Feeds

RealNetworks drops MusicNet for Listen.com

Cheaper CD burns, but it's no Apple

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

RealNetworks has transferred its allegiance from major label-backed online music service MusicNet to Listen.com's Rhapsody offering. Real's new service will be called RealOne Rhapsody.

What's been grabbing web headlines is Real's plan to charge 79 cents per song, seen as a nod towards Apple's recently launched online Music Store, which charges 99 cents a song.

In fact, the services aren't that similar. Apple's charges for downloads, but RealOne Rhapsody's fee is simply for burning tracks users have already downloaded under through their $9.95 subscription to the service. Yes, 79 cents is below Apple's charge, but the cut is being driven by Listen.com, not Real, and Listen.com already charges 99 cents - the same as Apple.

Rhapsody is also a Windows-only service. Music Store is coming to Windows - by the end of the year, says Apple - but for now it's only available to Mac users.

Finally, all of Apple's songs can be burned to CD. That's not the case with Rhapsody, which restricts burning to two-thirds of its catalogue.

Real's move to drop MusicNet is interesting, but perhaps not surprising. MusicNet was jointly launched by Real and major labels EMI, BMG and Warner. Real CEO Rob Glaser moved over to head MusicNet on an interim basis, but has since ceded the hot-seat to Alan McGlade.

Real announced last month that it wants to buy Listen.com for $36 million. The acquisition is expected to be completed during Q3. Rhapsody, launched in 2001, has proved more successful than MusicNet, and Listen has built up a strong business licensing the service to ISPs, cablecos and the like. They re-badge Listen.com's service, but Listen does all the work behind the scenes.

Forrester Research said earlier this month that the market for downloaded music over the Internet will be worth $24 million in Europe alone this year, ballooning to $1.3 billion by 2007. Already the market is well established in the US, where downloads were worth some $15 million last year alone and are set to grow to $2 billion market by 2007.

Notably, Forrester reckons that the majority of sales will come from individual downloads rather than subscriptions. Forrester forecasts that by 2007 around two million subscribers will spend EUR125 million per annum, which will account for ten per cent of total digital music sales. ®

ElectricNews contributed to this story

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
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.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.