Subtractions and Additions for iTunes Plus
That didn't take long: Less than a month after Amazon.com began selling MP3s without any "digital rights management" controls for considerably less than Apple's own iTunes Plus DRM-free downloads, Apple now seems to be cutting the prices of iTunes Plus downloads to match.
Last night, searches for iTunes Plus songs began showing many of them going for 99 cents--some of which, for the first time, came from independent record labels instead of just EMI, Apple's initial partner in this venture. But Universal, the other major music label besides EMI to sell music without DRM on Amazon, is holding off on iTunes Plus. In early August, company spokesman Peter Lofrumento wrote in an e-mail that Universal would use DRMed sales at iTunes as a "control group" to compare with no-DRM sales elsewhere, as part of a test that he said would conclude on Jan. 31.
Some of the new additions to the iTunes Plus inventory are songs that I've already obtained as regular, restricted iTunes downloads (as part of last summer's enormous digital-music giveaway on Facebook). But as of 10 a.m. today iTunes' "Upgrade My Library" feature wasn't showing them as available upgrades.
Over at computing publisher O'Reilly and Associates' MacDevCenter blog, Chris Adamson reported that he was charged 30 cents a song and $3 an album to upgrade his old purchases, the same rate as before.
Looks like Apple has realized it has competition and is now responding accordingly. Ah, capitalism at work.
Meanwhile, the other major-label music-download stores--Napster, Yahoo, Rhapsody, and Microsoft's Zune Marketplace--continue to lumber along, selling only copy-controlled files with far less flexibility than the MP3 and AAC downloads sold by Amazon and Apple. I wonder how that's working out for them.
And in other news, Led Zeppelin has finally discovered this Interweb thing and will allow digital-download sales of its work starting Nov. 13--which now leaves the Beatles unchallenged for the title of "Most Economically and Technologically Clueless '60s Band."
October 16, 2007; 10:14 AM ET
Save & Share: Previous: Bluetooth Blues
Next: News From Apple: iPhone to Open, iTunes Plus Expands, Leopard Next Week
Posted by: Kevin R | October 16, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Jon M'cu | October 16, 2007 3:47 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Brian | October 16, 2007 5:10 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: 23112 | October 16, 2007 5:20 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: midanae | October 16, 2007 8:45 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: beetsnotbeats | October 16, 2007 11:35 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Podesta | October 17, 2007 1:12 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: SMA | October 17, 2007 9:57 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: tjb | October 17, 2007 5:28 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: midanae | October 18, 2007 11:52 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Martin Bernstein | October 19, 2007 12:37 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: chevy chase | November 1, 2007 10:52 AM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.