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Businesses Music Entertainment

Rhapsody To Acquire Napster 59

Posted by Soulskill
from the should-they-call-it-napsody-or-rhapster dept.
tekgoblin writes "Earlier today Rhapsody, the biggest premium on-demand music service in the U.S., announced that they would be acquiring Napster and finalizing the purchase of the company by the end of November. Best Buy, a huge global name in consumer electronics retail, is the current owner of Napster. Best Buy will only be keeping a minority stake after the sale of the company, while Rhapsody will acquire all Napster subscribers and additional assets."
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Rhapsody To Acquire Napster

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  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Monday October 03, 2011 @04:53PM (#37593410)

    So they're getting Jim AND Randy?

    • That's not fair. Tony is a Napster subscriber, too.

    • by Hatta (162192)

      Sure. Jim's too blitzed to realize it's not 1999 anymore, and they just offered Randy a cheeseburger.

      • by hairyfeet (841228)

        Hey now, don't forget little Sally! Little Sally thinks having this "Napster stuff" makes her a part of this "Internet thingie" so she is VERY loyal! Hell a single Sally is probably worth THREE Randys and possibly TWO Jims too boot! That means she alone has GOT to be worth a dinner for two at olive garden, surely that is worth shelling out good money for napster, right?

        Seriously though Napster has been dead as a doornail for over a decade, why anyone would care anymore is beyond me. It reminds me of one o

  • by SphericalCrusher (739397) on Monday October 03, 2011 @04:55PM (#37593422) Homepage Journal
    This would have been big news... ten years ago. =P
    • by Dogtanian (588974)

      This would have been big news... ten years ago. =P

      Yes, if we'd been talking about the original- and long-defunct- original Napster (which was entering its death throes at this point a decade back).

      Basically, Roxio bought the name after the original owners went bankrupt, and used it to rebrand their paid music service Pressplay. From then on, it's been "Napster" in name only. It's just another music service that we probably wouldn't be even discussing if it wasn't wearing the name of the otherwise unrelated famous original.

  • I didn't even know Napster was still around ... or relevant for that matter.

    Well, as long as there continues to be competition for iTunes, I guess it's a good thing.

    • Re:Amazing! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by pushing-robot (1037830) on Monday October 03, 2011 @05:24PM (#37593720)

      Every time I see one of these mergers this [penny-arcade.com] comes to mind.

      Well, that and the Looney Tunes cliche of two characters grabbing each other in mid-air before plummeting to the earth below.

    • by mr1911 (1942298)

      Well, as long as there continues to be competition for iTunes, I guess it's a good thing.

      The only ones that think Rhapsody and Napster are competition for iTunes are Rhapsody and Napster.

    • by kehren77 (814078)

      I didn't realize either of these were still around.

      I thought they'd been replaced by better services such as Rdio and Pandora.

    • I still buy tunes off of Napster. No DRM and reasonably priced. And no monthly fee to do it. There may be better options out there for some, but it has always worked for me so I haven't bothered looking.
    • by Dogtanian (588974)

      I didn't even know Napster was still around ... or relevant for that matter.

      They're not, and they're not.

      Some other company bought the name when the "real" Napster went bankrupt a decade or so ago, and used it to rebrand a crappy early "legal" music service. That's about it.

  • You're not the customer. You're the product.

    • by Synerg1y (2169962)

      I would love to hear from who actually still uses these services... anyone? Also, that's typically how mergers work, beats getting your internet / cell phone / TV service getting cut off one day for seemingly no reason.

      • I'm subscribed to both. I like Rhapsody's iPhone player, library, and playlist options. Napster has different music, and since you get MP3 downloads along with access to their entire libary, in my case it paid for itself.

        Both Rhapsody are essentially 'music on demand', and in my case, where I work across different computers and like finding new music all the time, it works out pretty well for me. I don't recommend it for everybody, but I don't understand why it's poo-poo'd so much, either.

        • by cayenne8 (626475)
          Ok...let me get this straight.

          There's actually people out there that pay for these streaming (or otherwise) services?

          Interesting...I've yet to meet anyone that pays for subscriptions to these things.

          With the free alternative...I gotta ask. Why?

          • With the free alternative...I gotta ask. Why?

            Chicks?

