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Nokia Music Store to open in Australia

Nokia today has unveiled part of its master plan to take over the world, one mobile music service at a time.

Nokia's Music Store on the N95

Shut down your iTunes and prepare for something new. Well, something similar.

Nokia gathered the cream of Australia's tech press today to show off the latest in the Finnish mobile giant's master plan to take over the world, one mobile content service at a time.

From next Tuesday -- the 22nd of April -- Aussies will have access to the Australian version of Nokia's Music Store, with an estimated 45 per cent of the content coming from local artists, including exclusive releases by the John Butler Trio and Pete Murray.

Nokia also confirmed the three major labels which will contribute to the 2 million tracks available; Universal, Sony/BMG and EMI. Joining the big boys is an extensive list of independent Australian labels including Shock Entertainment, Modular and the Hillsong music label.

While the service will draw many similarities to existing online music services, especially Apple's iTunes, Nokia have devised a nifty streaming 'Jukebox'-style service to help differentiate its offering. For AU$10 per month customers will be able to stream as much of Nokia's music catalogue through the site's built-in music player, however, these tracks will not remain on the users handset or PC afterwards.

Aussies can expect to pay AU$1.70 for individual tracks, and AU$17 for entire albums.

The launch of the Nokia's local music service follows closely on the launch of the company's N-Gage gaming platform, and follows Nokia's plans to centralise social networking and picture sharing via its Ovi Web portal later this year.

The Aussie Nokia Music Store can be found at http://music.nokia.com.au from Tuesday.