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04 March 2024

Nokia launches music service

Nokia's smartphone X6 was launched last year in Germany. (SUPPLIED)

By David Tusing

Nokia Middle East launched its unique Comes With Music service yesterday Beirut. It also announced the availability of the Nokia X6 mobile device in the region at an event in the Lebanese capital.

Comes With Music (CWM), a service already available in 10 countries including the United Kingdom, Singapore, Italy and the Netherlands, allows customers who buy Nokia phones branded Comes With Music to download an unlimited number of songs for a period of one year.

Customers, who will be able to download music through their Nokia devices or from a computer over the internet, will also be able to keep all music even after the download period has expired.

"The proposition is simple: you get four million tracks, for free, for keeps. So after the year is complete, the licences do not expire and you can continue to enjoy all of your music," said Jake Larsen, Head of Music, Nokia Middle East and Africa.

The Middle East launch covers 11 markets which includes the UAE and other GCC countries, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, the Palestinian Territories and Iraq, it was announced.

This brings availability of the music service to 27 markets worldwide.

The region's first CWM branded phone, the Nokia X6, will be commercially available from the first week of March, for an estimated price of $600 (Dh2,203) before taxes.

The X6, a music smartphone featuring full touchscreen, was first revealed in September last year at Nokia World in Germany.

Frederic Copper-Royer, the Music Manager for Nokia Middle East and Africa, told Emirates Business in an earlier interview that his company is currently focusing on adding more devices that support the music service.

"Compatibility of CWM devices depends on the market. We are investing in music services for the long term," he said.

Nokia already operates an online music store, www.music.nokia.ae, where customers can purchase single tracks or albums and stream music.

Nokia, currently the world's largest mobile phone maker, has partnered with major international music labels including Universal Music Group International, Sony BMG, Warner Music Group and EMI, said Larsen, who added that he hoped the two services will help to tackle illegal downloads and sharing.

"Piracy is rife. What people really want today is the free stuff. With services such as CWM, you literally get an unlimited number of music tracks free for a year when you buy a branded device," he said.

In April last year, Apple announced its iTunes Store, had become the largest music retailer in the United States, citing data from the NPD Group.

With more than 50 million customers, iTunes sold more than four billion songs. The online store features the world's largest music catalogue of more than six million songs, it said. Music download capability on iTunes, however, is currently not available in the UAE.


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