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Amazon Releases Cloud-Based Music Service

samzenpus posted about 3 years ago | from the aether-tunes dept.

Cloud 222

c0lo writes "Right after rumors that Google was preparing to take on iTunes service with a digital music store of its own, Amazon has announced that it's entering the fight with a cloud-based music service of its own. From the article: 'Amazon Cloud Drive is a "personal disk drive in the cloud," while Amazon Cloud Player is, well, a Web-based music player. That's right--Amazon Cloud Drive will be something like Google's rumored digital music locker, a cloud-based storage system for all of your tunes.'"

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222 comments

It's cloud-based alright (5, Informative)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35651978)

Because if Amazon doesn't think the music studios are going to push back *HARD* on this, their heads are in the cloud. Here's a relevant quote:

"We are disappointed that the locker service that Amazon is proposing is unlicensed by Sony Music," a spokeswoman for Sony Corp.'s Sony Music Entertainment told the Journal.

Considering that Sony will sue people [theregister.co.uk] who even *talk* about putting their IP on the web, you think they're just going to sit back and watch while you allow everyone and his brother to put all their ripped Sony CD's on a web accessible service?

All I can say is that Amazon (and Google and Apple if they intend to follow up with their rumored similar services) had better lawyer up.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1, Troll)

mikaelg (2028366) | about 3 years ago | (#35652036)

I agree, record labels will never allow it. On the other hand, there are services that already have deals with them, and they're better too. Zune Pass [zune.net] offers unlimited music streaming for just $14.99 a month. A nice deal, huh?

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35652142)

I think comparing this to Zune Pass is apples and oranges. From what I understand Zune Pass is something more akin to Netflix's streaming service, with a limited number of titles available, and locked down with DRM. This "locker" is a storage service that essentially lets you put any song you want onto it (pirated, ripped, or legally purchased). This would allow you to access your entire music collection, through the web, from anywhere--with no royalties or agreements with any studio. There is no way the studios are just going to look the other way on this.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (2)

xhrit (915936) | about 3 years ago | (#35652284)

this is not what it does though. from the looks of it this will allow you to play songs you buy from amazon in a special player that is totally locked down. in this respect it is pretty much exactly like itunes except you can only listen to music you buy from the amazon cloud in the amazon cloud player. player comes in android, mac, and windows flavors. chances are the studios are on board, just liek that are with amazon selling mp3s and what not.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (2)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35652376)

All the reports I've seen indicate that they will also let you upload your own MP3 and AAC files to the server. And obviously Sony isn't on board, at least.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

herojig (1625143) | about 3 years ago | (#35652648)

Just read the Amazon announcement (referenced) and u will see. You can upload whatever u like, to include docs and videos. I agree with all the others that say "How will the Sonyies of the world let this be?!?"

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

RingDev (879105) | about 3 years ago | (#35652714)

How do the "Sonyies" of the world let Cryptonite storage work? How to do they let Azure work? How do the allow any of the hundreds of online document storage systems already in existance work?

The only difference here is that in addition to a cloud based storage system, Amazon appears to be added MP3s you buy directly to the storage. And that seems like a pretty insignificant note seeing as how iTunes effectively does the same thing.

-Rick

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652144)

So the 7-11 down the street from me was giving away 3 free Zunes with the purchase of a Slurpee. I was unaware of this promotion, so you can imagine my surprise when the clerk tried to hand me a pile of what I assumed to be fecal matter with my drink. My initial excitement of course turned to disappointment when I realized it was in fact a Zune.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35652210)

My 7-11 had the same deal, only they offered the option to choose between three Zunes or three Grammys. I took the Zunes, because hey, a little something is better than nothing at all, right?

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 3 years ago | (#35652248)

>>>Zune Pass...14.99 a month. A nice deal, huh?

That's 14.99 too expensive. I store my music on my hard drives (times two) for free. And I can access it anywhere, even at work, which blocks streaming music from Zune.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (0)

somersault (912633) | about 3 years ago | (#35652112)

Since it's only accessible to the person who bought the music, I don't get the point in even trying to fight against it. You'd have to be a monumental idiot to believe that you can stop the embrace of technology in this way. It's not even encouraging piracy. Good luck, Sony - have fun wasting your money!

