Apple Is Bringing Albums Back

Physical albums are going the way of the eight-track as music downloads have become popular. The problem, according to the Financial Times, is that consumers now tend to buy individual tracks and not high-margin albums, sales of which fell 14 percent in 2008 to 428.4 million units, according to Nielsen SoundScan. Apple is reportedly working with EMI, Sony Music, Warner Music, and Universal Music Group on a tablet-sized computer to change all that. The project, code named "Cocktail," would allow users to buy album packages containing interactive material including photos, lyric sheets, and liner notes. The new gadget would be "fabulous" for watching movies, according to one entertainment executive, and could provide an alternative to Amazon's Kindle.