French carrier matches iTunes on pricing

In a move to match Apple's pricing on its iTunes store, French carrier SFR will drop its price per music track download from €1.99 to €0.99 starting November 7. Of course, additional charges apply if the track is downloaded OTA to a mobile phone, rather than over a fixed Internet connection to a PC. SFR's spokeswoman Caroline Mir said Apple's price "is the reference price today" and claimed that "this is the first time this price has been offered on a mobile service." When it comes to albums, SFR plans to undercut Apple by selling complete albums for €9.90, compared to Apple's price of €9.99.

SFR rival Orange charges €2 per track, plus airtime, for its music download service. SFR currently facilitates 300,000 music downloads a month, but the carrier hopes the new pricing will push that number to 1 million tracks a month by next year. Of course, there's still a €0.10 per minute access charge for the service, so Apple still has it beat. Many industry pundits believe that mobile music services need to compete head on with iTunes if they hope to get more than a foothold in the digital music industry.

For more on SFR's price change:
- see this article from Macworld