So here’s the mp3 download service for Linux. I’ve used it to test, and it works a treat on my Fedora 10 64bit machine….
Here’s and email I sent to Amazon about their service:
As a user of the Fedora operating system for the last 10 years, I am delighted to come across a service such as yours. Today, I was looking to a way to download DRM free music. The days of torrent (illegal!) shared music it seems are over. For people like me, it was never an issue of getting music for free, it was a case of getting music for a very reasonable price (anything under a single less than 89p), in a unrestricted form (DRM free). Today I found the Amazon mp3 downloader available for Fedora. I must applaud such a mutli-OS stance taken by Amazon on this. Good news!
The bad news… it could be better. You may realise that the Linux community demand more thana multi-OS releases of software. They also shout out loud for open sourcing of code and, of course, lossless music format. the Amazon downloader does not achvieve the following:
1. It is not open source. – Do this, and you will get a great deal of respect and custom from the rapidly growing Linux community.
2. It’s not lossless – You only allow mp3 downloads. The mp3 format is a closed technology – proprietary software, with licensing restraints. So for those of us who want to stay as close to the term “Free” (and “legal”!), i.e. fedora users want to see FLAC file format, not mp3.
What are the chance of either of these?
So I blind email, not many companies would reply to that… Despite this, below is their honest and sincere response:
First of all thank you for writing to Amazon.co.uk with your kind comments and feedback which we greatly appreciate.
We want to provide a download service that customers will remember, and we really appreciate receiving such nice compliments.
We also acknowledge that our downloads are not open source and are available in MP3 format only at this time.
MP3 is the most widely compatible music file format and is supported by most media player applications, hand-held music devices, and some CD and DVD players. We encode our MP3 files using variable bit rates for maximum audio quality and smaller file sizes, aiming at an average of 256 kilobits per second (kbps). Using a variable bit rate allows us to allocate a higher bit rate to the more complex sections of music files while using a smaller bit rate for the less complex sections. The average of these rates is then calculated to produce an average bit rate for the entire file that represents the overall sound quality.
It is unclear whether either of your suggestions will come to fruition in the short term however, I will certainly pass your message on to the appropriate department who will be glad to review your suggestion. Customer feedback such as yours helps us to continue improving the selection and service we provide. This is a rapidly changing area and we appreciate the time you’ve taken to write to us.
If you have any other suggestions for us or would like to make a comment at another time, simply send us an e-mail. To do this, you can visit our Help Desk at the following URL:
One thumb up to Amazon. If we see FLAC, i’ll give them two !