Nokia launched its ‘Comes With Music’ service in the UK in a fanfare of publicity, promising access to a huge host of music tracks along with free permanent downloads for a year – but now it looks like the company’s facing an unexpected problem – the DRM it uses to limit use of music acquired using the service has been cracked….
Electric Pig informs Nokia has chosen a Microsoft standard for its service, and new software called Tunebite can eliminate the DRM shrouded across Nokia’s ‘Comes With Music’ tracks.
Nokia’s ‘Comes With Music’ may already have generated its first fan-site, but questions remain on the future for mobile music services – surely the usability factor doesn’t yet match desktop alternatives, such as iTunes?
Apple does offer the iTunes Store for WiFi, and has before been rumoured to hold plans for its very own mobile music service, though this may prove less successful if aimed at iPhone users alone. As an incremental addition, iTunes for WiFi offers something like a mobile experience.
That no one beyond Nokia appears yet to be aiming to offer a full package (hot potato) mobile music service, incumbents must surely be mulling the latest figures to come out of Japan.
Major labels are happy now to sell DRM-free music through retailers such as Amazon and 7Digital, but Apple remains locked out, with three of the four majors denying it permission to sell tracks DRM-free through its iTunes Plus service – even though it’s the largest US music retailer. But this may soon change.
The service effectively pits the world’s largest mobile phone maker in a direct challenge with Apple’s iPhone (family?) and its iTunes store. Within the purchase price of a handset, Nokia is offering customers all-you-can-eat access to music – though there are a few caveats to the deal.
On plans to extend the service to the UK, Tero Ojanpera, head of entertainment business at Nokia said in a statement: “In the United States we will launch next year”.
A move to introduce ‘Comes With Music’ into the US makes some sense in terms of Nokia’s attempt to broaden its grip on the mobile market there.
The move could face challenges: The US digital music market is far more advanced, partially because labels have been faster to reach deals with new technology services there. Continue reading →
Ben Drury, CEO of UK online music service 7digital.com has slammed the newly-announced Nokia ‘Comes With Music’ service as “fatally flawed”.
“Nokia’s new service is an interesting new model for digital music but at first glance seems fatally flawed,” Drury said. “Songs downloaded through the Comes With Music service are not in MP3 format and are wrapped in DRM (Digital Rights Management) locks which means the downloads cannot be played across a multitude of music devices including iPods and all other MP3 players.”
Referring to the terms and conditions of ownership of the music, Drury pointed out that customers are limited in the amount of time they can hang onto the music. Continue reading →
Nokia will unveil its very own iPhone-killer next week, a touchscreen device until now called the ‘Tube’.
Following up last week’s introduction of the first Android-powered touchscreen device, HTC’s Dream, the Nokia gadget is the first device from the manufacturer to employ this technology.
Nokia will introduce its new handset in London next week on October 2. While the company has declined to comment on the launch, a Gartner analyst observed the company continues to lag behind Apple, “We have been wating for the market leader to respond to Apple’s iPhone for a year and a half now.”
The company does have a good track record, the same report explains, observing that while Nokia was late to introduce devices capable of accessing 3G network, the devices it did offer quickly achieved wide market acceptance. Continue reading →
Nokia may charge a premium for handsets equipped with its ‘Comes With Music’ plan, a report claims – though detractors have quickly poked holes in what’s being said (see comment below).
Symbian.com claims the first two such handsets to go on sale in the UK cost a fair bit extra if you want a load of music too. The 5310 costs between £132.99 and £145.99 on the site on its own, and £214.99 with Nokia’s tunes – so an extra £70 or more. The Nokia N95 8GB is selling for £394.99 on its own, or £479.99 with the music… Continue reading →