Nokia Comes With Music
Nokia's subscription-based music service allows unlimited music downloads for a full year, but the tracks are encumbered with DRM protection.
- Unlimited music downloads, no 'fair use' policy, wide range of music available through Nokia Music Store
- DRM-protected WMA files, not compatible with Macs, can only play tracks on one nominated phone and PC
All in all, Nokia's Comes With Music offer of 12 months' free music is certainly enticing, but do remember that there is a catch — all music is DRM-protected, so you can only play the music on your Nokia phone and one nominated PC. That being said, if you aren't fussed about these restrictions then Comes With Music will certainly impress.
A music subscription service bundled with a selection of Nokia mobile phones, including the touch-screen 5800 XpressMusic, Nokia's Comes With Music service offers unlimited music downloads from the Nokia Music Store for either a 12 or 18 month period. At the end of that unlimited download period, you are able to keep any of the music you've downloaded.
The main negative aspect of the Nokia Comes With Music service is the fact that all music downloaded is DRM-protected, meaning you can only play the tracks on a nominated PC or your Nokia mobile phone. You can't burn the WMA files to a CD, transfer them to another PC or play them on any other mobile phone, though you can choose to pay extra fees in order to do this.
You can transfer your downloaded Comes With Music tracks between both of your registered devices (PC and mobile phone), and in case you upgrade your PC, Nokia allows you to transfer the Comes With Music subscription to a new computer once every three months. Tracks on your PC can be played through the Nokia Music application or Windows Media Player 11, but obviously they won't work with Apple's iTunes software or any other media player.
The Comes With Music service is fairly easy to set up. When you purchase a compatible Nokia mobile phone there will be a voucher in the sales package containing a PIN code. Simply download the Nokia Music application onto your PC, access the store and enter the PIN code. You can then connect your mobile phone to your PC via the included USB cable and the phone will automatically be associated with your account.
Although the Nokia Music application is well designed and fairly intuitive to use, it is a little slow to browse from page to page. In addition, the program is only designed for Windows machines, so Mac users are completely out of luck. Nokia doesn't state the exact bit rate of the WMA files downloaded, but the sound quality when playing tracks on both our PC and Nokia's 5800 XpressMusic mobile phone was excellent.
Tracks took about a minute to download on average, though this depends on a number of factors including track length, the speed of your Internet connection and your PC itself. You can also download tracks directly from your phone itself, though be warned that this will count towards your data limit and could be an expensive exercise if you don't have the right mobile Internet plan. We much preferred downloading music on our PC first, then simply transferring the songs to our handset via USB.
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