BBM Music went live a few weeks ago, and though it had a 60 trial attached, RIM is bumping up the trial period to four months. Anyone who isn’t already giving it a try and downloads from now until January 4 will be able to get the extended trial period. Unfortunately the offer is limited to those in the United States, so those of us elsewhere in the world are a little screwed, but that’s okay – I was ready to say goodbye in January anyway.
BBM Music is a subscription music service exclusive to BlackBerry handsets that, for $5/month, lets you pick 50 songs as your personal collection, which is then expanded by the people you add to your contact list. A home feed shows what your contacts have added, who they’ve started following, and what comments they’ve left on the songs of others. Of course, this means your collection is limited by the number of contacts you have, and the quality of their taste, both of which might be a roadblock for some people. At that price, the service is a bit of a throwaway, but if you’re going to even bother with a subscription music service why not go all-out at $10/month for Rdio, Slacker, or Spotify? Beats me. Now, if RIM introduced a fully-functional free tier where you could, say, follow up to five people, but have no collection of your own, that might be an impetus to sign up. Licensing for on-demand music can be harsh, but maybe if they took out the on-demand element and just let you shuffle the music of five friends and throw some ads in between, BlackBerry owners might be willing to give it a shot.
As is, licences are constantly shuffled, people are constantly tweaking their collections, and you can’t access the vast majority of music from friends outside the country. Overall, it makes for a pretty unstable collection of music. Still, free’s free. You can find more info on BBM Music and sign up over here.