Re:It's cloud-based alright (2)

gehrehmee (16338) | about 3 years ago | (#35652252)

Precedent says that's not necessarily good enough. MP3.com had a huge library of music, that was only available if you proved you owned the CD already. They were shut down quite dramatically.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (3, Interesting)

Jason Levine (196982) | about 3 years ago | (#35652436)

There's a small, yet significant, difference between Amazon Cloud Drive and MP3.com. MP3.com was ripping tons of CDs. They then had you insert your CD in the drive so you could get access to their ripped version online. Amazon is letting users upload their own files. Yes, these could be pirated files or files that the user owns, but this is the user's responsibility. Plus, unless the user shares their Amazon login information with others, they will be the only ones able to access those music files. It should be easy to weed out TOS violators (people who store pirated MP3s and then let others log in to retrieve them) without shutting down the entire service.

Besides, if this becomes MP3.com vs RIAA: Round 2, I hope that Amazon points out that their Cloud Music service could be replicated by anyone with a web hosting account and FTP software. My hosting account has unlimited storage. (I know, it's really not "unlimited", but I can store more than the 5GB that Amazon is offering.) If I made a folder called "My Music", which I didn't tell anyone about, and uploaded my MP3s there, they would be backed up the same as with Amazon Cloud Drive. For additional security, I could password protect the folder so if someone stumbled upon mysite.com/My Music/, they wouldn't be able to get in. For even more security, if the host so offered it, I could put the files outside of the website's root so they would only be available over FTP.

Basically, if Sony is allowed to say that Amazon's Cloud Storage is illegal, than so is any web hosting service. After all, just because I'm not uploading MP3s of Sony music to my web space doesn't mean I *can't*. And since I theoretically could do this, why would a web hosting service be legal while Amazon Cloud Drive would be illegal. (Especially since web hosting services are specifically designed to share files out and you need to take action to prevent this.)

Re:It's cloud-based alright (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35653162)

> They then had you insert your CD in the drive so you could get access to their ripped version online

Can someone explain that to me? I'm a geezer and don't understand how young people think any more. If you have the CD in the drive, why wouldn't you just play it from that, instead of streaming the same music you have there locally? Or at least rip the songs from the CD and have them to carry around with you, or stream from your own PC instead of somebody else's server?

I feel so out of touch.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

c0lo (1497653) | about 3 years ago | (#35653192)

For additional security, I could password protect the folder so if someone stumbled upon mysite.com/My Music/, they wouldn't be able to get in.

http://mysite.com/My%20Music/ [mysite.com] - returns the 404 page. Mate, fix your 401.[html|php] page, will ya?

Re:It's cloud-based alright (0)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 3 years ago | (#35652420)

>>>Since it's only accessible to the person who bought the music

Go back and read the quote from Sony. They say you are LICENSED to hear the music, and if that license doesn't give you permission to store it online, then you can't do it. QED online storage will be sued, and shutdown as an infringing format that violates that copy monopoly/license.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

somersault (912633) | about 3 years ago | (#35652602)

Then they'd better sue Microsoft for its Live storage thingy too then, and Dropbox, and Ubuntu One, and every other online storage/backup site out there. People are getting fed up of the bullshit. Even guys like me who actually still buy music are going to stop paying if they keep this up.

Having looked at Amazon's pricing model (and considering they haven't released the service in the UK yet) I think I'd be better off just subscribing to Spotify though.. it costs about the same as it would cost to store my current collection online, but I wouldn't actually have to buy any new albums.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35653198)

Go back and read the quote from Sony. They say you are LICENSED to hear the music, and if that license doesn't give you permission to store it online, then you can't do it.

Correct. Go get any LP from the 70s, and actually read the licensing information. Just because today we can effortlessly make unlimited copies of the same music, doesn't mean we have the license to do it. I don't understand why people continue to think that by buying a CD or LP or whatever that they OWN THE MUSIC. This has never, ever been the case. You have a license for personal use for the item you posess.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (3, Insightful)

adamchou (993073) | about 3 years ago | (#35652146)

That link has nothing to do with copyright law and I don't even see how that case is at all relevant to Amazon's or Google's service. On top of that, Amazon isn't providing a music sharing service. Its a web based storage service that only you access.

As for the lawyers, I HIGHLY doubt that any of the RIAA members have the financial balls to take on either Amazon or Google. Besides, if they go after either of the two companies, both companies have the financial means to pursue the case, most likely win the case, and set precedent that would bar the RIAA from ever pulling crap like that again. So I HOPE that the RIAA decides to try to sue.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35652256)

Its a web based storage service that only you access.

