www.xinhuanet.com
XINHUA online
CHINA VIEW
VIEW CHINA
 Breaking News URGENT: Hu Jintao, Putin attend Sino-Russian economic forum    
Home  
China  
World  
Business  
Technology  
Opinion  
Culture/Edu  
Sports  
Entertainment  
Life/Health  
Travel  
Weather  
RSS  
  About China
  Map
  History
  Constitution
  CPC & Other Parties
  State Organs
  Local Leadership
  White Papers
  Statistics
  Major Projects
  English Websites
  BizChina
- Conferences & Exhibitions
- Investment
- Bidding
- Enterprises
- Policy update
- Technological & Economic Development Zones
Online marketplace of Manufacturers & Wholesalers
   News Photos Voice People BizChina Feature About us   
France seeks to force Apple to open online music, player to competitors
www.chinaview.cn 2006-03-22 09:53:20

    BEIJING, March 22 (Xinhuanet) -- French legislators Tuesday passed a bill to force Apple Computer Inc. to open its iTunes online music store and iPod media players to competitors.

iPod    The French National Assembly, the lower house of the country's parliament, voted 296-to-193 to approve an online copyright bill that would require online music services and MP3 player makers to open DRM technology up to competitor's devices and services, and also allow for usage of content from various online providers on the iPod and other devices. The bill now goes to French Senate, which will debate the measure in May, MarketWatch reported.

    By requiring that songs bought from iTunes -- or from any other digital music site -- can be played on any music players, the proposed French law seeks to break down the barriers created by incompatible "digital rights management" formats, the copyright protection software that limits where and how music can be played.

    The decision has sent tremors through the wider technology world. The US public policy group American For Technology Leadership called the French decision a "direct attack" on Apple's intellectual property, warning that one consequence could be Apple pulling its iTunes store out of France.

    "Whether it gives other MP3 manufacturers an advantage is still an open question," Financial Times Tueaday quoted Barry Jaruzelski, consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton, as saying. "At this point, Apple's iPod and iTunes have become the product that many consumers view as hard to live without."

    If Apple were to withdraw iTunes from France, consumers would be left owning iPod music players that are "as much use as paperweights," the FT report said.

    Some analysts estimate that about 20 percent of iPod and iTunes sales occur outside of the United States, with the French market alone representing less than 2 percent of iPod and iTunes business.

    While it will also affect other companies, such as Microsoft and Sony, the proposed law was clearly aimed at Apple, which dominates the sector, FT said. Enditem

    (Agencies) 

Editor: Nie Peng
  Related Story  
Copyright ©2003 Xinhua News Agency. All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.