Record labels to ditch CD singles for USB Flash drives
Majors plan singles-on-stick releases
USB Flash drives will soon appear in record stores in a bid by major music labels to build up sales of physical media in the post-CD era.
Yes, but where are the sleeve notes?
Universal told The Times this week that by the end of this month it will release USB singles holding several songs, videos and multimedia content. However, it’ll charge around £5 (€7/$10) per stick – around £2 more than CD singles currently cost.
A spokesman for the record company said it’s targeting the USB sticks at 12- to 24-year-olds who “no longer believe that the CD is as cool as it used to be”.
Songs from Keane and The Pussycat Dolls will be released on USB by Universal at the end of October, with full albums from the likes of Kanye West and Amy Winehouseon due out in stick form before the end of the year.
Rival labels Warner and EMI are also turning their backs on ‘square’ CDs. Next month, Warner is releasing a “part-album” from band Hadouken! on USB, containing six new songs, five old tracks and multimedia content. EMI is releasing music from Pink Floyd on USB too, but it hasn’t set a date yet.
The Official Charts Company, guardian of the UK Top 40 singles chart, has already agreed to include singles bought on USB in its weekly countdown. So you could soon see HMV’s and Virgin’s shelves stocked with USB drives alongside dwindling CD single and album supplies.
Is USB the best way of improving physical music sales? Would you buy music on USB instead of downloading it? Register Hardware wants to know your thoughts.
I Bought Two USB Singles
This year I bought two of these USBSingles.
I can confirm both came in a shrink wrapped piece of card the size of a paper cdsingle, i.e. not a jewel case single.
Both had tracks on it with video content too.
Guess what, NON DRM too.
However, the quality was awful, they were encoded at 160kbs and the memory sticks were 64mb.
Now, I won't buy anymore, but I would rather have HQ DRM music on the stick than crappy quality tunes.
USB is the best thing since vinyl
Dunno about you lot, but I have gotten well sick of supposedly eternal CDs becoming scratched and unusable after a week or two of hard handling in the car, mostly by the kids. I've had to make copies of every CD I bought and use that for the few weeks that it might last. The result has been stacks of useless silver disks all over the place or fast-forwarding to find a non-skipping track.
Recently I bought a new car stereo with an SD slot, a USB port and an AUX jack, and life has become so much simpler. I bought a 1GB key for each of the 3 sprogs and leave them to put whatever they want on them - and no more burning of entire CDs just to add one song to the playlists. No more CDs in fact. They take turns with the keys, or plug their mp3 players into the USB port or the AUX jack, and control it all by the remote.
Everything that I want to hear, well OK, that they DON'T want to hear, is on my own key.
And the entire collection is stored in the hitherto-defunct ashtray!
The player will also rip from CD to USB so I only need to play a new CD once on the way home from buying it...
And if 1GB isn't enough space for them? Tough, they can delete something that they probably never listened to anyway.
As for vinyl, I'm still playing albums that were pressed over 30 years ago.
Doesn't affect me....
I still buy vinyl and I'll continue to buy vinyl. Vinyl is best.
woohoo to vinyl.
Well there goes quality...
....if they get rid of CD's then that's it really, quality music and recordings has gone, sure CD may not be the be all and end all of quality, but i've not yet heard an SACD/DVD-Audio player than can outperform a genuine top quality CD player.. but people like me who appreciate music and buy a lot of CDs probably don't matter compared to yoofs who enjoy playing music through their mobile phone whilst walking down the high street like dirty harry.
I really hope they see sense and stick with the decent format that offers portability, extendability and most of all quality!
What ever happened to the old analogue music?
I still buy vynil, but mainly CDs these days. I'll give in to digital on a CD, but I don't buy and download music online - I like having the whole deal, not just a file on the harddrive.
Personally I don't really want to buy a new sound system just to play off usb sticks - I like the one I have.