B2B digital music and radio services company, 7digital announced their first content available in Master Quality Authenticated (MQA) technology, allowing the delivery of master quality audio in files small enough to stream or download. Onkyo is already working with 7digital to provide MQA files in its high resolution audio store, onkyomusic.com.
Following the announcement of their global strategic partnership as the leading platform provider of MQA since January 11, 7digital is already providing indie label content available in this higher quality format on their platform for B2B clients. The MQA content is also available for download by customers of both the 7digital D2C web store and mobile apps, with the company becoming the first digital music platform provider to offer MQA for both download and streaming.
In addition, Onkyo is working with 7digital to include the new MQA technology into its high resolution audio store, onkyomusic. Since January 8, users are able to access indie label MQA content in onkyomusic, a store powered by 7digital (branded e-onkyo music in Japan). Onkyo, and its subsidiary Pioneer, are also launching digital audio players with MQA playback capability.
Currently, 7digital has 46 B2B clients running digital music services accessible to consumers in 33 countries around the world. The company also has licensing rights in 82 countries, to enable quick time-to-launch for prospective new client services throughout the world.
“MQA transforms music listening by delivering every nuance and subtlety of the original studio performance. 7digital’s commitment to excellence and sound quality has made the team a natural partner for MQA as we’ve prepared for the launch of this revolutionary technology. We are delighted to be working together to expand the MQA music library and bring the experience of the studio to the masses,” stated Bob Stuart, creator of MQA.
Pete Downton, Chief Commercial Officer of 7digital, commented: “Our existing reach, coupled with the proposed acquisition of French B2B digital music provider Snowite, gives us an unrivalled footprint for enabling future growth in the digital music streaming market globally. A great deal of work has gone into making MQA ready for our commercial partners and we are excited to be serving up this advanced and necessary technology to our existing and prospective clients. 2016 will be the year that 7digital and MQA offer master quality, high resolution music to the world’s digital services, thereby eradicating the need for music fans to sacrifice quality for convenience.”
Hiroshi Izutani, President, Onkyo USA, added: “Customers of Onkyo are passionate about audio quality, and our mission is to ensure they are able to listen to their favorite music, in the highest fidelity, on their chosen device. With our partners 7digital, we are proud to be providing consumers the option to listen in master quality with MQA – whether at home or on the move.”
Included in this MQA premiere is catalogue from Nordic label 2L, nominated for 23 GRAMMYs over the last decade for its innovative sound recordings. Morten Lindberg, owner of 2L and GRAMMY-nominated balance engineer and recording producer, remarked: “2L is a premium brand music label with very high production values. It’s important to us that all our output maintains the flawless standards we are known for throughout the industry. Collaborating with both 7digital and MQA enables us to use the best in new technology to share with music fans exactly what we experience live at recording venues and in our mastering studio, which is hugely exciting.”
Apart from Onkyo and Pioneer, MQA has also announced support from a range of playback partners including AURALiC, Aurender, Bluesound, Berkeley Audio, dCS, Kripton, Ixion, Meridian Audio, and Mytek. In addition, HTC demoed a prototype device – the One A9 smartphone – with MQA playback capability at CES 2016.
7digital provides the technical infrastructure and extensive global music rights used to create music streaming and radio services for a diverse range of customers – including consumer brands, mobile carriers, broadcasters, automotive systems, record labels and retailers. 7digital also offers radio production and music curation services, editorial strategy and content management expertise. 7digital has for years been the largest independent producer of programming for the BBC, launching Radioplayer in multiple territories, and powering services for partners like HMV, Panasonic and ROK Mobile.
The recently announced acquisition of Snowite in France expands its services, since the company’s services are the same as those provided by 7digital and operates a similar technology platform from its base in Lille. Snowite operates principally in continental Europe and Africa, with customers including French retailers Fnac and E.Leclerc, as well as mobile entertainment publisher Cellfish and Vivendi, owner of Universal Music. Snowite’s. Snowite’s technology will also contribute to the strength of 7digital’s content management platform by improving various levels of automation in the ingestion process. The formal completion of the acquisition is expected on or around 30th March 2016.