PaidContent.org: The Minced Meat Music Pie: RealNetworks’ Sean Ryan:
“[So if margins are not great, how do you make money?] You make money by subscriptions: it is a better business…it is a continual, annuity business. You bundle a la carte downloads on top of that. You don’t necessarily make money in any of those by themselves; you make money in total. For example, the assets we used to build Rhapsody are the same that power RadioPass, the free music experience, and the upcoming store. So we spread the work of encoding, of creating metadata, of taking credit cards etc across four different services, and then international services. So you start spreading your costs across different yet related products, and two, through distribution and marketing.”
This is a great interview with lots of insights for those interested in where online music is headed. Anyone who’s used Rhapsody knows that Sean Ryan “gets it”.