Apple’s One Billionth Download - An Inside Job(s)?

February 25th, 2006 by Larry Smith

Apple’s one billionth download on iTunes is a monster milestone in the personal media revolution—and giving away a $10K iTunes gift certificate, a big ol’ iMac, a bunch of shiny iPods, and establishing a music scholarship in the lucky downloader’s name is another stroke of marketing genius.

I am all about the Cult of Apple, am typing on one now, and have been known to sit in on classes at the Apple Store in NYC for programs I have no intention of ever using (the classes are just so sooooothing, somehow—I can’t exactly explain it). But I have two questions:

Really, Coldplay “Speed of Sound” was the billionth song downloaded? How perfectly trendy-convenient-media ready. This stinks like an inside Job(s). At least have the decency to create a story around the serendipitous billionth downloading of an unknown or on-the-rise band that might never be able to release its music were it not for the peer to peer power of the digital revolution. Coldplay? Disappointed!

Is the Apple love affair coming to an end? There’s no doubt in my mind that we’ve only begun to see the backlash. In my neck of Eden, the conversation has switched from the joy of Apple to the nightmare of our always breaking iPods and “you’re outta luck, Chuck” attitudes of the company’s tech support. C’mon, man: Do you really expect me blow another $60 for the extended warranty after shelling out $250 for your MP3 player?

As Gordon, my insane and awesome handyman, likes to say as he fixes all the things I can’t: At least romance me a little before you screw me. And don’t serenade me with Coldplay. You can do better than that.

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