Ethiopia is Launching a Native-built Music Streaming Service

Ethiopia’s telecommunication services provider, Ethio Telecom, in partnership with Awtar Multimedia, plans to launch a music streaming app for Android phone users in Addis Ababa, the capitol city of Ethiopia.

The Awtar Music App, which was pioneered by Ethiopian musician and composer Elias Melka, will catalogue Ethiopian music covering all genres and the Amharic, Oromiffa and Tigrigna languages.

Users can purchase songs and albums for 4.50 birr ($0.16) and 15 birr ($0.52), respectively. To curb piracy, downloaded music from Awtar will not be shareable.

The creators of the app have also developed a structure to ensure that all music contributors receive a 20 percent share of the profit from the song.

Awtar will also be used as a platform for sharing music-related news, concerts and workshops.

“Independent artists will find that streaming will be a big help in fighting piracy,” he said. “Illegal music download is killing the revenue in the industry and discouraging many from making more music, so this app will help us regulate our sales.”

Until now, YouTube has dominated the online streaming music video market in Ethiopia. The digital platform has been used by musicians, many of whom do not plan to earn any royalties but rather hope to achieve popularity.

Source: Music in Africa