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Amazon launches online music-download store

Amazon MP3 offers 2 million songs

Amazon has launched a public beta of Amazon MP3, a digital music store. Amazon MP3 will take on Apple's iTunes store by offering digital rights management-free music downloads, so users can download the music to their media player of choice or burn songs on to CDs.

Amazon MP3 offers 2 million songs from more than 180,000 artists, according to an Amazon statement.

"This new digital music service has already been through an extensive private beta, and today we're excited to offer it to our customers as a fully functional public beta," said Bill Carr, Amazon.com's vice president for digital music, in the statement.

"We look forward to receiving feedback from our customers and using their input to refine the service."

Prices for single songs range from 89¢ to 99¢, and most albums are priced from $5.99 to $9.99. By contrast, iTunes tracks in the US cost 99c and $1.29.

Amazon said users can use its 1-Click shopping tool to buy the music downloads and then use the Amazon MP3 Downloader to add their MP3s to their music libraries.

Amazon MP3 contains tracks from Universal, which is not on iTunes.


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