Big Finish Productions has announced the launch of a new download service launching on February 1st. With this service, listeners will be able to purchase and instantly download the audio of their choice as an mp3 file to their computer.
This includes the Doctor Who, Bernice Summerfield, Sapphire and Steel, and the forthcomingStargate series.
"Listening habits have changed dramatically over the last ten years," says Company Director, Jason Haigh-Ellery. "More and more people are choosing to buy their music and audio online and listen to it either on their computer or on mp3 players like the iPod. We are delighted to be able to make Big Finish's productions available in this new way."
Jason also addressed the impact that this change will have on foreign fans. "We have always done our best to keep the prices as low as possible for foreign customers," continues Haigh-Ellery. "Unfortunately though, the poor exchange rate with America, Australia and other countries has made this difficult. Now though, by offering downloadable versions of our plays, we can dramatically reduce the price as there is no extra expenditure on postage, packing and materials. We're sure that this will be good news for our foreign customers."
With the launch of the new website at BigFinish.com on February 1st, fans will be able to sample individual episodes for a small cost. The remainder of the play will be available for simply paying the remainder of the balance. Although not available at launch, a subscription service will be introduced where customers can purchase several plays in advance of their release at a discounted rate. In addition to the plays themselves, music suites, behind-the-scenes features and copies of the scripts will also be made available for download.
Fans who prefer to continue buying their Big Finish plays on CD need not worry that online downloads will herald the end of the CD versions. All new Big Finish plays will continue to be released on CD simultaneously with the download version. The download versions will be cheaper than the CDs in all territories but CD purchasers will also be entitled to acquire the download version at no extra charge.
"The new download service is a major step forward for Big Finish," says Jason Haigh-Ellery.