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Napster's Super Bowl Bet

Techstination feature for Friday, February 11, 2005

Napster's Super Bowl bet. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Napster is a strictly legit music downloading service these days…acquired by Roxio…which has since changed its name to Napster. And the company spent millions on Super Bowl ads….touting its new service…Napster to Go. CEO Chris Gorog…

"When you launch a product that is as game changing as Napster to Go, historically, using the Super Bowl as a platform to call attention to a very different and new product has been very successful."

For 15 dollars a month, Napster to Go allows subscribers to listen and download any or all of the million songs in its library…and port them over to Napster to Go enabled portable players. Keep in mind, the songs can only be listened to as long as the subscription remains active….and right now there are only a handful of Napster to Go enabled players. But Gorog says going forward…

"Every MP3 player other than an iPod is going to end up supporting Napster to Go. All hard drive memory, all flash memory."

The Super Bowl commercials compared the 15 dollar a month subscription… the ten thousand dollars it would cost to fill up an iPod with songs purchased from Apple's iTunes. Napster also offers a ten dollar a month subscription that provides access to the music library from PCs. But if you want to burn them to CDs…or store them permanently on a music player….you'll have to buy them…just as with iTunes…for 99 cents apiece. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.