Germany's Saturn switches to MP3 format

5 million titles will be offered DRM-free

BERLIN -- German electronics and entertainment retailer Saturn has switched its download store catalog of 5 million tracks to MP3 format, with a €4.99 ($6.49) promotion on 250,000 albums until March 29.

"All of the 5 million titles are offered without DRM and can therefore be played on any kind of music player," says Cordula Baum, a spokeswoman for Saturn in Ingolstadt. Individual tracks are offered for €0.99 ($1.29).

The Saturn download card allows customers to pay for music titles at the download store without inputting bank details. Starting at €5 ($6.50), the prepaid Saturn download-card can be charged up to €150 ($195). The card is available Germany-wide in all the 136 Saturn stores.

Saturn is also offering a special edition of the new Depeche Mode album "Sounds of the Universe" (Mute/EMI), which will be released April 17. A special edition with two bonus tracks is available from the Saturn download store, while CDs purchased in-store will provide the option to download the bonus tracks for free.