Audiogalaxy, one of the most popular music file-swapping software programs online, has introduced a subscription offer it says will offer better service. For $2.95 a month, people who subscribe to Audiogalaxy's "Gold" service will have a special set of servers reserved for their use and will not have advertisements fed to their software client. This won't guarantee faster file downloads, because the speed of most of the files traded depends on the individual computers and Net connections making a peer-to-peer transfer. But it could speed up the Web pages associated with the service.
Napster, once the most popular music-swapping service, is also planning to offer a paid subscription service later this year. That company's free service has been down since early July. Audiogalaxy is keeping its free service in operation for now.