Yeah, assuming no one every thinks of creating a generic account and then handing out the userid and password to all their friends. And I imagine they will--about 5 seconds after this thing launches.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

nateross (1265250) | about 3 years ago | (#35652314)

If they limit the number of devices that access it, and only provide music that you purchase on that account... I think generic accounts would be pretty limited.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35652406)

How can they limit it if they're letting you access it through any web browser? Maybe if they were requiring you to actually install their software, but it sounds like it's just a basic web interface.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

idontgno (624372) | about 3 years ago | (#35653248)

Well, maybe. I know that on Android mobiles, the newest version of the Amazon MP3 app (previously used to shop for MP3 songs and albums) is now their "cloud service" client as well.

I wish I'd known that was what they app updated was for; I would have stuck to the old "shop only" version, since I have no intention of using their music player and the added "features" bloated the app, making it take up more precious phone-only application storage.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

Jason Levine (196982) | about 3 years ago | (#35652536)

And those people can be rooted out and banned. It should be easy to find accounts that are being logged into from many different IP addresses. If the number of IP addresses passes a certain point, the account could be flagged for review and (if it turns out to be a "generic sharing account") banning.

Besides, this is only 5GB of storage. You could get a cheap web hosting account and store a lot more music on it for under $10 a month. (Share the cost with your friends and your monthly payment drops.) I'm not saying people *should* do this mind you (I don't condone copyright infringement), just that they could and music pirates probably won't flock to such a limited (for their purposes) service.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

nateross (1265250) | about 3 years ago | (#35652150)

Just because Sony may be overly litigious doesn't mean they will be successful. If Amazon secures the cloud based service sufficiently to ensure the identity of the individual, perhaps limiting the number of devices that can connect (eg Netflix streaming) they would simply be providing cloud storage to individuals. How is that any different than generic cloud storage? They could easily link it with AmazonMP3 service to ensure that you own all the music you have on the system. Essentially, music that you buy would be able to be streamed after the initial download... like Pandora from your own music.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35652318)

Just because Sony may be overly litigious doesn't mean they will be successful.

I always hope that they will fail in all their jackboot lawsuits. Yet they always seem to be on the winning end of every motion, subpeona, and trial. Even when they pull shit like the infamous rootkit, all THEY get is a slap on the wrist, while everyone who illegally downloads their stuff gets their door kicked in by cops and their lives destroyed.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (2)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | about 3 years ago | (#35652566)

Just because Sony may be overly litigious doesn't mean they will be successful.

I always hope that they will fail in all their jackboot lawsuits. Yet they always seem to be on the winning end of every motion, subpeona, and trial. Even when they pull shit like the infamous rootkit, all THEY get is a slap on the wrist, while everyone who illegally downloads their stuff gets their door kicked in by cops and their lives destroyed.

The legal actions to which you're referring are between Sony and individual non-wealthy people. Amazon is actually much bigger than Sony. Amazon is bigger than the entire music industry, in fact. If Google and Apple also get in on the fight, you're looking at those three companies fighting a group of entertainment companies that's an order of magnitude smaller than they are. That doesn't mean they'll win, but it at least shows that legal resources won't be so lopsided in favor of the RIAA.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

_|()|\| (159991) | about 3 years ago | (#35652298)

All I can say is that Amazon ... had better lawyer up.

Unless it violates their contracts, I'm not sure what the labels can do. I imagine it will be a sticking point when the time comes to renew those contracts.

There are already plenty of online backup services (including some based on EC2) filled with personal music libraries (including MP3s downloaded from Amazon). I wonder whether the back end employs any kind of de-duplication. Does Amazon use watermarking that would interfere with that?

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35652498)

There are already plenty of online backup services (including some based on EC2) filled with personal music libraries

Yeah, but this goes a lot further than just an online backup storage drive. It also includes a music player. And they're advertising it specifically as a music service. The studios are going to go apeshit on anything that threatens their stranglehold/monopoly. And this definitely qualifies.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

Eraesr (1629799) | about 3 years ago | (#35652452)

I don't understand the problem. I assume that the stuff I put in my locker can only be streamed by me? Sure, login credentials can be shared among friends, but is that really Amazon's problem? At most Amazon could put in some anti-sharing measures like only accepting one connection per locker simultaneously.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35652592)

My.MP3.com [wikipedia.org] tried a similar defense in their legal case [wikipedia.org] . To access music on the service, users had to prove they legally owned the music already on CD. But that defense didn't work. It cost them $53.4 million in damages (which basically bankrupted and destroyed the company).

