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iTunes LP Format Struggling After Less Than 6 Months

Gordon Kelly


iTunes LP Format Struggling After Less Than 6 Months

There's a certain irony that those who decry the loss of the CD really don't seem enamoured by digital's best attempts to recreate it - or at least Apple's attempts to recreate it...

Following up what has been a pretty tough 2010 for Apple so far is a report from Gigaom that iTunes LP is falling a long way short of the lofty targets the company set for it. Described by Apple as "the best thing to happen to fandom", iTunes LP enhances regular music downloads with liner notes, lyrics, photography, performance videos and other bonus content - but consumers aren't biting.

"None of the industry sources with whom I spoke said they viewed it as being anywhere close to game-changing from a format perspective," said Gigaom's Paul Bonanos. "Rather, it’s considered more of a curiosity. Like an enhanced CD or a DVD packaged with a physical album, iTunes LP’s bonus materials may interest super-fans, but they aren’t generating much buzz among mainstream consumers, and don’t appear to be stimulating LP sales at all."

Interestingly, "an industry source who preferred to remain anonymous" also told the site iTunes LP was actually forced upon Apple by major record labels frustrated at DRM-free music and the manner in which downloads encourage the purchase of individual songs rather than full albums.

Perhaps the most damning stat: just 29 iTunes LPs are on sale six months after the format launched, of which 12 were available on day one. A major effort from tech friendly super band Gorillaz this week is bringing that number to 30, but it looks like not everything Apple touches right now is turning to platinum...


via Gigaom

iTunes LP


March 10, 2010, 11:51 am

i just want an itunes lossless store.


March 10, 2010, 2:10 pm

Meh, not really a surprise TBH. IMO People who are intersted in buying music downloads are usually the people who are looking to save money/get music the cheapest and easiest way possible, so probably arnt that interested in paying extra for extras aside from the tracks that the like (like me!)

People who are interested in the extras that come with the music would be buying the CD!


March 10, 2010, 3:26 pm

This makes me very happy, but not in an anti-Apple way - I hope all such formats fail miserably. The record labels need to back off and finally deal with the fact that most of us simply want music, which we can listen to where and when we want (i.e. without DRM). They won't of course; they'll lobby and throw their weight around and generally be stroppy - but every embarassment like this is a step towards making them see sense.


March 10, 2010, 3:29 pm

would look nice on ipad + if they come free would be even nicer.


March 10, 2010, 5:08 pm

I have to agree with xbramster on the "free" idea. I'd buy a digital album if liner notes came as standard. If extra content, such as video's and interviews I think its worth charging a little extra but I think all digital album downloads should come with liner notes. Its part of the process of enjoying music. Learning about the band, reading the lyrics.

I'm not suggesting that every track you download has it though.


March 10, 2010, 6:21 pm

I find the comparison to CD here rubbish though.

Those of us who mourn Cd is are mourning a loss of sound repoduction quality. Just playing anything through a pc opens it to alot of noise on the sound. then with MP3 compression bleh! its not the features its the quality.

Only thing that offers us hope is SACD 2 channel cd's


March 10, 2010, 6:42 pm

The music industry encouraged people to buy individual tracks by pimping 'artists' that put out albums with 10 different producers and songwriters and padding them with sub-b-side material.


March 10, 2010, 7:41 pm

How about just sell the CDs for less without the liner notes?


March 10, 2010, 9:20 pm

MonkeyAxman: I get where you're coming from, but I actually take the opposite view - for me part of the process of enjoying music is listening carefully to the lyrics, interpreting them, trying to pick out instruments or samples; I like doing all this myself. Although while liner notes don't really bother me, I do kind of worry about the disappearance of the album cover as an art form - I doubt as much care and thought will go into these designs if they're only going to end up as thumbnails. So I'd be perfectly happy to have liner notes, cover art etc. - and I wouldn't even mind paying for them as an optional extra - but not as an integrated format which just happens to allow the labels to disguise DRM behind the supposed benefits.


March 10, 2010, 11:27 pm

its odd you dont have the option of a full cd iso its only 700mb nothing in this day and age.

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