|Sony Ericsson and Orange reveal next phase of their music partnership|
|Tuesday, 24 July 2007|
Sony Ericsson and Orange today announce the extension of their hugely successful music partnership, which has seen Orange sell over two million Sony Ericsson Walkman® handsets which feature the Orange full track music download service, Orange Music Store, in just over 12 months. The partnership has made Orange the leading provider of Walkman® phones across its nine European markets.
The Sony Ericsson Walkman® handsets are part of Orange's successful Signature Series, which gives customers one click access to Orange Music Store. Orange users of Sony Ericsson Walkman® handsets consume 50% more music than average music phone customers.
This next phase of the partnership brings about the creation of a range of local music marketing campaigns including the sponsorship of a unique TV, online and mobile content deal, mobileAct Unsigned?. Orange expects to exceed three million Walkman® music device sales by end of 2007 and will launch the W660i, W910i and W580i Walkman® handsets, which are compatible with its high speed mobile networks (3G, EDGE or HSDPA).
mobileAct Unsigned? was successfully piloted in Switzerland in 2006 and launches in the UK with Channel 4 in October accompanied by a web site www.mobileact.co.uk. A Swiss launch will follow shortly after with further launches, in France and across the rest of Orange's European footprint, being considered.
The partnership will generate interest in the new Walkman handsets available through Orange and provide exclusive content to drive mobile music uptake. mobileAct Unsigned? content will be available across the three platforms of TV, online and mobile and a range of local activities such as artist sponsorship and joint advertising campaigns will also take place across Orange's nine European markets.
In the UK, mobileAct Unsigned? is the first series to appear on both of Channel 4's flagship zones, T4 and 4music. It aims to unearth real talent - young bands that write and perform their own music. The search will be led by a panel of well-known, credible artists and music mentors. The UK winners will be signed to an album deal with a major record label.
Orange and Sony Ericsson began an integrated marketing partnership in March 2006 with a joint nine-month European sponsorship deal with Sony BMG artist Christina Aguilera. The deal gave Orange customers access to exclusive mobile music content, such as track downloads, via the Orange World portal. In France Orange experienced a 300% increase in downloads on Walkman® handsets following the partnership and in the UK the Walkman® W850, W810 and W880 handset have been the top three performers for download numbers.
"Sony Ericsson is extremely excited to be teaming up with Orange to sponsor mobileAct Unsigned?. By working with operator partners to provide users with exciting multimedia content, we bring to life the applications on our phones and encourage people to get the best experience from their phone," said Hervé Fontaine, Vice President, Orange Global Customer Unit, Sony Ericsson,. "With today's announcement Sony Ericsson and Orange have moved beyond just music to offer a highly integrated triple play content package."
Yves Maitre, Senior Vice President of Devices at Orange said "Music is at the heart of Orange's entertainment strategy. Orange has anticipated the fast growth of the music market providing a diverse portfolio of music devices across all segments. Working in close partnership with Sony Ericsson we have together delivered the largest and most successful integrated programme in the industry and anticipate similar success thoughout this year with these Walkman devices and the hugely exciting mobileAct campaign".
WALKMAN® is the trademark of Sony Corporation
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