It’s not very often that you hear of Walmart getting out of a business segment but that is exactly what is happening when it comes to the MP3 music download business.
Walmart was one of the first big brand companies to follow Apple into the business of MP3 track downloads after iTunes launched back in 2003. Unfortunately though, it never gained traction the same way that iTunes did and while they haven’t publicly stated why they are getting out of that business they have said that as of August 29th the service would no longer be available.
Some are suggesting that part of the reason for its failure was its choice in formats for the music tracks.
Much of Walmart’s failure has been blamed on its choice of formats. Making the presumption that endorsing Microsoft’s choice of format would lead it to success, it opted for Windows Media Audio and found itself locked out of Apple’s iPod, guaranteeing a lack of mainstream adoption. The choice of a Microsoft alliance compounded the troubles further when Microsoft launched the Zune and its companion Zune Marketplace, leaving Walmart to compete against its own partner.