EMI and StarHub First to Launch Biggest Online Music Download Portal in Singapore
Up to 50,000 tracks can be downloaded, burned and copied to portables legally
Singapore, 18 March 2004 - EMI Music Singapore and StarHub today announced the launch of the biggest music downloads initiative by a record company to date in Singapore. EMI will offer for online sale up to 50,000 tracks from over 3,000 EMI artistes on ;Play, StarHub’s award-winning* online musical gateway at www.starhub.com/play.
Consumers can now purchase and legally download their favourite music tracks for just S$1.99 per track or S$16.50 per album on ;Play. Payment can be made via credit card (Visa and Mastercard) or eNets Vcard and includes GST.
This exciting new initiative offers consumers the flexibility over how and when they can access their music, enabling them to:
Burn music onto CD-R three times;
Copy tracks to portable players twice;
(Transfers to portable devices are subject to manufacturers’ specifications. Device must be configured to accept the licensed music in WMA format.)
Purchase singles online as soon as the songs are serviced to radio and in advance of their commercial release on CD.
;Play is open to all Internet users in Singapore and is best experienced with a broadband connection such as MaxOnline.
StarHub is the first to launch such a service with EMI in Southeast Asia. To-date, more than 10 Internet music retailers from Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan are gearing up to start selling EMI’s new downloads and will go `live’ at varying times over the coming weeks.
Said Mr Kyong Yu, Head of StarHub Interactive, “;Play offers music enthusiasts a unique hear-it-first-here opportunity to conveniently sample the latest albums, songs and music videos. Now, with this collaboration with EMI, users can legally download music content and customise their own album collections on CD-R and portable players. This is the first step towards providing StarHub customers with significant value-added music content and services when they hub with us.”
Mr Hans Ebert, Executive Director, EMI Music South East Asia said, “These are truly exciting times for the recording industry as we start to understand and embrace all the intricacies and opportunities of new media technology - technology that is constantly evolving. This latest development is an extremely positive one that will take EMI in this region into an entirely new way of marketing and distributing our product. And as with anything and everything we do, the key thing is that we have people working for us who understand how this technology works and also understand the wants and needs of today's consumers.”
The launch of this online downloading initiative is very welcome in Singapore. Said Ms Liew Woon Yin, Director-General, Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS), “This is a very exciting initiative that signals great progress for the music industry in Singapore. Original works by artistes deserve to be valued, respected and protected and IPOS supports any effort put in place to encourage our consumers to respect intellectual properties. Given this new initiative, consumers will now have legitimate alternative to enjoy the music they love. I urge more consumers to leverage on this new initiative, to ‘say No to Piracy and live for Real’.”
The online catalogue will include music from the vast majority of EMI’s current artistes including Air, Richard Ashcroft, Atomic Kitten, Blue, Blur, Coldplay, Elva Hsiao, B.A.D., Penny Tai, The Dandy Warhols, Daft Punk, Dirty Vegas, Ben Harper, Janet Jackson, Joss Stone, Norah Jones, Lenny Kravitz, Massive Attack, Kylie Minogue, N.E.R.D., Placebo, The Vines, Stacie Orrico, Robbie Williams, and local acts like Ayden, Wendi Koh, Haikel & Claressa Monteiro.
Back catalogue will feature artistes such as The Rolling Stones, The Beach Boys, Blondie, David Bowie, Nat King Cole, Deep Purple, Duran Duran, Dean Martin, Pink Floyd, Cliff Richard, Frank Sinatra, George Lam, Roman Tam and Frances Yip, as well as classical recordings by artistes including Placido Domingo, Kiri Te Kanawa, Vanessa-Mae, and Nigel Kennedy. There will also be thousands of recordings in other genres including jazz and country.
More excitingly, EMI’s rich catalogue of local albums that are no longer in production today will also be made available for sale online – e.g. P. Ramlee, Anita Sarawak, Rita Chao, Western Union Band, The Quests, and more.
“We are pleased to be able to finally offer consumers in Singapore yet another channel for them to buy their music from. EMI has been spending the last year preparing for this launch in Southeast Asia, following successful launches in the US and Europe. Everyday we are adding more and more tracks and albums so as to be able to offer a sizeable catalogue that will one day match our physical catalogue. From pop to classical, from jazz to local repertoire, we want to be able to meet the demands of the Singapore consumer,” explained Ms Valerie Lim, Managing Director, EMI Music Singapore.
Launched in March 2003, the ;Play music portal provides a musical gateway to international music artistes from Hong Kong, Taiwan and the United States. The portal offers fully streamed albums, pre-released singles, music videos and now music downloads. Users can also access exclusive interviews, news articles and fun online activities such as polling, discussion forum, e-greeting cards, wallpaper downloads and more.
The ;Play music download service is powered by Netroasia, which provides the Digital Rights Management platform for the secure delivery of the music downloads portal. Netroasia will also provide technical and content management services for StarHub's digital music initiative.
To coincide with the launch of the music downloads service, StarHub will launch a ‘Top Downloader’ promotion, where winners stand to win cash and MP3 players every month. For more information, please go to www.starhub.com/play.
* Best Interface Design, International Business Awards 2003
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About EMI Recorded Music
EMI has consistently been one of the most progressive music companies in the online sphere. In the last four years EMI has signed over 60 license agreements with digital music companies all over the world covering a whole host of different business models and concepts and was the first record company to issue licenses to both MusicNet and Pressplay, as well as independent music subscription services. In November 2002, EMI announced the launch of a new US digital download programme in conjunction with nine online music distributors, while Europe came on board from April 2003 with more than 20 online retailers.
StarHub is a Singapore-based info-communications company providing a full range of information, communications and entertainment services over fixed, mobile and Internet platforms. It operates its own nation-wide broadband network that delivers multi-channel cable TV, data, voice and Internet access. StarHub will also offer Digital Cable Services in 2004. On the cellular front, StarHub also operates its own GSM/GPRS network and will have its 3G network ready by end 2004. Driven by a passion for listening and providing what customers want, StarHub endeavours to bring affordable and premium quality services with innovative and useful features to all its customers.
StarHub raises the level of competition in Singapore, challenging others as well as challenging itself, to constantly introduce new world-class services at competitive prices. This unwavering commitment will further strengthen Singapore's position as a leading info-communication hub in the region. Visit StarHub at www.starhub.com for your communication needs.
Netroasia is an info-comm technology company that focuses on digital media services and enterprise solution development. Its core digital media services include broadband and streaming solution for the Internet and mobile platform, aggregation and creation of digital content for various IP delivery platforms, web and mobile consultancy and development. Its subsidiary, Digital Connect Pte Ltd, provides the R&D services for continuous enhancement to secure digital platforms.