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  • Apple Opens Up iTunes LP/Extras Formats For Small Developers



    Apple is giving independent developers something to be thankful for this holiday week. The company has taken iTunes LP and Extras public, encouraging indy developers to get creative and make their own interactive digital content to be distributed through iTunes beginning early next year. According to Apple Insider:

    The new move signals a big move in taking on Adobe Flash, pushing the adoption of web standards, and creating an new business model for content that could impact how the company's forthcoming tablet is sold and used.
    It's also a good sign that Apple is keep good on its promise to open up the iTunes LP and iTunes Extras format to devs, a decision that will trickle down to tiny, independent music labels and even video or film producers aiming to distribute their original work to the masses through this new opportunity provided by Apple. Previously it was expected that Apple would reserve the new formats for exclusive use by major labels.

    Apple has unveiled a dedicated page on the Apple website that shares with developers “everything you need to know to create a rich, interactive experience around your music and movies. All right in iTunes.”

    Using the supplied templates and how-to guide, anyone can create interactive content that can be played back by iTunes 9 or Apple TV, including links to listen to album songs and view lyrics, liner notes, photos and videos (such as artist interviews). The virtually identical iTunes Extras format is designed to present a movie with interactive menus, bonus content, and chapter navigation, similar to those supplied by DVD or Blu-ray authors.
    Although there is no shortage of reading material available addressing all of the above, the process, on the whole, is fairly straightforward to developers, who only have to input their own metadata, artwork, audio files and video files. Apple's “how to” guide will take over, providing step-by-step instructions to help complete the process from there.

    "Automatic, electronic submission of your iTunes LP or Extra is scheduled for the first quarter of 2010. Until then, the submission process is manual and limited. Please contact your label or studio rep for details and consideration. An existing iTunes contract is required. Your iTunes LP or iTunes Extras will be reviewed by the iTunes team for appropriateness of content and for technical quality."
    Although few seem to be overtly excited about this news, it's a big deal - particularly for those who will find new ways of creating and promoting the work of truly talented artists.

    Image from Apple Insider
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Apple Opens Up iTunes LP/Extras Formats For Small Developers started by Michael Essany View original post