Orange Threatens To Derange Nokia Handset Unless Reassured About Music Store


Orange UK has threatened to boycott Nokia’s incipient music service unless the manufacturer “agrees to work with the operator to ensure that customer experience is paramount”. The Independent is citing a memo Orange sent to Nokia: “The memo states that Nokia plans to launch two variants of the N81, one with an 8GB storage capacity and another with 1GB of storage. Orange proposes that an “open and transparent” trial is conducted to evaluate the Nokia music store using the 8GB handset to compare results with the 1GB variant that would only use Orange’s own music download service. “If this proposal is not accepted, we will regrettably be forced to derange this handset,” the memo warned.”

People could be forgiven for thinking that Orange is more concerned with a potential loss of revenue if its customers start using Nokia’s music store rather than its own effort which reportedly sees 100,000 tracks downloaded each month. However, Orange does raise a reasonable point about having to deal with customer enquiries: “We would expect a significant level of customer confusion and increased calls to customer services as a result of housing both players on a device and our data tariffs would be negatively impacted as they were not designed to deal with such large individual music files. In short, if this was an Orange service, we would definitely not launch yet to protect our customer experience.” However, the complaint about large files is a bit of a misnomer — Nokia hasn’t given any details but previous reports have indicated the company is planning a sideloading service, which obviates any complaints abotu file size. I guess we’ll find out on Wednesday the full details…

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