TOKYO (CelebrityAccess) — Sony Music Entertainment announced they are teaming up with Rhapsody for the debut of the label’s “high resolution” streaming service in Japan.
“We chose Napster as our trusted partner because they have the global music experience, sophisticated API and passion to help us launch Japan’s new premier service,” said Shigeki Tanaka, Senior Vice President of Sony Music Entertainment.
The high-def streaming platform, called “mora qualitas” (Latin for quality time), allows users to stream FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec) files at a standard of 24-bit/96kHz (Hi-Resolution)/ 16-bit/44.1kHz (CD quality) through a variety of hardware devices including Digital Analog Converters which Sony, coincidentally, manufactures.
Music on the streaming platform will be sourced from Sony Music Entertainment, as well as a variety of other labels and distributors, including Universal Music Japan, Warner Music Japan, Victor Entertainment.
Mora qualitas is also fairly expensive compared to its peers and will set Japanese consumers back by 1,980 Yen a month which is around $18.50 US dollars.
While Japan has the infrastructure to support streaming, its music consumers have been slow to shift away from physical product. According to the Statista Global Consumer Survey, only about 20% of music consumers in Japan use streaming services as of 2019, with that figure expected to rise by only 1.6 percent in the next 3 years.
“The world of streaming is accelerating and as great companies like Sony Music Entertainment Japan expand into streaming audio, it’s an exciting time for the industry overall,” said Brian Ringer, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Asia Pacific Region of Rhapsody. “With the introduction of mora qualitas, music and audio fans in Japan can easily stream their favorite music in high-resolution audio.”