Both playback and ripping. Right now all my tracks pulled from CD's are 224kbps AAC. That was the point where I could barely tell the difference between AAC and the uncompressed source material on a decent stereo. I'm thinking that with eAAC+ I could possibly bring that down to 160kbps or 128kbps and save a ton of room on my iPhone that I could allocate to more podcasts and movie rentals. I realize no one outside Apple probably knows. I guess this is just a thread to complain about how lax Apple has gotten with introducing real innovation in their iTunes releases. They spend more time on gimmicky UI like coverflow than adding useful features like improved codecs, better smart playlist options, and subscription music/movies.