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Old 09-08-2004, 06:00 PM
James Fee
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Default MSN Music Downloads and the iPod

Last week during the opening of the MSN Music store, Microsoft offered up the following to those who wanted to use their store with the iPod,

"Although Apple computers and Apple iPods do not support the PC standard Windows Media format for music, it is still possible to transfer MSN Music downloads to an iPod, but it will require some extra effort. To transfer MSN-downloaded music to an iPod, you need to first create a CD with the music, and then you need to import that CD into iTunes. This process will convert the music into a format that can play on the iPod. We’re sorry that this isn’t easier - unfortunately Apple refuses to allow other companies to integrate with the iPod’s proprietary music format. If you are an iPod owner already and unhappy about this policy, you are welcome to send feedback to Apple requesting that they change their interoperability policy.".

Well it seems like Microsoft has gotten smart and changed the wording on their support pages to the following,

"The iPod does not currently support the Windows Media Audio (WMA) format and will not natively play any songs purchased from MSN Music, or any other Windows Media-based music service. If you are an iPod owner and would like to play MSN Music songs on your iPod, you can send feedback to Apple and ask them to change their policy and add support for the Windows Media format."

As many have pointed out (including John Gruber on Daring Fireball), "Help pages are more useful when they’re helpful, rather than spiteful". Also notice the wording on burning the WMA DRM files to a CD and importing them into iTunes is no longer in the instructions.
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