/// BlackBerry’s New Music Service Doesn’t Sound Like a Complete Disaster

August 19, 2011  |  All Things Digital


It’s very hard not to beat on Research In Motion these days. The company behind the once-iconic BlackBerry almosts begs you to do it. And when word broke yesterday that RIM was working with the music labels to launch yet another music service , it was time to reach — slowly, because at this point who really cares? — for the bat again. But it’s possible that RIM may not have a half-bad idea here: A scaled-back feature that gives some of its remaining customers something they’d like, and not much more. As described by The Wall Street Journal’s Ethan Smith , the new service will give users access to a mere 50 songs at a time, and will let them share the songs with their friends via BlackBerry Messenger. Is that it? For RIM’s sake, I hope so. Because at a certain price, it sort of makes sense: Yes, everyone says they want access to an unlimited world of music. But lots of people listen to the same small group of songs over and over. And if RIM is smart — I know — they won’t position it as a competitor to Apple’s dominant iTunes, or the subscription services like Spotify that have yet to take off. They’ll sell it as a cool way to show off your favorite few songs of the moment, and tell your friends about it. Again, if this works, it will depend on pricing — a couple bucks a month would make sense — and execution. And RIM hasn’t given us much reason to think it will get either element right. But the modest scope of RIM’s ambitions — pulling this off sure isn’t as hard as making a credible iPad competitor — gives them a shot here

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BlackBerry’s New Music Service Doesn’t Sound Like a Complete Disaster



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