Is the iTunes music store in trouble? Chris Gorog, CEO of Napster, sure thinks so. Napster runs on a subscription based format that allows you access to 700,000+ songs for your listening pleasure, all for only $9.95 per month. The catch is that if you want to put the songs on a portable device, it’ll cost you an additional $1 per song…until now.
Microsoft has developed a new technology that will allow users of subscription based listening services, such as Napster, to transfer those songs to a portable device for only $5 more per month. What does this mean? Well, taking technology to a new level, assuming your music player could hold 700,000 songs (the size of Napsters song collection), you could put all 700,000 songs on your player for a measly $180 per year. You can have those songs on your player as long as you have a subscription. Thats WAY less than a penny per song.
I know what you’re thinking, “there has got to be a catch.” Well…yes…sort of. Microsoft’s technology won’t work with most current media players, including the iPod. It will probably be another 2 years before a significant number of players adopt this new technology.
This new technology could very well be some real competition to the iTunes music store. I guess we shall wait and see how Apple plans on combating this.