Okay, let me clarify that headline a bit. For starters, the "new" album in question, Frank, is actually Winehouse's debut album from 2003, newly released in the U.S. Second, there's no actual shipping involved: The album gets delivered to you electronically. Finally, what the heck does this have to do with cheap tech? In this case, the medium is the message: I'm using the album to point you to Amazon MP3, where you can save money (and time) on music purchases.
The store sells DRM-free MP3s for 89-99 cents apiece; most albums sell for $9.99 or less. In Frank's case, you get 18 songs for $8.99, a per-track price of about 50 cents. The best price I found for the 15-track CD was $10.98 shipped. Okay, so I saved only 2 bucks, but I didn't have to wait a week for the CD to appear in my mailbox. Nor did I have to go to the trouble of ripping 256Kbps MP3s (the format and bit rate I typically use)--that's how the tracks arrive from Amazon. Plus, because they're MP3s, they'll play on my iPod, Zune, Palm Centro, or whatever. No DRM nonsense. (I hate DRM nonsense.)
To find out more about Amazon MP3, read my fellow blogger my complete review of the service. Needless to say, I'm a fan, and not just because it saves me money.. Or check out