Old CD jukeboxes face challenge from internet

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The Independent Culture

The days of the CD-based pub jukebox may be coming to an end with a new generation of machines hooked up to the internet.

The new machines are able to play any of two million tracks by using powerful broadband connections to the internet. If you like the song playing, you can buy the album or perhaps have the track e-mailed to you. There will also be another feature that many customers will appreciate: the chance to jump the queue by paying an extra 50p.

But CD jukeboxes, which have displaced vinyl-playing versions over the past 20 years, are still popular among the 55,000 pubs that provide music, said Chris Murphy, editor of Coinslot, the magazine for the pub entertainments trade. "These new machines are much more expensive, so much so that many pubs are keeping their CD jukeboxes going by any means possible. Some of the ones they're using are way past their sell-by date," said Mr Murphy.

Inspired Broadcast Networks, says it will replace its 5,000 CD jukeboxes with broadband-enabled versions over the next two years. The jukeboxes will be able to access songs from a special site set up by Inspired Broadcast.