Napster and iTunes are two online services providers involved in the sharing of music digitally between users that are subscribed to them. A lot of articles have been written about them with ideologies matching and contrasting. At the end of the day, both of them are in completion to make a mark and profits like any other business would want to. In this paper I look deeply at each of them then later contrast and compare them all in regards to markets, opportunities and exploitation, technological advances, consumer behavior, globalization, markets trend analysis and gap in the create for each other in this competitive market.
Napster as a company has its headquarters located in Los Angeles. It is a music store that is online which offers interactive digital music streaming services ‘3. It allows its users to find, share, obtain, and listen to music wherever online on any computers, Televisions sets and other home audio devices. These downloaded songs will become someone’s permanent compilation and they will be able to play them on any device that can play mp3 format files. Examples of the devices that can play mp3 files include Apple’s portable devices such as – iPhones, iPods, – mobile phones that can play music among others. In the U.S.A Napster service is available in on their websites, i.e. m.napster.com and napster.com. Napster service is also available in Canada, Germany and the United Kingdom on PCs. Napster is a fully owned auxiliary of the Best Buy, Inc. With Napster you can create your own profile where you can discover and share any music of your choice online. It also offers services that will connect well with other social networks. Initially Napster was a company that dealt with the person to person digitally programmed audio files (mainly in mp3 format) sharing ‘2. Roxio Company took it over after it got problems with copyright contravention but latter Best Buy Company took it over.
Napster as a company has joined hand with different other service providers such us Rhapsody. After creating your own music profile, here are some technological advantages that come with Napster. You can be able to make your songs movable on your cellular phone or tablet using applications for iPhone, Windows Phone 7, Blackberry and Android. Even when a Napster user is not connected to the internet, they can still download their music straight to their phone.
As a user also if you are at times not conversant or sure enough with what you want to listen to, this service gives you a variety of recommendations from which you can choose from. It also offers music catalogues that are attuned to home appliances such as Mp3 players, DVRs, and TVs from where you can access your mp3 playlists ‘4. Rhapsody radio stations are also options from where you can listen if you don’t want to listen to your playlists.
Though Napster has its criticizers it has proved to be successful. It has helped albums, listeners and musicians get and share there music with great hits an example in this case which would be that of ‘Kid A’ album that hit the billboards because of Napster’s promotion capabilities ‘5. Most of the subscribers of Napster were college students. Artists that are not mainstream have also have seen much promotion through Napster though others have criticized these unregulated distribution networks.
iTunes has proved to be one of the mainly trendy system of organizing audio and video content. In market trend, iTunes has also rebranded its logo from the traditional music note on top of a Cd to a further application like representation. With iTunes, you can create audio files, edit and tag them. With this service you can also buy, download, burn CDs and DVDs and supervise your music libraries.
iTunes also has a service called the iTunes Match. Users can subscribe to this service for $25 annually. The iTunes match service allows its users to store their music digitally on Apple’s servers from which it can be accessed any device that that have iTunes capability. iTunes merged with the Apple company and came up with iTunes in the cloud service’7. With this service the users of iTunes don’t have to be on a pc that runs iTunes so as to sync music, e-books or applications. Alternatively if a user is using any of the Apple’s devices such as iPhones, iPads etc and wants to sync to a pc, that’s still possible using Wi-Fi. With iTunes match, each song you have imported from your CDS can be able to be stored in iCloud.
Once that is done all your music will show in up to a total of ten of any of your iOS devices or PCs iTunes that have your account logged on them. As the iPod has globalised its services so has the iTunes store. Reports say that Apple will be opening an application known as pan – European iTunes ‘1. iTunes has three major markets that is, Germany, the United Kingdom and France also with Japan having a close follow.
Steve Jobs lately announced a merge venture between Apple TV and iTunes version 10. This technological advancement will allow the downloads of music on iTunes to look more of social networking where users will be able to chat and share music with their friends on iTune. With Apple TV technology people will be able to download movies for $4 and shows on TV for $1. With the new iTunes (7) store, subscribers can be able to download movies from iTunes an announcement that was made by Apple.
In the learning sector, another application that iTunes has is the iTunes U. Using this application, its users can acquire information from museums, top institutions, and other cultural institutions world wide. iTunes gift cards is another service that comes with iTunes. With users can share gifts such as songs, movies, song videos, shows for TV and also using this service the recipients have a chance to decide hence they get what they want. iTunes also makes use of podcasts which is a free service. With podcasts can be compared to TV or Radio shows which are in a series form. You can get pretty much anything that you may want to see ’6. Podcasts without human intervention download users’ iTunes library. This helps the users not to fail to notice passing episodes. These episodes can be viewed with all compatible devices that the users access.
In my comparison of the two download online download services, it is evident that iTunes services are largely known accepted and used compared to Napster services. The interface and the capabilities of Napster services also will prove to be of less usability with the changing technology trends standards that iTunes has set. The merging of Apple with iTunes has also played its part in setting this market gaps experienced in regard to Napster as a competitor providing same services.
Both the services have a big client subscription base of clientele who pay up for the services. However they have their strengths as well as their weaknesses. Many users will say that Napster is pocket friendly for unlimited downloads ’8. Napster offers 192kbs while iTunes offers 128kbs. Among other many contrasting issues based on strength and weaknesses.
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