updated 01:05 pm EST, Tue February 6, 2007
Helio Music Store
Helio today announced Helio Music, the cellular carrier's initial venture into music download stores. Subscribers to the virtual network provider's service will have the option of buying music from four major US music labels for playback directly on Helo's phones, beginning with the company's iconic, Samsung-made Drift.
A unique element of the service is the flexibility in download options, Helio boasts. Price will be dictated by the device used to buy a given song: a direct download to the cellphone will cost $1.99 per track, but those who can afford to wait until they reach home will have the option of buying the same music from a PC for 99 cents. In both cases, the music will be available to play on either device without paying extra. Owners can even buy gift downloads that can be redeemed on another Helio phone, or "beg" a fellow subscriber to do the same, the carrier adds.
The Helio Music store is online today for cellphone users and is freely viewable from any phone using the company's All-In plan; A La Carte owners may have to pay for data access. The PC-based version of the store is due to follow in Spring but will automatically unlock free re-downloads of songs purchased on phones in advance.