Motorola Dis Apple, Expect More Microsoft Music Phones: 3GSM

The news is coming out of 3GSM thick and fast. To keep up we’re planning to report is a slightly different way. When we see a press release that we thinks of interest to you, Dear Reader, we’ll put it up in full, with a brief comment at the top. Normal service will be resumed post 3GSM.

There’s been plenty of rumours about Motorola not being happy with Apple, following the iTunes Mobile launch. Today Mot announce that they are two-timing Apple with Microsoft. Interestingly they say they’ll have OTA (Over The Air) delivery of content by 2007.

Motorola and Microsoft Plan to Bring More Choice to Mobile Music Fans

Seamless integration of Windows Media technologies will deliver complete music experience and redefine music discovery on Motorola handsets.

BARCELONA, Spain – 13 Feb 2006 – Today at 3GSM World Congress 2006, Motorola Inc and Microsoft Corp strengthened their existing relationship by announcing a collaboration to integrate Microsoft(r) Windows Media(r) technologies on a number of Motorola’s music handsets, which will allow users to access content from the broadest selection of online music stores from around the world.

Motorola’s music handsets will add support for Windows Media Digital Rights Management (DRM), Windows Media Audio (WMA), the enhanced Windows Media Audio Professional (WMA Pro) codec and Media Transfer Protocol (MTP). These technologies will give consumers the maximum flexibility and options when purchasing and playing back their digital music.

Forthcoming Motorola music handsets will enable seamless connectivity to Windows(r)-based PCs via the USB 2.0 high-speed protocol. By supporting MTP, Windows Media Player will automatically recognise Motorola handsets and enable users to quickly and easily sync their music from their PC to their phone. Music acquired from any pay-per-download or subscription store using Windows Media technology will transfer and play back on Motorola handsets.

In addition to making Motorola handsets interoperable with PCs, Motorola and Microsoft plan to provide mobile handset offerings that are tailored for discovering and acquiring music over an operator’s 3G network. Incorporating the efficient encoding capabilities of the WMA Pro codec, this rich music offering will provide operators with handsets optimised for efficient music downloads* over a 3G network. Consumers will also benefit from quick and easy access to high-quality music on the go.

“Our relationship with Microsoft is about making the mobile world seamless with the desktop world and allowing consumers to experience music wherever and whenever they want,” said Richard Chin, corporate vice president of Global Product Marketing at Motorola. “Building on our existing relationship, this expanded collaboration can further enrich the mobile music experience and expand the mobile music offering to our operator alliances and consumers.”

“Combining Motorola’s wireless handsets with Windows Media technologies will significantly advance the mobile music experience,” said Amir Majidimehr, corporate vice president of the Windows Digital Media Division at Microsoft. “Motorola’s upcoming handsets with Windows Media will offer consumers and operators worldwide the widest range of high-fidelity, no-compromise music choices.”

Motorola began shipping Microsoft technologies on select handsets in 2005, and plans to offer Windows Media-enabled music experiences on multiple handsets worldwide in the second half of 2006. Support for over-the-air delivery capabilities and WMA Pro is expected to follow suit in 2007.