Orange not Singing Nokia’s Tune

Nokia today announced ‘Ovi’ their internet services portal including the Nokia Music Store. However, Orange aren’t happy with their sore toes, and have told the Finns they’re not playing.
With the introduction of Ovi, Nokia is expanding from a focus on mobile devices to offering a range of Internet services. Ovi, meaning ‘door’ in Finnish, enables consumers to easily access their existing social network, communities and content, as well as acting as a gateway to Nokia services.
As part of Ovi, Nokia announced the Nokia Music Store a service that makes it easy for people to discover, try and buy music from a blockbuster range of artists, including exclusive content only available through Nokia.

With a single account, music lovers can access the Nokia Music Store via their desktop computer or directly from optimized Nokia devices beginning with the Nokia N81 and Nokia N95 8GB. Consumers can browse through millions of tracks from major artists, independent labels as well as local hits, for new music, get recommendations or search for favorite artists, songs or albums.

However, Orange already have a music store from which more than 100,000 tracks are downloaded every month. Orange expect to be hit hard by Nokia’s store and are therefore loathe to promote it.

In a memo from Orange to Nokia execs, the network has threatened to derange the N81 handset (Nokia’s music store compatible device, launched today) and contact other manufacturers to make up the shortfall.

Orange have asked to only load the Nokia Music Store on 8gb versions of the handset, with the 1gb edition to only have Orange’s own store preloaded, thereby giving them the opportunity to compare results.

The memo said "We are very keen to work as a partnership with Nokia in this area, and subject to the above trial approach,  we would commit volumes to range the exclusive blue N81 variant. If Nokia decline this opportunity, we will need to work with other manufacturers to close the connections shortfall we would expect as a result of deranging the device."

Orange asked for a decision on their ultimatum by this coming Friday, August 31st.

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