Real launches 'Freedom of Choice Campaign'
RealNetworks will tout its new Windows-only Harmony technology, which allows files from its music store to be played on Apple's iPod, in a series of print, radio and online advertising, the company said in a statement on Tuesday. In addition, Real will hold what it calls the biggest music sale in history selling songs for US$0.49 and albums for $4.99.
"We believe Freedom of Choice is both the right thing for consumers and a crucial step in bringing digital delivery of music into the mainstream," said Rob Glaser, founder and CEO of RealNetworks.
Real first introduced Harmony late last month promising compatibility with a variety of digital music players, including Apple's popular iPod. Apple released a statement chastising RealNetworks saying they have "adopted the tactics and ethics of a hacker to break into the iPod."
In their own statement, RealNetworks said, "Consumers, and not Apple, should be the ones choosing what music goes on their iPod."
Apple said they were investigating the implications of the software under the DMCA and other laws. According to legal experts Apple has several legal options available to the company, but a win is not a sure thing.
RealNetworks also launched a new web-based community at www.freedomofmusicchoice.org. This community site will provide a forum where consumers can learn about compatibility issues and discuss the issues with other digital music fans.