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Published on September 25th, 2007 | by Tom

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Amazon Effect Takes a Bite Out of Apple

Today’s public unveiling of Amazon’s DRM-free MP3 music download service is the tipping point we all have been waiting for lo these many months.  Adoption of a competitive, rights-liberated download service by a giant retailer like Amazon means that the point of no return has been crossed in the war against content tyranny.   Mark this date for the kiddies to look back on some day.

Launched with two million songs by 18,000 artists, a sweet deal with EMI and Universal, Amazon can introduce both freedom of choice and a little price competition to the music world mix.  By shaving a dime off most songs–$.89 versus the standard $.99 on iTunes–Amazon points out the old Silicon Valley saw that "better is cheaper" and makes consumers think twice.  Once Amazon works out some of its bugginess (Om Malik does a nice job comparing Amazon to iTunes today), it will permanently change consumer perceptions and expectations. 

The point is, the days of over-controlled licenses and perpetual copyrights are staggering to their demise.  Like Jason Statham’s badass character Chev Chelios in the film Crank, the DRM-mongers are living on adrenalin alone; the end, however, is nigh.

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2 Responses to Amazon Effect Takes a Bite Out of Apple

  1. HAB says:

    You greatly confuse the DRM issue – it has been Apple that has been leading the fight for DRM-free music. If the prices are cheaper at Amazon, they’ll likely get their cut of the business, but don’t confuse them with leading the charge ’cause it just ain’t so.

  2. Tombomb says:

    HAB–
    Thanks for the comment: you are right, I know the proactive position Apple has taken on DRM and I am sort of talking through them to the rest of the music industry in my rant. I still believe the Amazon entry is a game changer–will likely even aid Apple–and that was my real message.
    Tom

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