Companies push to integrate service, players.
RealNetworks and SanDisk are deepening their ties in an effort to make the Sansa e200 series of MP3 players the flagship device for the Rhapsody music subscription service.
New Sansa models will come pre-loaded with Rhapsody's service which, among other features, will include 32 hours of music from the four major record labels, and will have the capability to automatically update free music sample based on the user's taste and past preferences.
The effort is designed to position the Sansa as the "integrated" device best used with the Rhapsody service, similar to how the iPod is the integrated device with iTunes. However Rhapsody will continue to support the broader range of PlaysForSure devices in the marketplace.