Limewire follows the footsteps of Napster with DRM-free Music

P2P outfit Limewire plans to replicate the success of Napster as it launches the beta version of its new Limewire Store.

Although most of the tracks available are from independent labels and artists, Limewire Store could do fairly well given that the tracks are encoded in 256kbps DRM free MP3 format rather than some dubious WMV, low quality file.

Limewire Store is only available in the US for the time being although they are working to "secure international licensing agreements as quickly as possible. "

Users can buy individual tracks for $0.99 per song or subscribe to the service on a monthly basis, which will give access to the whole catalog of songs for as low as $0.27 per download.

Some observers have wondered whether Limewire is not trying to compete head to head against eMusic with which it shares a substantial amount as the service ads "thousands of tracks daily from across all genres".

It is a refreshing view that a major P2P actor like Limewire finally comes to terms with people having to pay for what they consume; although millions will still use Limewire to share files including music tracks for free everyday.

There are also rumours that Limewire could also extend the service to include videos and audiobooks as well.