It’s been a while since the music industry first got excited about the idea of bundles – be they ‘hard’ or ‘soft’ – of streaming services with mobile data contracts. But AT&T has launched a new offering in the US that deserves attention.
Its $70 Unlimited &More and $80 Unlimited &More Premium plans were unveiled yesterday, with the first including a catalogue of film and TV shows for on-demand viewing, and an app called WatchTV offering more than 30 live channels.
It’s the $80 plan where music comes in though: subscribers can choose to get Pandora Premium or Amazon Music Unlimited for no extra cost – although these are options in a wider menu, with alternatives also including TV channels HBO, Cinemax, Showtime or Starz, and users only able to pick one.
“Teaming up with AT&T makes perfect sense – we have the opportunity to introduce Pandora Premium to AT&T’s massive subscriber base and provide them with the added-value of our on-demand music service,” is how Pandora CEO Roger Lynch welcomed the news.
The fact that this is a non-exclusive agreement is interesting though: it leaves scope for AT&T to add other music-streaming services as options, if they are willing and the deal terms make sense. That’s a break from the traditional bundle models of a telco working with a single streaming service.