& cplSiteName &

Music to My Mobile

Sarah Thomas
8/28/2014
50%
50%

Wireless operators may be busy beefing up their networks to support video, but music is clearly the service that is catching their eye (ear?) the most in the US.

When it comes to promotions, partnerships and zero-rated app offers, music is the main focus in the US today. Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) has a partnership with Spotify for a free six-month trial for its customers. AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) inked a deal with Beats Mobile, which we should hear more about soon, now that Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) has acquired Beats. And this week, T-Mobile US Inc. added six additional music partners to its toll-free Music Freedom service, which it says has seen 7,000 terabytes of music streamed since its launch in June. (See T-Mobile: You, Seven Nights & the Music, AT&T's Strategy Boss Puts Content First, Apple Confirms Beats Buy for $3B and Sprint Plans More Bundled-Content Offers.)


Find out more about telco apps and services on Light Reading's mobile services channel.


In response to operators' growing interest in mobile music, Opera Software ASA 's Skyfire division today added streaming audio optimization capabilities to its Rocket Optimizer software, initially built to optimize mobile video traffic. As support for the popularity of mobile music, the company cites a Strategy Analytics Inc. study that says 77% of mobile users listen to music on their phones -- 70% at least once a week.

Operators are using mobile music as a way to differentiate their service and increase customer loyalty, and it's an approach that makes a lot of sense. Offering video as a toll-free app that doesn't count against the data cap would be a non-starter: The network would crash under the weight of it. Streaming music is a more network-friendly, lower bit-rate app that resonates with a wide range of customers. It's the low-hanging fruit.

What's more, they are finding willing partners in the over-the-top music services. In the past, operators have tried to pave their own way with mobile music -- attempts that ultimately failed, with the exception of Cricket's Muve Music. As a partner service offering, they're finding their customers are actually quite interested. (See Will AT&T Muve to the Music? and Comes With Carriers?)

That said, it's still a service operators will need to keep an eye (ear?) on, as listeners have been known to stream music for hours on end. It can still be a bandwidth-buster, and the economics make less sense the more it's used over LTE. (See 10 Ways to Mind the Mobile Data Cap.)

It'll be interesting to see what the next mobile app is to catch operators' interest (Games? Enterprise functions? Photos?), but for now, music is clearly the sweet spot.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(14)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
futurephil
50%
50%
futurephil,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/29/2014 | 3:47:06 PM
another thing on streaming
Having music on your mobile is one thing. But unlimited choice isn't everything:
Nobody wants 20 million songs. Music fans want 20 awesome songs for what they were doing in a particular moment. They want them picked and sequenced by someone who knows lots about music.

One of my former editors, Jon Maples (http://jonmaples.com), wrote that at the beginning of the year and I think it holds up. If you're looking for a good source on the music industry and digital streaming, he's more knowledgable about those subjects than most mobile network operators. 
Kruz
50%
50%
Kruz,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/29/2014 | 4:24:41 AM
Re: The sound of money
Agree, as Youtube's user experience doesnt exactly allow a flow of contineous music you can listen to. But it is just one direction it can go to as Youtube is highly available, hosts rich content  and simply very practical. 
Gabriel Brown
50%
50%
Gabriel Brown,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/28/2014 | 1:15:21 PM
Re: The sound of money
Agreed, YouTube is not great in many contexts. 

But I think YouTube is great for discovery. Because everyone in your online life can access it, and send links and recommendations that everyone else can play back, you can get great exposure to music that people share becasue they it. I like recommendations from friends and contacts as much as (more than, probably) machine-generated discovery.

If you like something, then you go and find a better quality source (via download or streaming, or vinyl, etc.)

 
futurephil
50%
50%
futurephil,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/28/2014 | 1:00:23 PM
Re: The sound of money
It is important for music marketing. I don't listen to YouTube while in the car, at the gym, hosting a BBQ or sitting at my desk. I do use it for music discovery, though, and I imagine students who have more sitting/watching/istening time might use it a LOT vs. paying for services.
Gabriel Brown
50%
50%
Gabriel Brown,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/28/2014 | 12:54:11 PM
Re: The sound of money
YouTube is important in the streaming music discussion. I read somewhere that it's THE top music service based on number of plays. I can believe that. It's free, the catalogue is extensive, and I see lots of people using it for music.
futurephil
50%
50%
futurephil,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/28/2014 | 12:33:26 PM
Re: The sound of money
Apple was pretty far behind in streaming music unless you owned a lot of music, then iTunes Match is pretty good.

