Broadband News

7digital drop DRM

After talk of entering discussion with broadband providers over offering downloadable music last month, 7digital have announced they have become the first online digital music retailer to go DRM-free providing MP3's from all of the big four music labels, Universal Warner, Sony, and EMI. Music will be available in high quality 320kbps MP3 format which can be played or shared across any devices that are able to read it.

With a 4 million strong catalogue and also providing the backend behind some big names such as ITV or The Independent, 7digital has a large audience to provide this DRM-free content to. They will also be contacting customers who have previously bought music in WMA format so they can upgrade these tracks to MP3 for free. To help celebrate, they are offering two promotional albums for free and others from artists such as Queen, We Are Scientists and Sigur Rós for just £2.

It is encouraging to see the continued move away from DRM to make the market more open and user friendly to the end users but some think this is long overdue. The Register believes that the digital music industry is haunted by 12th century thinking and equates the whole thing back to feudal times in it's witty article.


The first? That surprises me a little. I've bought several albums off Play and they are DRM free MP3s.

My only complaint was that they only offer 128k which is a bit poor. 128k WMA would be better but for MP3 I'd rather see at least 256k.

  • AndrueC
  • over 12 years ago

320kbit is the standard for mp3 files these days, anything less sounds like its been recorded underwater imo.

  • doowles
  • over 12 years ago

It's good that DRM has been dropped but from looking briefly at their site they aren't cheap.
You can buy cd's for the same price or cheaper from a well known on-line store.

  • Scubaholic
  • over 12 years ago

They are the first to be completely DRM free (mp3 only, no WMA) with material from all 4 major music labels.

  • john
  • thinkbroadband staff
  • over 12 years ago

That's quite a scoop that they managed to launch that while is snoozing. Kudos.

  • JJC1138
  • over 12 years ago

About time... 320k is the minimum i would accept for bought music but even this is degraded when listened to side by side with lossless formats.

  • Aqualung
  • over 12 years ago

Good news but still a bit pricey to use regularly on a lot of albums.

  • over 12 years ago

winamp with diskwriter mod seems to work well, not used it for years though :)

  • scragglymonk
  • over 12 years ago

john - Great. Now the UK collection society needs to completly swear off suing people and in five years I might start buying new music again rather than just going to the second hand shops.

  • Dawn_Falcon
  • over 12 years ago

Just tried a free track and got told I should use IE6 or above as the track needs to be licensed and my browser does not support this (Firefox 3 on Ubuntu )
This is different from drm because.....?

  • CaptainReindeer
  • over 12 years ago

Ooops, iTunes just lost my custom.

  • Celery
  • over 12 years ago

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