EMI inks deal over S50 portable receiver.
Sirius Satellite Radio’s fight with the major labels over its S50 portable receiver is over. EMI today became the fourth and final major to ink a deal with Sirius that allows for sales of controversial device.
Details of the agreement were not disclosed but it is believed to mirror similar pacts Sirius struck with Sony BMG, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group in mid-March.
According to sources close to the agreements, Sirius will pay the labels an undisclosed fee for each S50 sold and will cap the number of devices it sells.
Sirius has not disclosed sales figures for the S50. Analysts expect no more than 1 million will be sold.
Sirius began selling it in December for $330, amid protests from the labels. The S50 allows users to record and store up to 1GB (50 hours) of Sirius programming. Tracks can be saved individually and arranged into playlists like normal music downloads.
Music industry executives argued the capabilities go beyond the scope of the compulsory licenses satellite radio broadcasters currently pay for, which cover the rights to broadcast and stream music to subscribers.
While Sirius is in the clear on the S50, the company will have to go back to the bargaining tables with the labels if it wants to roll out similar devices in the future.
“Sirius and EMI Music North America have resolved the issues specifically related to the S50. Moving forward, the two companies are open to discussions to resolve issues relating to future products,” Sirius said in a statement.