Buy music legally for one tenth of the normal cost ($0.10 per song)

by ron on October 21, 2008

If you wish to stay on the legal side of the road when it comes to obtaining songs, you have three main options which most people know about:

You can buy your songs from:

  1. iTunes for $0.99 per song
  2. Amazon for $0.99 per song
  3. Zune marketplace for $0.99 per song (or use the Zune Pass for $14.99 per month for unlimited songs)

There’s now another company called LaLa, which allows you to also buy songs (DRM free) for $0.99. Nothing new there.  But the key difference is that they also allow you to:

  • listen to the full version of any song of your choice, one time, for free
  • purchase a “web streaming” copy of the song for $0.10, which allows you to listen to the song as many times as you like via their web site
  • if you initially purchase the “web streaming” version of the song for $0.10 and later decide to buy the DRM-free MP3 copy of the song, then you only pay $0.89 for the song rather than $0.99
  • allow you to add 50 “web streaming” songs of your choice to your account for free
  • allow you to import your existing songs from iTunes into the full “web streaming” format, as if you had purchased each song for $0.10 each

Overall, I like the model they are using.

My only concern is whether they will be able to endure as a company, since if they were to collapse then you would lose all access to the web streaming songs you purchased.

If listening to streaming versions of music is your thing, then there are also many other (completely free) viable alternatives, such as Last.Fm, Pandora, SeeqPod, MySpace Music, and my current favorite: GrooveShark Lite.

Here are some videos which will walk you through the functionality available in GrooveShark.

GrooveShark is by far the best way to listen to streaming music for a total cost of …… zippo/nada/zilch.

Note that GrooveShark also allows you to legally purchase and download songs as well.

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