7Digital, the United Kingdom-based (or UK for short) company, claims that a majority of its tracks only cost 0.77¢ as compared to iTunes 0.99¢ price average claim. There are songs that cost 0.99¢ on the site, but these are tracks that are usually $1.29 on iTunes.
The store only has 7 million DRM-Free MP3s as opposed to iTunes 10 million. One major feature is that the store offers 320kbps MP3s, which are of higher quality than most digital download stores. Surprisingly, the 3G network cannot handle these. But if you do download a song at say... 128kbps, once you reach a Wi-Fi spot you can replace it with the 320kbps version for free.
The article continues on, questioning how the company can maintain such low prices. There is really no other useful information after what my last paragraph discussed. I think that this is an interesting idea. As an old-school musician/fan, I still purchase CDs. So I was surprised to learn that iTunes only offers 256kbps as their highest quality at the moment. Most of their MP3s are still encoded at 128kbps as well. I find the inability to transfer high quality MP3s over the 3G network to be somewhat alarming. It seems rather inconvenient to have to potentially download something twice. It will be interesting to see how this expansion of 7Digital's services works out.
- Derek Jenkins