I don’t think this story about Stanford University and Aple’s iTunes working together received the attention it deserved.
Basically, what they’ve done is create a version of iTunes that, instead of selling songs and videos, is full of Stanford lectures, speeches, sporting broadcasts, and more.
Essentially, this is a pilot project for potentially releasing all kinds of different iTunes-based media distribution platforms.
Imagine the possibilities for companies, universities … any organization with a large number of people that want any of a variety of types of content or media. iTunes provides a ready-made cross-platform distribution channel that puts you on the desktop of your community … while still providing all the internet-connected goodies: being able to update the application regularly and easily, being able to change featured items and add new content continuously, and, critically, being able to see what users are doing at any giving time.
Very, very cool.
I’m certain the value in having “your own” iTunes-style application will only be for very large organizations. Smaller groups and companies will be better served by participating in the scale that Apple has already achieved with iTunes.
But for large companies – with deep pocketbooks – this could be very, very enticing.