HP launches music download service

MusicStation to come on certain PCs in 10 European countries
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Hewlett-Packard has launched a digital music service that will come pre-loaded on certain PCs in Europe.

As of today, MusicStation comes on 16 HP models in Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Netherlands, Belgium and Austria. The service is provided by British firm Omnifone and will give users unlimited access to tracks from all major and leading independent labels. A 14-day free trial of unlimited access comes on the entire range of new HP Pavilion, Compaq Presario and HP Envy models.

Following the trial, UK users will pay £8.99 a month for HP's service, which allows them to download unlimited tracks and keep 10 forever in DRM free MP3 file format each month. Other countries pay around €10.

Rob Lewis, CEO of Omnifone, said: "The HP rollout sees MusicStation Desktop preinstalled on multiple HP PCs, available in 7 languages with each territory featuring an individually tailored music catalogue from Omnifone's roster of over 6.5 million tracks."

"We look forward to extending our partnership onto even more PCs and territories, to ensure consumers have the ability to gain legitimate access to the world's music on every HP PC they purchase," continued Lewis.

The record labels providing tracks to MusicStation hope that it will encourage consumers to download music legally.

"Universal is working closely with PC manufacturers to support the introduction of legitimate music access across mainstream connected consumer electronics," said Rob Wells, senior vice president of digital at Universal Music Group International.

Eric Daugan, senior vice president of commercial strategy of Warner Music EMEA, added: "Warner Music strongly supports HP's introduction of the MusicStation Desktop proposition to bring legitimate music access to HP's range of top selling PCs."

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