Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Psst! Hey buddy, want some free music?

Universal have released a new music service with a bit of a twist - you can download the albums for free.

Their SpiralFrog service has been in beta for a while but has now been released to the general public. You can subscribe for free, install their download manager and be off downloading legal music before you know it.

Providing you use Windows. And aren't allergic to DRM. And you don't want to burn it to CD. Or play it on the majority of MP3 players (such as IPods, Mobile Phones, cheap EBay Mp3 players).

If are willing to use Windows for your musical needs, or your MP3 player supports PlaysForSure DRM then you're laughing. There is a good selection of albums there already and the quality of the tracks is OK (128kbps). The site is still experiencing some teething problems, and I found that the easiest way to download an album was one track at a time, as having multiple tracks in the download list causes download errors after the first couple of tracks. There have also been more than a couple of 404 errors when following links on the site.

One other detail is that you'll need to renew your account every 30 days by answering some questions on their website. If you don't then your music stops working. Nice.

At present, if you are a Windows user and want a legal way to increase your music collection then this isn't a bad option, but for the rest of us it isn't as good as it could have been.

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