Although I love love love my iPod, I rarely use the iTunes music store. Mostly, I don’t like that I can’t choose the bit rate my songs are encoded at (I would pay more for higher quality), but I also don’t like the iTunes DRM. I also don’t really need the convenience of it — I think it’s kind of fun to rip new CDs. It gives me a chance to read the liner notes.

However, I am thinking of buying a Christmas gift for someone from the store. This person is not all that technical and uses the iTunes store a lot, and I believe would have trouble downloading the album I’m thinking of gifting from any other source. Also, for very rational reasons having to do with a teeny-tiny apartment, this person really doesn’t want to have to store CDs. Quite simply, it makes sense to give the gift this way — and would be a major pain in the butt for the recipient if it were given any other way.

All of this led me to spend some time poking around iTunes. I was really pleased with how flexible and easy gift-giving through the site was, allowing you to gift whole albums, individual songs or playlists. I also like that you can e-mail or print out the gift certificate. It’s much nicer than simply buying a gift card. As I said, I rarely use the iTunes store, so all of this was news to me. I’m not likely to become a regular iTunes customer any time soon, but I could see using it to buy gifts for a small handful of people from time to time.

Posted on December 7th, 2007 by Katxena