MP3s and online music sharing over the past decade has forced record companies to change their marketing model for music. Gone are the days when CDs used to cost $19.99 with only 2-3 good songs and 12 filler songs.

Record companies have been forced to lower the price of their CDs as they compete for your entertainment dollar with DVDs, and Video Games. The average CD now costs $14.99.

Record companies have also begun to sell their collections to music download sites which charge per song downloaded. The average song costs $0.99.

The newest music download site Amazon MP3s it poised to become the leader in music download sites. Though the site is not as easy as iTunes, it offers a library of music almost as large as iTunes. The cost per song is on average $0.10 cheaper. The songs do not have any digital rights restrictions.

This lack of digital rights restrictions I believe will be the biggest factor in making Amazon MP3s a success. You are free to transfer and listen to the music you purchased on any digital media device you want. Other popular music download stores such as iTunes cost more, and severely restrict what you can do with the music that you paid for.

Preview Amazon MP3s

iTunes Store

  • Most popular music download site.
  • AAC format at 128-256 kbps.
  • Integrated to work with Apple iPod.
  • Over 3 million songs available for download. Also audio books, TV episodes, podcasts.
  • Price $0.99 per song.
  • Digital Rights Management (DRM) protected songs.
  • Users can make a maximum of seven CD copies of any particular playlist.
  • Songs can only be played on a computer with iTunes or an iPod; other MP3 devices do not support downloaded songs.

Amazon MP3s

  • Newest music download site.
  • MP3 format at 256 kbps
  • Over 2 million songs available for download.
  • Price $0.89-$0.99 per song.
  • No digital rights restrictions.
  • Songs can be played on any MP3 player, iPod, burned to CD, transfered to any digital media device.
  • Need a US billing address to download music. Soon available to international billing addresses.