UK Top 40 Singles: Should It Include Ringtones As Well?

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I noticed two interesting stories today. The first one on the BBC stated that from Sunday the UK singles chart will include online downloads for the first time, which will have a major impact on the top 10. In the first three months of 2005, 4.5 million songs were downloaded legally in the UK - compared with 5.8 million bought over the counter, and also because downloaders tend to be mature males not teenage girls.

The second story I noticed was that Cingular had convinced bands to release their songs as ringtones before singles. Coldplay will be the first band, and their new song "Speed of Sound" will be available as a new ringtone six days before it gets played on the radio and a couple of months before their new album comes out in June.

I still can't get my head around why anyone would pay ?1.5-4 for a 30 second clip, but given that people are in their droves, and also given that the ringtones market is also bigger than the singles market, should ringtones also be included in the UK top 40?

One benefit would be that Top of the Pops would finish a lot quicker - imagine how many 30 second 'hits' they could play in 15 minutes!

The author runs a blog following developments in the internet and mobile internet sectors. With over 10 years experience in strategy consulting and business development, and has seen and lived through the highs, and the lows of the industry.

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