Well, that was embarrassing. UBC Media’s Cliq mobile/radio music download service is shutting down today, a year after the radio outfit invested £1.6 million in the project, UBC said, confirming FT.com’s speculation. Launched in December, Cliq let users buy songs played on partner radio stations via a mobile Java client – tracks were downloaded to PC, though there were plans to offer download to radios via a partnership with DAB maker Pure.
The serendipity of instantly purchasing a track being played on radio is a holy grail for a music industry still not offsetting physical sales decline with digital growth and for a radio industry that has watched its ad revenue dip to about two percent of UK spend. Cliq had been used by GMG, Global Radio, Chrysalis and Emap (LSE: EMA) stations but others, like GCap, have fallen back on the tried-and-trusted iTunes affiliate links for their download efforts.
UBC’s website says Cliq was “the biggest single project we are engaged in at the moment”. FT.com said closure would cost £1.1 million but would save £1.3 million per year. The final impairment UBC will incur will be £2 million. UBC last month agreed to sell its core commercial division to Global Traffic Network for £15 million.
UPDATE: Cliq is denying that its service has