Amazon launched a new iTunes rival called Amazon MP3. One of the nice things about this new music store is that all songs are available without DRM for $0.89:
The early version of the store launched this week, with an initial catalog of over 2 million songs. The store is expected to directly compete with iTunes for online music dominance.
Singles on the new service are cheaper than iTunes -- sometimes. Songs run from 89 cents to 99 cents, an Amazon claims in a statement that more than half of the 2 million songs priced at 89 cents. The company guarantees that its top 100 best sellers will remain at 89 cents.
Amazon signed deals with Vivendi owned Universal Music Group, the largest record company in the world, and EMI, another major record label. Altogether, Amazon claims it secured more than 20,000 record labels.
Users can download tracks from the new service in MP3 format without any copy protection: all music can be readily played on just about any MP3 player, including Apple's iPod family. This move marks a departure from DRM-protected iTunes and recently launched ad-supported download service SpiralFrog.