CES 2006 - As expected, Verizon Wireless today announced over-the-air (OTA) music downloads as a part of its V Cast media streaming service. All OTA downloads are dual mode, allowing you to easily download the same song on your Windows desktop computer. Microsoft's Steve Balmer was at the launch event this morning and was full of his trademark enthusiasm over the new service.
Pricing was the most interesting part of the launch because Sprint Nextel relecently launched a similar store and is charging $2.50 per song. Verizon Wireless is charging $1.99 for dual mode downloads, but you can also download songs from your desktop PC and then transfer them to your phone for $.99. There is no limit to the number of songs stored on a phone other than memory.
To help out with memory issues, Verizon and Microsoft today announced a new format called Windows Media Audio Pro that is supposed to chop about half the file size off. This format is used for OTA phone downloads only, not desktop downloads.
January 16th is the official launch date and there should be about 500,00 songs to choose from at that time. The number should double within a few weeks of launch. You'll need the LG VX8100 or Samsung a950 to be able to use V Cast Music.