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For six years, the Internet Nexus served as my technology blog, but I've since started blogging at the SuperSite Blog instead. If you're looking for the blog, please head there. --Paul

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

New Challenger to iTunes Emerges

Me, in WinInfo:
There's a new player with new ideas in the online music services arena: Universal Music Group this week announced that it is partnering with fledgling music service provider SpiralFrog to offer an iTunes competitor that the companies hope will supplant illegal file sharing networks. Their strategy is simple, if unexpected: The service they will offer will give songs away for free.

"Offering young consumers an easy-to-use alternative to pirated music sites will be compelling," says Robin Kent, founder and CEO of SpiralFrog. "SpiralFrog will offer those consumers a better experience and environment than they can get from any pirate site."

While offering legal song downloads for free sounds implausible, SpiralFrog says that it will forego the usual 99 cent fee per song and will pursue an advertising-based model instead. Various niche services have tried a similar approach, but none had the backing of a major music studio. And while Universal alone can provide millions of songs, SpiralFrog says it is talking with other recording companies, including EMI, Sony BMG, and Warner Music. SpiralFrog plans to launch its service in the US and Canada by the end of the year.
So, the restrictions on this service make it a total nonstarter, from what I can tell.
[ Posted at 12:18 PM | Permalink ]


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