Not that I need to tell you guys, but things are moving fast in the digital music space. The DRM dike is springing leaks and Edgar Bronfman doesn't have enough fingers to plug the holes...
Are we in the making of a perfect storm? Let's look at what is going on:
- Apple wants to sell unprotected tracks
- EMI is seriously considering going DRMless, and have recently done some tests with Norah Jones and other acts
- EMI is said to be hurting finanically and need to do something drastic to feed the bottom line and make their quarterly numbers
- Apple and Apple (The Beatles) are finally over their feud - with Apple (iTunes) getting a 3 month exclusive window to sell the Beatles catalog
- When Jobs introduced the iPhone, the Beatles were what was playing
- The Beatles catalog has been in the process of being remastered for digital distribution for some time (per George Martin), and rumors that they would be complete early this year
- The Beatles are on EMI
- Apple is said to be having an event at the end of the month (Feb. 20th) for some Beatles-related announcement
You see where this is going, right? Steve Job's is going to stroll on stage and announce that iTunes has the entire Beatles catalog... and it is available as unprotected MP3s. The flood gates open, they sell billions of tracks, EMI makes a boatload, the digital music consumers go crazy, everyone that isn't yet a digital music consumer becomes one, Apple sells a billion more iPods. Kaboom!
Hold on to your seats... this could be the big one.