Where does the back-catalog sit for streaming media?
Yesterday, I looked into how the modular by design approach impacted the music business. Today, I’m examining how music stores are selling tracks. Much has been made recently of the battle between Apple and Real Networks. After their attempt to partner up with Apple were rebuffed, Real Networks introduced a new product called Harmony, which allowed songs bought in the RealPlayer music store to be played on an iPod. Of course, Apple was shocked and threatened lawsuit. In a way, the reaction by Apple was to be expected as they were trying to create a new bundle around the online music business. Their model is not one of album sales but one of an integrated media package that includes both a device (the iPod) and a service (the iTunes music store). This contention is encapsulated in the way they present their offering on the Apple site. The tab at the top of their pages clearly states “iPod + iTunes” and the company sees them as part of the same offering. By introducing a different way to buy and manage music on the iPod, Real Networks attacked the heart of Apple music strategy, unbundling the device from the service. While Apple…Read More