London (England) - EMI has announced that it will be dropping DRM file protections for its entire digital library of songs. The company says the “premium” songs will have much higher quality than older digital versions and that consumers will have a choice of bit rates. iTunes will be the first download service to offer the new songs.
We had to check the calendar to make sure this story wasn’t an April Fools joke, but the press release is dated April 2nd. Eric Nicoli, CEO of EMI, said, "By providing DRM-free downloads, we aim to address the lack of interoperability which is frustrating for many music fans. We believe that offering consumers the opportunity to buy higher quality tracks and listen to them on the device or platform of their choice will boost sales of digital music.
EMI says the new songs will have up to twice the sound quality of original songs and consumers will be able to pick bit rates all the way up to CD Quality. Itunes will sell these new songs for $1.29 each. Owners of older DRM-protected songs can upgrade to a DRM-free one for 30 cents.
If you are crazy enough to still want a DRM-protected song, don’t worry because EMI assured that the new songs are complementing its existing library.
In addition to DRM-free music, EMI has also announced protection free music videos.