Exactly what the announcement will mean in real terms, however, is far from clear. Critics question whether the company has the infrastructure to compete with MP3.com in the streaming arena.
On the other
hand, for the time being, Emusic has a clear advantage in terms of the
number of established acts in its catalog. While MP3.com has Bowie and
an army of little known independent artists, Emusic has a far deeper roster
of mainstream artists including Bush, Green Day, Elvis Costello - even
This would seem to make it unlikely that most people will endure the frustration of beaming a good-sized stack of - let's say 25 or 50 cds onto the service. Unfortunately, that's exactly the sort of heavy usage MP3.com is counting on to turn the program into a serious moneymaker.
It seems a safe bet MP3.com will do something to fix the problem in the not too distant future by enabling a lookup feature, something you would have thought they would have done before relaunch.
Of course, there may be a rather obvious reason they didn't. If that great big database that caused the company such much trouble in the past contains recordings that haven't yet been authorized by copyright holders - which seems fairly plausible - a lookup feature could cause the San Diegans serious problems.
What's going on here? Time will tell.