Maybe you’re one of those people that still uses the factory-default ring tone, and that’s fine. Not everybody wants to hear the opening strains of Beethoven’s Fifth blaring from your pocket. But for many people, music makes up part of their identity. The same holds true for our mobile devices; there are iPhone people and Android people and presumably even Blackberry people. So it’s little wonder that many people have combined their passion for music and mobile phones by choosing personalized ringtones.In the U.S., our fascination with ringtones has faded over the years; in 2014, mobile music revenue dropped by nearly one-third from the previous year, down to $66.5 million (according to Statista). In much of the world, however, mobile music is booming. According to Mahindra Comviva, a mobile solutions provider that has become one of the leading content aggregators in the world, music services account for 40% of mobile operators’ downloaded content revenue in Africa. And in Asia, Mahindra Comviva has seen music services revenue grow 20+ percent year over year.
Much of Mahindra Comviva’s success has come from localized content and personalized recommendations. The company owns the digital rights to over 260,000 music assets across a broad range of styles (pop, hip hop, reggae, inspirational, rock, jazz, etc.) in more than 90 languages. Through their mobile app, Mahindra Comviva uses a specially developed analytics engine to create personalized recommendations for each subscriber. So, instead of seeing a list of the most popular music/video choices based on a regional or global aggregate, subscribers are greeted with a list of recommended choices based on their own personal tastes when they open the app. Mahindra Comviva credits the personalized touch to a 50% growth in sales.
Perhaps not surprisingly, subscribers not only enjoy listening to music, but also sharing it with others, as evidenced by a 25% increase in revenue from ring back tones. (A ring back tone is a ringtone that plays on someone else’s phone to let them know you’re available to talk.) Mahindra Comviva’s Color Ring Back Tone (CRBT) service is currently used by millions of subscribers to personalize the callback experience. With CRBT, subscribers can choose different tones to reflect their mood, personalize the tone based on who is calling, and (most importantly) share their love of music with the world.
As one of the largest content aggregators in Asia and Africa, Mahindra Comviva needs a media server platform that is both flexible and scalable. Tellingly, they chose Dialogic’s PowerMedia HMP platform to provide the media processing capabilities for their CRBT service. PowerMedia HMP allows Mahindra Comviva to scale out their media services using common-off-the-shelf (COTS) servers, which is a key advantage when you’re managing a high-growth service. As Mahindra Comviva has shown, having the right technology rocks.