Melon and Mnet, number one and two music distribution websites in Korea’s digital music market respectively, has increased the price for downloading of songs.
On January 1, Melon, which has 56 percent of the market and owned by Loen Entertainment Inc., raised the flat rate of its music streaming service from 3,000 wons [approximately 3 U.S. Dollars] a month to 6,000, the firm announced on December 31.
90 percent of Melon users are currently purchasing the service.
Melon also increased the price per song by 50 percent from 60 won to 90 won, which is part of its monthly service to download up to 150 songs.
Mnet, the second largest online music service portal with 18.5 percent of the market and managed by CJ E&M Corp., also raised the monthly fee for its streaming service from 3,000 won to 6,000, the firm announced on New Year’s Day.
The latest rise is due to an amended regulation of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism in June 2011, which states that the price of online music services should go up to ensure patent rights and higher margins for musicians and patent holders.
Other online music service companies such as Bugs and Ollehmusic are expected to follow suit.
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