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Amazon MP3 failing to tackle iTunes' dominance

Just 10% of Amazon users are iTunes defectors

Amazon's MP3 service has so far failed to take significant share from Apple's market-leading iTunes Store, according to NPD.

Analysts at the research firm said just 10 percent of those buying music from Amazon's US digital download store are defectors from iTunes. NPD analyst Russ Crupnick explained this as a "healthy indication that the digital music customer pool can expand into new consumer groups who have not yet joined the iTunes community".

Apple remains dominant in US music retail, now becoming the leading US music retailer. Amazon meanwhile has done its level best to become America's number-two digital download destination.

The playing field's not in Apple's favour, however, as with the exception of EMI, major labels have been reluctant to allow iTunes to offer songs free from the restrictive DRM technology.

The primary reason for that is clearly not fear of piracy - all the majors offer DRM-free music through Amazon, causing some music industry watchers to question if the labels are combining their market power to affect development of the digital music landscape.

NPD also suggests that Amazon MP3 overall sales are just 10 percent of those generated through iTunes.

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