Blog Post

@ MCW: Are the Operator Prepared: Brad Deau, Napster

[by Mike Butcher] Brad Duea, president Napster, (somewhat predictably) noted that the Napster brand is synonymous with digital music so it “allows people to recognise where they are”. He argues that this is easier than trying to morph a mobile carrier brand into a music brand. “Secondly we’re trying to push new models such as unlimited subscription on the mobile, integrating with the rest of the music experience, the PC, the living room, the car, the TV etc. We’re trying to move across all platforms at a reasonable price.”
Where does this put MP3 players and the iPod sector – do they have a future? Duea says, there’s a lot of activity, but how things play out, such as with pricing, will determine direction. Mobile phones have a great opportunity, but most content there is pirated or without DRM, so the “Net is still the best platform”. If phones support only free MP3s then this will prove difficult for development of the industry, claims Duea.
(We’ll gloss over the rather pat answers about how some of the music industry “gets” digital and some “don’t. Like we didn’t know that already).
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