Friday, November 10, 2006

Microsof to pay music industry per device sold

Microsoft will pay to Universal Music for each sold Zune, the portable device that the Redmond, WA, company is unveiling to compete with Apple’s iPod. The device will be lunched next Tuesday along with Zune Marketplace, a virtual music store that mimics iTunes. Apple, which has almost 80% of the portable devices’ market, pays to the music companies per sold song in iTunes, but Microsoft has agreed to, in addition of that, this payment that resembles the levy that certain devices have to pay in the USA, where the Audio Home Recording Act of 1992 introduced Section 1008 of Title 17 of the United States Code, which essentially says that it is legally to record music because a levy has been paid on the recorded media (this would bring into question the limitation for sharing that Zune has embedded.
A completely different thing is whether Zune can compete with Apple’s iPod, but as many times before, Microsoft arrives late, copy not very well at the beginning, but then catches up. One interesting feature that may rise some eyebrows, at least from the law point of view, is the possibility of sharing your music wirelessly with other Zune users...

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