QTrax announcement 'premature'

January 29, 2008 | 07:23

Tags: #download #industry #legal #p2p #qtrax #vapourware

QTrax, the start-up promising to legitimise peer-to-peer music downloads, may have been a bit over-eager with its launch yesterday. Due at midnight Eastern Standard Time on Monday, the supposed beta launch came and went without so much as a sniff of the application announced with such fanfare this weekend.

As I reported yesterday, the company issued a press release claiming that they had signed deals with the 'big four' of the music industry and were forging ahead with a plan to wrap DRM technology from Microsoft around music snagged from the popular Gnutella P2P service. This seems to have been... premature, to put it kindly.

Many of you commented on the original report as the news slowly broke across the 'net that first one and then another of the big four denied any such deal with QTrax. By the end of the day it was clear that QTrax had, in fact, failed to sign a single label to its brave new service.

Forum user Quack was the first to point out that, contrary to QTrax's announcement, the vast majority of publishers had quickly distanced themselves from QTrax following the soft-launch on Sunday. User legoman666 put the final nail in the coffin with a link to an Ars Technica article announcing the final major publisher denying any affiliation with QTrax.

So, what does the future hold for the service? At first glance it seemed to be an olive branch bringing together the profit-hungry music industry and the freeloading P2P downloaders, but it seems that it will remain a dream for now.

Although the company finally managed to start shipping the software late last night - quite some way away from the original launch deadline - it seems that the download client doesn't yet live up to its name, with an error message popping up should you attempt to download a song via the service. Which makes it all a bit pointless, really.

One thing's for certain, though: the company won't have done itself any favours with the big four by claiming support it just doesn't have.

Disappointed that QTrax fell at the first hurdle – less than 24 hours after we first reported on it – or were you expecting nothing less? Let us know over in the forums.
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