“MySpace, the wildly popular online teen hangout, said on Friday it will make its first move into the digital music business by selling songs from nearly 3 million unsigned bands,” Reuters reports.
Reuters reports, “MySpace is the latest company to try to take on Apple Computer Inc.’s iTunes Music Store, but unlike many other start-up rivals, it already boasts 106 million users, as well as the backing of parent company News Corp. ‘The goal is to be one of the biggest digital music stores out there,’ MySpace co-founder Chris DeWolfe told Reuters. ‘Everyone we’ve spoken to definitely wants an alternative to iTunes and the iPod. MySpace could be that alternative.'”
MacDailyNews Take: Oh, really now, Mr. DeWolfe, “everyone?” Give us a break. Note: MySpace songs (MP3 format without Digital Rights Management) will play on iPods, too.
Reuters continues, “Before the end of 2006, De Wolfe said MySpace will offer independent bands that have not signed with a record label a chance to sell their music on the site. MySpace says it has nearly 3 million bands showcasing their music.”
MacDailyNews Take: While we’re sure there is some small percentage of great bands that are unsigned at any given time, we fail to see why MySpace’s offer to showcase music that nobody really wants to hear is a threat to Apple’s iTunes Music Store.
Reuters continues, “DeWolfe said MySpace would be “enhancing and customizing” its online music store as the service evolves, aiming to eventually offer copyright-protected songs from major record companies… Digital music is the fastest-growing sector of the record industry but the market is dominated by iTunes, which has more than 70 percent of U.S. sales, according to NPD Research. iTunes is only fully compatible with the iPod.”
Full article here.
Catherine Holahan reports for BusinessWeek, “Don’t expect the new services to threaten iTunes anytime soon, says Wendy Abramowitz, an analyst at Argus Research. She didn’t change her positive outlook on Apple when she heard of the new competitors. ‘We have seen other companies entering the music download space and to date there has been no substantial impact on Apple’s prospects, so I would expect it to be similar this time around,’ she says.”
“A big reason for bullishness on Apple’s prospects: the iPod. Apple not only dominates legal music downloads, but also the handheld devices on which they’re played. The company has sold more than 50 million iPods around the world and except in the case of MySpace, songs downloaded through non-iTunes players won’t work on the iPod. Until a new player compatible with these services gains popularity, it is unlikely that massive numbers will switch their music buying habits, says Mark Mulligan, vice-president of Jupiter Research,” Holahan reports.
Full article here.