Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus

Posted by: Bryan

Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/07/09 05:30 PM

In the last 6 years, I've probably blown (er..spent) about $500 in the iTunes Music Store. I am interested in upgrading my entire library to DRM-free iTunes Plus.

A few things I have noticed about the process. perhaps my discoveries could save some frustrations.

As of right now, a few things to make note of:

1.) Only some of the tracks are available in iTunes Plus versions. Supposedly all by the end of April.

2.) iTunes works off your purchase history in recommending which versions to "upgrade," not what is on your hard drive. Which leads me to:

3.) It is all or nothing. Clicking "upgrade my library" in iTunes will prompt you to upgrade all tunes purchased WITH THAT ID. No way to pick and choose. If you want to pay 30 cents to upgrade a Springsteen tune, you have to pay 30 cents to upgrade that idiotic Gnarls Barkley song you somehow have.

4.) If you have multiple accounts, you will apparently have to log in, update each with new payment information and upgrade your tunes to iTunes Plus. I have 3 iTunes accounts.....I wish there were a way to combine them.


So there you have it!

Posted by: polymerase

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/07/09 08:09 PM

I'm in the same situation. Multiple accounts with a lot of DRM tunes, some I don't even have anymore. It's an all or none decision based on the buying history of the account?

That has got to be the lamest trick pulled. It makes the only possible thing left to do is to DRM break them all for free.

I am about at 500 bucks too maybe a tad more including my kids. But I haven't purchased anything in months because of all this. That is what DRM has done for me. Kept me from spending money on music and now it is going to turn me into a thief and I likely will do it to my children's tunes so I teach them how to cheat too.

Did I mention DRM was stupid?

I was thinking of asking Apple to combine accounts but that is likely pointless.
Posted by: Jashue

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/08/09 08:26 AM

Something I'm wondering about: wasn't Apple against DRM in the beginning but implemented it to placate the labels? Were it not for that move, a market for legal digital music would not have happened as it did.

That's what I thought anyway. Is my sense of history wrong here?
Posted by: carp

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/08/09 11:05 AM

Right you are correct - odd thing was later the labels gave other online stores DRM free , which apple got pissed about
Posted by: Bryan

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/08/09 03:42 PM

Originally Posted By: polymerase
I was thinking of asking Apple to combine accounts but that is likely pointless.



I sent Apple an e-mail asking that very thing and here is the response i just received:

Dear Bryan,

My name is Leslie with iTunes Customer Support. I understand that you would like to merge your three accounts.

I apologize, but it is not possible to join two or more iTunes Store accounts together. However, you can play the titles you purchase with two or more accounts if you authorize each computer on which you want to play those titles for each account.

We appreciate your business here at the iTunes Store and I hope that you have a great day, Bryan.

Sincerely,

Leslie
iTunes Customer Store Support

Please note that I work Monday and Tuesday, 12:00 PM - 9:00 PM, Wednesday 9:00 Am - 6:00 PM, and Friday 4:00 PM - 1:00 AM,

Apple may also send you a survey regarding your customer service experience, not your experience with the Apple Store or iTunes. Any feedback regarding your experience; with myself as a Customer Service Agent would be greatly appreciated.
Posted by: padmavyuha

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/10/09 02:37 AM

Yowch - 20p per song in the UK to 'upgrade' to drm-free. I wouldn't mind doing some of them, but I'm really not fussed about the Alice Cooper albums! Apparently I have 10 albums and a further 34 tracks available right now, at a princely upgrade sum of 25.
Posted by: Gigi

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/10/09 08:16 AM

We will probably upgrade all our music to ITP. Papa and I don't have so much. Son in Germany will probably go broke getting all his upgraded. I-Tunes gift cards are his favorite present. I wonder if your I-Tunes Gift card would apply to this?



Posted by: yoyo52

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/10/09 08:40 AM

I don't see why a gift card wouldn't apply. It's money, after all wink

I'd be up the creek for over 200 bucks at this point. We'll see.
Posted by: Nagromme

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/10/09 01:04 PM

I don't have a problem with the system--we all knew that newer, better music formats would eventually come along, and we knew weren't promised an upgrade path.

As it is, the only people in trouble are the people who paid money for a LOT of music they don't like. Well, that's a bad situation to begin with smile I buy almost entirely music I like.

The good thing: free iTunes tracks do NOT get upgraded. Thank goodness! Those are the ones I wouldn't want to pay .30 for.

It would be nice if Apple offered more options (and less simplicity) but the system as is works for me. I'll be upgrading. (And then as more tracks go Plus, you can upgrade again later.)
Posted by: Bryan

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/10/09 07:35 PM


Now all we need are *full* quality AIFF tracks that we can download, so the quality is the same as a store bought CD.
Posted by: padmavyuha

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/11/09 01:19 AM

I'd settle for Apple Lossless or some other lossless compression codec - or bandwidth could cost more than the CD smile
Posted by: polymerase

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/11/09 03:09 AM

Originally Posted By: Apple iTunes Customer Support

I apologize, but it is not possible to join two or more iTunes Store accounts together. However, you can play the titles you purchase with two or more accounts if you authorize each computer on which you want to play those titles for each account.


And that is why I have taken a siesta from purchasing from iTunes and I won't be back until they are completely DRM free. I'll break the DRM on the songs that are in my two accounts and then be done with DRM.

