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Facebook to offer full-fleged iTunes rival?

updated 08:35 am EST, Wed March 5, 2008

Facebook Music Store Rumor

Facebook is investigating the possibility of its own music store, say reported insiders. While the social network recently launched its Music on Facebook service for following artists and buying their music through iTunes, the company is reportedly in talks with major labels to offer content of its own. While no aspects of the deal have been finalized, label officials reportedly say that a deal would most likely include free, ad-backed streaming audio similar to MySpace's profile pages but allow paid MP3 downloads usable on any operating system and portable player.

Such a move would echo rumors of a MySpace store earlier this month, which also hinted at early negotiations to offer a mix of free streams as well as paid content. However, Facebook is expected to have an easier time persuading labels as it has encountered few if any complaints about copyright violations. Universal Music Group is still involved in an infringement suit with MySpace where it accuses the latter of violating copyright by hosting full tracks.

Both initiatives are believed to be prompted by a desire to tap into a ready-made audience that is not always possible with separate online stores, such as Amazon MP3 or iTunes.

by MacNN Staff





  1. vasic

    Joined: Dec 1969


    iTunes rival..???

    More like iTunes wannabe (or, to grab headlines even more efficiently, iTunes killer)...

    Give me a second to get some popcorn and get more comfortable on my sofa. OK, now you can go at it, MySpace.

  1. danviento

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Is it just me,

    or are people making waaaaay too much out of this site? If you ask me, this is much ado about next to nothing.

    Yes, were myspace and facebook to start their own stores, they might sell some music out of convenience, but do you think they're going to have the same prices as iTMS? The labels have been foaming at the mouth for want of the ability to set their own prices in per-song downloads (thank you Stevo for sticking to your guns).

    Their best effort might be trying to undercut iTMS in the beginning, and the reserve raising prices for later, as they did with Amazon.

    These two sites do not have their own dedicated software and hardware lines to complete the whole package. I very much doubt they'll amount to much other than a distant rival in the downloads market.

  1. danviento

    Joined: Dec 1969


    And don't forget

    How people were chomping at the bit to be part of the add integration on FB, and how miserably it failed. Yes, it has a lot of users now, but it won't for long as soon as its littered with excess ads and marketing ploys.

  1. Rezzz

    Joined: Dec 1969


    full fledged

    full-fleged, huh? well, since you put it that way...

  1. ender

    Joined: Dec 1969


    hope they succeed

    I actually hope they are successful. Why? Because, if the story is correct, they are planning to use non-DRM MP3 tracks (sure, I'd rather it be AAC). I really don't think they ever be a true competitor to iTunes (lack of integration with iPods, AppleTV, etc), so no worries there. But if these other stores are successful, the record companies may finally get the hint that DRM is bad and we'll be able to start getting more non-DRM content on iTunes. (Of course, they could continue to require DRM on only iTunes, but at some point I'd think they'd get into legally questionable grounds if they require DRM on iTunes but not on any other store.)

    If all of these stores fail, the record companies may just look at it as proof that customers must want DRM because they aren't buying non-DRM music. Yes, that's twisted logic; but we ARE talking about record company execs...

  1. JulesLt

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Gambit - yes, because a lot of people will buy things that look like something else if they have a poor understanding of how they work. And they may live with slower and worse battery life for something 1/2 the cost or more.

    The interesting thing is to what degree Apple's strategy of using OS X in the iPod platform will pay off in creating a significant difference between them and their competitors. Creating software like the original iPods and Nano isn't that difficult. OS X more so.

  1. UberFu

    Joined: Dec 1969



    whenFacebook actually comes out ahead of iTunes - then let me know - Amazon - Microsoft and all the rest have continuously tried and as such MacNN and other sites like to promote "is this the next iTunes Killer?" and it never happens_ It hasn't happen yet and nobody cares anymore until it actaully does happen_

    So once again why is this a comparison to iTunes - why can't you simply say that Facebook is releasing an online Music/video Store and congratulate them an dmove along?

  1. ApeInTheShell

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Social networking

    If Apple wants to get into this "social networking" hub bub the advantage they have over everyone is music. The MPEG-4 is a higher quality format and takes up less space using audio. If Apple were to allow Mac/PC users to share their purchased songs on MySpace or Facebook than they wouldn't have to download the music. Or build a mini iTunes music store client into these networks. But that will never happen. =D

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