Amazon’s Official E-mail to Record Labels About its Cloud Services

Amazon Cloud Services

Saw this over at hypebot the other day, and this morning over at Digital Music News (with a ridiculously misleading, attention grabbing title), and I wanted to re-post the e-mail here for anyone who may have missed it.

As many of you are probably aware, Amazon has recently released its Cloud Drive and Cloud Player services, which have received a pretty positive response from consumers so far.

Below is a copy of the e-mail Amazon sent off to record labels:

Our launch of Cloud Drive and Cloud Player last week garnered lots of attention and excitement.We thought we’d follow up with you to let you know that customer response has been terrific. Customers have embraced Cloud Drive, uploading photos, documents, music and other digital files and thanking us for providing an easy way for them to keep their files safe.

And, as we expected, by removing the friction associated with managing your personal music files, our launch of Cloud Player has boosted Amazon MP3 sales.

There has been a lot of discussion as to whether Cloud Drive and Cloud Player require licenses from content owners. Here’s why they do not:

Cloud Drive is a general online storage service for all digital files, not unlike Google Docs, Microsoft SkyDrive and any number of other internet file back-up services. It’s your external hard-drive in the cloud. It requires a license from content owners no more than those other internet file back-up services do and no more than makers of external hard drives for PCs do.

Cloud Player is a media management and play-back application not unlike Windows Media Player and any number of other media management applications that let customers manage and play their music. It requires a license from content owners no more than those applications do.

It really is that simple.

There has also been speculation that we are looking for licenses for Cloud Drive and Cloud Player. We are not looking for licenses for Cloud Drive or Cloud Player as they exist today – as no licensees are required. There are, however, potential enhancements to Cloud Drive and Cloud Player that would require licenses and that we are interested in – like the ability to replace multiple copies of the same music track uploaded by different customers with a single server copy that could be used for all customers with the same track. Licenses permitting us to do that would save storage costs and would be good for customers because they would reduce the number of tracks customers need to upload to Cloud Drive themselves.

Expect to hear more from us on potential licensing in the near future – and please let us know if you have any questions in the meantime.

I think that was a very well-versed explanation of their cloud music service. I’m sure labels are frantically searching for a way to either restrict or make money from this, but I don’t think they will have much luck until Amazon wants to start storing local copies of songs.


    Thanks for sharing this Chris! I missed this on Hypebot when they originally posted it. Ive been using Cloud Drive myself and I can absolutely say that it has increased my own purchasing of music since I now have a music store on my android phone. I think the labels should be ashamed of how they are approaching this… though I guess record labels being afraid of something new is in itself nothing new. But as Amazon has even said… it is making them money! So stop the whining and start cashing those checks :-)