Cingular Wireless has joined with InfoSpace Inc. in providing software tools that unsigned bands looking for an audience on MySpace can use to convert their tunes to ring tones and sell them on the popular social-networking site.
Mobile Music Studio is currently being tested by about 75 bands and artists with profile pages on MySpace, which has a subscriber base of mostly teenagers and young adults. The tools are available on a dedicated MySpace page, which guides artists through the licensing and production process.
To create a ring tone, artists upload a short track of their music on an audio file, which is converted by InfoSpace into a 30-second ring tone. Before the conversion process, files are screened to ensure the content is original and "appropriate," the companies said in a joint statement.
Once the ring tone is created, artists are provided with a link to post on their MySpace page. The tune, however, can only be downloaded by Cingular customers on the carrier's phones. Artists are also given the opportunity to market their ring tones through Cingular.
The first unsigned band to post a ring tone using the new software tools is an Australian group called Shifter, which is promoting their five-song CD, Cingular said. The tools, which were announced at the CTIA Wireless show in Las Vegas, Nev., this week, are expected to be generally available this spring.
MySpace, which is owned by News Corp., has more than 68 million subscribers and more than 1 million bands, according to the site.