Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

BlackBerry Launches Its $5 Music Service

Here’s the BlackBerry Music service we told you about last week: As we reported on Saturday, it’s 50 songs, tethered to your phone, for $5 a month.

A couple of tweaks to my earlier report: Most important is that BBM Music subscribers can “share” songs with friends who also use the service. Which means that your pool of available songs could expand well beyond the 50 associated with your account.

Other details: You can only change up to 25 of the songs in your collection each month. And while music sources I talked to thought an international rollout wouldn’t kick in until next year, Research In Motion says it will be available in many territories later this year. For now, the beta is limited to the U.S., Canada and the U.K.

The big picture is the same: On a price-per-song basis, BBM Music isn’t nearly as good as the $10 for unlimited music services offered by MOG, Rhapsody, Spotify, etc. Nor will it give you access to all the songs you already own, a la new cloud services from Amazon, Google and Apple. But RIM will be marketing this as a service that’s about sharing and “personalization,” not access to a music library.


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus