Yahoo Raises Music Subscription Fees, But Will Anyone Notice?

from the anybody-out-there dept

Yahoo has raised the prices of its portable music subscription services, basically doubling the cost to $9.99 per month for users that pay for a year in advance, or $11.99 per month for those that pay monthly. Users that want to just listen to music on their PC won’t see any increases, though. Yahoo execs didn’t say a whole lot about the success of their music offering during a recent earnings calls, leading to speculation that takeup hasn’t been too high. If people weren’t buying it at $7 a month, why would they at $12? The whole “rent stuff” business model is supposed to be hot right now, but it doesn’t seem like people think it’s such a great idea for music. It’s great to have access to a huge library, but it’s not so great to lose that access if you quit paying. Even RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser has downplayed subscription services, and his company has one.

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Comments on “Yahoo Raises Music Subscription Fees, But Will Anyone Notice?”

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Music Man says:

I prefer subscription plans

Subscription services are great if you want to listen to a wide variety of music without having to pay for and download each song that is to your mood at the moment.

For $7mo, I have access to 100,000+ songs. While I will probably never be able to hear them all, there is a good chance that I’m going to be able to listen to what I want to listen to. If I had to purchase every track that I want to listen to, there would be no way that I could have the kind of library that I would actually enjoy listening to.

Likewise, being a sound engineer, it is wonderful to be able to download songs to my laptop that will accomidate the evenings show that I will be running (yes, we are licensed to do this). Just a few years ago, I was limited to the 500+ CDs that I had in my private collection. Now for only a few $ each month, not only do I have access to that collection, but I also have access to anything else that is out there. Virtually guarenteeing that i will have the right song for the evning.

And we can’t forget the fact that there are lots of new albums that come out each month, that if I had to buy even just one track off of each album, I would spend way more than $7!

Now there is a place for the purchase programs. People want to download and burn to CD, but CDs eventually get old and die. Not to mention the fact that CD medium is becoming more and more worthless every day (my subscription service allows me to transfer music to a portable MP3 player too). But those kinds of programs have no place in my world.

sun says:

Re: Re: Re: I prefer subscription plans

> Sound Engineer = Glorified DJ?

Yes. That’s why they are sound engineers and not DJs. Most music selections I’ve heard at concerts pre and post show usually suck.

Anyway, what is going to stop someone from figuring out how to record online streams into files (like streamripper for shoutcast stations) using the lower priced subscription fee?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: I prefer subscription plans

You have read the Terms of Service agreement with Yahoo before you signed up for this contract didn’t you? If you did, then you know that using anything provided by Yahoo (including downloaded music) for any commercial enterprise (like a DJ playing said downloaded music for payment) is in violation of the terms of service.

You may like the deal, but you are in breach of contract.

Anonymous Coward says:

There are different types of subscription services

There is a distiction to be made here between subscription services and portable subscription services. There are different fees imposed by the labels for streamed, burned, and portable music. Companies like Yahoo and Real usually charge accordingly for the different types of services. I am not at all surprised to see Yahoo raise the prices for portable subscriptions since they have essentially been subsidising their customers.
Rob Glaser was specifically referring to portable subscription services, not subscription services in general when he said they were more hype than substance.

noc_man says:

No Subject Given

Well the free service is fairly poor with its constant commercials (literally every 3rd song or so) and Id been tempted to purchase the monthly when it was $4.99. But I decided its too annoying to listen to free, and not worth $5.

At least live radio has DJ’s with a possibility for entertainment, and if commercials are necessary evils maybe there’s a product I care about — fat chance.

Debbie-Lee says:

Re: No Subject Given

Well… I don’t pay anything to listen to it anyways and the service is not as poor as you think. In fact, not until i downloaded SoundMax to my computer. Having a good soundcard helps minimize the poor audio quality. As far as commercials,can’t really ask for too much when something is free, right?

angela says:

All I want...

I have an extensive personal library made from the cds of anyone I have ever met. Once in a while, I think of a random song that I would like to add to my library, and I can’t get it without subscribing to some ridiculous service. I have a visa gift card, and I can’t find a single site where I can just pick a few songs, pay for them with a prepaid card, and never visit the site again. Is it really so much to ask for?

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