By Guest Author Steven Finch
Amie Street is an online music store that has two key features: their unique pricing model and DRM-free downloads.
The Amie Street pricing model is quite simple - all songs start free and rise in price the more they are purchased. So as the demand increass, the price goes up accordingly. At present there is a cap at which is the maximum price a track can sell for, which is $0.99.
The site overall is well designed and they highlight their key selling point nicely. However the online music store market is quite crowded. Similar competitors include Snocap, ReverbNation and BlastMyMusic. Snocap has focused on partnering with some of the biggest social networks on the web; and this is something that Amie Street should consider too. Currently Amie Street is mostly focused on selling through their store, instead of spreading throughout the web and selling via widgets and social networks. Currently the site has a recommendation service, but no sign of widgets or other distributed mechanisms.
The DRM free strategy that Amie Street has is starting to blossom in the world of online music sales. In April 2007 EMI announced a DRM-free music download offering. That is a premium service, covering EMI's entire digital catalogue, and will enable full interoperability of digital music across all devices and platforms.
However the Amie Street catalogue growth has been limited due to DRM-free being in just its initial stages. Once DRM-free is used by the other major labels and more independent labels, then look for the Amie Street catalogue to grow a lot. Indeed Amie Street could be a market leader in introducing DRM-free to a wider audience.
What do you think of Amie St? If you've used the service, please share your impressions.