Napster (still dead)

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Remember Napster? The first really big peer-to-peer network back in, uhm, like 99/00/01 or so? The first massive scare for the major labels, and the first sign telling them that something huge was happening?

Well, Napster is back. Now it comes with a music flatrate (Euro 14.95 / month), a sort-of-decent-looking music collection of 1.5million songs, and a subscription model that -on the first look- seems to make sense: Play your music on up to 3 computers and one (or two?) compatible mobile players.

And that’s where it ends crashes: Compatible. If you see a list of compatible players which doesn’t even include an iPod, then it’s over before it has even begun.

More importantly, though: It just doesn’t feel right anymore. I’m not talking about it now being a legal service – I highly appreciate it. The same goes for the music flatrate: I’ve been asking for one for the last 4 or 5 years, and even if it comes way too late, at least it comes at all. Nope, it’s the underlying feeling that you just can’t trust the service, that it turned into a mainstream/marketing/rip-off just trying to squeeze a few bucks out of it’s old brand name. I cought myself looking out for fineprints all the time.

You don’t need to be an oracle to predict Napster’s future.

ps. It’s also quite telling that the Investor Relations pages seem to be more comprehensive than the whole music section.

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