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09. 02. 2004

Napster To Go

Napster To Go is the first music service that uses Microsoft's new DRM (digital rights management) Janus, so you can "rent" rather than buy songs. If you have a subscription you can listen to anything available at the store, but if you end the subscription, your access is gone, the songs will be in your memory only, not your music player's. Microsoft says there are over 700,000 protected songs that are eligible for Janus-ing, but I'm not sure if that entire catalog will be available immediately. iTunes sells over 1,000,000 songs, but you'd need $1,000,000 to get them all. But then again, they'd be yours forever. Sigh... I really miss Napster, pre 2.0.
The beta is available only through Windows Media Player. The only portables to work with Napster To Go are Samsung's and Creative's Portable Media Centers, and neither is available yet, but new players by Rio are expected to be compatible as well. Napster To Go is currently $14.95 monthly, but the final pricing will be revealed when the full product, as part of Napster 3.0, launches in the Fall.

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