Analyst: Apple may be forced to offer subscription service [updated] | iLounge News


Analyst: Apple may be forced to offer subscription service [updated]

Apple’s iTunes Music Store is facing its strongest challenger in subscription services from Napster and others. At least one analyst says that subscriptions will outpace downloads within the next five years.

“Subscriptions are a great thing for real fans because you get access to a lot of music. The appeal is it’s on-demand. As long as you keep paying, its all there,” Jupiter Research analyst David Card says.

Many believe Apple CEO Steve Jobs will change his stance on subscriptions (he says they won’t succeed because consumers want to own, not rent) if iTunes and the iPod are challenged.

“The only reason they have iTunes is to sell iPods. If it turns out subscription services are important to sell iPods, they’ll probably get into that business,” Card says.

Update: Today at the iHollywood Forum Digital Living Room conference taking place in San Mateo, California, RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser said that one day Apple CEO Steve Jobs will have to move iTunes to subscriptions. “The day that they introduce subscriptions is the day that Steve Jobs has the brilliant revelation that subscriptions are a good thing,” Glaser said.

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Once again, the music industry believes consumers buy music as a utility/commodity, not as art. People don’t need new music on a daily basis. And if they do, it must suck to be them.

Posted by minty on March 7, 2005 at 3:04 PM (CST)


The RIAA wants a subscription model.  Then they completely own everything and you get the priveledge of listening to their precious tunes for a month as long as you pay.  Then when you stop paying you got nothing.

For that reason, I will never use a subscription model.  1) I want to own my music, and 2) to stick it to the RIAA.

Oh, and please don’t comment how you really don’t own the stuff even with iTunes… I burn it to CD then rip it to remove the DRM.  I’ll put my music where I want to listen to it, thank you very much.

When was the last time you wished some company put *more* time and resources into figuring out how I could do *less* with what I buy?  What kinda of a messed up place are we living in…

Posted by m. sherman in Northern VA on March 7, 2005 at 4:52 PM (CST)


I like the idea of offering both, as Zump99 said, it benefits the consumer most of all. Let each individual person decide what works for them.

I could see using both personally. There are many songs or collections I want to own, because I’ve listened to them for years and will keep doing so. On the other hand, there is a lot of “pop” music that is entertaining now, but isn’t going to last long before the novelty wears off.

Finally, to add to m. sherman’s argument about why to hate the RIAA, let’s not forget that (as an old guy!) I’ve already purchased some of the music I own multiple times (i.e. first on vinyl or later cassette and then again on CD, and in a couple cases yet again on iTunes to replace a song or two from lost or damaged discs I didn’t want to purchase again.)

Posted by punxking in San Diego on March 7, 2005 at 5:28 PM (CST)


using the Holocaust in your post is, well, offensive.

I hereby change my analogy from “Holocaust Deniers” to “Flat Earthers”.

please don’t comment how you really don’t own the stuff even with iTunes… I burn it to CD then rip it to remove the DRM

Well I have to interject that if you are doing this to remove the DRM (and not just as a backup media for the iTMS licensed files) then you are in violation of the DMCA .

You have already paid the RIAA license fee through iTMS, I really don’t see how you’re “sticking it” to them.

Posted by Demosthenes on March 7, 2005 at 7:50 PM (CST)


I wouldn’t want it. It would be like killing the goose that laid the golden egg.

Posted by Birdman in Boulder CO on March 7, 2005 at 8:01 PM (CST)


some of you still don’t get it.  You can use the subscription service to sample every song available on iTunes….those you wish to keep forever, sure, you can pay the 99 cents to permenantly keep it.  If you don’t like the model, you don’t even have to subscribe.  Some people simply enjoy listening to the latest songs out, and once they get sick of it, they don’t have to pay the price to keep it.

Posted by VertigoLimit on March 7, 2005 at 9:09 PM (CST)


i agree. i’m a completist and love to collect the entire collection, i thought well, i’ll try napster get music, burn to disc and convert to iTunes (which I guess I could still do) but in digital form, i can only play as long as I can paying… even for the free subscription?

that’s a rip-off in my opinon.

if you want the latest tunes til their old, just play the radio. i want my tracks to last as long as my iPod does… longer even.

Posted by xenlab on March 8, 2005 at 10:17 AM (CST)


Demo - You mean the earth is round? ;o)

Posted by Magic Rabbits in Aberdeen, Scotland on March 9, 2005 at 9:51 AM (CST)


Given what Napster now offers, I would not buy an IPOD for my teenage daughter.  I would buy an MP3 player that is compatible with a legal subscription service.  I want to keep her downloading legal safe software, and a full subscription service is the only way I can guarantee her activity.  I will be one of the first to sign up, once ITUNEs announces a subscription service.

Posted by amyb on March 14, 2005 at 10:07 AM (CST)

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