Yahoo Partners Rhapsody to Deliver Full Song Playback in Search

Yahoo and Rhapsody are putting the play buttons right in the search box and making the Web playable. Beginning today, users who search for an artist with available content on Yahoo! will be able to click play right in the Yahoo! shortcut at the top of the search results and instantly stream full-length songs by that artist through the FoxyTunes Player, which is powered by Rhapsody. The launch, part of the planned expansion of the Rhapsody service across Yahoo!, represents the continuation of Yahoo! Music’s strategy to “play the Web” and furthers Yahoo!’s strategy to open its sites to feature content and services from across the Web.

The Yahoo! Search music playback experience is now powered by Rhapsody, the leading digital music service from RealNetworks(R), Inc. (Nasdaq:RNWK) and MTV Networks and offers full-song playback for more than 5 millions tracks. Yahoo! recently partnered with Rhapsody to offer users access to Rhapsody’s acclaimed sub scri ption music service and have now extended that relationship to include music playback within Yahoo! Search. This partnership allows all users to listen to 25 free full-length tracks every 30 days. Once 25 songs have been played, users can subscribe to the Rhapsody Unlimited streaming service or continue to listen to an unlimited number of 30-second samples until the next month begins.

Yahoo!’s FoxyTunes Player enables the on-demand, web-based playback of music within Yahoo! Search and throughout Yahoo! Music. When a user clicks a play button in the Search results, the FoxyTunes Player will launch near the bottom of the browser window. The player is easy to use, offers full functionality for song playback, and includes an expandable playlist option. Users can continue to browse their results page while the player is in use, as search results will continue to scroll while the player stays in place near the bottom of the browser window.

“The launch of full-song playback in Yahoo! Search brings us closer to realizing Yahoo! Music’s vision of making the web playable and removing the barriers that prevent people from clicking play and hearing music,” said Michael Spiegelman, head of Yahoo! Music. “The powerful combination of Rhapsody and Yahoo!’s FoxyTunes Player will greatly enhance the discovery and consumption of music on the Web by giving online music fans what they want — an easy way to hear music.”

“The integration of Rhapsody playback into Yahoo! Search is a major step toward our goal of delivering “Music Without Limits” to consumers across the Web,” said Neil Smith, vice president of business management for Rhapsody America. “The integration between Rhapsody and Yahoo! eliminates additional steps that previously served as a barrier to connecting consumers with artists and their music.”

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