Thursday, October 05, 2006

Best Buy partners with SanDisk and Real

Best Buy will be marketing a new line of SanDisk MP3 players together with subscriptions to Real Networks' download service.

The company said it would use Real's Rhapsody subscription service, hand-in-hand with a new line of SanDisk Sansa digital music players, much in the way that iPods work with iTunes.

"The customer expects everything to work together," said Jennifer Schaidler, vice president of music for Best Buy.

The service and players will both be available starting October 15 and will be heavily supported in its more than 840 nationwide stores.

The article doesn't say so, but it sounds like an exclusive deal.
Best Buy said it will throw its promotional weight behind the new service, offering buyers of the Sansa a free two-month subscription with up to 30 hours of preloaded music already on the player.
It will be interesting to see if this three-way partnership can cut into iTunes' 88% market share or iPod's 60%.

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