Dolby Laboratories and digital music service provider Omnifone have announced an international collaboration to introduce the multi-platform digital file format Dolby Pulse into music services for mobile, PC, in-home, and in-car streaming and downloading.

Omnifone will be Dolby's first customer to utilize the pre-processing and encoding tool Dolby Media Generator, to encode its entire global catalog of over 6.5 million tracks from all majors and many indies into the Dolby Pulse format.

Dolby Pulse combines High Efficiency AAC audio coding with Dolby's audio expertise; a statement said that it "offers rich, premium sound at low bit rates, making it ideal for bandwidth-constrained applications."

"As digital content services and networked devices become part of our day-to-day lives, the ability to deliver digital content in the most efficient file format becomes increasingly important," said Kevin Yeaman, president and CEO of Dolby Laboratories, in a statement. "Dolby's collaboration with Omnifone to pioneer the first commercial use of both the Dolby Pulse format and Dolby Media Generator will bring a new level of speed, quality, and efficiency to Omnifone's digital media services."

He added: "With multiple services live in 20 countries today, Omnifone has outstanding reach as a digital music service provider and is an ideal partner for the introduction of the Dolby Pulse codec to consumers across multiple cloud-based services on a wide range of devices globally."

"Omnifone is proud to be Dolby's first customer to bring the high-performance, high-efficiency Dolby Pulse format to market," said Rob Lewis, CEO of Omnifone. "Consumers demand great sound quality, fast downloads, and streaming, and want to be able to store more media on their connected devices. Omnifone's decision to encode tracks using Dolby Media Generator into the Dolby Pulse format in 2010 will deliver highly efficient track sizes, faster delivery speeds, and higher sound quality per megabyte than traditional formats like MP3."

London-based Omnifone powers digital music services for various clients including BSkyB, Vodafone and HP.

Labels welcomed the new format from Dolby via Omnifone services.

"Content formats have an important part to play in the introduction of legitimate music access across mainstream connected consumer electronics," said Rob Wells, SVP, digital, Universal Music Group International, in a statement. "Omnifone's introduction of the Dolby Pulse format will enable a better user experience for music consumers on an ever expanding range of devices, with faster downloads, and better sound quality from smaller files requiring less memory. Suddenly, you can store four times more music on your device than before and still get great sound quality from the files."

Eric Daugan, SVP, commercial strategy, Warner Music Europe, added: "The introduction of this impressive file format represents a further step forward in the quality and speed of the digital music experience that can be offered to partners and fans."