BARCELONA—Here´s something you don´t hear every day. North America is actually leading in a mobile service – ahead of Europe.
That´s what music recognition service provider Shazam is finding. CEO Andrew Fisher said awareness of music as a category overall has been building, in particular in the United States. Shazam is the solution provider behind AT&T´s Music ID service and Verizon Wireless´ Song ID. The company serves 50 carriers in more than 45 countries.
Shazam´s technology can identify a song, whether it´s on a radio or being played in a bar. Noise cancellation techniques block out extraneous noises. Users can then buy ringtones, ringback tones or full song tracks.
Carriers teaming up with artists and the deck placement they´re giving music applications are part of what is driving uptake, Fisher said. Last week, Verizon announced that Timbaland will be the first mobile producer for its Mobile Producer in Residence program. The plan calls for his album to be exclusively offered to Verizon Wireless customers through V CAST Music.
Still, it was a European carrier that Shazam announced a deal with at the Mobile World Congress this week. The company has an agreement with VidZone Digital Media, supported by Vodafone UK, to launch a trial that will offer music video downloads and full track downloads for a fixed download price. Shazam will offer Vodafone UK subscribers the opportunity to download and buy music videos, full tracks and ringtones through ShazamiD on their mobile phones. Charges will be the equivalent of $2.89 for music video downloads and $2.18 for full track downloads.