Business

easyMusic picks Wippit for pre-Xmas launch

'easyJet for iPod generation' service

Stelios Haji-Ioannou's upcoming easyMusic digital download service will be delivered by UK online music pioneer Wippit, the two companies announced today.

Ironically, Wippit's own a la carte download service was described by CEO Paul Myers as "easyJet for the iPod generation" around the time of its launch in March this year.

Wippit will deliver DRM-protected content via the easyMusic.com 'Copyright' front-end and presumably serve up the free and fee'd songs that the site will offer in its 'Copyleft' section.

The latter is a key part of easyMusic's low-cost approach, though the Copyright section will feature songs priced at 25p and up for content from both the independent sector - one of Wippit's strengths - and the majors, both new tracks and back-catalogue material.

Copyleft, by contrast, will feature unsigned acts to whom it's being pitched as a way of getting their songs in front of a larger audience and - here's the carrot - potentially record company scouts. At best it'll be a way to discover exciting new bands, at worst a repository for the world's worst demo tapes.

Having come to the market early, Wippit has managed to secure worldwide distribution rights for a number of its independent label partners, enabling easyMusic to offer a multi-national service when it goes live in a few months' time.

This month Wippit began trialling its mobile download service, which uses WebTV-derived compression technology to squeeze full songs onto a variety of handsets. Downloading and payment are controlled by SMS. ®

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