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The Sunday Brief: Mid-year report—AT&T, Verizon earnings preview

July greetings from Blair/ Omaha, Nebraska (fresh off a memorable College World Series, and home of this week’s PGA Senior Open) and Davidson/ Lake Norman, North Carolina.  Pictured is a wonderful fireworks shot my neighbor captured from last Sunday’s celebration.  It is great to be back...

Spotify music service launches in the U.S.

After two long years of negotiations with record companies, Spotify, a Swedish streaming music service, is finally launching today in the U.S. after hammering out deals with the big four labels of Universal, Sony, EMI and Warner Music to stream around 15 million tracks. As...

Spotify music service launches in the U.S.

After two long years of negotiations with record companies, Spotify, a Swedish streaming music service, is finally launching today in the U.S. after hammering out deals with the big four labels of Universal, Sony, EMI and Warner Music to stream around 15 million tracks.

Reconnecting music with mobile

San Francisco - Full-track downloads are spinning their wheels and subscription services are falling on deaf ears. So Nokia Corp. and its music-industry partners are hoping music lovers will shell out for devices that come with music.The Finnish manufacturer-cum-Internet services provider last week offered...

Innovation must be institutionalized to drive content adoption

ATLANTA - Innovation has to become institutionalized if wireless content is going to be successful, AT&T Mobility CEO Ralph de la Vega last week told attendees at the GSM Association's first last Mobile Innovation Marketplace - Americas event in Atlanta. "Just having it pop...

Etc.

Can you smell me now?Multimedia messaging could soon become multi-sensory. A German syndicate including a sensory analysis and marketing consultancy and an interactive value-added services specialist have filed for a patent for technology that allows users to send scents with their MMS messages to...

Livewire gets its groove on: Ringback provider goes broader with Groove Mobile purchase

NMS Communications Corp. subsidiary LiveWire Mobile is hoping to gain traction in a very slippery space: full-track mobile downloads.LiveWire, which was rolled out as a separate division in December, last week acquired Groove Mobile for $14.5 million - less than half the investment capital...

Groove goes to NMS for $14.5M

NMS Communications Corp. subsidiary LiveWire Mobile said it pocketed Groove Mobile for $14.5 million -- less than half the investment capital the startup had attracted in its six-year existence.LiveWire, which was rolled out as a separate division in December, targets carriers with personalization services...

Report: Motricity plans major layoffs

Motricity is slashing roughly one-third of its workforce and considering moving its headquarters, according to a report from WRAL.com citing multiple sources. The Durham, N.C.-based mobile content company will eliminate roughly 200 jobs as it streamlines operations following the recent $135 million acquisition of...

S.E., Nokia set to battle in D-2-C space: Line-ups appear stacked, though carrier competition remains

Nokia Corp. and Sony Ericsson are gearing up for what looks to be an epic battle on the mobile content playground. But the complicated world of mobile content is more like one of those bar-fight scenes in the movies where it's tough to tell...

Sony Ericsson adds 5M tracks to PlayNow: Company has deals with 10 labels for mobile music offering

Sony Ericsson said it has secured deals with 10 music labels, adding 5 million new tracks to its mobile music service.The company, a joint venture between Sony Corp. and L.M. Ericsson, announced agreements with Sony BMG, Warner Music Group, EMI, The Orchard and six...

N-Gage delayed . again: Nokia expects gaming platform to launch in early 2008

NOKIA CORP.'S DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER EFFORT suffered yet another growing pain as the company again pushed back the launch of its mobile gaming service. The world's No. 1 handset maker postponed the release of the highly touted N-Gage platform until early 2008. The delay marks the...

Nokia scores big win for Ovi: Handset makers gaining ground in direct-to-consumer space

It appears Nokia Corp. has learned a few lessons from its doomed Club Nokia mobile content business. But that doesn't mean the direct-to-consumer waters are getting any easier to navigate.The world's No. 1 handset manufacturer last week scored a huge win, inking a deal...

Nokia’s direct-to-consumer efforts befuddled

Nokia Corp. is once again finding that the direct-to-consumer path is a treacherous one.The world's No. 1 handset maker postponed the launch of its long-awaited gaming platform, according to Reuters, citing software problems. N-Gage, which was unveiled in August and slated for release this...

Cooperation key to rollout

A quick stroll of the show floor reveals all sorts of flashy gadgetry and eye-popping mobile applications. But the executives behind Sprint Nextel Corp.'s Xohm would rather talk about the ecosystem than about megabits per second.WiMAX is a substantial technological step forward for the...

EXTREMELY PERSONAL: Ringbacks, caller tags push personalization to new levels, garner attention from startups

Personalization refers to the way consumers use mobile content as kind of a bumper sticker, telling others who they are and what they think. It won't be long, though, before users will be placing those bumper stickers on your phone-not theirs.Ringback tones were the...

BREW continues slow inroads into European market

Qualcomm Inc. established another European beachhead for its BREW service as Hutchison Whampoa's 3 Group said it plans to offer handsets supporting the platform.The carrier, which offers service in Australia, Hong Kong, Israel and five European markets, said it will support BREW in an...

Sony Ericsson goes with Gracenote for mobile music

Sony Ericsson has tapped Gracenote to power a sideloading-enabled mobile music platform.The new platform includes features such as search and discovery, song identification and playlisting, and is designed to allow the easy transfer of tunes between home music libraries, online music stores and mobile...

Warner Music forms alternative programming division

Warner Music Group unveiled a division that will develop and produce original programming for mobile phones, cable TV, computers and other platforms.The division, dubbed Den of Thieves, will work with WMG's record labels to create content for distribution around artists' releases and special projects....

Play it forward: Push ringers new way to customize ringtones

Some high-profile investors are wagering on Emotive Communications Inc. and its "Push Ringer."The Encino, Calif.-based company last week said it pocketed $7.7 million in a funding round from Warner Music Group, Bertelsmann Digital Investments, the D.E. Shaw Group and undisclosed angel investors. Emotive said...

Emotive pockets cash for “Push Ringers”

Some high-profile investors are wagering on Emotive Communications Inc. and its "Push Ringer."The Encino, Calif.-based company said it pocketed $7.7 million in a funding round from Warner Music Group, Bertelsmann Digital Investments, the D.E. Shaw group and undisclosed angel investors. Emotive said it will...

After the handset, jacking ARPU

So you sell a jillion handsets into the next global hotspot. What's next? The true believers at the 3GSM conference last month, for instance, said that rapid penetration of under-served, emerging markets could actually spur economic development. With economic development comes rising personal incomes,...

Icahn gives Motricity cash, credibility boost

Motricity Inc. once again added to its bank account, pocketing $50 million in equity funding from controversial investor Carl Icahn. Whether the cash will be enough to see the company through the troubled wireless entertainment waters is uncertain, as the mobile content space increasingly...

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