Feeds

Online adults won't pay for music downloads

Most don't use their PCs as hi-fi kit, that's why

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Security for virtualized datacentres

If the music industry thinks it can make money charging for digital music downloads, it can think again - punters just aren't interested in paying for music online.

So concludes G2, yet another subsidiary of research colossus Gartner Group, after surveying the purchasing plans and habits of 4000 online adults.

Tellingly, only half of them use their PCs to listen to CDs. Only a quarter listen to downloaded music. So 50 per cent of the sample don't play music at all on their computers.

That would seem to clash with the widely-held perception that PC owners use their machines to listen to music. Certainly plenty of kids and college students do so, but it's interesting that the demographic with the higher disposable income don't.

We can't say we're surprised. Older, wealthier folk tend to be happy to buy hi-fi kit and would generally rather listen to music from the comfort of the armchair than hunched up in front of a PC. Digital music is more likely to have a future if it's accessible from the living room through the usual kit, than from the PC in the spare room.

Equally essential to that future, we reckon, is a universal pay, download and play system. Who wants to load up a different client every time they want to download and listen to something?

G2 concurs. "Digital distribution needs to be brain-dead simple for consumers, and any digital rights management solution deployed should work with all music software and hardware," said analyst P J McNealy.

"The percentage of Internet music buyers is not likely to increase with new Internet services being developed by the big five music companies unless they make their copyright protection systems more flexible to entice consumers."

Absolutely. But don't expect it any time soon. Sony has come together with Vivendi Universal to form Pressplay; BMG, EMI and AOL Time Warner have MusicNet; but the two aren't the truly compatible. All will work in Windows, but it's not clear to what extent Mac and Linux clients will be supported. ®

Related Story

EMI, BMG, AOL define universal Net music scheme

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Bono apologises for iTunes album dump
Megalomania, generosity and FEAR of irrelevance drove group to Apple deal
HBO shocks US pay TV world: We're down with OTT. Netflix says, 'Gee'
This affects every broadcaster, every cable guy
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
SCREW YOU, EU: BBC rolls out Right To Remember as Google deletes links
Not even Google can withstand the power of Auntie
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express
Series finally hits stride, but Clara's U-turn is baffling
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
America's super-secret X-37B plane returns to Earth after nearly TWO YEARS aloft
674 days in space for US Air Force's mystery orbital vehicle
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.