Amazon To Launch Music Store Next Month: 99/89 Cent, DRM-Free MP3s


Amazon looks to be getting into the digital music game, with the New York Post of all organizations claiming that the Web retailer will launch an online music store the week of September 17. That specific date is tentative, by the way. The store will have support from two of the Big Four record labels—Universal and EMI. (There will also be plenty of independent labels.) You’ll notice a lack of Sony BMG and Warner. That’s because that latter two still insist that their music be wrapped up in DRM, something the Amazon store won’t have.

I repeat, the Amazon store won’t have any DRM; the songs will be DRM-free MP3s. That’s what the reports indicate, at least.

The move makes sense for Amazon: it launched its video service, Unbox, last year. Even though the chances of anyone knocking Apple off the top of the digital music mountain are pretty slim (do you know anyone who says, “oh, let me see if Napster/Urge/Other_Store has that hot new single”?), I can just imagine Amazon’s shareholders whining, “Why don’t we have an online music store?”

The DRM-free songs will cost 99 cents and 89 cents: full-price for new songs and 10 cents cheaper for older songs or songs from “emerging” artists. Does Vince count?

September looks to be a busy month for music. Good. This summer has been slow as hell and it’s about time things picked up.

LET’S DANCE BABY [New York Post]