autorip Amazon launches AutoRip service

Amazon has launched a new service in the U.S which allows purchasers of physical media free access to digital versions of albums, and to stream them from almost anywhere with the website's Cloud Player.

Popular everything website Amazon.com is now offering a service called AutoRip, which gives CD purchasers access to digital versions of the music they buy. The service is only available in the U.S for now, and only for select albums.

The decision to bestow this service to an album has so far been influenced by the popularity it has on Amazon’s website. Available selections currently include stuff with track records like “Dark Side of the Moon” by Pink Floyd, and “21” by Adele.

"When we picked those 50,000 titles we focused on having a substantial majority of our physical CD sales covered,” said Steve Boom, head of digital music at Amazon.

In addition to offering this new service at album purchase, Amazon is also making digital downloads available to users who purchased it anytime between now and 1998.

Depending on how the library of available AutoRip music expands, it represents a nice convenience to users, who would otherwise have to manually rip the music themselves. Also, it beats purchasing digital downloads alone, since many will now be accompanied by a physical “backup” to keep around.

Things used to be simpler when there was one way to get music – you went to the store and bought the CD, cassette, or record, depending on what era you lived in. But then the digital world stepped in and made everything complicated, introducing a whole dictionary of new words like DRM, MP3 player, and the even more baffling “cloud”.

Services like AutoRip seem like a nice way to unify and make order out of the physical vs. digital media dilemma. Perhaps CDs and iPods have hope to one day dwell in harmony.

Source: BBC News