Things that make you go: WTF?

January 22nd, 2009 | Tags: ,

Microsoft is getting back into the Music business (after abandoning it and screwing their customers because the DRM’d music stopped working) with the launch of the MSN Mobile Music Service.  Music is a good business now so that makes some sense, though they’ll have to compete with iTunes and Amazon for paying customers.  PCPro (UK) interviewed the guy in charge.  The key features of Microsoft’s new service:

  1. Tracks cost 2x as much as on iTunes and Amazon
  2. Tracks are DRM’d
  3. Tracks will only play on the mobile device you bought the track on

Essentially, you are being asked to pay 2x as much for the ability to play a track on a single device — one that you will likely be replacing in less than 2 years.  And I’m sure that if your phone breaks and you get a warrantied replacement, you’ll have to buy the track again.  When asked about this puzzling plan:

What is your message to consumers – why should I come to you instead of Amazon or iTunes? What do you offer that none of your competitors do?

There’s a whole bunch of people who are very loyal to MSN on the web and there’s now almost a million users of MSN Mobile every month, within the space of 12 months of it being launched.

So there’s a whole bunch of people who are using MSN on their mobile phone for a whole variety of reasons. And we’re saying to them, if you want to download music, it’s available here. If you don’t, that’s fine.

It’s a consumer’s choice and they will decide if they’re happy with the MSN Music service or if they want to go somewhere else.

So what they are offering is to milk the fools who use MSN for as much cash as they can get.  Nice…

Today Microsoft announced that they’ll be firing laying-off 1,400 employees today.  While the prevailing economic climate has a lot to do with the layoffs, launching products that don’t provide a competitive advantage but rely on customers being locked into your brand can not have helped.

Seen on Slashdot.

P.S. I still HATE Exchange.

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