Hot on the heels of Apple's iTunes, US-based music software specialist Musicmatch today launched its PC-only downloads service offering users tunes from 99 cents (approx 50p) a pop.
Musicmatch claims its service is far less restrictive than anything else currently available, with no subscription requirements or additional charges for burning tracks. Customers can play tracks on up to three PCs simultaneously and then download them to other devices. However each play list can only be burned up to five times — compared to Apple's 10 burn limit.
"By offering consistent and fair ownership rights, breakthrough music personalisation, convenient purchasing and the highest quality files, our service is better than any free legal alternative," said Dennis Mudd, Musicmatch chairman and chief executive.
Buymusic.com already offers a very similar service to PC users with others such as Dell, Napster and Amazon expected to launch their own services by Christmas.
Musicmatch is marketing its service as a more personal alternative. It uses so-called personalisation technology to advise visitors about tunes they may wish to hear based on their download history. It also offers access to 30 independent labels.
Single tracks can be downloaded for 99 cents (approx 50p) while albums will cost $9.99 (approx £8.50).