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iTunes battles Amazon with DRM-free price drop

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Apple has responded to the launch of Amazon's DRM-free music download store with a price cut to its own iTunes Plus.

Amazon finally opened its store last month - though only to US customers - charging $0.89 per song.

It'll surprise few Apple watchers to learn that its discount from $1.29 to $0.99 has only been announced for the US*.

UK users will continue to be squeezed for an extra 20 pence for EMI's DRM-free catalogue, compared to 79 pence for tracks shackled to iTunes and iPod. At today's currency rates, £0.99 is $2.02.

The phones were not being answered this afternoon at Apple's UK press office.

The Sydney Morning Herald has some choice words for Apple about the price cut not applying in Australia either here.

Steve Jobs told The Wall Street Journal that Apple will start adding unencumbered tracks from independent labels too. Its repertoire of DRM-free currently labels lags behind Amazon and eMusic, though it dominates the mainstream download market. ®

*Update

Apple's announced a drop for iTuns Plus in the UK too now. Tracks will cost £0.79. See the press release here.

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