Apple Revolutionizes Online MP3 Distribution. 

05-5-03 antiGUY
Apple, the company that brought the world the first mass market graphical user interface for micro-computers when they introduce the MacIntosh in 1984, have now become trailblazers in legal online MP3 distribution. 

Late last month the Cupertino, California based company rolled out their iTunes Music Store, which offers downloads of songs for $0.99 cents each. 

What sets iTunes apart from other services that offer legal downloads is the other services are based on a subscription model and the iTunes service offers popular songs for individual purchase.  (an idea we here at antiMUSIC have been championing for sometime). 

The iTunes Music Store got off to a roaring start, with over a quarter of a million songs reportedly downloaded during the very first day of operation. This success should send a clear signal to record labels who have thus far taken a confrontational role towards the idea of distributing music online. 

iTunes is not for everyone, at least not yet. The initial role out of the service is limited to users of MacIntosh computers and the Apple iPod portable player. But the implications are pretty clear that the idea of selling songs for a dollar a piece is a winner considering that a quarter of a million songs were purchased by users of a computer system that represents roughly only 5% of the total personal computer user base. 

Perhaps it was that small installed user-base that sold the major labels on the idea of licensing their music to the iTunes service? What better way to experiment with the idea of selling individual songs online than with a small market segment?  While this idea is a natural, up to this point the major record labels have shied away from using this business model and only recently reluctantly adopted the subscription model (which has not really caught on like expected).  With the initial success of the iTunes service, look for the music industry to sit up and pay attention. While the changes may not come over night, Apple may have just sparked a revolution within the music industry.  .


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