Sprint Launching Wireless Music Service

Number three wireless operator Sprint today took the wraps off its Sprint Music Store, the first U.S. wireless music download service, making songs from major music distributors available at $2.50 apiece.

Powered by Groove Mobile, the Sprint Music Store operates on the Sprint Power Vision network, a high-speed EVDO data network Sprint says can currently reach as many as 130 million people, with access expanding to 150 million people by early 2006. The Sprint Music Store currently works with two new multimedia phones, the Sanyo MM-9000 and Samsung’s MM-A940, both of which support stereo headsets, offer built-in speakers, and can store up to 1,000 songs with an optional 1 GB removable memory card. According to Sprint, users will be able to download full-length songs in as little as 30 seconds.

The Sprint Music Store enables browsing, preview, and purchase of songs from Sony MBG, EMI Music, Warner Music Group, and Universal Music group. When users purchase a song, they actually receive two versions: one specially encoded for playback on their phone, and another high-quality WMA version users can transfer to up to three Windows PCs, and burn to CD using Windows Media Player.

“Sprint is the first carrier in the United States to deliver what customers want most in a wireless music store