Feeds

OD2 clocks up 1m downloads in Q1

Long, long way behind US players

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

UK-based digital music distributor OD2 sold one million downloads through its European retail partners during the first three months of 2004, the company claimed yesterday.

That figure amounts to a 1000 per cent increase on the same period last year and a 100 per cent increase over Q4 2003, OD2 - short for On Demand Distribution - said.

The growth is certainly impressive, but the base figures are less so. OD2 offers downloads through 21 online retailers in nine European territories. Most of its downloads come through subscription-based packages. Last August, it announced its an a la carte download service, but this didn't kick off until Coca-Cola launched its OD2-fed music download store, MyCokeMusic.com, in January this year.

The big increase over Q4 2003 shows the impact of MyCokeMusic, and shows how more popular the pay-per-download model is over the old 'x tracks for y pounds per month' approach.

But OD2's progress pales before the 50 million songs downloaded from Apple's iTunes Music Store in the US during the store's first 11 months online. Even Napster managed five million downloads during its first three months of operating as a sing seller.

OD2 covers roughly the same population base as the US, and Europe lags behind the States in the degree to which its citizens download music from unlicensed P2P networks. Yet Europe - the UK in particular - consumes a significant portion of the world's musical output.

OD2 isn't Europe's only digital music distributor - DX3 operates a similar subscription-based system too - but like its rival, its focus on distribution leaves it at the mercy of those of its retail partners who promote their offerings and the concept of legal downloads to the public. Certainly, few have done so to the extent that Apple and Napster have, and that shows in the relative download stats.

The arrival of these companies in the UK and Europe will raise the profile of downloading as a whole, but consumers coming to the download sites for the first time are more likely to opt for the better known ones: Napster through its P2P notoriety and Apple because of the success of the iPod. Both use their own distribution systems.

Virgin, which currently uses OD2 to provide downloads, will shortly be relaunching its service as Virgin Digital, though this is backed by US-based OD2 rival, MusicNet, which this week opened a UK/European office.

The privately-held OD2 also said its total turnover for the first quarter was £1m ($1.84 million), with proceeds from downloads and licensing fees. If it wants to increase that it had better persuade HMV, Freeserve/Wanadoo, Tiscali, MTV Europe et al to start marketing digital music in earnest. ®

Related Stories

Wippit offers pay-by-SMS digital music downloads
MusicNet to deliver music downloads to UKApple notches up 50m music downloads
Napster song sales hit 5m
Coke's music download site falls flat
Microsoft to beat Apple iTunes Music Store to Europe

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
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.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
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.