Research In Motion (RIM) today launches its new BBM Music streaming and sharing service for BlackBerry handsets, offering a 60-day free trial before an ongoing subscription fee of AU$5.99 per month.
RIM joins Sony, Samsung and Microsoft in hosting its own streaming music service for mobile devices, but with a significantly different structure to the competition. Subscribers choose 50 songs from the BBM Music catalogue, with the option to swap out 25 songs per month. To make best use of the service, subscribers will need to have a long list of BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) contacts, with everyone sharing the 50 songs they choose.
BBM Music also offers the option to cache music to the SD card, so that you can listen to your music when you are unable to connect to the internet. This option is also open to tracks listed on your friends' profiles, as well.
The BBM element adds a layer of social networking to music that the other services listed don't offer. Sharing access to streaming music services has traditionally been off limits, based on the limitations of licence agreements that the services have with the major record labels. This freedom is, of course, offset by the rigid limit to music that each user has individually, and acquiring a decent collection of music using the BlackBerry streaming service will require teamwork between a network of BBM users.
BBM Music launches today for BlackBerry users across all of Australia's major telcos.