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Is this what a funeral looks like?

iTunes Song Purchases plotted on a graph

This iTunes sales chart easily demonstrates the power-curve we're seeing at the iTunes Music Store. Lots of analysts and journalists have foretold the death of the 99-cent single at the hands of a subscription model. Bullshit. It's a pure power curve. A hockey stick. The reverse long-tail.

Okay, so, maybe it's too soon to tell. Maybe this is the just the first third of an eventual bell curve. But I don't think so. Lots of people have talked about how the iTunes Music Store is just a promotional vehicle for the iPod. But the iPod can also be viewed as the showroom for the iTunes Music Store. Apple sold 500 million songs over the past seven months. Apple's production cost on the iTMS has to be low enough that it doesn't take many units before the economy of scale kicks in. A billion songs here, a billion songs there, and pretty soon we're talking about real money. Throw some movies in the mix, and you've got the next-generation home-entertainment company.

Years ago, Bill Gates famously declared that he wanted to put a computer on every desktop. I've got a feeling Steve Jobs wants to put an Apple in every living room.

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  • hi, i'm mat honan, a writer in san francisco, california.
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