Apples to Apples
Funny, the only way that my mobile service providers have allowed me to add ringtones to my phones, has been through purchasing them, which usually sets me back around $2.50, whether I own the song already or not. Assuming that I bought the song through iTunes, then I've paid around $3.50 for the set. Unlike iTunes, these other providers give you one choice, of ringtone, theirs. They don't permit the buyer to customize them in any way. It's not as if Apple is being greedy, it's widely believed that Apple makes so little revenue from iTunes $0.99 song sales, that the sales of iPods probably subsidize it. Of course, Apple could give in to the demands of both studios and labels and raise their prices, even offer packages of programming forcing the buyer to spend more than they need too. Kind of like the Zune store... you have to convert real money into microsoft money. But you have to buy their money in big blocks and their prices and money are different than the real world so you actually spend more money in Zuniland than the real world.