Along with announcing a brand-new lineup of handsets, Nokia is also venturing into the brave new world of Internet services. It's called Ovi, which is "door" in Finnish, and it signifies Ovi's open access to existing social networks like MySpace, Flickr, and Facebook right from a compatible Nokia phone. But the big news here is that Ovi will also be a gateway to Nokia's newly launched Internet services, which include the Nokia Music Store, Nokia Maps, and N-Gage games. Though Ovi can work on any personal computer, it is really designed for the mobile experience. It will go live in English in late 2007, while additional features and languages are expected next year.
The Nokia Music Store will have millions of tracks from a variety of music sources that include everything from major artists to independent labels. You can browse for music, buy the song directly over the air to your phone, or add a song to a wish list for later download. If you like, you may also download the song to your PC and later load it onto the phone. The Nokia Music Store also supports full track streaming on the PC. Another neat thing about the Music Store is there will be a music recommendation engine based on songs you have purchased. Songs are available in 192kbps WMA files, and can be managed either via Windows Media Player or Nokia's own Music PC client. As for pricing, a song will cost one euro each, while a whole album will go for 10 euros. But the interesting part here is that Nokia will also allow you to have a subscription for PC streaming for 10 euros a month.
Right now, compatible Nokia phones include the following: Nokia 5310 XpressMusic, Nokia 5610 XpressMusic, Nokia 5700 XpressMusic, Nokia 6267, Nokia 6500 Classic, Nokia 6500 slide, Nokia 6555, Nokia 7500 Prism, Nokia 7900 Prism, Nokia N75, Nokia N76, Nokia N81, Nokia N81 8GB, Nokia N91 8GB, Nokia N95, and Nokia N95 8GB. Music Store will open in certain European markets later this year, with additional stores opening next year.