Planet Funk to Launch Mobile-Only Single

Anglo-Italian five piece Planet Funk is aiming to set a new record next month when it launches its single “Stop Me” in the U.K. next month. The twist: the song will only be available for sale to cell phone users.

The mobile-only record launch marks a new attempt by bands and distributors to jolt the market for music singles, which, while enjoying some success online via track-by-track sales from venues like Apple’s iTunes Music Store, has generally been flagging worldwide.

Downloads currently account for less than 5 percent of the U.K. singles market, but the hope is that music singles are especially appropriate to music-capable cell phones, which often lack the memory capacity for storing a significant portion of a listener’s music collection, and are more likely to be used for casual, spur-of-the-moment purchases and listening.

Planet Funk’s single will debut on the U.K.’s 3 mobile service on May 8, 2006. (Yes, it’s sure to be dance-oriented, thumpy pop.)