Will the Zune Be a Narc?

Yesterday we wrote that the Microsoft Zune was like the football character Rudy, only it turns out that the Zune is actually more like Rudy’s uptight college R.A.. One of the reasons NBC went with Microsoft, according to The New York Times, is because the Redmond giant may put anti-piracy protection on its device.

J.B. Perrette, NBC Universal’s president of digital distribution, told The Times that his company and Microsoft will work to create:

“…filtering technology that allows for playback of legitimately purchased content versus non-legitimately purchased content.”

The technology would be akin to other systems currently being tested by Microsoft and Google that aimed at keeping illegal clips off video sites. Consumers may despise DRM, but content owners love it, and it’s one of the reasons they keep going back to Microsoft (Kontiki’s president Eric Armstrong talked to Liz about the difficulty of finding a Mac DRM solution).

Another interesting tidbit in the article was that Microsoft agreed to the flexible pricing that NBC was after — the ability to charge more for hit shows and less for library titles. NBC is getting different wholesale rates from Microsoft, but Microsoft is absorbing any difference and selling all episodes for $1.99 (the same as iTunes).

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