EMI and Roxio team up in music CD burning deal

Companies hope to create a system where users pay to download songs straight onto a CD

UK music label EMI has teamed up with Roxio in a deal that will let consumers download music from the Internet onto CDs.

Roxio, a US company, controls 75 percent of the CD recording software market with products such as Easy CD Creator. EMI is thought to have invested up to £35m for a stake in Roxio. The two companies announced on Tuesday that they plan to develop a secure method by which users could buy songs from EMI's catalogue on the Internet and burn them straight onto a CD.

According to reports, Roxio doesn't think the scheme will generate much revenue initially -- but in the long term it feels that making it easy for users to download digital music files straight onto a CD is a crucial step. "People don't want to listen to music on their PCs, but in their cars or on a walkman," Roxio chief executive Chris Gorog said yesterday, according to the Financial Times.

Since last year's court battles against Napster and MP3.com, the major record labels have been making concerted efforts to take control of the digital music sector. Rival labels Vivendi and Sony have teamed up to launch Duet, an alternative to Napster -- but the EMI/Roxio deal is the first one aimed at letting consumers download songs straight to CD.

In a separate development on Tuesday, Napster was thought to be close to making a deal with EMI, Warner Music and Bertelsmann that could save the song-swap site from closure.

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