"AOL will use its recently-acquired MusicNow property to deliver a web-based solution, while Napster and RealNetworks will broaden their existing application-based approaches. Meanwhile, Apple has little intention of moving away from the application, indicating that competitors are taking fewer cues from the market leader.
The key advantage of a web-based solution is accessibility - not only from multiple computers and browsers, but increasingly from mobile devices. At first blush, the proposition is compelling: buy or listen to music from wherever you are, by simply entering a username and password. And for a player like AOL, a web-based approach is designed to integrate more smoothly into a larger music destination."