“A year ago this month, the music-downloading business came to life with the debut of Apple’s iTunes Music Store. By the numbers, the store has done outrageously well. More than 50 million songs have been downloaded off the service to both Windows and Mac OS X machines and the store is on track to hit 130 million songs a year, Apple brags,” Rob Pegoraro writes for The Washington Post.
“A flock of competitors, including stores from Roxio, RealNetworks and Wal-Mart, have followed Apple without catching up — not in ease, not in elegance and not in numbers of downloads. But the iTunes Music Store’s success hides a couple of unsettling trends. One is pricing — a lot of albums now exceed the store’s customary $9.99 price, and a few even exceed their cost as CDs in a store. The other is compatibility — though a variety of consumer-electronics devices could be made compatible with iTunes music files, the only one Apple permits is its own iPod digital-music player,” Pegoraro writes.
Full article here.