Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Comes With Music

I was walking around Sungei Wang yesterday, and noticed a bunch of ads, selling the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic for about RM1,399 or lower.

I had first read about it, from Suanie and was impressed when she said:

Vlasta Berka, GM of Nokia (M) took the stage to officially launch the Nokia 5800 XPM. He also announced the price — RM1,499 which I think is a real steal. They are also giving away 1,000 DRM-free songs with each unit; song artists include Madonna, Jason Mraz, Kylie Minogue, Norah Jones, Michael Buble… you know, the talented ones.

1,000 DRM-free songs. According to The Star, it comes with a voucher of some sorts, and you have a selection of over 10,000 songs, from big labels like EMI, Warner Music and so on. It comes I believe, with an 8GB microSD card, which stores up to 6,000 tracks!

But, lets go back to the 1,000 DRM-free songs. You’re paying market price – RM1,499, for a device, and you’re getting free music. Back in November 2008, I wrote about looking for devices that comes with music. I revisited the article in The Economist, and noted that handsets in the UK, could cost as little as £130, and it would come with a supply of music!

I wonder what Nokia is paying the music industry for this feature. In fact, I wonder if the music is downloaded over-the-air, which also means, people will want to get unlimited data plans. Budget-conscious owners, will probably do it via a desktop application (I presume), which probably only works on Windows. Discounting Mac users (and even Linux users), is a big mistake, which I hope someone like Russell Beattie would get fixed.

So, what is the true cost of the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic, without music? A phone store by Nokia, when Apple can’t even muster the iTunes Music Store? Depending on popularity, I wonder if Apple will slowly miss the boat, here in Malaysia. More on this, if/when I try the phone out…


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