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MP3tunes debuts Oboe online music locker

updated 04:50 pm EST, Wed November 30, 2005

MP3tunes debuts Oboe

today released Oboe, a music locker that stores an entire personal music library online--making it accessible from anywhere via the internet--and is integrated with iTunes. Music fans can stream music from any machine with an internet connection, as well as sync songs to any computer or device, including Apple's iPod digital music player. A website accompanies each Oboe account that displays artists, albums, tracks and playlists that can be streamed for online listening at 192kbps--near CD quality. Oboe accounts are available for a $40 annual subscription, and include unlimited storage with no extra bandwidth charges.

The Oboe service offers individual user accounts that can store music files in .mp3, .wma (Windows Media), .aac (iTunes), and .ogg formats. Registered users are provided with a personal account and the Oboe software suite, which installs tools to easily load online music lockers using Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows or Linux systems. The Oboe sync software will search an entire computer for music files and load all located music files into the designated online locker, creating a backup of the collection online.

Delivering integration with iTunes, a software plug-in enables access to Oboe directly from within iTunes on either Macintosh or Microsoft Windows computers. An "Oboe" entry is added to the shared music area, which can be clicked to provide access to iTunes music while playlists are synced to the online locker. Using the same plug-in, iTunes users can view the entire contents of their online libraries from within iTunes, as well as stream it.

The Oboe software suite includes a Mozilla Firefox plug-in providing music available on the internet with its own link that can be copied directly into the Oboe Locker. Once installed, any website with music links ending in .mp3, .wma, .ogg or .acc trigger a small musical icon to appear after that link which can be clicked to sideload the track from the viewing site directly to the configured locker.

Free accounts are also available that allow loading of music from the Web, including the Oboe for Firefox plug-in, but are limited to 56kbps streaming in both the Oboe Locker and Oboe for iTunes plug-in. Additionally, no syncing is permitted with free accounts.

by MacNN Staff



  1. scottnichol

    Joined: Dec 1969



    unlimited storage?!? so, for $40 i can store my entire 30GB music collection. and you guys won't take any of it right?!?

    so, a group of friends could just create an account and then upload their collective collection. then, if you don't have a CD that your friend has, you could just download one of your other friends' copies.

    and the RIAA is OK with this?!?


  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: hmmm

    No, you can't copy files from the locker. They just go into the locker. They are then streamed from the locker to whatever streaming software you're using (say Firefox with plugin, or iTunes, or WMP, or whatever).

    The big question is whether they do anything to prevent sharing of accounts, so you're friends can't load all their music into one account and then listen to the music anywhere (my guess is that they only allow one or two connections to an account at a time).

    BTW, I doubt they'll let you share your music online, like you would, say, with iTunes, so other people can't just listen to your music.

    One last thing. This service doesn't appear to actually support DRM'd music in AAC or WMA formats, just un DRM'd music.

    BTW, used to have a similar service long, long, long ago. But there's was challenged and defeated by the RIAA because ripped the music, then verified you had the CD, and basically then linked you to the copy of the song they had. Apparently that violated the copyright (even though, logically, they had the checks in there to make sure you had the disc).

    This doesn't seem to fall under the same problem, since all they're doing is storing your files. Nothing technically illegal there, assuming they make sure they can't be copied.

  1. EdipisReks

    Joined: Dec 1969



    they will let me upload my 150gb collecction, then?

  1. LordJohnWhorfin

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Corporate death pool

    Who's taking bets on how long they'll manage to stay in business once the RIAA sues them? (which should be taking place right about now)

  1. JulesLt

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Sure, why not - there's good odds that a significant %age of any collection is going to be duplicate files, and I'm sure they're clever enough to only store the exact same file once. There will be some people who rip from vinyl or encode in a completely unique way, but that will be a small %age, relatively speaking.

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