No other MP3 player manufacturer has been able to put a dent into the runaway success of the iPod and iTunes, but French lawmakers may succeed where others have failed. They have voted to force Apple to make their iTunes downloads work on all audio players and not just iPods. The move still has to be approved by the French senate. It would apply to all manufacturers, though Apple is clearly the target. The iPod has a monster share of the French market and members of the French lower house clearly aren’t comfortable with that.
It is uncertain how Apple will respond to the move. To comply with the law, Apple would have to share the closely guarded technology and codecs behind the music with their competitors. That seems unlikely, which would make you think that Apple could just shut down the French iTunes store. Either way, it will be interesting to watch.