MTVi Group L.P., RioPort.com Inc. and
the five major music labels announced a breakthrough pay-per-download music
service that will launch by month's end.
Singles will cost between 99 cents and $1.99, while full CDs will cost
between $11.98 and $18.98.
RioPort president Jim Long said two of the five labels -- BMG Entertainment,
EMI Group, Sony Music Entertainment Inc., Universal Music Group and Warner Music
Group -- have content available today. The other three will be online by month's
end, when 10,000 songs will be available.
MTVi president Nicholas Butterworth estimated that 50 percent of the music
MTV: Music Television plays by year's end will be available for pay-per-download
purchase online. MTV will feature the service as part of MTV Radio, which
features 60 Internet-radio channels, and VH1atWork Radio.
'Working with the labels is critical to the success of online music,' he
MTV's ultimate goal is for viewers to be able to watch a video, then purchase
the song or album they've just watched via MTV.com, Butterworth said, adding, 'We can offer
a convergence music experience.'
The service will utilize RealNetworks Inc.'s
'RealPlayer' and Microsoft Corp.'s 'Windows Media Player' streaming formats, as
well as InterTrust Technologies Corp.'s and Windows' download players.