updated 09:10 am EDT, Wed June 6, 2007
iTunes playlists go mobile
Melodeo this week promised to take iTunes playlists mobile, by allowing users to listen to their iTunes music on their cell phones. The company already enables users to listen to Web-based audio clips while on-the-go and expects to launch its new service, which is currently in testing, within the next 2-3 months. Reuters reports that the service would allow users to listen to streamed music in their personal iTunes collections on desktops and via their mobile phone: since users already own the music and it is only streaming music, the company would only need to recoup minimal royalties--the same fees paid by Web-based radio services, or a tenth of a cent per song play. Melodeo hasn't decided on a revenue model, but may charge a monthly fee to subscribers, charge software download fees, or run audio advertisements.
The new service continues to expand the ways users can purchase, listen to and play music on-the-go. Earlier this week, Lala.com promised unlimited free music via streaming and the ability to purchase music for users' iPods. Analysts believe the new service would continue to grow the iPod ecosystem by providing users with another alternative to iTunes, which currently sells more than 5 million songs per day.
Melodeo is not selling copies of songs for consumers to store on their phones, but is focused on simply expanding the number of outlets users can listen to their own music.
"We're doing everything we can to follow the current legal guidelines and standard industry practices where the legal guidelines are not crystal clear," the company told Reuters, adding that the low price may lead digital music listeners who do not pay for songs they swap with friends to subscribe to the service.
Melodeo said expects the first version of the service to launch in six to 12 weeks, the report said; however, it does not yet have carrier deal in place. Currently, the company delivers audio clips to customers on AT&T and Alltel networks.