Sony targets iTunes with free downloads

Sony targets iTunes with free downloads

Media giant teams up with European download services

Sony has unveiled five partnerships with leading music download services across Europe, offering Walkman users a variety of free trial periods and downloads on a country-by-country basis.

The download services include HMV in the UK, FNAC Music in France, Musicload in Germany, Terra Pixbox in Spain and Planet Music in Holland.

Benefits range from a three-month free trial for 'unlimited' music, via free album downloads, to free weekly tracks depending on the country of residence and the purchase of a qualifying Walkman.

"These exclusive partnerships confirm Sony's commitment to supporting an open standard with Windows Media Technology," said Jeffry van Ede, vice president of audio marketing at Sony Europe.