Details Emerge On Best Buy's 'Music Cloud' Service

from the press-your-computer's-power-button?-that's-$49 dept

Always striving to prove that they’re on the cutting edge of the technological curve (how’s that for "turning a phrase?"), Best Buy has announced that, why not? it will be offering some sort of music cloud service as well, thrillingly named "Music Cloud." While information is still trickling out as to licensing issues and whether or not the public was really crying out for a Best Buy-owned cloud service, a few details have emerged. 

The following is a mockup (emphasis on the first syllable) of Best Buy’s promotional ad copy for its upcoming Music Cloud:

Can’t wait to do this "cloud thing" that everyone’s already doing? Come to Best Buy!

Simply drop off your computer and one of our Geek Squad™©® members will get you "clouded" in no time.
"No time" = 4-6 hours (4 hour min. @ $79/hr.) to 4-6 weeks (depending on computer complexity/misplacement.)

Can’t make it in to one of our convenient locations? Our Geek Squad™©® members will be more than happy to jam themselves into the nearest VW bug and get this "cloud thing" going from the comfort of your own home!

With either option, you know you’re getting Best Buy’s famous technical expertise!

In-Store Cloud Service

For just $79/hr. (4 hr. min. charge), your personal Geek will:

Stripmine your hard drive of all porn, personal photos, personal data, functioning AV programs and music files. Music will be uploaded to the cloud and accidentally deleted from your hard drive. All other items will remain in place but be conveniently duplicated to your Geek’s personal "cloud" and uploaded later to Facebook and image boards.

Install trial version of various products, including the AV program you didn’t want and multiple trial versions of software you’d never purchase. This "Convenience Package" can be uninstalled for $49.

Provide you with a link to your personal cloud ($29), an email verification form ($7.99)* and a complimentary USB drive (2 GB or lower) from the Returns pile to be used as a personal "take anywhere" pocket cloud or whatever.
* Optional email installation (Gmail, Hotmail or Earthlink – $39)

Sneeze or cough on your computer no less than four(4) times.

Possibly corrupt your hard drive. (Offer not valid in AL, HI or PR.)

Home Cloud Service

For just $149/hr. (4 hr. min. charge), you’ll get all of the above, plus your personal in-home Geek will:

Disconnect your internet service ($19/per occurence).

Comment on the "loveliness" of your home. ($39-$99, depending on sincerity.)

Create some sort of error requiring a trip to the nearest Best Buy for repair. ($"Add to Cart" to see surprisingly high price.)

Hand-copy your login info to the back of his business card ("for quick reference").

Note: additional supplies needed to ensure proper home service will be added to the minimum bill. These include:

  • 5′ Ethernet cable – $39
  • Blank DVD to create recovery disk – $4.99
  • Complimentary Geek Squad pen ($0 if left behind by technician. Otherwise, $4.99.)
  • Screen defragmenter – $12.99/bottle (Active ingredients: isopropyl alcohol, Geek palm sweat)
  • 5′ Power cord – $19
  • Comment card – $2

With your music possibly loaded into our Cloud, you’re now free to go anywhere* and listen to your music at any time!** And all for less than you’d spend on a top-end Airbook! Welcome (belatedly) to the future!* "Anywhere" is defined as any of the contiguous 48 states (excl. TX, MT and VT). Your "Cloud" can be accessed from any Best Buy Certified Computer for up to 6 hours a day or 3 hours continuous play. Other restrictions may apply. See EULA for details.
** "Anytime" is defined as normal store hours. "Cloud" hours will NOT extend during the holiday season. Expect regular interruptions for scheduled maintenance, unscheduled maintenance, "someone forgot to turn it on when they clocked in" and inadvertent login info dissemination.

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Companies: best buy

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Comments on “Details Emerge On Best Buy's 'Music Cloud' Service”

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Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile) says:

Re: Re:

All love was lost the moment the “tech” asked me if I wanted him to install my operating system for me, at the low, low price of $49. I said, “This comes with XP pre-loaded,right?” He says, “Yes.” Me: “So what will you be installing?” Him: “Well, we just go through the setup with you and make sure you’ve got the computer how you want it?” Me: [Incredulous, derisive laugh.] Followed by: “No, thanks. I can handle ‘installing’ my own operating system.”

art guerrilla says:

Re: Re: Re:bust buy sux

1. it actually took me a while to catch on this article was parody, since that is EXACTLY how bust buy operates…
2. NEVER really liked them (or circuit city), but *sometimes* you gotta get a widget *right now*, even if you pay through the nose…
3. when homebuilt desktop (and printer) were knocked out by a lightning strike, needed a replacement fairly quickly, and found a folding desktop (i think others call them laptops, or sumpin’) at reasonable price there, so got it…
4. that is AFTER enduring numerous attempts to get me to upgrade this or that, buy this or that maintenance contract, etc, etc, etc…
5. IN SPITE of telling the two or three sales droids trying to wear me down that i did NOT want their stupid, shitty AV and other bloatware crap, another droid STILL tried to ring that shit up on me ! ! ! fokkers…

made him back it off, but they ‘gave’ it to me anyway… guess that crapware is so valuable… also signed me up for their idiotic email spam until i told them i used their useless CD for a coaster and stop sending me their spam…

art guerrilla
aka ann archy

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:bust buy sux

LOL.. reminds of when I bought my last laptop. They were trying to sell me virus software and warranties with it. I calmly looked at him and said no thank you on any of that, since the first thing I am doing when I get home is repartitioning the hard drive and installing Debian. The guy actually started sputtering something about destroying the backup partition and I asked, why do I need a backup partition for Windows if I am not running Windows? Then he said that installing Linux would void the warranties, to which I said, Really? So the 1 year warranty on hardware defects will be void if I install Linux?”. He then said no that warranty would be OK, just the ones he wanted to sell me would be void.

