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Rhapsody Embraces iTunes, Launches Competitor

  • Reuters, Monday, June 30, 2008 11:30 AM
ITunes competitor Rhapsody is launching a DRM-free MP3 store, which means that users of the online music service will now be able to purchased and play Rhapsody songs on Apple's iPods. Before now, Rhapsody, a joint venture of Viacom's MTV Networks and Real Networks, offered users a subscription service, allowing unlimited streaming music for $13-$15 per month.

Rhapsody Vice President Neil Smith said his company's service had been limited by not being compatible with Apple's iPod. "We're no longer competing with the iPod," Smith told Reuters. "We're embracing it." In conjunction with the launch of the new store, Rhapsody will supply music MTV's music Web sites and iLike, the social music application popularized on Facebook.

The Rhapsody store will also be available of mobile phones via Verizon Wireless' VCAST Music service. Those who buy songs through their phones will also be able to port those songs to their computers. Rhapsody execs described the new service as "Music Without Limits" and said they would spend $50 million on a marketing campaign supporting it.



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