Dell promotes Musicmatch's online music service

— 1:05 PM on September 29, 2003

Musicmatch is the latest player to throw its hat into the online music service game. To help promote its new service, Musicmatch has enlisted the help of PC giant Dell. It looks like Dell's own music store may eventually be a rebranded version of Musicmatch's service.

In addition to providing access to an online music store through its Jukebox software, Musicmatch looks to be offering a reasonable amount of DRM with its competitively-priced downloads:

Pricing is set at 99 cents per song and $9.99 for most albums. Apple's iTunes likewise offers songs for 99 cents apiece; BuyMusic offers a range of single-song prices starting at 79 cents.

The company is also claiming relatively liberal usage rules. Customers can play tracks on up to three PCs simultaneously and transfer them to Windows Media-supported music players. Songs can be burned to CDs, but a given playlist may be burned no more than five times.

No mention is given on what kind of bit rates are being offered by the Musicmatch service, but I suspect audio quality to at least equal what's available through competing services. Musicmatch's reliance on the Windows Media format for downloads may limit the service's appeal for non-Windows users, but for the vast majority of mainstream PC users, the WMA format should work just fine.
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