Music to the Cloud

So came across this today.

Moving music to the cloud

I wonder if this is just another one of those ideas that will disappear in to the ether, or will it actually take of this time.

It’s all we seem to here now, “the cloud”. But the issues is always going to be that even if there is 99.9% coverage. The times you want to be listening to your music are when driving / holiday / walking, there very times you are most likely to be out side of the coverage areas. And the only way to cope with this is to have off line local storage that you can carry around with you as we do right now.

May be the way to manage a cloud based music system if not to charge for how much music you have access to. But how much you can store off line. So you would pay for a set amount of off line storage that you can save to your music player. Each time you download a song it is subtracted from your allowance and each time you check a song back in it is removed from your device and you account is re-credited.

So you still always have access to all the music, and you can keep your favourite music local to you for those time when you are out of coverage. With the artists getting paid depending on how often there tunes are played through the cloud of when they are downloaded .

But can cloud music possible bet the piracy? In my view Piracy is not winning because it is cheaper (although this is a big factor I grant you), but because there are no ties. Once you have a tune, it is yours, you can leave one piracy site and go to another and you don’t lose what you already have. No one likes to be tied to a company, and this is why I personal dislike I-tunes, the idea that music purchased through it is tied to it. So if a better offer comes along or a better player you can’t take advantage of it.

In my view this is what has got to change and is what will bring people in from piracy, that once you have purchased music it “belongs” to you, or at least for you to listen to how and when you want to. For this to happen there has to be an open DRM standard that all of the industry sign up to. But while all the different companies fight to get customers and then lock them in. Piracy will only get worse.

I like the idea of cloud music, especially the peer to peer model, but I will be surprised if this takes of in any really big way, or really changed the music industry.


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