MusicStation hopes to beat iPhone to mobile music

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MusicStation hopes to beat iPhone to mobile music

UK - Omnifone has launched its all-you-can-eat MusicStation mobile music service, giving users unlimited access to full music tracks on industry-standard mobiles for a small weekly fee.

"MusicStation's launch today heralds the beginning of the next generation of mobile music," said Omnifone chief executive Rob Lewis.

"Consumers will have the ability to legally access, download and enjoy an unlimited amount of music from an international and localised music catalogue, supported by the whole music industry, all for a small weekly fee.

"MusicStation users can download music, wherever they are, at any time and with no charge for data."

With the imminent arrival of Apple's iPhone, Omnifone seems determined to make sure that Apple's domination of the download market is not extended to mobile music.

"Omnifone has a great opportunity, partly because Apple is doing exclusive deals with carriers and leaving others out in the cold," said Robin Bloor, founder of analyst firm Bloor Research.

"Apple is not willing to share its iTunes revenue with the carriers, and has only one device that is highly priced."

The first MusicStation handsets arrived in stores today with Scandinavian operator Telenor becoming the first operator to make MusicStation available to its subscribers.

Following this first launch in Sweden, rollouts in Europe, Asia-Pacific and Africa are imminent and due for announcement in the coming days and weeks.

Omnifone has also confirmed that has entered into partnerships with 30 mobile operators with networks in the EMEA regions.

The platform comes about thanks to international licensing deals with all four major music labels: Universal Music Group, Sony BMG, EMI Music and Warner Music International.

"It's hard to imagine a more compelling music experience on mobile than MusicStation," said Rob Wells, senior vice president of digital at Universal Music Group International.

"It works on almost any phone, giving consumers the freedom to choose whatever device they want. It allows downloads wherever those consumers are, providing the freedom to access music whenever they want."

Subscribers will pay a small weekly fee of €2.99, £1.99 or the localised equivalent, to access the catalogue of music drawn from all the major record labels and independents, including music localised to each market.
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