20050621

Flux your muscles, watch your wallet - music for a song ?

Viacom's MTV selected Japan and KDDI for their first subscription based music video service over 3G (Vids over 3G EVDO, then). I don't care if it raps, rocks or rolls but this rather sounds like classical music to my ears.
The other side of the East / West Sea, Korea's Daum are about to offer music for free to all their customers. Well, you can LISTEN to up to 3 songs a day within Musiccity's 400,000 song library, but the service usually costs W3,000 per month. All you have to do is being one of Daum's 35+ million subs. Obviously, the former leading portal seems allergic to MelOn, a key factor of success of SKT's Nate nowadays, along with Cyworld, the leader in homepages, a serious competitor to the Bank of Korea thanks to their quasi-currency loyalty program, and one of Musiccity's big customers. Because Musiccity is into "background music" and this kind of music seems likely to be heard far beyond its original mobile devices (elevators) : even if you can't podcast it, you can have people hear it wherever you post things (personal pages, blogs, e-mail ?). You don't even have to buy the latest 2.5 Gb-mp3-7-megapixel-4WD-phone to enjoy it*.

And what do the music majors think of this ? The Korea Music Copyright Association just gave their blessing, considering Daum already pays W125 / month / user.
Well. Once again, Korea's leading major is now a 60% SKT subsidiary.
A smarter combo ? Amp'd offers more than background music : back-uped content. I like the "safe haven" approach (for each download on your mobile phone - including mobisodes shot at Amp'd's brand new studios or your own content-, the US 3G EVDO MVNO will provide a simultaneous remote download), but I wonder if Amp'd can deliver before the big league players tune in, especially when they also envision ambitious multiplayer experiences with InfoSpace. Anyway : more hype announcements for Motorola and Kyocera, the suppliers supposed to release nice new handsets for Amp'd this fall. Remember lads : the word "fall" is zweideutig, and Moto have also been supposed to deliver ipod phones soon for a while... Verizon could hold the best spot for a takeover, being Amp'd's host through Verizon Wireless, but also a major US LLO.
Whatever the outcome, at the age of many-stop-storing and collaborative purchasing, at the age of Snocap and Mercora, you need a considerable reach by yourself and through your partners, but also more and more through not so loyal endusers.

Stephane

* You'd better invest on iRiver's latest player for your kid (ReingCom are now targeting the babies - I guess they'd better diversify beyond portable multimedia players). Anyway, any device will be more fun than Movida's : even in Puerto Rico you can't make people believe a Nokia 2270 will mobile-ize their life ("Moviliza tu vida" / "Get moving with Movida"). Talking about a revolution and an innovation... heard about Virgin Mobile's "disruptive" new service with BT Livetime ? TV over radio and an exciting EPG (Electronic Program Guide). That's DAB and SMS alerts... Radio Definitely Killed The Video Stars.



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