Music2Text uses SMS as a music distribution platform

We typically don’t associate SMS and music distribution, but that’s exactly what Music2Text aims to do: use the most universal mobile phone communications building block (after voice) to sell and share music. The whole system is based on something very simple: each song can be identified with a “shortcode”. A shortcode is a special number like #7415 that is usually used by carriers to send settings to your phone.

In this case the shortcode will be used to connect to a music store and retrieve a track as a download, just like you would download a ringtone in the old days. Users can SMS shortcodes to their friends if they want to share a pointer to a track. It is also fair to assume that performers and bands will also be able to send an SMS to their fans when their latest production comes out.

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The pricing for the songs will vary, but in the U.K many sell for 1 UKP. The business model is simple: the label/artist/seller needs to pay a fixed fee of 20UKP (about $35) to have the right to sell a track on the service. From there, all the proceeds go to the seller, so breaking even should be fairly easy.

Music2Text is a pretty interesting idea because despite the fact that one day all phones will be smartphones, we still have billions of handsets that are rather plain and relatively low-tech. Also, many smartphone owners may simply prefer using an SMS service rather than create an account on a music store. Because the price is low to get started, this is also a new channel for upcoming artists. We haven’t tried it, but if you did, leave a comment.

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