Business Matters is a daily column that offers insight, analysis and opinion on the day's news.
-- How does the price of the iPad stack up to previous Apple products? Adjusted for inflation, it's actually one of the company's cheaper products. In March 2010 dollars, the Apple I computer, released in July 1976, cost $2,540. The first iPod, released in October 2001, cost $488 after adjusting for inflation. At $521, even the first iPhone, released in July 2007, cost more than the iPad. The most expensive Apple product was the Lisa personal computer. It debuted in January 1983 with a list price of $9,950, or $21,745 in today's dollars. So, forty-three iPads cost the same as one Lisa. (Social Media Graphs)
-- For a good conversation on the first sale doctrine - copyright holders' rights to control a change in ownership end after the first re-sale of a copyrighted work - listen to this podcast at Intellectual Property Colloquium. This doctrine is why CDs and LPs can be resold and purchased as used goods. But re-sale and re-use gets more complicated with digital goods. Lawyers, after listening to the one-hour podcast you can apply for CLE credit (good in California, Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania and Tennessee). (Intellectual Property Colloquium)
-- Country album sales ended the first quarter up 15% compared to an overall album deficit of 8%. A crossover hit by Lady Antebellum is a main reason country sales are up this year. "Need You Now" has sold 1.56 million since its January 26, according to Nielsen SoundScan. With year-to-date sales of 834,000 units, Zac Brown Band's "The Foundation" is still going strong. (Music Row)
-- Spotify has updated its iPhone app to include Last.fm scrobbling, the ability to open Spotify links from Facebook app or browser, a "star" feature to save favorite songs and playlists, support for more efficient streaming on slow connections and many more features. Audiobook listeners will be happy to know Spotify will now remember where you were when you closed the app. US consumers will still have to wait. Spotify, and thus the iPhone app, are available only to consumers in a small number of European countries. (Spotify blog)
-- Gorilla vs. Bear and Weekly Tape Deck are the latest bloggers to launch a record label. The two have joined to form Forrest Family Records. The label will product limited runs of 7", 10" and 12" vinyl as well as cassettes. The funny thing about bloggers forming record labels is how it contrasts so sharply with the commonly held (in some circles) belief that music blogs actually reduce the need for artists to sign to record labels. Just promote yourself at blogs, the thinking goes, and you'll find your audience. But if blogs are creating record labels, which they use to develop up-and-coming talent, the value of the record label really needs to be reconsidered. (Pitchfork)