E-Carols For Cell Phones In The Works By Laurie Sullivan Requests from executives at the
company's distributors, such as Arena Mobile in the U.K. and Mobile Media in
Asia-Pacific, prompted the decision to create the platform, said Lars Harold,
co-founder and chief executive officer at Miyow. "It could take between 10 and
16 months to develop the platform, but work should begin shortly," Harold said.
"Perhaps, we'll have it ready by next Christmas."
Miyow, headquartered in Sydney, Australia, already offers ringtones for cellular
phones where the name is sung as a personal message in the tune. The company
also launched Singaname.com to deliver personalized Christmas e-carols in early
December. There also is a plan to expand the selection to love ballads for
Today, the site offers four category of Christmas song: classic, funny, naughty
and romantic. Once on the site, customers type in a name they want to insert in
the song. A click of the mouse personalizes the lyrics with audio slices and
LyriMix is the software that customizes the songs. The proprietary application
from Miyow contains thousands name recordings and background tracks. The
software platform is comprised of recording software that plugs into studio
software for musicians, a MySQL database running on Microsoft Corp.'s Windows
operating system, and assembly algorithms where the songs are assembled.
The files are stored in the MySQL database as uncompressed wave files. Thousands
of names have been prerecorded. The platform uses a Web-based application
programming interface (API) to easy assemble the song with the name audio clip.
The technology automatically assembles the song in about half a second. It took
Miyow 18 months to develop the LyriMix software. The platform sits on a server
hosted by GoDaddy.com, Harold said.
For now, the songs are recorded by Miyow, but Harold said the company is in
discussions with several music labels to also offer copyrighted tunes.
Research firm IDC Corp. estimates four in 10 wireless subscribers will have
purchased at least one ringtone by 2009, forecasting the market to reach nearly
Research firm Yankee Group puts the ringtone market in the United States this
year at $458.3 million, up from $221.4 million in 2004.
Those looking for Miyow's personalized ringtones can find them through content
provider MediaPlazza; or Arena Mobile, which is powered by the
telecommunications carrier Orange U.K.; as well as several in Asia-Pacific,
Harold said. "We've began to sell the personalized ringtones earlier this year
and have sold about 10,000 through our carriers," he said. "In the U.K. they
sell for between $3 and $4 for a 30-second ringtone. Pricing varies because it's
set by the carrier."