          • by MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) on Monday October 03, 2011 @05:27PM (#37593754)

            - I pick what I want to listen to when I want to listen to it.

            - The songs are cached so I can listen to them off-line.

            - 10 seconds after the desire to hear a particular song not on my playlist I'm listening to it.

            - Lots of comedy albums etc, too.

            - Rhapsody's music search has been pretty darned good at finding songs I want to hear.

            - If I pop onto a new machine I just log in and start listening to my music right away.

            - With Napster you pay $60 for a year's access to their music and you get 60 mp3 downloads.

            - No ads. Rhapsody's music store recommends songs/albums all the time but there are not banner ads or audio ads.

            Show me a free alternative that covers all of these bases (excluding the Mp3 one...) and I'd be happy to try it out.

            • I concur, I use Spotify which is very similar. I disliked it when I tried it with ad support, but earlier this year I just decided to try subscribing (to try it on my phone and the "Linux preview" version), and I love it.

              Even before Spotify I did actually buy my MP3s though.

          • by tech4 (2467692)
            Because it's legit and the moral thing to do?
          • by cornface (900179)

            It is worth the small monthly fee to not have to deal with downloading and retagging files.

              I mostly just use the "to go" Rhapsody service. I don't have any complaints about it. It is equivalent to Netflix streaming if you could dump as many movies as you wanted to your hard drive whenever you wanted and they had basically every movie every created available.

          • With the free alternative...I gotta ask. Why?

            It's only $5 a month, and it's easier than pirating.

            You get consistent quality and can listen and acquire new songs on pretty much any internet enabled device.

          • by StikyPad (445176)

            The only decent free streaming service that I'm aware of is Pandora. Which is great, when you don't want to micromanage what you're listening to (particularly since you can't). I subscribe to Rhapsody because I can create a playlist of exactly what songs I want to hear, listen to almost anything on a whim, and I don't have to have the songs on my phone first. Their library isn't exhaustive (whose is?), but it's pretty good for what you get, and certainly more than what I could store on my phone.

    • Or, rather the end user. Pesky agreements...
    • by HalAtWork (926717)
      Nope. I don't subscribe to anything. I don't need services, all I need is tools. While I may want the occasional product, at least that can be re-used or sold/passed on, unlike a service that can be snatched away and take all of its wares with it.
  • I remember when Best Buy had some kind of partnership with Rhapsody. Then they dumped Rhapsody and went with Napster. Now they're dumping Napster off on the company they originally dumped.

  • Cool! My dad can finally download 8-tracks legally!
    • Cool! My dad can finally download 8-tracks legally!

      Not quite. None of the downloads contain the mid song fade out, the THUNK noise, and then the song fading back in. Its not quite the same experience. ;-)

      • by bdcrazy (817679)

        I'm almost positive I heard of a plugin that does this...

      • Cool! My dad can finally download 8-tracks legally!

        Not quite. None of the downloads contain the mid song fade out, the THUNK noise, and then the song fading back in. Its not quite the same experience. ;-)

        That's OK, My dad is so old his brain does that for him.

  • Why still use the name Napster? It may have worked around 2003 by confusing people thinking it was the same old service but now legal, but this isn't 2003 anymore.
  • How much longer will the zombie corpse of Napster be flogged? Just let the damn thing die already.

    • by perpenso (1613749)

      How much longer will the zombie corpse of Napster be flogged? Just let the damn thing die already.

      IIRC it takes 3 to 10 years for zombies to disintegrate depending on the environment, plus the activity level of the zombie accelerates things. Of course colder climates with long freezes really lengthen the process. Napster is headquartered in Los Angeles so the hot dry climate could suggest something closer to 10 years. Thanks to Max Brooks for his research. ;-)

  • by Dracos (107777) on Monday October 03, 2011 @05:15PM (#37593634)

    Screw you, Lars.

  • It's the best deal around I think.

    Unlimited custom playlist for $5/month. And you also got 5 MP3 downloads too.

  • Napster isn't dead yet? That's almost as surprising as Rhapsody not being dead yet!

    I look at this more as a desperate merger than "omg Rhapsody is getting ALL the Napster user base!"
  • But I don't want Napster! What's going on?!?
  • Incredible that this topic attracts a total of 51 comments a couple of hours after being posted. Has anything lost relevance as quickly as it has. Ok. Maybe Nortel.

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