Apple goes DRM-Free with EMI on iTunes – at a price

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Well, it’s been widely-predicted over the weekend, so no surprise to see the announcement that Apple will offer EMI Music’s entire digital catalogue of music for purchase DRM-free on iTunes as of May. The price point will be increased to 99p per song though.

Apparently, DRM-free tracks from EMI will be offered at higher quality 256 kbps AAC encoding, which Apple claims will result in audio quality indistinguishable from the original recording. And if you’re a previous customer, you can upgrade your collection of EMI tunes to the higher quality DRM-free versions for 20 pence a song – the difference in price points.

“We are going to give iTunes customers a choice – the current versions of our songs for the same 79 pence price, or new DRM-free versions of the same songs with even higher audio quality and the security of interoperability for just 20 pence more,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “We think our customers are going to love this, and we expect to offer more than half of the songs on iTunes in DRM-free versions by the end of this year.”

Worth the extra 20p or not? Let us know your thoughts.

Apple website

Dave Walker