Amazon.com announced earlier this week that they are going to launch a DRM-Free MP3 music download store later this year with songs and albums from EMI Music as well as more than 12,000 other record labels. So yes, that means that every track and album will be available in the MP3 format without the DRM (digital rights management) software. The interesting thing is that their service will work on all devices including PCs, Macs, iPods, Zunes and Zens. Customers will also be able to burn songs to CDs for personal use just like with iTunes.
In a press release from Amazon.com, CEO and founder Jeff Bezos stated, "Our MP3-only strategy means all the music that customers buy on Amazon is always DRM-free and plays on any device. We're excited to have EMI joining us in this effort and look forward to offering our customers MP3s from amazing artists like Coldplay, Norah Jones and Joss Stone." EMI CEO Eric Nicoli went on to comment, "Amazon.com is known around the world for the unique experience it offers music customers through features such as customer reviews and personalized recommendations. They have been an important retail partner of ours, and we are delighted they will be offering consumers EMI's new premium DRM-free downloads in their new digital music store. We think having a trusted destination like Amazon.com offer a high-quality digital music product that will play across a number of devices gives consumers more options and will be a significant boost for the overall digital music market."
I don't think anyone in this office will be downloading those artists mentioned above per say, but it is interesting to see them get in the game.