What Makes A Mobile Song Download Worth $1.50 More?

from the mobile-equals-expensive dept

Sprint's making headlines this morning by announcing the first US over-the-air mobile music download service. Apparently the company's target market is impatient rich people that can't wait to get home to download something, as songs will cost $2.50 per track. What is it about mobile download services that make operators think they can charge two and a half times the going rate for regular online downloads? Oh, well, it's dual-delivery, they say, meaning users will get the songs both on their phone and on their computer. Awesome -- so not only does their copy protection make things more difficult, it's used to justify a higher price, too. Here's where everybody's insistence on copy protection really becomes a problem: users won't want to buy new devices that can't play music they already own, and they won't abandon existing cheaper services (and music players they already own) just to be able to buy music through their phone when it costs so much more. Sure, device convergence is nice, but asking users to pay a $1.50 per song premium to carry around one less device really isn't the right way to go about it.

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  1. identicon
    Wireless Guy, 31 Oct 2005 @ 10:36am

    I cringed when I saw this

    Too many times good ideas have been killed by poor marketing/pricing. Sprint once again is pricing itself out of the game. This combined with their own admission that they will be limiting their unlimited service, keeping people from using voice phones with cables in EV-DO mode, puts their price tag of $60 at a point where you are better off staying with 1XRTT rates at more reasonable costs. The same is true for Cingular UMTS & Verizon's EV-DO> The only data I see that makes financial sense for what you can use it for is T-Mobile's EDGE at $20.

    $2.50 for a song, that is about $25-30 an album. Even if you take the time to go and buy in a store, the cost of gas and the pain of the geeks behind the counter it is still cheaper to go and get it the traditional way.

    I bet within two months people will have ways of getting around their locks, just like people have with everything else.

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