Apple said it was going to allow independent content producers open access to the tech and process behind iTunes LP and iTunes Extras, and it has done good on that promise, as TUAW reports. Today Apple has created a dedicated page on its website that offers devs interested in the format “everything you need to know to create a rich, interactive experience around your music and movies. All right in iTunes.”
For those who may have missed it, Apple introduced the iTunes LP and iTunes Extras rich media formats for albums and movies when it released the latest major update to iTunes, version 9. Both LP for music, and Extras for movies, package extra content with a customer’s purchase, including videos, behind-the-scenes info, commentary and more.
There was some speculation shortly after the launch that Apple was purposely keeping the enhanced formats closed, and letting only major labels in on the party, in exchange for a $10,000 per album/movie admission charge. Apple denied the allegations, and it turns out it wasn’t lying.
Anyone who wants to can now head over to Apple’s site and check out three documents that should help even well-motivated amateurs work their way through the creation of the new value-add formats. There’s a template for both, and also a template how-to document that provides step-by-step instructions about how to create your LP or Extras.
For now, each and every artist and label that wants to create either an LP or an Extra for their album or movie will have to go through a manual submission process. And that’s only if you’re able to submit at all. The submission process is currently limited, with Apple directing people to contact their label or studio reps to see if they have access. Apple intends to have automated, electronic submission in place in the first quarter of 2010, but until then, most people will probably be stuck creating without any real hope of publishing.