VentureBeat reports that Amazon has invested an undisclosed sum in AmieStreet.com. The social music site has a unique business model where all songs start off free and rise in price — up to 98 cents — the more they are purchased. Anybody can upload their music to AmieStreet (tracks are sold as DRM-free MP3s) and artists keep 70% of any revenue generated from sales. The site also reward fans when they recommend songs to their friends by giving them credit to buy more music, creating a social network around music discovery.
Last week we pitched Amazon as an underestimated player in the battle for the digital living room, noting properties such as the video on-demand service, UnBox, as well as their soon-to-be launched digital music store. Add into the mix user-generated review sites such the Internet Movie Database (IMDB), Digital Photography Review, and Amazon.com itself, along with today’s news of its investment in a social music site, and its clear that the e-commerce giant knows more about our digital lifestyles than ever before.