Anonymous Coward says:

Seriously, why does Tim continue to be allowed to write here? Between him and Michael Ho, I’m less and less interested in coming to this site…

Tim, it would help if you kept your quips short, instead of spending the whole article droning on and on about the same point (BB sucks, we get it, and we all already knew it too). Also, it wouldn’t hurt to include some *actual information* about the news you are writing about.

Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Seriously, why does Tim continue to be allowed to write here?

That’s a good question, AC. I’ll pass it up the ladder.

Also, it wouldn’t hurt to include some *actual information* about the news you are writing about.

The first link will do exactly that, but I’ve included it here so you don’t have to drag your eyes across my painfully long words again:

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Seriously, why does Tim continue to be allowed to write here?

Because I like his posts. Sometimes they’re insightful. Sometimes they’re funny. Sometimes they’re a bit of both. They are different, but different can be good, and in this case, I definitely think it’s good.

Between him and Michael Ho, I’m less and less interested in coming to this site…

I’m sorry to hear that. I like having more voices on the site, and I expect that’s going to continue over time.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: "Because I like his posts."

See folks, opinions of mere /readers/ don’t /actually/ matter here, either. It’s all about Mike. A remarkably strong dislike of this piece just causes him to dig in. His views on serving customers end up the same as those of Murdoch or the New York Times. Readers and topics exist only to generate income for him. The true face of capitalism: only /money/ matters.

JMT says:

Re: Re: Re: "Because I like his posts."

Jesus, what whiney little bitches some people are. If you don’t like this article, move on to the next one. If you don’t like this opinion blog, move on to the next one. Comments like these are far more annoying than the odd article I’m not interested in. Get over yourselves.

Jacob Cooper (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: "Because I like his posts."

Are you fucking serious? Some of us didn’t find the post funny. It wasn’t a call to string Tim and Mike up by their necks from the nearest tall tree.

Jeez… get a grip on yourself.

And, yeah, the accumulation of money (or wealth) is the driving force of civilization. Get used to it. You don’t like money? Go be a monk and leave the rest of us alone.

ClarkeyBalboa (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: "Because I like his posts."

out_of_the_blue wrote:
“His views on serving customers end up the same as those of Murdoch or the New York Times.”

Let’s get something straight: you and I aren’t Mike’s customers. We are his readers. This is his blog, and I appreciate seeing more pieces by other writers. If you don’t, move on to a different article or a different blog.

Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile) says:

Re: Since nowhere do you disclaim this as "humor",

“Since nowhere do you disclaim this as “humor”

Nowhere. Except in the first sentence of the second paragraph. True, I didn’t just come out and say “THIS ISN’T A REAL THING!”, but I see no reason to completely dumb it down.

On to other things:

1. Best Buy’s lawyers will probably fail to see the humor. I would imagine their lawyers fail to see the humor in a lot of things, not just posts mocking their exorbitant prices for non-essential services or their general lack of quality customer service.

2. Those bold blue letters lead to links detailing exactly the sorts of actions I list in this piece. I highly doubt that a piece referencing their own activity is actionable.

3. Like Selhat said: it’s damn near impossible to defame Best Buy considering their history of customer service screwups.

4. Back to BB’s lawyers: are you suggesting a class action suit involving the readers of this article?

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: Since nowhere do you disclaim this as "humor",

Right after you say “a few details emerged”, “mockup /could/ mean Best Buy’s mockup of an ad campaign, and that’s how I took it for some time: details of a /real/ ad campaign.

I consider myself a fairly good reader (and writer), and believe that if you tricked me, accidentally or on purpose, that it’s lousy writing, heavy-handed at best.

No, I highly doubt you’ll /be/ sued, or if so sucessfully, but lawyers and executives can be capricious and might take you for a ride through the courts just for fun. I’ll just ask you to believe that my reaction once I figured out that you’re /attempting/ satire — by the way, this is /nowhere/ put across as a /satirical/ site; read the “About” as I have several times this week: it’s alleged to be NEWS and that’s the set of mind I bring to it — I was annoyed at being tricked, and think you crossed a line, clumsily, but crossed it, and as a reader and citizen — despite my surely well known contempt for corporations — I then sided with Best Buy. Quite a feat.

Niall (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Since nowhere do you disclaim this as "humor",

Tim always seems to write Satire – so read the byline! No-one is ‘forcing’ you to read every article – it’s not like you are paying by the word (unless you are on some stupid data plan)!

