Amazon working on DRM-free music store

Posted by Mark Raby

Seattle (WA) - About a month after EMI signed a deal with Apple to provide restriction-free versions of its songs on iTunes, Amazon has taken further steps in providing its own alternative.

The London Times is reporting that Amazon has begun preliminary conversations with all major music labels to offer unrestricted MP3 files of their songs through an Amazon.com platform.

Amazon has been unsuccessful so far in its attempts to compete with iTunes, scoring low consumer bases in its Amazon Unbox video downloading store and gaining little attention to its collection of free, uncopyrighted music downloads.  

Plans to develop an Amazon-branded MP3 player were also halted before production was finished.

Earlier this month, iTunes struck a partnership with EMI to offer unrestricted versions of its songs for a 30 cent premium over the standard 99 cent price point.  Sprint's mobile music store also lets customers download straight MP3 files of their 99 cent mobile music purchases.