The cloud-based Qriocity music service from Sony launched in Australia and the US yesterday is curiously unavailable on Aussie computers.
UPDATE: The Australian version of the Qriocity service has just been put up online, a day late on Sony’s original announcement of the Australian release of the service.
Sony’s answer to iTunes features a ‘Music Unlimited’ subscription plan for access to millions of songs from the big four record labels including Universal, Sony, Warner and EMI, but the service is late for its own release date scheduled for last Thursday.
Anyone familiar with Vevo’s country restricted content will be no stranger to the ‘Sorry, this service is not available in your country/region’ alert.
In theory, Sony would offer a ‘Basic’ plan for $4.99 a month that provides ad-free radio, personalised channels, categorical listings and unlimited song skipping alongside a ‘Premium’ subscription for $12.99 that begins with a 30 day trial. The Premium option offers access to the database of songs to choose individually as well as the ability to create playlists and access regularly updated Top 100 channels.
When the service is up and running, music can be streamed onto exclusively Sony products like network-enabled VAIO notebooks, BRAVIA TVs, Blu-ray players and PS3s, with a future ambition from the company to launch on a wider range of portables and Android phones.
The service has already been launched in countries across Europe and the UK following last year’s launched of ‘Video on Demand powered by Qriocity,’ being an extension of Sony’s Qriocity library that it is pushing against iTunes popularity.
While Sony has had disputes with iTunes over its offerings on the Apple service like having its eBook app banned from the iTunes Store recently, Sony Computer Entertainment CEO Michael Ephraim says the company still relies on providing content to iTunes because it is “the format right now” and is one of its biggest digital partners.
Sony is looking to fix any technical issues with the Music Unlimited service before it makes any big marketing moves in the hope of a successful launch period.
The service runs on Omnifone to take advantage of its licenses with rights holders of the six million song library and Gracenote for all its music tailoring and preference services.