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What AT&T's Rumored Sale of Muve Music Would Mean For Cricket Customers

According to a story published by the New York Times, AT&T is looking to sell off the Muve Music service that it acquired as part of its purchase of Cricket Communications. This sounds like bad news for existing Cricket customers who get Muve for free with all of Cricket's current Android plans.

Muve lets users download music tracks, playlists and ringtones to their phones. If Muve is sold or shut down, all the DRM protected music that Cricket customers have downloaded will likely stop working. There will be a lot of unhappy Cricket customers if they lose their downloaded music libraries.

The reasoning for the sale seems to be that AT&T already has a deal with Beats Audio that it's heavily promoting and doesn't need a second music service.

Muve's list price is $10/month but no one actually pays that as the service is bundled with the monthly plan cost. The Beats service is also priced at around $10/month so it's possible that AT&T will include it with Cricket plans as a replacement for Muve. However I think that's unlikely. Beats is positioned as a premium product that AT&T sells to postpaid family plan users at a subsidized  price of $15/month for up to five lines. Giving the service to prepaid customers for free while charging lucrative postpaid customers for it doesn't make sense.

According to the Times, Muve has over 2 million subscribers, making it one of the largest subscription based music services in the US, bigger than Spotify or Rhapsody. Although it's big I don't think Muve is particularly valuable. The brand is relatively unknown outside of Cricket markets and I doubt many current Muve customers will be willing to pay to keep the service. Likely buyers include other subscription music services or perhaps another prepaid operator like Sprint's Boost Mobile or T-Mobile's MetroPCS.  I could see one of AT&T/Cricket's prepaid competitors buying Muve and bundling it with plans to try to lure Cricket customers unhappy with losing access to their Muve.

A further wrinkle is that Apple is reportedly in negotiations to buy Beats for $3.2 billion. I don't think that deal, if it happens, will stop AT&T from ditching Muve. Most analysts believe Apple wants Beats to expand its music distribution business to other platforms. That would likely mean keeping the Beats brand and Beats Android and Windows Phone apps and no changes to Beat's relationship with AT&T.

Related:
New Plans Coming to Cricket Will Look Familiar to Aio Customers
AT&T Says It Will Relaunch Its Prepaid Operations Under the Cricket Brand By The End Of June
AT&T Completes Acquisition of Cricket. Here's What It Means For Cricket and Aio Customers

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  1. I've just got off the phone with a Cricket CSR and she says that Cricket will start selling GSM branded phones on May 18th and also, she says that you can take an unlocked GSM phone and take it to the new Cricket powered by AT&T.

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    1. WHOEVER BUYS MUVE THAT'S WHERE I'M GOING!!!! TO HELL WITH AT&T!!!! IF IT'S NOT BROKE DON'T FIX IT AT&T!!! HOW HARD IS THAT TO FIGURE OUT!!!!

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  2. Also about Muve Music, she says that Cricket's Muve Music will continue to work for the next 18 months even though I just I've just happened to catch your story after I got off the phone with the Cricket CSR. She says that Cricket is working on a replacement that will be equal or better than Muve Music.

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  3. They better find an equal or better option. Muve music is the reason I've stayed with Cricket so long and I'll quickly sign on with a different carrier (not AT&T, had it before and was NOT impressed with service I got for the price I was paying or with the customer service I received) I know a lot of people who left other carriers and went to Cricket when Muve came around and I don't see them staying with new and "improved" Cricket if Muve or something comparable is not available. Bad business decision to me, maybe they need to do their research before getting rid of one of the most popular features. I actually left AT&T to go to Cricket. Plus it took me an hour to pay my bill last month, the CSR told me to call a # no longer in service. Seems like AT&T customer service hasn't improved over the last couple years.

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  4. I entirely agree with the idea of Cricket not letting go of Muvemusic. For so long Cricket Wireless has been a seperate budget company for the masses/majority of the frugal, money conscious, and low income families and singles. Taking away this strategic planning that has made them so successful till now will lower their sales significantly. Merging with a pricy company such as at&t will make loyal customers feel as though they are losing a quality feature with their phones (Muve) while paying an expensive fee every month which is not what they are looking for with Cricket and never have been. I am so disappointed with my once loved independent Cricket company, I have chosen not to spend my hard earned funds on a new upgrade that I ritualistically take part in every year. For I will no longer have my Beloved Muvemusic! Which took me so so long to collect on my Android phone. If the new cricket persues beats music, there will be nothing to differentiate between music services offered from Cricket to at&t. Cricket used to make me feel special, now they have abandoned all of us at the hands of the big boys(at&t)...

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    1. I agree, I've been with Cricket for a very long time, and to have this happen is very disappointing, We have worked to hard to download all this music and we lose it all for nothing better, that's not right

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  5. I liked muve music bcuz it was so easy for someone like me that is not good with smartphones and downloads since it was already on my phone. It was easy to use and I had so much music. I also loved that it was incorporated into my plan. I went to cricket the other day and they did swap my phone for a new phone that would work ok new network but I am so sad that all my music will not be on this phone even with the SIM card it won't work. Ok agree if AT&T can't come up with something just as good or better than muve and with same affordable plans I will go elsewhere.

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  6. Not a happy at all! The change over was bad enough, losing a phone that I totally loved and had no problems with. Now I got a phone I hate, Muve music is gone so all my music is gone!! I've been a customer for a long time even when so many of my coworkers, friends and family thought Cricket was a joke and they actually laughed at me for using and staying with Cricket. My reasons for staying was I didn't have no problems and with exercising my music was a big help, now NOTHING!!! I'm just not happy right now with Cricket..

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  7. Not happy at all with this whole process.

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  8. Can't wait to leave AT&FEE!

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