In many ways, this is an even tougher case. Because Amazon won't even be requiring users to prove they legally own the music. From the way it's being described, there is nothing to stop you from uploading your pirated MP3's right next to your ripped ones, and putting them both right next to the ones bought through the Amazon Store.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35653042)

The difference was one of "provenance", a term the record labels successfully convinced the courts was relevant.

In a nutshell, if I have a CD and you have a CD, if we both make mp3s of them to listen on other devices, I am only licensed to listen to MY mp3s, not yours, even though they are byte for byte the same. Thus the mp3.com defense fell apart, as the customer was using an mp3 not sourced from their owned CD, thus breaking license etc etc.

In this case, amazon is simply a cloud drive and indexer of media the user already owns, so the dynamic is different.

I am certainly not agreeing with the whole provenance ruling, just pointing out it is not relevant in this case as the files were provided by the user. The labels will push back hard against this, simply because they want a slice of a non-existant pie, but they'll have to find some other nonsense argument this time.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

Helpadingoatemybaby (629248) | about 3 years ago | (#35652858)

Yes, this music industry will push back, just like Napster.

Just think, they could have controlled the online music industry by now since they owned Napster, instead they gave an entire new industry to Apple. That's just smart management. And remember, those same geniuses are in charge still.

That's why they get the big money.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

c0lo (1497653) | about 3 years ago | (#35652992)

Considering that Sony will sue people [theregister.co.uk] who even *talk* about putting their IP on the web, you think they're just going to sit back and watch while you allow everyone and his brother to put all their ripped Sony CD's on a web accessible service?

At least, the IP they have in their rootkit is safe:by now, all decent AV solutions detect and remove it (maybe there is an idea around?)

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 3 years ago | (#35653054)

Amazon isn't people. It's a huge corporation with billions behind it AND it moves a lot of Sony Product.

Add Google and Apple to that and Sony may just have to suck it.

Re:It's cloud-based alright (1)

bemymonkey (1244086) | about 3 years ago | (#35653196)

While I do think that this kind of service is the future, and that we should be supporting it through any legal trouble in order to pave the way for more similar services to follow, this one sort of sucks - at least for music streaming.

My main basis for comparison is AudioGalaxy, which has turned into a pretty great application. You install a little helper app on your desktop/server at home and that scans your whole collection, streaming it to your phone or a web client on demand, including transcoding for the former (still to be implemented for the web client). Handles 24-bit 96kHz FLAC without any problems whatsoever :)

Positive points for Amazon Cloud Player Thingy:
-No need to run your own server at home
-No need for high speed upload at home

Negative points:
-Only MP3 and AAC - no FLAC, no OGG, no WMA, no WAV
-100MB filesize limit
-No way to rate songs, AFAICT (the Android app hasn't been updated to support the cloud drive yet, so maybe this'll be added there)
-No ReplayGain (to be fair, AudioGalaxy and even most other mobile players don't offer this)
-No Audioscrobbler AFAICT :(

Better services out already (-1, Troll)

mikaelg (2028366) | about 3 years ago | (#35651984)

I think there are better and nicer music services already.. Like Spotify. They also offer unlimited music for a monthly pass, so why not just get Zune Pass [zune.net] ? It's awesome service and works with PC, Xbox 360, Windows Phone 7 and Zune HD.

Re:Better services out already (1)

MetalliQaZ (539913) | about 3 years ago | (#35652044)

... because that list doesn't include Android or iOS?

Re:Better services out already (1)

Jugalator (259273) | about 3 years ago | (#35652068)

The list of supported systems does include Android and iOS, but the author for some reason didn't include them. :p

Re:Better services out already (1)

Jugalator (259273) | about 3 years ago | (#35652132)

Ooops - I thought that guy was talking about Spotify, but now I'm not so sure about that.

Re:Better services out already (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | about 3 years ago | (#35652158)

When I can "sudo emerge -va zune", we'll talk.

