There may be doubts about the health of the OTA mobile music downloads market, but that’s clearly proving a spur for Omnifone to ramp up its push into other sectors.The company has announced a new version of its MusicStation unlimited music service – MusicStation Next Generation – which has broadband ISPs as its target customers, rather than mobile operators. The idea is to deliver unlimited music and music videos to broadband users via their computers or set-top boxes.Omnifone says it has licensing in place on a pan-European basis from all four major labels and thousands of independents (what about publishers though?), and says it will announce “major ISP partners” shortly.The service could be bundled in with broadband users’ existing monthly bills, or offered on a Pay As You Go basis. It ties right into the desire of the music industry and governments for new methods of music consumption that may appeal more to consumers than piracy.”Tens of millions of European consumers are engaged in music piracy every day. Whilst government pressure is growing, we also need to deliver alternatives that recognise the needs and desires of the YouTube generation,” says Omnifone CEO Rob Lewis.“With today’s announcement, Omnifone is offering consumers something better than piracy.” However, it does beg the question of how much traction Omnifone sees for MusicStation in the mobile arena – something we’ll be asking the company when we meet them later today at Mobile World Congress, where the new service is being shown off for the first time.

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