CNET: Online music’s winners and losers

“Since May 2003, when Apple Computer’s online music service iTunes opened its digital doors, the drums announcing other online music services—new enterprises as well as existing music services spruced up and recharged—have been steadily beating. […]

The future looks good, too. Jupiter Research expects online music sales to grow to $3.3 billion by 2008. Forrester Research expects that within four years online music will account for 33 percent of the music industry’s sales. But behind the vaunted successes and the optimistic predictions lurk at least two big questions: Which online music vendors, among the nearly one dozen operating today, have found the business model that will guarantee they will be around in 2008 to share the profits? Can the for-fee services make a dent in the billions of musical tracks exchanged, at no cost, on pirate networks?”

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