“Napster Inc. on Wednesday unveiled a portable version of its music subscription service, backed by a $30 million ad campaign that takes aim at rival Apple Computer Inc.’s popular iPod player,” Sue Zeidler reports for Reuters. “Napster’s promotion includes a Super Bowl television spot urging fans to compare the costs of spending $10,000 to buy and transfer 10,000 songs from Apple’s iTunes store to an iPod, with the $15-per-month fee to carry songs from a catalog of over a million tracks on Napster-compatible players.”
“Until recently, music subscription services have been restricted in their ability to transfer songs they provide to portable players, while Apple has sold millions on the portable iPods by allowing users to buy songs from iTunes and store them on iPods. Chris Gorog, Napster’s chief executive, said the company hoped to convince consumers that pay-for-download services were more expensive and “antiquated” by comparison with Napster’s subscription model,” Zeidler reports.
Full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: If, and we stress if, Napster gathers any momentum with this, what’s to say Apple won’t add a subscription model option to their market-dominating iTunes? Steve Jobs might even send Chris Gorog a thank you note for paying for the marketing to educate the public. Oh, and what happens to your subscription money and your song access if Napster goes away again? As an MDN Reader wrote to us in an email, “if (when) Napster goes away after two years, what do you get to keep for the $360 you spent? Nothing. If you spent that same money on 15 iTunes each month, you’d have 360 songs.” When we spend our money, we like to end up owning something.
And, if you haven’t figured it out, yet, Gorog, people have or want Apple iPod players, not the third-party red-headed stepchildren players upon which Napster relies.
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Study: Apple iTunes Music Store dominates with 70 percent market share, second place Napster holds 11 percent – October 19, 2004
Cornell University wrestles with Napster’s exclusion of Mac and iPod-using students – September 08, 2004
Why are Cornell’s Mac students being forced to pay for useless Napster? – September 07, 2004
Napster schools to Mac-using students: bend over and take it – September 04, 2004
Napster CEO: ‘it would be great’ if Apple iPod supported WMA – March 09, 2004
Napster CEO: Apple iTunes, iPod ‘consumer-unfriendly experiences’ – March 09, 2004
Microsoft tries to push WMA by propping up beleaguered Napster – February 25, 2004