Sky Satellite Launches Subscription Music Download Service in UK

UK satellite TV and Internet service Sky announced Monday the launch of a new online music service called Sky Songs. The new service is subscription-based, and combines limited downloads with unlimited streaming. It is being offered in the UK only, with prices starting at £6.49 per month.

The service will be launching with some four million current and back catalog titles from EMI, Sony Music Entertainment UK, Warner Music UK and Universal Music Group, as well as several of the most important independent labels such as the Beggars Group.

Users can choose one of two subscription schemes: £6.49 gets one downloadable album priced at £6.49, or ten downloadable singles. £7.99 per month gets an album priced at that level, or 15 downloadable singles. Both prices get unlimited streaming from the full catalog.

Users can also pay for additional singles (65p) or albums, and downloads are being offered in DRM-free MP3 format, and we have asked the company for the bit rate used for downloads. The MP3 format means that downloadable tracks will be compatible with just about every digital media device on the market, including iPhone/iPod/iTunes.

The company is also offering all of its Sky Broadband customers who access Sky Songs a free £6.49 album download.