much different than using another computer's iTunes library over a LAN. (You can listen and browse, but you can't keep the music.) I'd love to walk into a coffee shop and surf all the iPod's in range, and I think Apple wants to give that to users. It's no novel concept, but it does show how DRM and it's proponents most certainly stifle innovation.

It's a tough line Apple is trying to skirt between the RIAA/MPAA/DRM-clan and users who don't want crippled hardware or software. I'll personally never buy a DRM'd song, but I know plenty of people that don't mind if the DRM is unobtrusive.

In the end I believe the type of close proximity wireless integration you discuss will happen in many devices- it's inevitable. But whether or not it happens in a device that the supports DRM that the RIAA/MPAA will endorse is up to them. Make them customers (with Apple's help) or defendants...what a tough decision that will be.

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