I read on MacRumors that Amazon had a DRM-free mp3 store. The first major issue (by comparison to iTMS) I saw was the added hassle of downloading the songs and then manually adding them to your iTunes. It turns out that they have a little downloader program that handles the downloading and importing automatically. It even handles the album art. The songs are in VBR 256kbps. That’s actually higher than I encode, normally, but the file sizes are still manageable. The prices are really good, too, the albums I looked at were all under $10. They even have a few free songs available for download.
Being someone who really cares about DRM, I’ve been very reluctant to use iTMS. Friends have populated their libraries with these non-portable songs, and I always opted not to. With Amazon, I have no excuse. I immediately bought an album. The process was completely streamlined and painless, including the use of one-touch ordering.
I give the mp3 store a thumbs-up. It is still rough around the edges compared to the Apple experience, but the DRM-free mp3s more than make up for it. For those interested, I bought Thom Yorke’s The Eraser.