Thursday’s Music 2.0 Briefing: Apple Opens To 3rd Parties, Amazon Trumps iTunes & Much More

>>> We proudly participated in hugely successful Blog Action Day 2007 alongside 20,603 other bloggers. Our little check for the one day income from all our blogs plus a personal donation is on its way to Greenpeace.  Here is a summary of overall Blog Day activity.

>>> Apple announced that it will follow the growing trend and open its iPhone and iPod touch to third party developers. (Apple) This trend  plus the demise of DRM should lead to many exciting and profitable new music applications.

Amazon will pay affiliated sites 20% through the end of the year on mp3 sales then drop to 10%. Even at 10% the pay out is twice the 5% that iTunes pays. (Silicon Valley Insider)

>>> Billboard is expanding its digital download store. (press release) Did you know they even had a store? Check it out here.

>>> YouTube has filtering in beta...finally. (Billboard)
>>> PassAlong and Digonex are testing an MP3 store with variable pricing.

>>> Groove Mobile adds more tracks from Redeye. (press release)

>>> Full text of the official iTunes announcement lowering prices after the jump.


Apple(R) today announced that it has expanded its iTunes(R) Plus offering to over two million tracks and lowered the price of all iTunes Plus tracks to just 99 cents. All iTunes Plus tracks feature DRM-free music with high quality 256 kbps AAC encoding for audio quality virtually indistinguishable from the original recordings (http://www.itunes.com/). The iTunes Plus catalog is now the largest DRM-free catalog in the world, and includes artists from Sub Pop, Nettwerk, Beggars Group, IODA, The Orchard and many others, along with EMI’s digital catalog.

"iTunes Plus has been incredibly popular with our customers and now we’re making it available at an even more affordable price," said Eddy Cue, Apple’s vice president of iTunes. "We’re adding over two million tracks from key independent labels in addition to EMI’s digital catalog and look forward to even more labels and artists making their music available on iTunes Plus."

EMI began offering their catalog on iTunes Plus earlier this year, and their impressive selection has grown to include singles and albums from the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Norah Jones, Frank Sinatra and the solo catalogs of all four Beatles.

With the expansion of iTunes Plus, customers can now download tracks from a variety of labels without limitations on the type of music player or number of computers that purchased songs can be played on. iTunes Plus songs purchased from the iTunes Store will play on all iPods, iPhone(TM), Windows or Mac(R) computers, widescreen TVs with Apple TV(TM), as well as many other digital music players.

The iTunes Store is the world’s most popular online music, TV and movie store and has become the number three music retailer in the US, surpassing both Amazon and Target.* The iTunes Store features the world’s largest catalog with over six million songs, 550 television shows and over 500 movies and has sold over three billion songs, 100 million TV shows and over two million movies.

With Apple’s legendary ease of use, pioneering features such as integrated podcasting support, iMix playlist sharing, seamless integration with iPod(R) and iPhone and the ability to turn previously purchased songs into completed albums at a reduced price, the iTunes Store is the best way for PC and Mac users to legally discover, purchase and download music and video online.

  * Based on data from market research firm the NPD Group’s MusicWatch
    survey that captures consumer reported past week unit purchases
    equivalized so that one CD equals 12 tracks, excluding wireless

Apple ignited the personal computer revolution in the 1970s with the Apple II and reinvented the personal computer in the 1980s with the Macintosh. Today, Apple continues to lead the industry in innovation with its award-winning computers, OS X operating system and iLife and professional applications. Apple is also spearheading the digital media revolution with its iPod portable music and video players and iTunes online store, and has entered the mobile phone market this year with its revolutionary iPhone.

(C) 2007 Apple Inc. All rights reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, Mac, Mac OS, Macintosh, iTunes, iPhone, Apple TV and iPod are trademarks of Apple. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners

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