Archive for napster

Best Buy to Purchase Napster

best buy napster Best Buy to Purchase Napster

Best Buy today agreed to pick up Napster for $2.65 per share or about $121m. What is interesting here is Best Buy has been using Rhapsody for their own branded music store going as far as requiring manufactures to change their packaging to include the “Best Buy Digital Music Store” branding. (The reason why Creative no longer sells at Best Buy is because they refused to change their packaging and get on board the BB music store.)

This news is a bit disappointing for me since I was never really a fan of Napster and currently subscribe to Rhapsody and Zune Marketplace. It’s not that Napster is a bad music service, it’s just Rhapsody has a better catalog and has the best recommendation engine in the game. But I guess the good news is you will still be able to use Rhapsody Subscription on most of the players sold at Best Buy, it’s just not going to be bundled. Also note that it has not been officially stated as to what will happen with the Rhapsody / Best Buy partnership, but I am assuming the obvious.

[Press Release via PaidContent]

Napster’s Entire 6 Million Track Catalogue Now DRM Free

napster logo Napster’s Entire 6 Million Track Catalogue Now DRM Free

Back at CES 2008 Napster announced plans to make their entire catalogue DRM free. Today it joins stores like Amazon and Zune who also offer a part of their library DRM free. The downloads will remain at the same price as before (99 cents per track and $9.99 per album) and will be offered in 256kbps MP3 with high resolution (1,000 x 1,000 pixel) album art. By contrast Zune Marketplace and Amazon offer 320kbps MP3s.

There is one part of this story that is really aggravating in that people who have purchased previously ala carte downloads that were DRMed will not be able to trade for unprotected versions of the music they paid for. Don’t blame Napster, this decision made by the record labels showing us one again they don’t care about their customer base. Once again the DRM customer is screwed. Please vote with your dollars and never purchase DRM content since its expatriation is inevitable.

[CNet | Napster PR]