Yesterday, Apple (AAPL) announced at Macworld that by the end of the first quarter, all songs in its catalog will be DRM free. While that's nice, but not really that big of a deal, the real question is when DRM free videos will be made available?
Let's face it, most folks who buy music from iTunes only want to play it on an iPod anyway and are not moving the content around to many other devices. Music is not what's driving the growth of the Internet, new applications, or bandwidth consumption. It's all about video. If Apple really wants to push the market forward and help video consumption explode, it needs to convince content owners that offering DRM free videos would help jumpstart the industry. New business models would be created overnight and consumers would be happy, which means they would buy and consume more content. We'd see an amazing amount of growth in just a year's time.
For all we know, Apple is already doing this and trying to convince content owners of the need for DRM free videos. But until the day consumers can buy content once and move it to any device they want, the market for purchasing video content won't see the kind of growth that many of us in the industry have been waiting for.