iTunes store pricing changes

In the news today, Apple announced that iTunes will be increasing the price of their “hit” tracks from $.99 to $1.29. Back in January, iTunes announced this tiered pricing structure by stating that it would begin selling individual songs at $.69 and $1.29 in addition to the current price point of $.99. This move was trumpeted as a way to offer a discounted pricing option directed to consumers looking to fill out their digital music collection with some older, less popular titles as well as offering a higher priced option for those interested in a better quality, DRM-free files. Does that mean, I can stock up on all those Steely Dan albums? Maybe, we will see. Will the $.69 price option offer back catalog songs that are DRM free? Don’t know, my hunch is everything is the iTunes store will be DRM-free, but I can’t confirm that. To be fair, Apple may have detailed all of this, but I just can’t find it anywhere. If anyone has the breakdown as to what costs what, and what you get for your money, please point me in the right direction.

Color me skeptical of Apple’s whole tiered pricing structure. My bet is most everything you will want to purchase will be $.99 or $1.29 (please let me know if you find anything interesting for $.69) and forgive me if I don’t get too excited about the fact that the files are DRM free. Big whoop; Amazon has been DRM free since January 2008 and offer 256kbps MP3 files not AAC. I have been purchasing MP3s from Amazon since they launched the MP3 store -they offer better prices, better quality and a more flexible and portable file format. Somebody please tell me what I am missing over at iTunes.


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