Walmart Music Store - Beta Testing

Discussion in 'MacRumors News Discussion (archive)' started by MacRumors, Dec 18, 2003.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001
    Reuters notes that Wal-Mart had begun testing its new music download service on Thursday.

    According to Reuters, Walmark will be gathering customer feedback over the next few months and make changes before the official launch in 2004.

    The new service boasts "88cents, Every Song, Every Day" and offers music downloads in Windows Media format.

    Early reports had noted that Walmart sells CDs at a loss to attract customers. Its unclear if their online music store follows this model but at 88cents for every song, it appears to represent the (consistently) least expensive music download store.
  2. Pablo macrumors regular

    Jan 8, 2003
  3. sickracer2015 macrumors member

    Apr 14, 2003
    limited burns..

    it may be a cheap 88 cents.. but its walmart not a nice interface as itunes.. plus after reading the info.. you can transfer to only 2 computer (3 with itms) and only limited to 10 burns (unlimited with itms) this is still very limiting
  4. macMaestro macrumors regular

    Sep 14, 2003
    If Apple is losing money at 99 cents, Walmart must be taking an insane hit with this 88 cent service. How on earth does Walmart expect this to be a good thing? Apple's could be in big trouble though...
  5. jcshas macrumors regular


    Oct 8, 2003
  6. mailhojo macrumors newbie

    Jun 20, 2001
    Well, I know I don't have a PC. But I down loaded their trial song. It down loaded fast and opened WMP9 just fine and played. It is recorded at 128. Don't know how that compares to AAC at 128. The only problem I saw was that when it downloaded it to my computer desktop it doesn't have a name that I would even understand. Just a bunch of numbers. I definately don't want that. It will get too confusing and I don't want to relabel it.
  7. jeremy.king macrumors 603


    Jul 23, 2002
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    Not really. Even if the "break even" point was $1, Walmart stand to lose very little compared to their daily sales. Black Friday, they did something like $1.3 BILLION in sales. Thats one day.

    Even if they sold 100,000,000 songs in a year at a $.12 loss each, its only $12 million or less than 1% of a single days total sales.
  8. dynamicd macrumors 6502

    Jul 16, 2002
    So assuming they sell 100 million songs and make 12 million profit, then why even bother going through the trouble of setting a music service up when they probably won't even hit 100 million songs per year?
  9. the_mole1314 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2003
    Akron, OH
  10. mrsebastian macrumors 6502a


    Nov 26, 2002
    sunny san diego
    walmart is all about making small profits on each product they sell, but they sell mass quantities to make money. as for selling music online, i assume they have some sort of marketing plan set up so people purchase other items as well. it's like them selling cds in the store for a loss.
  11. jeremy.king macrumors 603


    Jul 23, 2002
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    My logic was reversed. I said they lose $12 million (granted, those numbers are made up by me as I have no idea what the profit margin/loss is per song).

    They do it because they want name recognition in the digital music realm. Sort of like when first came out, they were operating at a loss and then BAM, profits!

    Seems everyone and their brother is jumping on the music d/l bandwagon and I hate to say it, but if Apple doesn't support other players, they are going to fall to the wayside.

    Aside, thought this was funny when I tried to sample any song.


    :D :rolleyes: Stupid Windows.
  12. Stella macrumors 604


    Apr 21, 2003
    Works on a Mac fine - including preview and playing.

    However the interface is sucks.
  13. Steamboatwillie macrumors regular


    Mar 25, 2003
    Memphis, TN
    I think it's funny that they sell the tracks for $0.88, Like $0.11 a track makes that much of a difference? The only thing that, in my humble opinion, could be better than ITMS would be OGG-Vorbis tracks at $0.25, unlimited burns AND OGG support for the iPod... Like that's gonna happen. I don't get why all these companies are jumping on the music store bandwagon when the industry leader, Apple, openly admits it is not profitable? Bizarre.
  14. AmigoMac macrumors 68020


    Aug 5, 2003
    It's flood...

    My grandma-mart is keen to open her own music store... I hope she will deliver AAC instead... ;)
  15. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040


    Sep 13, 2003
    Its not so much where you are as when you are.
    Some thoughts

    Walmart is infamous for screwing suppliers. If you want to sell to them bring the KY.

