Vodafone says nearly 450,000 of its customers across Europe have signed up for music subscription services since it agreed DRM-free MP3 music deals with all four major labels last year. It's calculated this gives it stewardship over the largest number of paying music subscribers in Europe.
In December alone, over 100,000 customers signed up to one of Vodafone's music services in Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and the UK. Choices include monthly 10-track MP3 bundles and ‘all you can eat’ unlimited access services.
Lee Epting, Director of Content at Vodafone Internet Services, said "We are really excited by our customers’ reaction to these great music offers. We expect to see continued growth in our music service subscriptions driven by the increase in smartphone use, with their worry-free data tariffs and great value add-ons such as music bundles. We will carry on working hard with our partners in the music industry to develop new and innovative music services for our customers. Vodafone is starting to prove the significance of its place in the music industry."
Vodafone announced DRM-free deals with Sony Music Entertainment, EMI Music, and Universal Music in March 2009, following this in September 2009 with a Warner Music Group agreement.