Re:Better services out already (-1, Troll)

mikaelg (2028366) | about 3 years ago | (#35652074)

If your phone doesn't support it, there are lots of phones available that do. Take a look here [microsoft.com] - especially the HTC phones look great!

Re:Better services out already (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652360)

Why in the HELL would I go out and buy a new phone just to use a highly-proprietary system controlled by a known monopolist?

Again--why the HELL should the customer change everything he is doing to conform to what some stupid company is offering? Shouldn't it be the other way around? Why doesn't the almighty Microsoft offer their lame-duck Zune cloud to everyone? Of course not--if I have an Android phone, well...it's not running a Microsoft product so that JUST CAN'T BE can it?

Zune is the laughing stock of the industry and this is exactly why. Oh wait, I see everyone calling you a bot! Well in that case, "Ya tvoi sluga, ya tvoi rabotnik!" Give my regards to "Steve Barkto."

Re:Better services out already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652088)

I'm just bummed that there's no ogg support.

Re:Better services out already (1)

Even on Slashdot FOE (1870208) | about 3 years ago | (#35652114)

Asking a bot questions will not get you answers. They aren't programmed for that most of the time.

The answer is "Not if they can help it".

Re:Better services out already (1)

somersault (912633) | about 3 years ago | (#35652082)

Why not also link to Spotify [spotify.com] instead of just shilling? Spotify works on Windows/OSX/iPhone/Android/WP7.

Re:Better services out already (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | about 3 years ago | (#35652100)

Zune requires windows. Tying one's music collection to a particular OS, especially a proprietary OS, seems like extremely poor planning to me. The equivalent of signing in blood, one might say.

Re:Better services out already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652180)

First, Spotify isn't in the US yet, and second, why pay for something you already own?

Re:Better services out already (1)

fabregas256 (2020388) | about 3 years ago | (#35652474)

Other services don't compare

Amazon lets you download the music you buy so you can keep it forever and not have to rely on streaming. The cloud just provides a easy way to access your music collection from multiple devices

Clouds and overages (4, Insightful)

dicobalt (1536225) | about 3 years ago | (#35652050)

I prefer my clouds to be in the sky. I also prefer not to go over my 250GB monthly cap.

Re:Clouds and overages (2)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | about 3 years ago | (#35652134)

I prefer my clouds to be in the sky. I also prefer not to go over my 250GB monthly cap.

Not to mention the 250MB or 2GB limits on cell data plans.

Re:Clouds and overages (2)

zoloto (586738) | about 3 years ago | (#35652264)

It's pretty sad and pathetic that there are bandwidth limitations.

Re:Clouds and overages (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | about 3 years ago | (#35652554)

It's pretty sad and pathetic that there are bandwidth limitations.

Very true, but the carriers here don't consider them 'limits', they prefer to treat them as 'billing milestones' ;)

Re:Clouds and overages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652802)

Damn physics!

Re:Clouds and overages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652852)

It's pretty sad and pathetic that there are bandwidth limitations.

Do you have a better solution than fiber?

Re:Clouds and overages (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652236)

Don't worry, with the pathetically small 5GB that Amazon Cloud Drive offers for free, that won't be a problem.

For those of us without a monthly caps to worry about, go grab a free 25GB SkyDrive.

Re:Clouds and overages (1)

aberrati0n (1516199) | about 3 years ago | (#35652402)

Only songs you manually upload to the Amazon Cloud Drive count toward the 5GB limit. Any MP3s you purchase on Amazon from this point on can be downloaded straight to your Cloud Drive (at the time of purchase) without counting toward your limit.

Too bad I don't download music anymore. (2, Interesting)

Jugalator (259273) | about 3 years ago | (#35652056)

I only really listen to streaming music these days, with Spotify and Grooveshark.

OK, with one exception: Downloading stuff to put on a USB drive for the car radio. But this doesn't really have a place there either.

Re:Too bad I don't download music anymore. (1)

drb226 (1938360) | about 3 years ago | (#35652562)

Nitpick: streaming is still "downloading", just with supposed restrictions on your access to the file.

