AOL Europe preps second music download service backbone

GristyMcFisty reports us that according to
this article over at The
Register, America Online (AOL) Europe is planning to launch the second
music download service backbone in Europe. The service will include an online
radio station and pricing of the music tracks will be akin to Apple iTunes,
which is to be launched
this week:

The plans were revealed in an interview with Reuters,
and the service would be the first that does not rely on the backbone
delivery network run by OD2 which drives the EMI, Microsoft and all other
services launched so far.

That network has the rights to about
200,000 songs and AOL plans to have rights to a similar number by launch
and is negotiating with record labels and collections bodies now.
Previously European music providers have been loathe to offer their songs
through online delivery, stubbornly resisting online services due to
concerns about illegal downloading. But EMI broke the logjam when it
launched its own service through about 20 etailers, with delivery and
digital rights managed by OD2.

As a lead up to the online music
service, AOL launched Radio@AOL Broadband yesterday as a free radio
service.

Music downloading services are hot, real hot. It’s too bad that
we haven’t seen any real competition when it comes to the pricing of downloading
music. Almost every new music downloading service seems to be
following the pricing that is used at existing services. When the services start
competing in this area it will become more interesting
methinks.

Source: The Register