Snapchat signs AR licensing deal with Sony Music

Snapchat signs AR licensing deal with Sony Music

Snapchat has signed a new deal with Sony Music Entertainment to include the major’s artists’ music in Snap’s library of licensed music. 

Snapchat enables friends to recommend and share music and video content together.

Dennis Kooker, president, global digital business, Sony Music Entertainment, said: “We are pleased to be expanding our relationship with Snap to develop new commercial opportunities for our artists around short form video and augmented reality experiences. Through this agreement, our artists have more ways to connect with fans and enhance engagement in their music by enabling their songs to be part of the Lens and Sounds tools that support communication and creative expression among Snapchat’s users.”

“Our new deal with Sony Music marks a major milestone as Snap now has partnerships with all the major labels, in addition to networks of independent labels and emerging artists,” said Ben Schwerin, Snap’s SVP of content and partnerships. “We’re excited to further integrate Sounds into our AR Lenses to provide artists a proven and powerful way to share their music, and create immersive new experiences for our community.”

Additional music partners include Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, Merlin members, Sony Music Publishing, Universal Music Publishing Group, Warner Chappell, Kobalt, BMG, NMPA members, DistroKid and thousands of individual songwriters and music publishers.

Snapchat has more than 200 million users engaging with augmented reality every day. The messaging platform is expanding the music experience on Snapchat by adding Sounds into its AR Lenses available in the Lens Carousel, and experimenting with new formats. 

It is also rolling out new features, including a Sound Lenses with a pre-selected song embedded into the Lens, a Lens that transforms pictures of anyone to appear as if they are singing a song, and Cameo Sound Lenses that apply visual effects to put the user and a friend in an animated music video. Users can find Lenses with Sounds by looking for Lenses that have a musical note icon on the Lens icon. 

“These new Sound Lenses will make for a more immersive music experience, and open a proven and powerful way for artists to share music on Snapchat,” said a Snap statement.

The Sony deal builds on previous partnerships with the major. Snap and Sony Music partnered on an AR Lens to support the launch of Kygo’s collaboration with Whitney Houston for Higher Love. In three days, this limited release Lens resulted in over 16 million Snaps creations, and it received over 55 million views. 

Other partnered Lenses with Sony Music artists include Calvin Harris and Rag’n’Bone Man’s Giant, which resulted in 90 million creations and one billion views; and G-Eazy and Halsey’s Him And I, which resulted in 61m creations and 750m views.

Since launching the Sounds tool last year, videos created with music from Sounds on Snapchat have collectively resulted in nearly 1.2 billion videos created and nearly 77 billion views. Nearly 40% of all videos created with music from Sounds were shared directly with friends via chat. 

A “Play This Song” link will open a webview to enable users to listen to the full song on their chosen streaming platform, including Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon Music.

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