MP3tunes, a new digital music store started by Michael Robertson, founder and former CEO of MP3.com, has opened at www.mp3tunes.com. Robertson, CEO of MP3tunes, unveiled his new venture at the Desktop Summit in San Diego this week. Songs are available for download from the MP3tunes site for $0.88 per song or $8.88 per album.
All music sold at MP3tunes will work on any computer and with any portable player including popular models like the Apple iPod, Dell DJ and Creative Nomad. At www.mp3tunes.com, consumers never run the risk of losing their music – songs that have been purchased are permanently stored in a “music locker” and accessible from any Web browser. Even if a computer crashes or a user switches machines, the music is saved and can be accessed without repurchasing.
“Digital music sales make up less than two percent of the total music business because many consumers know they aren’t really buying the music – they’re renting it from a big corporation that controls what software, computer and portable devices they can use,” Robertson said. “A consumer-friendly digital music store that provides true music ownership to paying customers can triple the digital music business almost overnight. MP3tunes gives the consumers more value because they can use the music on all their computers and MP3 players – whatever brand they may have. And it’s permanently stored in their music locker, so they never lose the music they paid for.”
MP3tunes only offers songs for purchase and download that are legally licensed for distribution from the copyright holders. More than 22,000 artists are participating in the launch of MP3tunes, and 300,000 songs representing nearly 30,000 complete CDs are now available for immediate purchase in high-quality 192k MP3 format at www.mp3tunes.com. No special software is required to sample the music and make purchases and virtually any Web browser will work.
MP3tunes differs from other online music services such as Apple’s iTunes and Microsoft’s MSN Music Store because it does not use digital restrictions management (DRM) technology, which restricts how a buyer can use the music. DRM restrictions limit what software or computer can be used to listen to the music and also limit what types of portable players will work. Songs in the open MP3 format, like those found at www.mp3tunes.com, are the most flexible for consumers because the songs work with a wide array of software players such as iTunes and Windows Media Player and are also compatible with virtually all digital players or computers, including the iPod series.
- 88¢ per song and $8.88 per CD
- Free Music Locker with permanent storage for all purchased songs
- Songs will play on all portable MP3 players
- Songs will play from any computer (Mac, Windows, Linux)
- Unlimited CD burning and downloads for personal use
- High-quality sound – 192k MP3s (most sites offer 128 KB)
- Chart-driven Web site
- You own the music
“All new trends in music start with emerging artists and progressive-thinking labels who are most willing to try new approaches, which is where MP3tunes is focusing initially,” Robertson said. “MP3.com started with complete songs in MP3 format from promising young artists like Linkin Park and Maroon 5. Then it expanded to include new artists from major labels, and eventually it grew to be a key promotional vehicle for all the major record labels. I’m confident MP3tunes will follow the same path – if music buyers come to MP3tunes, then ultimately forward-thinking labels will too.”