GLOBAL – There’s been plenty written about Comes With Music, specially since it’s launch in the UK yesterday. But this piece on Wired.com caught my eye, suggesting as it does that CWM “could be the biggest challenge yet for iTunes and Apple’s dominance in digital music services”.
Now, I don’t know whether that was the express intention of the good boys and girls behind Comes With Music. Sure, they wanted to come up with something fresh and a way for more people to access more music, legally, that works as well for the record labels and artists as it does for Nokia and its customers.
Although there was plenty of skepticism doing the rounds after the service was initially announced, as we’ve moved towards, and now past the launch date, that skepticism has morphed into rabid enthusiasm. I’ll be honest, I was one of the early door skeptics and having actually played with and used the service, am now one of its biggest enthusiasts (even though my trial 5310 is now on its way back to the press office). I will most likely buy a Comes With Music device shortly.
The Wired article goes on to draw comparisons between Comes With Music and Apple’s music offering. Of course you couldn’t compare an iPod to a 5310 XpressMusic – they’re too utterly different offerings. Even the iPhone and the 5800 XpressMusic aren’t meant to be head to head devices.
What Wired does highlight though, and what they (and as it happens I too) believe is that the combination of service and product is what gives Comes With Music its real backbone. Sure, that you don’t have to pay for every track you download is a big benefit, but it isn’t what gives the service its real strength. That job belongs to a solution that’s been well integrated and well thought out.
CWM might get grief for various things, such as its DRM protection, being a closed system and even for not (yet) being Mac compatible. Sound familiar?