iTunes is more expensive than any other shop for downloading music tracks
An investigation by a London-based newspaper, the Evening Standard, demonstrates that iTunes is always more expensive than any other store for music downloads.
The Standard conducted a series of searches for music singles and albums on a test version of the website and in all instances iTunes was undercut by one or more of its competitors.
Consumers who want to download media have numerous alternatives. Unlike iTunes, other online stores don't install a monsterous EXE app that uses-up 4 Gigabytes of RAM, and they don't try to take-over your computer. iTunes really is not good software. I usually just buy from the cheapest seller, which is never iTunes. It's just an MP3 file; I don't need a designer label on it. I sometimes use Tesco Digital -- a new website recently launched by a the UK's leading supermarket company. In contrast, Tesco Digital is a nice website to use. It's built with state-of-the-art technology, running on Microsoft's basic web platform -- simply ASP.NET on IIS.
There has been a long history of concerns over grossly excessive pricing by iTunes. For instance, in the UK in 2004 the Consumers' Association sent a report to the Office of Fair Trading complaining that iTunes is overcharging its customers.
"There appears to be considerable evidence that the iTunes set up is prejudiced against the UK public and distorts the very basis of the single market"
Apple's prices are high across the board, not just for music downloads. Its products are expensive, trendy, designer, brand-name versions of products which are available much more cheaply elsewhere. Apple has achieved commercial success by producing shiny, pretty, products, through innovative design work. Ingenious marketing and PR have popularised some of Apple's brands to cult-status. (I have to keep reminding myself that he iPod is in fact just another MP3 player.) A recent TV ad by Microsoft used Apple's own strategy against them, pointing out that buying a Mac means paying more while getting less. The masses are easily seduced by designer brands, and will happily pay extra for something that makes them feel cool or trendy -- especially if it looks nice and has the right label.
iTunes is the global market-leader for music downloads, with 70% of all online music sales world-wide going through the iTunes store. Apple looks a lot like a monopoly abusing its privileged position, selling at inflated prices to maximise corporate profits at the expense of the customer.
No wonder industry insiders have started describing Apple as "evil".
04 August 2009
Tags: itunes music download shop expensive over-priced store tracks downloads mp3 over-charging mp3 player extortionate mp3s compare prices price comparison comparedownload cheapest brands designer brand competitive intelligence