Deezer and Samsung partner on free music trials

deezer and samsung 300wDeezer and Samsung announced a partnership that would give buyers of Samsung’s Galaxy S5 phone a free six-month trial of Deezer’s subscription music service. The plan would work in selected countries only, where Paris-based Deezer operates the service.

This business partnership does not play into Deezer’s aspiration to launch in the U.S. The company is unabashedly seeking a telecom partnership to bolster that launch into the jam-packed U.S. streaming-music market.

The Samsung deal takes a page from SiriusXM’s distribution strategy in cars. It is commonplace for new-car buyers, if the satellite service is factory-installed, to be given a no-charge six-month introduction. SiriusXM reports a 45% conversion rate of trial listeners to paying subscribers. It makes sense for Internet music services to stare hard at that number and ply the same strategy.

On Samsung’s end, the deal probably has more attraction than free satellite contributes to the value of a car. A phone is less expensive than a car, has fewer defining features, and exists in a much smaller product marketplace. Buyers shopping for an Android phone, circling around Samsung, LG, and HTC, might be swayed toward Samsung’s Galaxy with six months of free Deezer.

Brad Hill