Re:Too bad I don't download music anymore. (1)

Jason Levine (196982) | about 3 years ago | (#35652586)

I still download music (and rip CDs to MP3) and don't think I'll use it either. My backup method is 2 1TB external hard drives. I back up all of our files to Drive 1 and then back up Drive 1 to Drive 2. Drive 2 then gets stored "off site" (not in my house) so my data will be safe in the event of fire/theft/etc. The cost of this is much less than Amazon's service. Even 50GB space is $50 a month. 1TB of space (like I have with my USB drives) is $1,000 a month. (I can think of a lot of things I'd do with $1,000 and none of them involve Amazon.com.) Besides, upload/download times are faster to a local USB drive than to the web. I'd hate to think of how long my upload would take to move 400GB of files to Amazon's servers.

Re:Too bad I don't download music anymore. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652768)

1TB of space (like I have with my USB drives) is $1,000 a month

Umm... $1,000 a year not a month: https://www.amazon.com/clouddrive/learnmore

Subsonic for Normal Users (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652152)

So basically it's Subsonic [subsonic.org] for normal people.

nothing new.... or is it? (2)

xhrit (915936) | about 3 years ago | (#35652204)

If this "personal disk drive in the cloud" is just marketoid bullshit keyword stuffing to describe a system that allows you to download stuff you have licensed from the internet then it is just another online music store. If they are actually streaming the music you licensed to you then it will have the same flaws as all other streaming music services like shoutcast and pandora - your music will be interrupted by lag and/or be riddled with obtrusive advertisements, and probably will only be accessable on approved players. However there is a 3rd prospect, that being Amazon Cloud Drive is a bit of both.

In any case, it is not very interesting if you ask me.

Re:nothing new.... or is it? (2)

LambdaWolf (1561517) | about 3 years ago | (#35652292)

If this "personal disk drive in the cloud" is just marketoid bullshit keyword stuffing to describe a system that allows you to download stuff you have licensed from the internet then it is just another online music store. If they are actually streaming the music you licensed to you then it will have the same flaws as all other streaming music services like shoutcast and pandora - your music will be interrupted by lag and/or be riddled with obtrusive advertisements, and probably will only be accessable on approved players.

Not to mention that mysterious gaps in your collection will probably appear the minute Amazon gets squeamish about sexual morality [slashdot.org] or discovers they screwed up the licensing. [slashdot.org]

Re:nothing new.... or is it? (1)

marcello_dl (667940) | about 3 years ago | (#35652760)

That's possible,

among the TOS there's something like: You give us the right to access, retain, use and disclose your account information and Your Files to (give assistance, comply with the TOS and the law...)

Same TOS say you are in charge for the security of your files. That means I'd use the service to store encrypted backups, not mp3 or photos.

Re:nothing new.... or is it? (2)

Fnord666 (889225) | about 3 years ago | (#35652366)

If this "personal disk drive in the cloud" is just marketoid bullshit keyword stuffing to describe a system that allows you to download stuff you have licensed from the internet then it is just another online music store. If they are actually streaming the music you licensed to you then it will have the same flaws as all other streaming music services like shoutcast and pandora - your music will be interrupted by lag and/or be riddled with obtrusive advertisements, and probably will only be accessable on approved players. However there is a 3rd prospect, that being Amazon Cloud Drive is a bit of both. In any case, it is not very interesting if you ask me.

Or, since it is free (up to 5 GB) and you can upload your current music, you could just try it. I'm listening to the SuckerPunch soundtrack right now and so far it my experience has been a 4th prospect: that it will have neither of the issues you describe.

Re:nothing new.... or is it? (1)

xhrit (915936) | about 3 years ago | (#35652810)

I can see from the screenshots this thing is plastered with advertisments urging me to "buy additional storage" and "shop for this artist". I don't need a garish music player urging me to make more purchases.

I have never listened to a radio stream nor played an online game for any extended period of time that has not been effected negatively at some point by lag.

Even if this thing was not rehashed ideas (another music player+store) plastered with advertisments (it is) and impervious to lag (it is'nt) it still is not very interesting to me.

Encryption and Privacy (2)

arglebargle99 (1689782) | about 3 years ago | (#35652324)

I'm still looking, but I don't see any mention of how/if your music is encrpyted on thier servers, and how much they will cooperate/sell your information to the music companies.

This could be a goldmine for the record companies if the music is stored unencrypted and Amazon provides/sells them access. Both in finding pirated music, and also in market research.

"You give us the right to access, retain, use and disclose your account information and Your Files: to provide you with technical support and address technical issues; to investigate compliance with the terms of this Agreement, enforce the terms of this Agreement and protect the Service and its users from fraud or security threats; or as we determine is necessary to provide the Service or comply with applicable law. "

That language doesn't seem limiting enough to me. Investigate compliance could give 100% access to the record companies.

