LaunchMedia to Provide Music to Wireless Devices
LaunchMedia will use Qualcomm's Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless application to expand Launchcast, a service that lets users design their own music stations online.
BREW's standard application eliminates the need to modify applications for each emerging cell phone model, according to Qualcomm, San Diego.
"As more consumers become mobile and wireless technology improves, we are excited to be at the forefront of giving music fans unlimited Launchcast from wherever they are," said Dave Goldberg, CEO of LaunchMedia.
In addition to tailoring music to wireless customers' choices, Greg Morrow, executive producer at Launchcast, said the application could eventually be used to tailor advertisements to consumers while they listen to their music stations.
"Launch has built the personalization aspect of delivering Launchcast," Morrow said. "That's what broadcast hasn't been able to do: target content and ad messages.
"The market for PCs connected to the Net is $100 million, and the market for cell phones connected to the Net in several years is estimated to be [$1 billion]," he said.
Although Launch has banner and Flash ads on the site, the opportunity for audio ads via wireless devices will soon be a profitable market, Morrow said.
"Through the BREW platform, Qualcomm enables companies such as Launch to provide consumers with personalized applications," said Peggy Johnson, senior vice president at Qualcomm.
Launch and Qualcomm will set up wireless providers with BREW this year and will roll out the final product by year's end or in early 2002. Although the application would initially apply to cell phones and personal digital assistants, Morrow said the technology could work for pagers at some point.
MP3.com and Qualcomm also teamed up recently to work toward delivery of digital music to cell phones.
"Artists and fans have told us they are looking for the day when music will be delivered beyond the desktop to wireless devices," said Michael Robertson, chairman/CEO of MP3.com. "We're building the technologies that will be instrumental in making this vision a reality."
Wireless phone carriers have expressed significant interest in adding music to their services, Johnson said.