If you buy a CD on Amazon but also want to play it on your iPod (which describes my kids), you insert the disc and rip the music to iTunes. That gives you the best of all worlds – and if you use iTunes Match you can then download the tracks on any of your iOS devices. But with fewer and fewer computers (dominated by the move to Ultrabooks and the Macbook Air) coming equipped with a CD drive, customers are increasingly making the move to an all-digital library … so if they use an iPod or other iOS device that usually means buying through iTunes.
I have professed my love for Amazon’s MP3 store due to the great selection, ease of downloading and direct import to iTunes – oh, and the fact that they are almost always at least 10% cheaper than iTunes! Now Amazon is trying a new way to get customers who still love CDs to keep buying – “Amazon AutoRip”, which will include free digital copies, be for CD purchases dating back to 1998, be enjoyable from anywhere, offers free storage and backup and is stored in Cloud Player and accessible from any compatible device.
It is worth noting that not ALL CDs are eligible. So for example the image above shows what I saw when I logged into Cloud Player – 82 new songs across a bunch of genres. One CD – Jesus Piece by The Game – only had a single song eligible, and the other new one my son got by T.I. had only three songs … and the two albums had more than 30 songs combined! Stuff such as Enter the Wu Tang, Peter Gabriel’s So, Miles Davis Bitches Brew Legacy Edition, Daft Punk’s Human After All and so on.
So it is rather hit or miss right now, but I see it as a great new feature! What do you think?