Wednesday, October 22, 2008

To Zune Or Not Zune

Let me start out by saying DRM is evil. This is the biggest point to this post than anything else. So much so that I feel it needs to be gotten out right away but we will get back to it after I explain the situation.

A few weeks ago my beloved iPod finally bit the dust. After a little more than a year of the hard drive making horrible noises and needing to be held upside down and smacked to get it to boot it finally just refused. I mourned it's loss and went through a grieving period. Now as I sit at work frustrated with my inability to listen to exactly what I want to listen to when I want to listen to it I am frustrated. I want a new player so I can get through my day easier.

Right at the same time as it died Apple announced it's new line of iPods and left me feeling unsatisfied but still interested. The classic lines seem to be riding off into the sunset with nothing but the expensive bigger than I need model left. While the flash based players are either all screen(touch) or barely screen(nan0) and a bit on the small capacity side. After checking my music library and figuring it out I think I can cram most of what I have into a 16 gig to get me through for a while.

Then I start thinking outside the apple box. I know to some of you this is a mortal sin but too bad I want the best features for my dollar. What about a Zune. Microsoft makes a 16 gig flash based zune. This is the right size for me and it's flash based so I can avoid the dreaded "wheeeee crunch" that my iPod started makeing. Zunes can access wifi and download podcasts and music on the go. Zunes have built in FM radios so I can listen to NPR during the day or what ever else my catch my interest. Wow this all sounds so great. I mean genius sounds interesting on the new iPonds and the adjusting screen based on which way you hold it sounds nice. Really though those are just novelty to me, wifi mobile downloads make me drool.

So why even hesitate why take the time to right this post. DRM!!!
I like many iPod owners fell into the well of iTunes and it's allure of getting the music you want with out leaving the house or waiting for it to be delivered. Now the chains of DRM are pulling me under when I try to leave the platform. I bought my music, I paid for it, it should be mine. But it isn't I can't take it with me if I move to a Zune. All of my recent purchases have been through Amazon's MP3 store which is DRM free and cheaper than iTunes but I do have a good bit of music through iTunes that I will either loose or let it force me to stay with an iPod and dreaded iTunes (no I do not want to install Safari you piece of shit).

Now I debate. I lean towards just moving away from iTunes and Apple just as a move against DRM. But I did like my iPod, I did love how everything is made to work with it because of it's popularity. I wish Microsoft and Apple would both allow me to try their players and let me go with the one I really liked the best after trying them. I wish if they lost then that Apple would strip the DRM from my songs and set me free to what ever player I want. This is a silly dream though I know.