By: Spacelab Research Staff
Wasn't it already(?) was my first question. I guess today's announcement means no, but the intention was always there. Amazon and the Amazon music overlords said today that 'the company will begin an international rollout of Amazon MP3, Amazon's DRM-free MP3 digital music store.' Amazon meets world. Again.
"We have received thousands of e-mails from Amazon customers around the world asking us when we will make Amazon MP3 available outside of the U.S... We are excited to tell those customers today that Amazon MP3 is going international this year," said Amazon.com Vice President of Digital Music Bill Carr in a statement released by Amazon.
This of course ups the ante in Amazon's battle with Apple's dominance of music downloads with iTunes. Amazon has proven to be a favorite partner of all four big recording labels because of its friendliness towards variable pricing and other flexibilities that Apple and Steve Jobs stood against in the past.
Amazon launched its store late last year on its web site, as part of a broad move to enter the music download market and decided it would abandon any DRM (digital rights management) with its music and sell in the MP3 format. It seems common now, but when they first announced it , it was a pretty big deal.
Not everyone has commited forever to a DRM future with Amazon, as the Silicon Alley Insider reported today. Universal Music Group says that they still consider this just a 'test,' and that they'll review the results and possibly change their mind at a later time.
It's also become apparent that Yahoo is looking to revive its flatlining music services with the possibility of a new offering of either a DRM-free music store or an ad-supported streaming service.