SanDisk describes slotMusic as high quality, DRM-free MP3s on microSD cards, clearly playing toward the fact that compared to a couple of years ago, there’s a huge amount of mobile phones in circulation with microSD slots not to mention media players.
slotMusic cards come with a small USB sleeve, enabling users to put any music they buy onto their computer as well as playing it on their phone or MP3 player, however SanDisk seems to think that everyone will dig the idea that you can walk into a shop and walk out listening to music on your phone. To extent we’re sure people will like that factor but we also think that people only really buy these things when they know they’re not going to be able to get to their computer to change the music on their phone or MP3 player. This is the kind of thing that would probably be a total hit with tourists on holiday or if they were available to buy in airports, but in the everyday world, not so much.
The slotMusic cards will have 1 GB of space which means plenty of room for entire albums with extra artwork or images from the artist as well as videos, interviews and other additional content. With all that storage, one can’t help but wish there were a lossless encode included in addition to the MP3s.
SanDisk has yet to announce a list of musicians available on slotMusic but it’ll be interesting to see who is willing to support the scheme. Many artists (most notably Radiohead, NIN and Oasis) have released material either exclusively online with no intention to pay for shelf space in bricks and mortar stores. We wonder if this will have any effect on artists tempted to take that route, or will we have less artists distributing online independent of a label.