The days of the 99-cent single could be over. Warner Music has teamed up with a company, Digonex, that collects and analyzes music sales data from a number of online music stores. Using the data, and applying some sort of Warner Music formula, Digonex then alters the price of the song to reflect things like demand, amount of time it’s been available, and so on. In trials, songs have ranged from 33 cents, to 66 cents, to 99 cents. Album sales are similarly affected, ranging in price from $3.30 to $10.
Apple’s Steve Jobs isn’t likely to appreciate the scheme, since he’s long be a proponent for across-the-board 99-cent singles.
Don’t be too quick down Warner’s throat, however. Just because the record company wants variable pricing does it mean it’s going to automatically charge more for popular music. Wouldn’t it make as much sense, if not more, to lower the price of popular music so as to sell more?
Anyway, this is all still experimental, with tests set to start this month.