One thing that frustrates Aussies is the fact that despite being an English speaking country, we are generally behind the US and UK in legal media streaming services.
MOG.com, the online music streaming services, has announced it will soon be available to Australian users. It will partner with Telstra, and the service will be called “Mog, powered by Telstra”.
From the release:
The ability to stream ad-free, unlimited music on connected devices for less than the price of a CD each month means the days of storing CDs or deciding what playlists to load onto your devices are coming to an end. With 15 million songs at your fingertips, you think of it, and there it is.
Choosing Telstra means MOG will of cause have the strongest network behind it. Telstra already has a branded music-mp3 store Bigpond Music which is mainly a competitor to download music sites iTunes and Bandit.FM (to name two). There are even more awaiting in the wings like JB Hifi . There is no news or details how (or if) Bigpond Music will interface with MOG.
This can also been seen as a response to Spotify which has limited release in Australia, and Google Play Music and a potential, unannounced iTunes streaming service (based on the purchase of much loved Lulu) which has not been released in Australia.
MOG will be based on HTML5, so it is compatible with all systems, both mobile and desktop platforms, even Linux. So far it promises unlimited downloads and 320kbs stream, meaning the music will be high quality (better than default 256kbs MP3).
From the blogpost:
The service will be available to all Australians in the coming months regardless of network
This is good news in theory, however, it will be interesting to see how download quota’s be affected. Bigpond users may be quota free, however ISP like Optus, iiNet and TPG may not get that luxury.
At the moment, as an iiNet customer, I get unmetered Quickflix (streaming video) and iTunes (al la carte music, TV and Movies).
Given that Bigpond Music is tied into the Bigpond billing system, I suspect that Telstra will offer the same for Bigpond members for MOG, with non Telstra customers paying a monthly fee via credit card. No pricing details released.
The thing that makes a music live or die is the ability to give people the music what they want, when they want, in the format they want. A platform neutral music platform that allows a wide music choice on a subscription is one way music companies can maintain control of music via DRM in a way that should be palpable to music fans. Music is an area where there are many wrecks on the path, so it will be interesting if MOG will succeed in this country.