For streaming, music discovery and sound quality, Beats helps Apple out a lot.
Gabriel Brown
50%
50%
Gabriel Brown,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/28/2014 | 12:24:44 PM
Re: The sound of money
Phil -- is Apple a little behind in terms of a streaming music service?

Quite a few iOS users I know have turned to Spotify and are gradually dropping iTunes.
jabailo
50%
50%
jabailo,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/28/2014 | 11:14:48 AM
Re: The sound of money
I've been a Rhapsody Music user almost from the time Robert Glaser left Microsoft to found Real Networks.  In fact, I pretty much skipped the entire era of downloading files and "tunes" because streaming seemed like a better technology (although, at the beginning the quality might not have been perfect).

I was a bit disappointed that Virgin, my carrier for many years, announced new data caps as they shift to LTE (why else would I want it except for data/media)!   I still have my mobile Wimax connector from Clear/Sprint which thankfully is unlimited, but I'd have to carry around a hotspot modem in addition to a phone or tablet to get it to work!

It doesn't make much sense to me that for $35 a month I was able to subscribe to unlimited Wimax mobile with Clear but that a phone carrier wants to charge me much more for LTE with a cap on it.   And especially in light of what you've written about LTE-only handsets.   What I've always really wanted instead of just a smart phone is the UMPC -- the Ultra Mobile PC.  An small, portably, long life, always networked device for doing computing outside, at the same costs as inside.
futurephil
50%
50%
futurephil,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/28/2014 | 11:00:23 AM
Re: The sound of money
I think Apple and Beats will be a great combo here and there's a lot of integration work that needs to be done.
  • Beats Tune Your Taste vs. Apple Genius algorithm
  • iTunes Radio vs. Beats Tastemaker feeds
  • iTunes Match vs. Beats Download/Offline Mode

Because of the purchasing tie-in, I can imagine that musicians would be more likely to list their songs for streaming on Beats because the purchase via iTunes could be influenced much more directly, immediately.

Also, Beats is a cross-platform play. It could be Apple's key to getting some meaningful mobile app-related revenue from Android users.

-ph

 
mendyk
50%
50%
mendyk,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/28/2014 | 9:59:43 AM
Re: The sound of money
Yes, the music business went through the same digital destruction as the print media business, with just about the same results. Those at the bottom of the old trickle-down model -- namely the content creators -- have felt the impact the most. I wonder whether musicians still feel the same about the evil, parasitic record companies now that they find themselves selling t-shirts and CDs out of the back of their vans.
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
More Blogs from Que Sera Sarah
A handy rundown of the myriad terms used to describe the challenging circumstances surrounding women in comms, many involving glass.
Making recruiters solely responsible for increasing diversity is not effective when there isn't internal buy in, Facebook's struggles to diversify show.
Virtual reality wasn't the only vomit-inducing feature of this year's CES. Booth babes and boys' clubs were still dominant, although there was progress afoot in Vegas.
Join Women in Comms and Intel 5G General Manager Caroline Chan tomorrow at noon EST for a live radio show chat on professional and technological risk taking.
In time for Internet of Things World, IoT World News profiles four women who are driving the technology behind IoT.
From The Founder
Cisco's Conrad Clemson, recently promoted to head up the company's Service Provider Apps & Platforms developments, talks to Light Reading's Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about how he's bringing cloud video, mobile and virtualization together to empower network operators.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Interviews
Heavy Reading: The Webscale View

1|18|17   |     |   (0) comments


At Light Reading's 2020 Vision Executive Summit in Rome, Heavy Reading's former chief analyst Patrick Donegan shared insight from the recent webscale operators report, which featured research on how webscale operators view the market, the best webscale companies to ...
LRTV Custom TV
Cisco's Cloud Scale Networking: Automation, Virtualization & Simplification

1|18|17   |     |   (0) comments


Cisco's Sanjeev Mervana outlines the latest innovations in networking technology at CES 2017 in Las Vegas.
LRTV Custom TV
ADVA Talks Innovation & the Future of Networking

