In response to pressure from music labels who argued that song value should be based on popularity, Apple’s iTunes today went live with its 3-tiered pricing strategy. Each song available on iTunes will now be priced at $1.29 for new hit releases, $.99 for the majority of songs, and $.69 cents for older tunes, replacing the one price fits-all-strategy that Apple engaged in since opening iTunes in 2003.
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To offset any criticism of the $1.29 price point, an Apple spokesman was quick to point out in an interview with Reuters that for every title raised in price, at least ten would be reduced to $.69.
When they announced the plan earlier this year, Apple claimed that most album prices would remain at $9.99, and any price increase would not be due to the $1.29 hit-song price point.
New tracks purchased through the iTunes will still be DRM free.
In early reviews, Gizmodo had a tough time finding a $.69 track. Acts long out of the pop charts including Vanilla Ice and LFO still carried tunes with the $.99 price point.
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Currently, the Apple Store is down. Perhaps they are working out the kinks?