The new names in digital music are familiar, but they specialize in commercial music. Everyone knows Apple Computer as the company that is now moving more iPods than Macs. Former peer-to-peer bad boy Napster is now the lobotomized pimp of commercial music subscription services….
The broadband migration continues. Bandwidth and servers get
perpetually cheaper, yet the market seems to think that the only money
to be made in digital music is in pitching popular tracks for a buck or
less, or coming up with some portable aural smorgasbord solution of
commercial tunes. In a word, strategy is primitive.
That’s why I believe that, years from now, the major labels won’t be
the same batch of old-school vinyl pushers you see today. As ludicrous
as it may seem, I think that the real power brokers in the music
industry will be Google, Yahoo!, and Microsoft.