Napster inches toward subscription service

Two and a half weeks into Napster Inc.'s offline slumber, the embattled song-swapping service showed a small sign of life Wednesday when it announced that it was "getting close" to releasing the beta version of its new subscription service.

In an e-mail sent to potential beta testers, Napster said that it was working hard on the new software to make sure the final version meets "the highest technical standards."

The announcement comes one week after U.S. District Court Judge Marilyn Hall Patel ruled that the company's service must remain shutdown until it can prove that its filters are 100 percent effective in preventing the trade of copyright music. The rogue music site initially suspended its service July 1 in order to update its databases to support a new filtering technology, and has been offline ever since.

The U.S.Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit said Monday that Napster has until Aug. 9 to file a brief appealing its shutdown.

Although much debate has been waged over whether Napster will be able to recover enough users to successfully launch its subscription service, Napster's beta announcement Wednesday indicated that the company is still moving forward with its plans.

In the e-mail, Napster said that the subscription service will cost a small monthly fee, with over half of the proceeds going directly to the artists. The company concedes, however, that gaining a wide audience for the service will not be easy.

"We expect that Napster will start small and grow, just as it did when (Napster founder) Shawn (Fanning) released it 2 years ago," the e-mail reads.

While the site continues to fight highly publicized battles in the legal arena, behind the scenes employees are busy working on Napster's reincarnation. Napster announced Monday that it selected PlayMedia System Inc.'s AMP technology to secure the service's forthcoming subscription service.

While Napster's service and legal status hang in the balance, by all accounts, the site is doing the only thing it can do: forge ahead.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Scarlet Pruitt

Computerworld
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?