UBC Media Group has developed a technology that will allow mobile phone users to buy any song playing on a radio station by the tough of a button. The proposed service uses the same technology to deliver digital radio to 3m sets in the UK, with mobile phones containing the necessary chips expected to be on the market soon. A trial of this technology will begin soon in the Birmingham area, with a full consumer launch to follow in a year. UBC's has teamed up with the Chrysalis radio group and technology firms to launch the new business, which is expected to be worth £93m in six years.
By tuning into "digital radio stations through headphones, listeners will be able to click a "buy" button on their phone and have the track downloaded to their phone. Each track will cost around £1.25, with one copy being transferred to the phone and a second copy made available for download to a computer or iPod-type device."(Guardian Unlimited) At the launch customers will buy pre-paid vouchers that will entitle them £10 or £20 worth of tracks, but future purchases can be billed via their phone or bank account. UBC's intent is not to out do digital players such as the iPod, but rather to live side by side. The losers once again are the record stores. (GUSH Magazine)