We were on vacation and my daughter had an iPod she was listening to on the trip. My son swapped iPods and then asked why she only had one song on it. It turns out she had purchased all her other music from my other account and only one song could be downloaded legally when she hooked her iPod up right before the trip.

So because of her stupid Dad who had two accounts my daughter addled her brain with one song for two weeks. I think I would rather blame it on DRM.

What the iTunes customer support says I believe is also incorrect. How do you authorize a computer to play from two accounts at the same time? You cannot. You have to authorize one account, play that music, then de-authorize and authorize the other account and the play that next tune. How ridiculous is that?

If what she says is true it is still too complicated to keep track what computers are authorized to do what on multiple accounts. Add a hard drive crash and the convoluted solution becomes impossible.
Posted by: Nagromme

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/13/09 09:37 PM

I've been able to play music from two accounts at once. You're only logged into the STORE with one account at a time, for buying, but you don't need to be logged into the store at all (or even online for that matter) to be authorized to PLAY music. (You were online when you first authorized, but no need after that.)

I just did it a month ago to help my parents with something, and I'd swear their purchase AND my own library both played and synched to my phone OK.

I don't think most people NEED more than one iTunes account at once in a single user account. But if you do it does complicate things I'm sure.

Glad to see DRM is gone from iTunes music in April. (And almost gone already.)

Now, movies and audiobooks are a different matter.
Posted by: polymerase

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/14/09 05:15 AM

Thanks for that info. I will try to authorize both.

Originally Posted By: Nagromme

I don't think most people NEED more than one iTunes account at once in a single user account. But if you do it does complicate things I'm sure.


It really complicates things when you made two accounts accidentally within a month of the iTunes store being created and never figured out why some computers had access and some did not. I finally figured it out when I took all the change out of my basement that had been collecting in pillowcases and sent it through one of those change machines. They were going to take 5% of my 500 bucks (no quarters, I had used them for tolls) unless I chose to get an Amazon or iTunes receipt card. I put it all on my iTunes but then could not see the cash from the other computer. Finally, a dim light bulb went on.



Posted by: MacGizmo

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/17/09 08:27 AM

This is why I stopped purchasing music from iTunes. Too many restrictions. And iTunes Plus still is NOT DRM free as they claim. Every song you purchase or "upgrade" contains your email address - so if you share them online, you're exposing yourself to legal action should the wrong (or right) person get a hold of those files.

You could try checking out your local library. The Phoenix Public Library offers a ton of music CDs (you would be surprised at the selection). Check them out and rip the songs you want to "replace" - at least then you have quality control over the import process as far as encoding goes.

Otherwise, I recommend using a DRM-stripping application.

iTunes is great. It's convenient and has an awesome selection. But the restrictions are just not worth it.
Posted by: yoyo52

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/17/09 08:42 AM

Is there a batch stripping app?
Posted by: polymerase

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/17/09 10:05 AM

I am going to follow your advice on the DRM stripping you gave me a while ago I just have been too busy to do it. And you are right about the library. I have done that a couple of times just sitting there stripping the CDs while I read a book. Another thing I might do instead of removing the DRM because I have more control over the quality I end up with.

Shoot, I was just at Best Buy purchasing an emergency replacement SATA drive and they had 1TB SATA for $109.00. I could just restrip everything since the stripping has sped up so much. Or at least the last time I really did a bunch it was at 15X regular play speed. Still takes some time. If we are going to have 2TB SD cards soon the whole paradigm shifts away from DRM as a viable pathway.

I won't feel guilty at all stripping songs at the library that I have paid for through iTunes. I will feel slightly guilty stripping songs I used to have on LP and cassette and CD once upon a time. My staff has a combined 18,000 or so tunes in the lab at 128 bitrate. I really have to say screw DRM if they make it difficult. I will feel guilty but I will get over it.

For the most part I really listen to very little music. I don't have an iPod and I find headphones earphones interesting but I never wear them. (My kids do.) I can't think with them on. That's dangerous while moving and unprofitable when I am working (which is anytime I am not moving).


Posted by: yoyo52

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/17/09 11:08 AM

I use my iPod, with headphones, not buds, all the time to walk the dogs (3 times a day) and when I go food shopping. I can't work with music on, but I can listen to music while I'm doing repetitive, mindless stuff, like grading papers putting grades into an Excel spread sheet.
Posted by: Nagromme

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/17/09 01:08 PM

I never come close to running into restrictions on iTunes--and now that the DRM is gone, I never will smile

(Well, a few DRM songs are left... until April.)
Posted by: six_of_one

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/26/09 03:27 AM

Quote:
4.) If you have multiple accounts, you will apparently have to log in, update each with new payment information and upgrade your tunes to iTunes Plus. I have 3 iTunes accounts.....I wish there were a way to combine them.


Hah!

I was wondering why the store was only offering to upgrade 2 albums -- logged-in to my other account and it found 27 more ;-)

Thanks so much for the info!
Posted by: Nagromme

Re: Important: Upgrading your tunes to iTunes Plus - 01/29/09 10:38 AM

Not all-or-nothing anymore!

http://www.macrumors.com/2009/01/29/itunes-plus-upgrades-now-available-on-a-per-track-basis/