1|17|17   |     |   (0) comments


Ray Le Maistre and Christoph Glingener, CTO of ADVA Optical Networking, discuss the current state of the industry, cooperation and collaboration, open innovation and the future of networking.
LRTV Custom TV
Cisco's Infinite Video Platform

1|17|17   |     |   (0) comments


Cisco's Infinite Video Platform allows service providers to deliver broadcast-quality video over IP networks. Infinite video supports many devices, from 4K TVs to tablets to game consoles. Join Cisco's Rajeev Raman for a brief tour and live demo.
LRTV Interviews
Masergy: Ability to Adapt Key for NFV

1|16|17   |   6:40   |   (0) comments


Speaking at Light Reading's 2020 Vision in Rome, Masergy's VP, Global Technology, Ray Watson, said agility is key to providing the mix and match NFV-based services that are driving business for the managed service provider today.
LRTV Interviews
Equinix: The Data Explosion

1|13|17   |   4:16   |   (0) comments


At Light Reading's 2020 Vision in Rome, Eric Schwartz, president of EMEA, Equinix, talked about how Equinix is helping its customers manage the influx of data today, and how it's preparing for a future filled with millions of connected IoT devices.
LRTV Interviews
Heavy Reading: The Changing Data Center Landscape

1|12|17   |   6:05   |   (1) comment


At Light Reading's 2020 Vision event in Rome, Heavy Reading's Senior Analyst Roz Roseboro talks about how virtualization is impacting data center evolution and how that evolution is affecting the relationship between service providers, data center operators and public cloud providers.
LRTV Interviews
Boingo: Prepping for Millions of Devices

1|12|17   |   5:07   |   (1) comment


At Light Reading's 2020 Vision in Rome, Boingo's CTO Derek Peterson discusses how wireless operators will address the needs of low-bandwidth and high-bandwidth apps at the same time, the need for more MHz, the impact of IoT and more.
LRTV Interviews
Comcast Shows Off Gig Gateway at CES

1|11|17   |     |   (1) comment


With its largest presence at CES in years, Comcast took the wraps off its long-awaited gigabit gateway and a new platform for managing the home WiFi network. Light Reading Senior Editor Mari Silbey sat down with EVP Chris Satchell to discuss the latest Comcast advance, and met with VP of Product Strategy and Development Andrea Peiro to walk through a demo of the ...
LRTV Interviews
Colt: End-to-End Key for 2017

1|10|17   |   6:21   |   (0) comments


At Light Reading's 2020 Vision Executive Summit in Rome, Nico Fischbach of Colt said having a multi-carrier, end-to-end service proposition is going to be key for 2017 -- and SD-WAN is instrumental in making it happen.
From the Founder
Cisco's Clemson on Mobile Cloud Video

1|9|17   |     |   (1) comment


Cisco's Conrad Clemson, recently promoted to head up the company's Service Provider Apps & Platforms developments, talks to Light Reading's Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about how he's bringing cloud video, mobile and virtualization together to empower network operators. "If you think about where we're going… whether it's a mobile application, or a video ...
LRTV Custom TV
VMware Telco NFV Solutions – Preparing for 5G & IOT

1|9|17   |     |   (0) comments


Shekar Ayyar, EVP & Corporate Strategy/General Manager of Telco for VMware, discusses VMware's Telco NFV solutions role and foundation for the Imminent Arrival of 5G & IOT.
Upcoming Live Events
May 15-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Hot Topics
A Women in Comms Glossary
Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 1/18/2017
Ericsson: 5G Heralds 'New' New Economy
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 1/12/2017
Next Plugfest Gets G.fast Closer to Market
Brian Santo, Senior editor, Test & Measurement / Components, Light Reading, 1/13/2017
TV's Paradox: No HDR Without 4K
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 1/17/2017
Cable Has One Thing Verizon Needs
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 1/17/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders chats with Sportlogiq CEO Craig Buntin about sports data analysis.
Eyal Waldman, CEO of Mellanox Technologies, speaks to Steve Saunders, CEO of Light Reading, for an exclusive interview about the 100 GB cable challenge, cybersecurity and much more.
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.