Report: WMG Planning CD Replacement?
August 4, 2006 at 9:55 AM (PT)
Add "DVD album" to the growing list of next-gen media deilvery products to replace the slumping CD, as THE WALL STREET JOURNAL reports that WARNER MUSIC GROUP (WMG) is planning "an aggressive attempt" to spark physical sales by pushing a bundle of music and extra features on a single DVD. The JOURNAL reports that WMG is currently in the final stages of securing technical licenses which will allow them to get a handul of the product to stores by as early as OCTOBER, with an extensive product launch to follow next year.
Not to be confused with the SuperAudio CD, DVD-Audio, or the DualDisc -- the double-sided CD/DVD product which has reportedly been scaled by drastically -- the "DVD album" (there is no plan to name the product as this time) would include a music album that plays in both stereo and surround-sound on a standard DVD player, and contain additional video footage that plays on a DVD player or a computer. WARNER will reportedly ask retailers to stock the product alongside regular CDs. The price for the new format will be higher than the traditional CD, and prices will reportedly vary based on the amount of extras included on any given disc.
Potential drawbacks to to the product include the fact that these discs would not play on normal CD players, and users would not be able to copy the main audio mix onto their computers. On the proposed DVD album, the main audio mix is to be protected by the same software that already protects the content on normal DVDs. A separate, lower-quality file of "preripped" tracks could be copied to a CD or portable devices. The JOURNAL reveals that WMG is in talks with APPLE COMPUTER to have that company creating the digital tracks, a boon for the label, as APPLE has, up to this point, been unwilling to license its proprietary copy-protection software to outsiders.