Amazon's Cloud Drive may not have seemed like an innovative move as more consumers are opting to stream rather than download their music. But it was a disruption enough to cause some record labels to bark back at Amazon and chastise the company for not getting their permission to launch a cloud-based storage and music player. Their permission, and of course, their licensing.The launch of
But Billboard reports that Amazon has responded to some of these music industry complaints with a letter contending that since the launch of Cloud Drive two weeks ago, that MP3 sales are up.
Infamous for not ever releasing the sales figures to back up these sorts of claims (the same goes for claims about sales of Kindles and e-books, for example), Amazon doesn't say how much sales are up. But it insists that the new cloud-based storage will help, not hurt the industry.
Amazon also reiterated its stance that, since the Cloud Drive is akin to an external hard-drive or an online back-up service, there is no requirement for it to obtain licensing agreements with music labels.
"Cloud Player is a media management and play-back application not unlike Windows Media Player and any number of other media management applications that let customers manage and play their music. It requires a license from content owners no more than those applications do. It really is that simple."
The letter does indicate that as Amazon adds features to the Cloud Drive and associated MP3 player, that it may seek licenses. The letter ends with, "expect to hear more from us on potential licensing in the near future."
As both Google and Apple are reportedly working on their own versions of cloud music storage, it's not surprising that Amazon wants to be firm in its argument that it doesn't need the record industry's approval on these efforts. To have to negotiate deals would set it back as these major players all move to provide customers with some sort of storage and streaming cloud-based service.