OK, every now and then I see a poll that has me not so much looking at the results as thinking ‘what did the OTHER bunch of people think’? Over at MusicMagazineUK there is a new article with poll results to questions posed last week. There were three questions, and all were Yes/No.
Here are the results:
86% of people want a price match with Amazon’s services.
71% of people want Apple to reduce the restrictions on variable song and album pricing.
57% of people are unconcerned about easier integration with third party services.
Note that the last result was in response to the question “Easier Integration With All Third Party MP3 Players?” And only 43% of respondents were concerned about using non-Apple MP3 players with iTunes. I am using exclusively Apple music players and want that capability built in!
The one about the variable song & album pricing restrictions is a bit more nebulous, as it isn’t clear exactly what is wanted. Does it have to do with offering sales like Amazon’s $5 albums, or prices other than the current fixed rates, or … ?
But the real head-scratcher is that there are 14% of people who have no interest in iTunes price-matching Amazon’s MP3 store. I mean, it is pretty much common knowledge that Amazon is cheaper than iTunes the vast majority of times by a minimum of $0.50 per album, and frequently by $1-2, isn’t it? So what are these people thinking – are they happy paying more money for the same music at the same basic sound quality? I have no idea!
Speaking of which, the other item brought up in the ‘suggest other items’ box was the ‘iTunes Sample Rate’. Considering Apple and Amazon both use 256kbps rates, it seems like more or less a non-issue to me, but hey.
All of this is speculation about what Steve Jobs might say at his annual keynote in a few weeks. Two years ago we got the end of DRM … and beginning of variable pricing (read: higher prices mandated by labels to get rid of DRM). As for what we’ll get this year?
With 70% market share for digital music, the #1 position for all music sales, total control of the (shrinking) dedicated MP3 player market, and the only real competition coming from streaming music sources … I wouldn’t expect them to be too concerned with minor pricing issues. I would rather they focus on taking iTunes ‘to the cloud’ or unveiling something to rival Spotify or some other forward-looking initiative. What do you think?