Music company Saregama India (earlier known as HMV) plans to launch their revamped site next week, offering users downloads of music from a catalog of 3,00,000 songs, reports Radioandmusic.com. The company has tied up with many record labels, including T-Series (via Hungama?), Sony (NYSE: SNE) BMG and around 43 South Indian labels. Thankfully, they’re selling single tracks, as opposed to selling full albums, which they did at HamaraCD.com. However, tracks are being priced at Rs. 12 to Rs. 15 each, and need to be purchased using credit cards. Compare that with the existing model of tracks available for free, requiring no credit cards — proliferating despite being illegal. The report doesn’t mention whether the music on sale is DRM protected or not.
There are small steps. One could say that record labels still are being slowly coming to terms with drops in revenue from cassette sales each year, or blinded by the success of Caller Ring Back Tones (CRBTs). What one really needs is for a maverick to go and change the game — offer, for example, their music library on a subscription basis. Others, I’m sure, will follow suit. Not much of a chance of someone doing a Radiohead in India, is there?
Here’s one blog post you must, must read.