[qi:004] UPDATED: Dell Computer today announced that it will preload music from Universal Music Group into special music folders on the computers it ships.
- Individuals will be able to select a variety of music bundles to be pre-installed.
- 50- and 100-song music bundles start at $25, each of which includes a curated selection of MP3s.
- These MP3 are going to cost about a half of regular prices.
- Pre-installed music bundles will show up as Music icons on the Dell Dock.
Add-ons such as these have already come under criticism from customers who find them, well, annoying. But these are desperate times for both PC makers and music companies. Their margins are being eviscerated and growth is non-existent, so of course they’re willing to try anything. This experiment, however, is like taking two bricks, tying them together and praying really hard that they won’t sink.
Update: Dell is also, through CinemaNow, doing the same thing with movies. Cost-wise (movie bundles also start at $25) and convenience-wise, this is actually a pretty good idea for movies.