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Amazon MP3 to bring DRM-free music to the UK in October?

by Parm Mann on 17 September 2008, 16:16

Tags: iTunes, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)

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Amazon MP3 became the first online store to offer DRM-free music from all-four major studios earlier this year, and we've been waiting patiently for the US-only store to make its global debut.

Fortunately, that wait appears to be coming to an end for some as various reports have today suggested that the UK launch of Amazon MP3 will take place as soon as next month.

Since its launch in September 2007, Amazon's US store has grown to offer a catalogue of over five million DRM-free songs. The tracks are offered to customers in the 256kbps variable-bitrate MP3 format and can be played back on virtually any device - unlike DRM-restricted files purchased from Apple's iTunes.

US customers have also been treated to prices generally lower than those offered on iTunes, Amazon's singles are priced at $0.89 to $0.99 and full albums retail at $5.99 to $9.99. UK pricing, however, hasn't yet been disclosed.

Despite its obvious advantages, Amazon's MP3 store has one significant disadvantage - its interface is far-less intuitive than that of Apple's iTunes and Microsoft's Zune Marketplace.

Nonetheless, it'll be a welcome addition to the increasingly competitive digital music market and its DRM-free attitude will appeal to customers.

HEXUS Forums :: 5 Comments

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Am i right in thinking all online MP3's are ripped lower than 320kbp/s? its annoying because you should get top quality if you pay for it, atleast amazon are going to compete with play but i am yet to try online sales :P the good old album from family every year from the store is good enough for me :). = MP3 320k

Apparently. Was looking at it yesterday. has MP3 downloads at 320k
so why are amazon 1 step behind? cutting down on bandwidth and so they can provide that slightkly cheaper price? Should have 3 prices or something, 1 for high/medium/low bitrates because it would reduce bandwidth and so the pricing could be good.
I sincerely doubt that Amazon are worried about bandwidth - they are supposed to be adding a CDN service to their web services toolset at the end of the year as they have servers all over the world.

I agree its better to have multiple encoding options that create different pricing levels - although i will always go for the highest bitrate available.