Lady Gaga appears to have shelved plans for an ambitious app to support the launch of her third album Artpop, instead partnering with mobile network O2 for a more traditional style release.
The deal between O2 and Polydor Records sees the album premiere on O2’s music service O2 Tracks six days before its official 5 November release date.
Gaga fans were expecting Artpop to be released in conjunction with its own official app, which the star claimed back in September 2012 would be “the most major way to fully immerse yourself in Artpop”. A post on Gaga’s Facebook page in July of this year revealed the app would be pre-orderable as of 1 September alongside the album; however, the app launch date has considerably slipped back.
The partnership sees Gaga appearing in a TV ad for O2, which continues the mobile networks on-going ‘Be More Dog’ campaign. The exclusivity of the deal in the UK suggests that the album won’t be made available for pre-release streaming on iTunes, Spotify or other digital music services.
Launched in February of this year O2 Tracks is available to all networks in the UK, though O2 customers do get an eight-week free trial. So far in 2013 O2 has spent around £7.3m marketing the £1-per-week service which enables music fans to download the Top 40 singles chart direct to their handset.
O2 and Gaga’s partnership takes its lead from Jay Z’s successful collaboration with Samsung in June where he gave away one million early copies of his Magna Carta Holy Grail album to those who downloaded the Android app.