Vodafone, Sony agreement promises personalised music

Vodafone and Sony NetServices have announced an interesting agreement to deliver personalised music streams to mobile customers in Europe initially and subsequently to 20 markets worldwide. The service uses Sony technology to deliver a web radio experience to both 3G mobiles and PCs. Users can interact directly with the content, indicating whether they like or dislike particular tunes, enabling the service to build up a profile of their music tastes. Over time, the channel becomes personalised to their individual preferences.

Sony will also work with local music experts to define music streams based on themes, such as Christmas songs or new tracks in a particular genre.

The service allows users to build several channels corresponding to their music tastes and purchase songs for download to both their mobiles and PCs.

It is representative of the growing trend towards technologies which enable deep segmentation of customer groups, particularly based on media affinities. It is also another major step for Vodafone to enhance its positioning as a content provider for both mobile and desktop devices. Lee Fenton, Director of Consumer Platforms at Vodafone, confirmed this was the direction in which Vodafone is heading: “This is the beginning of a new era in portable music. This partnership with Sony will drive Vodafone’s strategy to become a leading global music provider. Vodafone Radio DJ is a revolutionary new way to discover personal music, anytime and anywhere, and we anticipate it will have widespread consumer appeal amongst our customers.”

Availability is expected in major European markets first, with rollout over the next few months, and other international markets later in 2006.

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