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Amazon MP3 already No. 2 behind iTunes

updated 01:25 pm EDT, Wed March 26, 2008

Amazon MP3 at Number 2

Amazon MP3 is quickly catching up to iTunes despite having been on the market for only a fraction of the time, according to new data. Launched in September, the web-based music store is now ranked second in the US only to Apple's service and is the highest-ranked store to offer all its tracks without digital rights management (DRM). The success is credited largely to the lack of copy protection, which allows songs to be played in nearly any modern operating system as well as any portable devices, including historically locked-down devices such as the iPod or the Zune.

A wider-ranging catalog is also cited as key to Amazon's success. While Amazon stocks 4.5 million songs versus Apple's 6 million, the former store includes albums rarely found online, such as Radiohead's back catalog as well as Jay-Z's American Gangster. Amazon is also the only store to have secured all four major labels for DRM-free music and holds much more of the unprotected content. iTunes was first to offer DRM-free major label tracks in spring 2007, but remains limited to 2 million songs from EMI as well as numerous independents.

Amazon's offering was also initially helped by lower prices, which sold some songs for as little as 89 cents versus the $1.29 charged for unprotected iTunes music.

The shift is widely believed to be deliberate on the part of the major labels, which have complained about Apple's continued dominance of iTunes. Sony BMG, Universal, and Warner have all to varying degrees offered DRM-free tracks at many major stores except for Apple, including Wal-Mart and other smaller outlets that until last year were pushed to sell songs with Windows Media DRM and other formats incompatible with iPods.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. Guest

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 1999

    0

    So what

    Sure Apple makes a tidy half billion of iTunes but that is only likely to grow. More MP3 sales and MP3s in consumers hands will only grow the IPod market even if it contributes less to their specific share. More IPODs is good for Apple. Bring on Amazon its great for competition and growth.

  1. Stogieman

    Professional Poster

    Joined: May 2000

    0

    How many songs sold?

    They don't say how many songs Amazon has sold. I wonder how big the gap is between Apple & Amazon on digital downloads?

  1. Eldernorm

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2007

    0

    correct stogieman

    When they do not tell you the numbers, its because the numbers are bad.

    How much is that car? --- Its a great buy. :-) (means it really expensive but we marked it down (after marking it up) for this sale)

    Amazon is number two. (iTunes sells billions, Amazon sells millions. #2)

  1. Grendelmon

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: Dec 2007

    0

    Good iTunes alternative

    After realizing that the much rumored MacBook Air wasn't what people thought that it was going to be, I replaced my old TiBook with an Asus EEE PC. Since it runs Linux, I got no love for running iTunes and opted to use Amazon's MP3 service instead. Works great, although the file sizes are a little larger than iTunes. The selection is comparable. And I can play them on my iPod!

  1. dlstarr7

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2003

    0

    re: grendelmon

    How are you getting the songs on the iPod without using iTunes?

  1. mgpalma

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2000

    0

    @

    "MacBook Air wasn't what people thought that it was going to be, I replaced my old TiBook with an Asus EEE PC. Since it runs Linux"

    Huh? You replaced your PowerBook with a 7" screen, (max) 8GB drive, 1GB ram that runs Linux??? Why do I find that hard to believe...

  1. Guest

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 1999

    0

    Love AmAzOn.cOm/MP3

    I love Amazon.com/MP3 and purchase DRM-free music there over iTunes whenever possible (and cost-effective). You have to download and install a special Amazon program to download the MP3 files and seed them in your iTunes Library. It works great with Safari but not so much with Firefox. Still, choice and competition are good, except when it comes to killing fetuses. Respect life!

  1. bigpoppa206

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2003

    0

    Actually you do not need

    to install anything. I purchase 256 kbps MP3s and download them directly to my desktop on both of my Mac and Windows machines.

  1. jhawk95

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2006

    0

    How does 8 become 13?

    Says 13 comments, but I see only eight.... anyone else?

  1. pt123

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2007

    0

    why

    Why would I buy from iTunes which is iPod only when I could buy from Amazon which works on any music player?

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