Re:Encryption and Privacy (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 3 years ago | (#35653140)

You know what? if the only price I had to pay was that Amazon 'reported' that I was listening to X song at X time I would be fine with that.

At least it's another data point of what music people like listening to for the music company. It's also a data point that can't really be corrupted or 'played' like the current data points are.

Also, don't pull out half a sentence and then use that to build your argument

" to investigate compliance with the terms of this Agreement" Clearly it has nothing to do with record companies.

If the record companies comply with the law to get that information then they can:

"or as we determine is necessary to provide the Service or comply with applicable law."

Alternatives to Corporate Clouds (5, Interesting)

jchawk (127686) | about 3 years ago | (#35652346)

I'm always distrustful of a large companies managing my music collection. What happens when they can't make a profit and shut the service down? At best I have to deal with retrieving my media, at worst I could potentially lose access to everything.

Most folks who read slashdot probably have all of the pieces they need to just build this service themselves. Broadband connected computer, iPhone or Android device, 3G or WiFi connection to the remote device or computer.

If you have a media server at home or just a computer running Windows, OSX or Linux why not consider running Subsonic (http://www.subsonic.org)? Using subsonic I can stream my media to any computer using the in browser player and I with a client for my iPhone (isubms) I can stream to my iPhone over 3G or Wifi.

I've been using this as my own personal Pandora radio in the car and it works great. The nice part about the client app for my iPhone is it can cache content for when I don't have 3G coverage.

The total cost for this project was about $20 bucks since I was already paying for broadband and 3G cellphone service. I bought the $10 euro streaming license for subsonic and the $4.99 iPhone app. If you have an Android phone your costs are even cheaper as I believe there is a free client app for Android devices.

This is the solution I've been looking for... For years!

I know I sound like an infomercial but no longer having to remember to sync my device and having my entire music collection at my finger tips where ever I am is awesome.

Re:Alternatives to Corporate Clouds (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652864)

props for subsonic.
Also worth noting: It can also play from the hosts hardware, making it a music streamer AND a networked jukebox at the same time.

Re:Alternatives to Corporate Clouds (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 3 years ago | (#35653228)

The same thing you do with ALL YOUR DATA. keep a back up.
Data loss is data loss; whether is's because you HD went bad, your computer was stolen, or a service shuts down.

Supporting subsonic means you are supporting Java, and no good can come from that~

I'll check it out, thanks.

Just like mp3.com (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652462)

Just like mp3.com did years ago, and look how well that worked out!

mp3.com all over again (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652466)

mp3.com tried the same thing years ago. Upload your personal MP3 collection for access anywhere. They got sued though because the didn't license for content that the end-user already paid for.

Amazon remotely wiped 1984 from peoples' kindles (4, Insightful)

Scrameustache (459504) | about 3 years ago | (#35652486)

Why should you trust them to keep your things?

Re:Amazon remotely wiped 1984 from peoples' kindle (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652814)

Calm down. You'll still have your MP3's on your own hard drive as well...

Re:Amazon remotely wiped 1984 from peoples' kindle (1)

fabregas256 (2020388) | about 3 years ago | (#35652838)

Why should you trust them to keep your things?

I trust Amazon to store my files compared to myself. I am lazy when it comes to backing files up and if someone breaks into my house and steals my computer, I am screwed. If you are very paranoid, you can keep a backup copy on your own computer and one on the cloud.

Expired session (1)

Aerynvala (1109505) | about 3 years ago | (#35652530)

I gave it a spin, since I was buying a new MP3 album anyway. It's easy enough to use and navigate around in. You can sort by artist, genre, album and create play lists, control the volume. A fairly standard music player.

But my session kept expiring. I wasn't even able to get through three full songs before the session would expire and I'd have to log back in. Which meant starting the song over again.

The do have an option for uploading music, you have to agree that you have the right to listen to that music when you sign up for it. But I didn't try that out. I just listened to my purchase until I got fed up with the session expiring. Then I downloaded the files like I would normally.

PS: Sum 41's new album is awesome.

CAPTCHA crazy (1)

fermion (181285) | about 3 years ago | (#35652570)

So I sign in with my Amazon ID, then have to go through a CAPTCHA to accept the terms of license.

