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Napster Takes Apple to School

Apple Computer's iTunes might be stomping all over the competition, but there's one area in which competing services such as Napster are starting to beat Apple: schools. Despite Apple's legendary relationship with educational institutions, Napster in particular has signed a surprising number of deals with colleges and universities, providing students with lower prices on subscription-based services and a la carte music downloads. Case in point: The company's recent deal with the University of Washington and a partnership with Dell that will see participating schools running Napster services off of Dell servers. Of course, what Napster can offer that Apple can't is subscription-based services, which are seen as the future of digital music delivery. What I'd like to see, however, is Napster ratchet up its quality: Currently, its music offerings are stuck in the same 128Kbps swamp that iTunes users suffer with

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