RAIN 08/29: BBC PLANS MASSIVE MUSIC STREAMING SERVICE
RAIN SCHEDULING NOTE: In observance of the Labor Day holiday in the U.S., our offices will be closed Monday September 1. Look for our next issue of RAIN on Tuesday.
BBC WORLDWIDE TO LAUNCH MASSIVE STREAMING MUSIC SERVICE: The UK’s Guardian reports BBC Worldwide will launch “a targeted web music service… tapping the corporation’s vast audio archive that includes ‘Old Grey Whistle Test,’ the ‘John Peel Sessions’ and the ‘Six Music’ hub.” The launch is scheduled for early next year. “Users will be able to stream tracks for free with the ad-funded service,” the Guardian reports. DRM-free tracks “will be available for download to own.” The BBC plans to eventually offer its full music archive of over 50-thousand music tracks and more than 3,000 hours of video. Read the Guardian’s coverage here.
CNET ON NEW SQUEEZEBOX BOOMBOX WI-FI RADIO: “ONE OF THE BEST PRODUCTS IN ITS CLASS WE’VE EVER SEEN”: “For those of us whose online audio choices have moved beyond Apple’s walled garden, the Logitech Squeezebox Boom looks to be a strong contender,” writes CNet reviewer John Falcone. Like other previous Squeezebox products, the Boom wirelessly connects to your netowrk to stream online content from Rhapsody, Sirius, most Internet radio streams, and most DRM-free music files. But the Boom is a self-contained unit with speakers that doesn’t require a pre-existing stereo set-up. Interestingly, though, it’s AC-only. No battery operation! It’ll hit stores next month for $300. Read CNet’s review here.
U.S. TO TOP GLOBAL MOBILE WEB USE BY NEXT MONTH: The U.S. will overtake the UK next month to become the top “mobile web-connected” nation, according to research firm Bango. The company named the top five countries based on percentage of user visits to mobile websites in July 2008 as follows: UK (19.35%), U.S. (18.88%), India (10.82%), South Africa (8.82%), and Indonesia (4.08%). “The USA share of the browsing market has grown as an increasing number of phones come with bigger screens and service contracts that include unlimited internet access,” said Adam Kerr, VP of Bango North America at Bango. (There’s a larger version of this chart here)
NEW SALES HIRES AT McVAY NEW MEDIA, PANDORA: McVay New Media, McVay’s interactive division, has brought on James Thomas as a consultant. Thomas was Regent Communications as interactive sales manager. Meanwhile, Pandora has announced its hire of Priscilla Valls as senior ad sales manager for its New York office. Valls most recently was ad sales director for Answers Corporation, and has held sales and management positions with LastMinuteTravel.com, Modern Bride magazine, and iVillage as well.
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