Apple first introduced its own lossless audio compression format, Apple Lossless Audio Codec (ALAC), in 2004 with iTunes 4.5. This Thursday—seven years later—the company made the code for its encoder and decoder available under an Apache 2.0 open source license.
ALAC is similar to another common open lossless format know as FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec), but uses an MPEG 4-compliant QuickTime container. ALAC is supported in iTunes as well as Apple's popular iPod and all iOS devices. For audiophiles who can't stand lossy formats like AAC or MP3, it offers a better sounding alternative. Unlike AAC or MP3, though, which tends to compress files around 10:1, lossless ALAC files only save about 50 percent of your disk space.
一向愛搞專利的 Apple 總算幹了件讓我豎起大拇指的事。 XD
近年來最強勢的無損音樂壓縮應該是 FLAC，也許 Apple 終於明白自己拼不過 FLAC，所以想藉開放 ALAC 原始碼(Apache 2.0 open source license)來搶市場？