HP partners for new music download service

25 Jan 2010

Computer manufacturer HP has partnered with Omnifone to provide a music download service that will be distributed on a selected number of its PCs to go on sale in Europe.

This new partnership with Omnifone will see the MusicStation service pre-installed on 16 HP models that will be sold in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria, Belgium, The Netherlands, Switzerland and Sweden.

As a direct competitor to Apple’s iTunes and Amazon’s MP3 Download Store, MusicStation has a back catalogue of more than 6.5 million music tracks from the four major record labels but they will be DRM (digital rights management) protected WMA files that are only playable as long as the subscription model is kept active.

MusicStation is free for the 14 days after which a monthly subscription costs €9.99.

Omnifone’s other commercial partners include Vodafone, Hutchison Telecommunications, Vodacom and Telenor.

By Marie Boran

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years