US-based Universal Music’s subsidiary Deutsche Grammophon has launched the DG Web Shop, an online store for classical music downloads. The company claims that the store offers about 2,500 classical albums, which include more than 600 titles that are no longer available as CDs.
Universal Music (UMG) said that it intends to digitize all Deutsche Grammophon (DG) recordings for download over the internet. The music downloaded through the website is free from digital rights management (DRM). The company said that this is a part of its ongoing DRM-free download trial, under which all titles are offered in MP3 format.
The company added that the downloads are compatible with all portable music players, including iPod, iPhone and walkman and can be copied to a CD. The songs can be downloaded at a transfer rate of 320 Kbps, which it claims is more than the industry download standard of 128-192 Kbps as well as EMI’s 256 Kbps on iTunes.
The online store can be accessed in 42 countries, including China, India, Latin America, South Africa and Central and Eastern Europe. The users can buy tracks in US dollars and euros, depending on their residence. Individual titles are priced from $1.09, while albums are sold for $10.99-11.99.
In January 2007, the UMG’s Classics & Jazz website launched its own download service to cater to the growing digital market for classical music. The company claimed that the website had the largest online classical and jazz genre downloads, with more than 125,000 titles, including works from the DG catalog. It also partnered with eBay in 2004 to launch Universal Music Store.
Source: ComputerWire daily updates