NEWS: Universal to deliver free downloads

We've reported on free, ad-supported download services before, most notably from the service, and now Universal is getting in on the act.

Qtrax is the company setting this ball in motion, striking a deal with Universal that covers publishing and recording rights, and should see music available for free within the next month or so.

The company has also struck deals with Beggars, the UK's largest independent label, and the publishing arms of EMI and Sony/ATV, but this deal is the first covering publishing and recording.

Using peer-to-peer software, downloaded music will be the users for ever as long as they regularly log in to renew the rights management. Tracks will also be transferable to iPods and MP3 players.

As well as displaying advertising, the site will offer merchandise, concert tickets and other music-related items for sale. Check out the site here.

Technorati Tags: download, MP3, Qtrax, Universal,

Joe Cox
Content Director

Joe is the Content Director for What Hi-Fi? and Future’s Product Testing, having previously been the Global Editor-in-Chief of What Hi-Fi?. He has worked on What Hi-Fi? across the print magazine and website for almost 20 years, writing news, reviews and features on everything from turntables to TVs, headphones to hi-fi separates. He has covered product launch events across the world, from Apple to Technics, Sony and Samsung; reported from CES, the Bristol Show, and Munich High End for many years; and written for sites such as the BBC, Stuff, and the Guardian. In his spare time, he enjoys expanding his vinyl collection and cycling (not at the same time).