Full-track downloads launch on Panasonic device.
NTT DoCoMo today (June 7) became the third Japanese telecom to offer mobile-based full-song downloads.
DoCoMo says the service will initially be available only on the new Panasonic P902iS FOMA 3G handset, which was also launched today. The device can store up to 2GB of music content, or nearly 1,000 songs.
Users of the handset will be able to download songs from some 70 Web sites accessible via DoCoMo's "i-mode", dubbed the world's most popular mobile-based Internet interface. The service is currently used by some 46 million people. Some 24 million people subscribe to FOMA, DoCoMo's 3G mobile service.
The sites mainly feature domestic repertoire made available in digital form through the "Chaku-Uta Full" service operated by Tokyo-based content aggregator Label Mobile, which is owned by several major Japanese labels.
Pricing varies depending on individual songs and Web sites, most of which are using a subscription business model. Tracks will be encoded in the aac+ format.
Rival telecoms KDDI and Vodafone launched their own Chaku-Uta Full-access services in 2004 and 2005, respectively. KDDI has so far sold more than 50 million songs via the mobile-based service.