On the heels of yesterday's speculation that Cingular Wireless would enter the mobile music scene by supporting the transferring of music from computers to mobile phones, Cingular Wireless and XM Satellite Radio announced a partnership to stream 25 XM music channels to Cingular handsets beginning Nov. 6th. This is likely the first of a slew of agreements the operator will make as the carrier is believed to announce soon the ability to transfer music acquired from music subscription plans like Napster to Go, Yahoo's Y Music Unlimited or eMusic. This is certainly a different approach to mobile music than the over-the-air services Sprint Nextel and Verizon are offering, but more akin to what the market is used to.
Sprint quickly issued a press release yesterday touting its Sprint Music Store's one-year anniversary. The operator said it reached 8 million song downloads. That doesn't really smell of mass-market appeal, yet a Sprint spokesman decided to take a jab at the speculation surrounding Cingular's offering: "It's important to note that this service has not yet launched, and when/if it does launch, it will apparently require a cable connection from a phone to a computer. That's apples and oranges when compared to our service." The jury will be out on Cingular's service, but it makes sense to offer a wider choice to consumers given its late arrival into the music download market. Don't forget that Apple is expected to be a part of the mix too.