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August 26, 2016

EE launches free Apple Music deal for pay monthly customers

News: The operator is pursuing a new strategy.

By Alexander Sword

EE will offer subscribers free access to Apple Music in a UK-first deal.

New and upgrading pay monthly customers who take a pay monthly iOS or Android handset plan or SIM-only plan will get six months of free access to the music streaming service.

It is available from 1 September.

The launch is backed by an advertising campaign featuring "Oops!… I Did It Again" star Britney Spears and old EE stalwart Kevin Bacon.

Apple Music hit the 10 million subscriber milestone for its service within six months after launch, a number which took its rival Spotify almost six years to reach. It now has over 15 million subscribers globally.

The service launched in more than 100 countries in June 2015.

It is an app comprising a music library, a streaming service, a radio station including Beats 1 and curated playlists.

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This deal makes EE the first UK operator to offer Apple Music bundled.

Kester Mann, Principal Analyst at CCS Insight, called the deal a “coup” for EE and said it would strengthen the operator’s position at the premium end of the market.

“It will hope to encourage upgrade, boost retention and drive migration to higher data packages. The timing – just weeks before the rumoured launch of the iPhone 7 – is particularly favourable,” said Mann.

He also highlighted the implications for EE’s new strategy following its acquisition by BT, which has traditionally been built around its leadership in the 4G realm.

Another recent deal saw EE offering BT Sport bundled with its services.

Marc Allera, EE CEO said that the company wished to “bring our customers services from the best companies in the world. In Apple Music there is no doubt that we have found that, and together we’ll provide customers with an outstanding music experience on the biggest and fastest mobile network in the UK.”

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