I hope this is a one time thing, and not a device to prevent people from automatically uploading content or others writing an app to interface with the player.

I have never seen such a thing required after already having a relationship with a firm.

Re:CAPTCHA crazy (1)

AndrewNeo (979708) | about 3 years ago | (#35653078)

You know, your whole comment could have been voided if you had even tried logging in again. No, it doesn't ask for a captcha again. It's probably to stop bots from signing up a bunch of free accounts.

Looks like a big fail for anyone outside the USA (1)

herojig (1625143) | about 3 years ago | (#35652622)

For U.S. Customers Only It appears that you are attempting to use Amazon Cloud Player from outside the U.S. This service is intended for U.S. customers only. I know there are ways around this, only I never had a need before. iTunes works great in the tiny Asian nation that I download from...

Sounds nice for music, but not for general storage (2)

Netnerd865 (1954642) | about 3 years ago | (#35652690)

If I were just using this for music, it may be worth trying, but if I would decided to store other files, I don't see what makes it better than any other cloud solution. There is no desktop app for exploring the directories and you can only upload files, not whole folders. I would have to set up a folder hierarchy instead of just uploading whole folders that are already arranged how I like them. Besides that, I would personally rather point a music player at some folder that's linked to cloud storage (like Dropbox) than use a web-based player.

Meh. Stupid. (1)

Tolkien (664315) | about 3 years ago | (#35652696)

When I signed on to the Amazon Cloud Player site I was greeted with:

For U.S. Customers Only

It appears that you are attempting to use Amazon Cloud Player from outside the U.S. This service is intended for U.S. customers only.

mp3s? No thanks... (1)

darjen (879890) | about 3 years ago | (#35652764)

I listen to a lot of newly released music, and buying individual albums simply isn't very efficient. I would much rather use a subscription service and pay $10 a month to listen to however much new music I want. For anyone who listens to a lot of music, it's worth it because I used to spend $100 to $120 a year on CDs anyway. Plus it takes way too much time to organize and sync it all. Just not worth the hassle of dealing with files imho.

Re:mp3s? No thanks... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35652978)

Few posts earlier some one gave you a link for that: Zune Pass (http://zune.net)

Always stream my personal library? (1)

wile_e8 (958263) | about 3 years ago | (#35652870)

I take it this just steams songs on demand when I want to play them on my phone? I gave up on using Pandora in my car because inconsistent cell coverage led to choppy playback, and now it appears this service would require me to rely on the same coverage to listen to my personal library. I'd be very interested if this gave me the ability to sync to multiple locations, but I don't see that mentioned anywhere. I don't know about always being dependent on available network bandwidth to listen to my music.

No thanks, I'm stuffed. (1, Insightful)

JudgeFurious (455868) | about 3 years ago | (#35652952)

I have been gorging on free music for more than a decade now. From day one I've been paritcularly picky about what I bothered to download and keep so I never wasted my time on 128kbps mp3's. Space wasn't an issue for me so I went straight to the 320's and then on to FLAC. In short I now own very good copies of every bit of music I could ever want to hear. The key word is "Discography". Sure new music is released all the time but I buy very little of it these days. I find most new music to be either shit or simply not appealing. Music services and/or labels have very little to sell me. I already have what I've wanted from the beginning. Files to do with as I please and backups of those files just in case. I have something like 36 straight days of music on my hard drive now. I don't want anymore music. Really, I couldn't eat another bite but thanks for asking.

"Releases cloud" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35653148)

"Releases cloud" may be bad phrasing this month. "Confine" captcha is also insensitive. How clodly!

Only 20 GB free (1)

alex_guy_CA (748887) | about 3 years ago | (#35653216)

My digital music (and podcast and audio book) collection is currently at 328 GB. Heck, I have more than 20 GB of just free SXSW downloads. No thanks.

SICK of the Cloud (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35653250)

I want to listen to music while driving across the desert, I want to listen to music while camping in the mountains, I like to listen to music on a train in a foreign country....

I want to listen to music in a hotel, but they charge $14/day for internet, I want to listen to music while waiting for a flight, but the airport charges $10/day for web, I don't need ANOTHER freaking expensive as hell data plan...

You can have your stinkin' cloud, until these sorts of issues are fixed, I AM NOT INTERESTED IN THE FREAKIN' CLOUD..for music or anything else

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