Even non-satirical sites can have the odd ‘humour’ piece. As for this one, it really wasn’t that difficult for the average semi-careful reader to figure it out, especially with the word ‘mockup’ prominently called out. Or are you saying that you’ve failed the ‘moron-in-a-hurry test? 😉

This IS a news article – with an amusing slant. The piece is actually about the unoriginally named ‘Music Cloud’ service (good luck trying to trademark that!). Sure, Tim goes short on ‘news’ and long on ‘mockup’ here, but (and this is speaking as a UK citizen who doesn’t have ‘Best’ Buy) Best Buy seem to have done a great job of trashing their own reputation, as evidenced by the links that Tim so helpfully included, all of which are informative and remind us of their less-than-stellar history. Even you comment on feeling ‘forced’ to ‘side with’ Best Buy.

Frankly, I enjoy the change of pace these articles bring. Yes, there are articles I don’t care so much about. I even get disappointed because then that feels like I have been ‘deprived’ of some TD ‘goodness’. But… it’s Mike’s site, it’s an opinion not *news* site, it’s free to use and comment, and overall it’s not only highly educational but it’s also very enjoyable on many levels.

So whilst I can understand you being a bit disgruntled, unless you are a ‘senior’ BB employee/shareholder… get over yourself! 🙂

Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Since nowhere do you disclaim this as "humor",

… it’s alleged to be NEWS and that’s the set of mind I bring to it — I was annoyed at being tricked, and think you crossed a line, clumsily, but crossed it, and as a reader and citizen — despite my surely well known contempt for corporations — I then sided with Best Buy. Quite a feat.

Then you must feel right at home with these people:

However, it is refreshing to see someone wish a lawsuit on someone else simply because they didn’t like what the person wrote, or how they wrote it.

taoareyou (profile) says:

Not Far From the Truth

I went to Best Buy last week to buy some screen protectors for my phone. For ONE plastic sticky plastic rectangle around 3in by 5in they wanted $20. I thought that was a little insane and THEN the guy offered to put it on for me…for $8.99. Seriously. Nine bucks to apply the $20 sheet to my phone.

As I put up the box I noticed another box with the exact same plastic made by the exact same company…but you get three larger sheets for the price of the one smaller one already cut to size. I told the guy I would buy the three pack for twenty bucks instead of the single sheet.

He countered me, “But you will have to use scissors with those.”

I told him it would be ok, I learned how to use scissors back when they allowed them in Kindergarten.

taoareyou (profile) says:

Re: Re: Not Far From the Truth

Sometimes you have to make a choice. Are screen protectors overpriced? Sure. So is a $30 USB cable. Option A. Buy the screen protectors at the price given. Option B. Don’t and take the risk of getting permanent scratches on your $600 smartphone.

Nobody gets perfect deals and lowest possible prices 100% of the time. It’s not as if we are unaware, but we compare price against convenience. If the price is acceptable for the perceived convenience, we will make the purchase.

New Mexico Mark says:

Tough crowd!

FWIW, I enjoyed the article. Is it possible to say too many bad things about Best Buy’s technical services? Well, maybe. But still, it amazes me that people throw their money into that tech “support” black hole.

I wonder if you might have gotten a better response to a fake Best Buy Music Cloud poster-style ad. Are pictures of the Three Stoges in the public domain yet?

Danny (user link) says:

I know what I'm getting Tim from Christmas...

a big ole Best Buy Gift Card because clearly Tim is a fan of that store. I mean really who else but a fan of the story would come up with such an ad?

But seriously the only time I ever go to Best Buy is when I already know what I want and am just price comparing. The last thing I’d wish on anyone would be for them to go into Best Buy with a “I’m looking for a ______ but I’m not sure which one to get.” mindset. That will not end well.

Jimr (profile) says:

Looks legit to me. Thanks for such a detailed description of the upcoming service and details. I could actually read it all in one sitting and with out navigating to countless ‘linked’ pages. Obvious much better than Apples hundreds of pages of detailed legalize talk.

I am sure the ‘other’ cloud services have comparable services but it was really refreshing to seeing Best Buy so up front about everything rather than trying to hide it all.

Mel (profile) says:

Come on shouldn’t the phrases:
“from the press-your-computer’s-power-button?-that’s-$49 dept”
“The following is a mockup (emphasis on the first syllable) of Best Buy’s…”
have been a clue?

As outrageous and ludicrous as Tim’s satire is, the fact that people fell for it as a real news piece exhibits the same technique BB uses to take advantage of peoples’ lack of awareness/alertness to charge ridiculous fees and get money for inferior service/products. The article was close enough to BB’s reality, that without careful reading, it left the viewer thinking that it was real. Just like BB does.

alaskaguy (profile) says:

Why prohibited in AL?

did you mean AlasKa (AK?)
we have a BB up here too…. it sucks when I have technical questions for the Geek Squad and I know more than they do (ie: they didn’t know what a bridge was, nor that you could use modern routers as a switch to create a wireless access point, nor that some cameras had a miniature mode – not computer, but geek!)

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