Amazonmp3 v. iTunes Store
Folks, it’s WAY too early to be drawing any kind of conclusive comparisons of Amazonmp3 (beta) and the iTunes Store (I’ll call it version 7). Although, Om Malik has a very good side by side and where our options weigh in at.
First, the online music business is really just getting started. It’s by no means a mature market. Maturing? Yes. Mature. Nope. No one place has the whole package. The recommendation engines are weak. The social sharing of lists is far from ideal… The list of deficiencies and possible innovation is long.
Second. Remember back when Bezos and co. came on the scene? They were pooh-poohed and discounted. Then they promptly began pulling judo moves on the BOOK industry of all boring things and look at them now! No. To be sure, Amazon’s got the clout, the respect, the scalable computing and the prowess to get into this market and make some amazing things occur (89 cents at a time).
Sure, they’re not selling music in far flung countries yet. It’s not even a week old folks! (sheesh)
Third. Pricing is, um, interesting. I’ve bought one whole album on iTunes. Everything else has been onesy-twosy singles. They’ve chosen to offer almost all of their Top 100 singles at 89 cents per. OK, that’s Long Tail thinking. Buy the pop business with a dime discount and market the peeps like crazy and feed them on the Long Tail at 99 cents a bite.
Fourth. Their DRM policy is Spot Freakin On The Money. Why they have better DRM deals than Apple I can only imagine. They may have had to give a LOT of concessions to swing those deals. Concessions Apple just wasn’t willing to make. OK, fine. That simply left the door open for someone else to come in and put on a show to challenge Apple’s dominance. Keep in mind… Bezos has show us time and time again he’s willing to LOSE LOTS OF MONEY to eventually own a category. If they had to sell their Soul to get to DRMless R&B – he’s the guy that would have done it.
Finally. We’re in the very early moments of the first round of the bout. Up to this point Apple’s been shadow boxing. Now, someone with some real teeth and competitive umpf to them is bobbing and weaving across the deck. And, this isn’t even the championship round. There are some contenders out there we haven’t even heard from yet.