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Nokia ‘Comes with Music’ set to change the marketplace?

Lots of people I’ve been meeting have been talking in hushed voices about this.

“Comes with Music” — that’s the new offensive from Nokia and it’s got a lot — a LOT — of people quaking with concern.

When a company such as Nokia — routinely knocking out millions of handsets in a given day — decides to give away unlimited music with a handset, you need to start panicking if you’ve got anything whatsoever to do with this field.

How does it work?

Well, it does-what-it-says-on-the-tin. Buy the phone and you get access to an unlimited amount of music.

Ok. Not unlimited. Think iTunes. Think MusicStation. A *good* amount of tracks. You’ll find stuff that you like, at least.

It’s the Nokia 5300 series handsets that are to get this first. Specifically, the 5310 XpressMusic. Fair enough. No bother. I’m an iTunes man myself. Start knocking out Nokia N-Series handsets with this and I’ll certainly reconsider this position.

There’s certainly a lot of questions to answer.

Carphone Warehouse are the exclusive UK pre-pay channel for the device. If you want ‘Comes-with-Music’, you need to get it from them, this Christmas. You can, if you’re extra-specially interested, get yourself on the pre-order list at CarphoneWarehouse.com.

We should get a look at the device and answer a heckuvalot of questions this evening at the Carphone Warehouse Christmas Preview.

‘Til then, I leave you with some excited bullish statements from some of the key players:

Tero Ojanpera, executive vice president and head of the Nokia Entertainment and Communities business, said: “We believe that Comes With Music will transform the way people enjoy music. With unlimited music access for a year, you can enjoy your favorite artists or delve into new genres without having to worry about individual track or album purchases.”

Simon Ainslie, Nokia UK Managing Director, said: “Comes With Music is the most compelling digital music offer ever introduced to the UK. You get a fantastic Nokia device with unlimited access for a year to a huge catalog of music. We’re thrilled to be working with Carphone Warehouse to bring Comes With Music to the UK.”

Andrew Harrison, UK CEO, The Carphone Warehouse, said: “We expect the Nokia 5310 Comes With Music to be the gift for Christmas and at the top of all shopping lists. We know how much our customers love music and we hope to make music millionaires of people everywhere.”

For a little while, expect a negative reaction when you try and buy one of these from Vodafone or any other operator with its own music sales channels.

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

7 replies on “Nokia ‘Comes with Music’ set to change the marketplace?”

I am missing something here. Who is paying the per-performance fee. A radio station pays for every broadcast song but it has a revenue streams that correspond to its fees.

Is Nokia charging a premium upfront to cover the first year's fees? What about year 2. I still run a P800 bought on its release – admittedly that is a long time for a phone, but will also be a long time for Nokia between revenue refreshes if too many people start doing this kind of thing – and as phones get better people will refresh less (especially if it means losing fabulous on-off deals that are tied to the handset).

All will hopefully be revealed, Julian — I think Ben might have got along
to the Carphone Warehouse launch this evening. From what I know so far —
and it's a bit sketchy as I haven't been fully briefed — Nokia have done a
deal with the labels to avoid paying per-play charges. In year 2, you buy
another Nokia. Or pay up to extend, I reckon.

2008/9/2 Disqus <>

Who pays? Nokia. That's possibly why a number of executives responsible for establishing this arrangement have gone to spend 'more time with their families'.

Year 2? You keep the music to play on your PC and the handset it came with. If you change handsets you lose the ability to play it other than on your PC (unless it's a warranty fix or loss replacement where Nokia can transfer the service). Yes, this is rubbish.

You can't buy the subscription (yet) it only comes with a handset.

It's a good deal for consumers, but Nokia are going to have a massive headache if they don't fix the transfer and 'what next?' issues before the first subscriptions exprire…

Meanwhile everyone and their dog associated with mobile music is watching
them like a hawk. If you get it working reasonably then the consumer will
love it…

2008/9/3 Disqus <>

I think that this is a very interesting and significant development in the market.

The concept of 'all you can eat' bundled phone calls has been around for some time now – here each and every call has a cost to the provider who has done a load of statistical analysis around useage in order to ensure that ON AVERAGE he will make a healthy profit on the service.

I see that the music download model is very similar – each and every track will have a finitie wholesale price, yet there are in practice a number of constraints that limit the number of tracks that the average customer can and will download. Time, available bandwidth and storage space on the phone will act as a friction on the downloading of tracks.

I am very interested to see the price tag that this is released with and how it works out. I would expect that Nokia will make a pile out of this – at least initially (until other providers catch on)!

I think that this is a very interesting and significant development in the market.

The concept of 'all you can eat' bundled phone calls has been around for some time now – here each and every call has a cost to the provider who has done a load of statistical analysis around useage in order to ensure that ON AVERAGE he will make a healthy profit on the service.

I see that the music download model is very similar – each and every track will have a finitie wholesale price, yet there are in practice a number of constraints that limit the number of tracks that the average customer can and will download. Time, available bandwidth and storage space on the phone will act as a friction on the downloading of tracks.

I am very interested to see the price tag that this is released with and how it works out. I would expect that Nokia will make a pile out of this – at least initially (until other providers catch on)!

I think that this is a very interesting and significant development in the market.

The concept of 'all you can eat' bundled phone calls has been around for some time now – here each and every call has a cost to the provider who has done a load of statistical analysis around useage in order to ensure that ON AVERAGE he will make a healthy profit on the service.

I see that the music download model is very similar – each and every track will have a finitie wholesale price, yet there are in practice a number of constraints that limit the number of tracks that the average customer can and will download. Time, available bandwidth and storage space on the phone will act as a friction on the downloading of tracks.

I am very interested to see the price tag that this is released with and how it works out. I would expect that Nokia will make a pile out of this – at least initially (until other providers catch on)!

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