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Orange gets into the music biz

Joins Channel 4 and Sony Ericsson to find UK's best band

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Orange and Sony Ericsson have gotten together with Channel 4 to launch "mobileACT Unsigned": a competition to find the best unsigned band in the UK.

Noting the scarcity of talent shows on TV, particularly ones where the viewers get to vote on the bands playing, mobileACT Unsigned allows bands to set up MySpace-like sites, linked from the main site, where you can watch their videos and read about the performers before the TV series starts in October.

The show itself will be hosted by Alex Zane, and will appear on the Channel 4 zones T4 and 4music (yes: they used to be called "channels", but Channel 4 tells us the hip term is now "zones").

Bands signing up might like to remember The Upper Room: 4 nice-enough lads last seen performing at 3GSM, circa 2006, with promises of promotion by network operator O2, and feted as the mobile Artic Monkeys.

Mobile phone companies love to be involved in the music business; it's much sexier than telecommunications and impresses the kids.

Unfortunately they're not very good at it, so it remains to be seen if Channel 4 can provide the media savvy to make mobileACT Unsigned any more successful. ®

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