    They might be doing it as a loss leader. Remember collectively the Waltons are richer than Gates! and can afford to loose money for a while

    They could also be getting ready to gouge the music companies. If they have the same deal as Apple, then they loose money for a while and say, hey how about a discount.
  16. jasonbw macrumors member

    Dec 19, 2002
    before people get too worried, just remember how infamous wal-mart is due to their music censoring policies.
  17. TMay macrumors 68000

    Dec 24, 2001
    Carson City, NV
    the walmart way

    Pave it and people will come. But not everybody, thank you very much.

    Apple needs to keep focused on quality. If Walmart kills everbody else off, Apple still stands for quality, and I for one, and many others, prefer it that way.

    BTW. My small berg of Carson City is soon to be the recipient of a second Super Walmart. It gets worse. It's across the parkway (and soon to be completed freeway), less than a quarter of a mile from the location of my tranquil business.

    ...pave paradise, put up a parking lot...

    (my apologies to Joni)
  18. ceriess macrumors member

    Oct 25, 2003

    Don't under rate style and ease of use. Apple has momentum right now, and if they can keep on synergising their sales efforts with the iPod, they should be able to maintain their dominant stance for the forseeable future. I'd be more worried about Sony than anyone else.
  19. ces1965 macrumors member

    May 16, 2002
    full albums 50 cents less, if they have it

    Most full albums are 9.44. Wow, a whopping 50 cents less. Also, look at this from their questions:

    How many days do I have to play a song for the first time after I purchase it?

    You must play a song within 120 days of purchase. After 120 days, the license file that is required to play the song will no longer be available After you play the song for the first time, you will be able to play it any time thereafter.

    You don't always listent to a full album right away, so this is kinda stupid.
  20. TomSmithMacEd macrumors 6502

    Nov 5, 2003
    Fargo, ND
    Re: Some thoughts

    What does Walmart really have to gain about this? I don't understand. Even if they did make a little money on this. There isn't anything in it for them. Errr... I hate wal mart.
  21. McToast macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2003
    It's Wal-Mart, it's WMA, it's got horrible DRM and Wal-Mart only sells sanitized versions of songs and albums. Who the hell could possibly want this?:rolleyes:
  22. winmacguy macrumors 68020


    Nov 8, 2003
    New Zealand
    Something interesting to note, they dont appear to have put a country speciffic limit on it at this stage for countries outside the US who may not be able to download music yet. It is just the beta version..
    Other than that I cant really see any wrong with it at this stage. The lay out is simple and easy to follow.
    It doesnt appear to cater for Mac users.
    The 88c is an interesting price point
    It appears basic and funcional which I would imagine is what Wal Mart is all about so they are consistent with their image.
    Navigation is simple and straight forward, it also has step by step instructions with screen shots on how to do down load and play music which can actually be an important factor for the many non tech savy fans out there who have a limited PC knowledge.
    I havent really fully browsed the full range at this stage so I wont comment but will say that the process looked like it was easy to do.

    My initial thoughts would be that this will be some well backed compteton for iTMS- good price point and simple design

    Let the music battle commence!
  23. kwtneo macrumors newbie

    Sep 26, 2003
    piece of crap!

    here's what it says:
    Music Downloads from are 128-bit WMA files. The WMA format allows record companies to protect their music by using Digital Rights Management (DRM) encryption. This means that music downloads are legal, safe, and easy to use. The 128-bit WMA files also offer superior sound quality.

    Superior sound quality ???!!!

    Can I play music from Music Downloads on my Macintosh® computer?
    No. Music Downloads from are not compatible with any Macintosh computer. The music that you download requires Digital Rights Management 9 (DRM 9) software, which is not compatible with the Macintosh operating system.

  24. bwintx macrumors regular


    Jul 17, 2002
    Quite true. As Lamar Hunt's father observed in the early 1960s about his losing a million dollars a year on his American Football League team (which eventually became the Kansas City Chiefs): "At that rate, Lamar would go broke in about 150 years."
  25. SiliconAddict macrumors 603


    Jun 19, 2003
    Chicago, IL

    You are the weakest link.....Goodbye!

    I can't wait to see the reaction from some of its users when they hit the 10 limit mark. Walmart's store may fly for about 6 months to a year until people realize this and get pissed off in a big way.

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