Amazon announced today that their Amazon MP3 store, the section of their website where you can buy digital music downloads similar to what iTunes offers, has now been optimized to look and work better in Apple's Safari browser on the iPhone and iPod touch screen. According to Steve Boom, Vice President of Amazon Music:
Since the launch of the Amazon Cloud Player app for iPhone and iPod touch, a top request from customers has been the ability to buy music from Amazon right from their devices. For the first time ever, iOS users have a way do that – now they can access Amazon’s huge catalog of music, features like personalized recommendations, deals like albums for $5, songs for $0.69, and they can buy their music once and use it everywhere
Features of the Amazon MP3 store on the mobile web browser include:
- The Amazon MP3 mobile website for iPhone and iPod touches is built on HTML5, which means customers can make purchases >- directly from the Amazon MP3 mobile website at www.amazon.com/mp3 on their iPhones and iPod touches
- Selection of over 22 million songs and over two million albums at everyday low prices
- Access to everyday deals like $5 albums, $0.69 songs, and free songs from artists on the rise
- Individualized recommendations based on purchase history
- Immediate availability and seamless playback of purchases in the Amazon Cloud Player app
- Free storage of all Amazon MP3 purchases in Amazon Cloud Player
The iPhone and mobile Safari launched in June 2007. Amazon MP3 launched in beta in September 2007. That it took Amazon until January 2013 to make the latter work with the former is interesting. Of course, Amazon MP3 is still only available in 7 of countries, including the U.S., U.K, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Japan, Spain, and Italy. iTunes music, by contrast, is available in 118 countries.
Mobile has been the biggest trend of the last few years, and music has been the spearhead of the digital media revolution. It's great that Amazon is taking these steps, but they're taking them far, far too slowly.
That aside, the implementation looks good and works well, mixing a vertical page stack with horizontally scrolling sections. There's currently a focus on $5 albums, along with best sellers, new releases, genres, editor's picks, and top new albums. If you're logged in, you can buy just like you would on the regular web site, and thanks to Amazon Cloud, whatever you buy, where ever you buy it, is available to listen to in the player app.
If you live in a place that offers Amazon MP3, and you use the service, fire it up in Safari on your iPhone and iPod touch and let me know how it works for you.
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Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.