Qobuz, the French music streaming service, has confirmed that it will introduce its 'Studio Master' download service in September.
Subscribers can currently stream music via Qobuz up to CD-quality (16-bit/44.1kHz), but the firm's next step is to offer hi-res downloads (24-bit, up to 192kHz) for €15/album or €1.5/track. There will be a back catalogue of around 20,000 Studio Master albums at launch.
Alternatively, users will be able to download standard CD-quality FLAC files for €12 (album) or €0.95 (track).
It's all part of an ambitious plan to expand Qobuz's reach and offering. The service will extend its coverage to Scandinavia, Spain and Italy this year and after that it is looking to introduce a 24-bit, DSD streaming service when it can.
Also in the development pipeline are Qobuz TV, offering live concerts on your smart TV in high-res audio and video, Qobuz Connect, and a Qobuz in-car app. The company is also trying to negotiate more exclusive releases on its platform.
Yesterday Astell & Kern announced it had linked up with Qobuz to bring high-res downloads directly to Astell & Kern portable players.
By Andy Clough