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Motorola Unveils Music-Enabled Linux Phone Supporting Windows Media

Motorola has unveiled a Linux-based, music-enabled cell phone that can synchronize with online stores that support Microsoft's Windows Media Player.

The world's second largest cellular handset maker unveiled this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas the MotoRizr 76, which automatically synchronizes with online mobile subscription services by plugging it into a USB 2.0 or higher port on a PC.

The MotoRizr includes a 2-Gbyte removable microSD flash memory card that holds several hundred songs. In addition, the phone includes dedicated music keys for easier management of playback functions, and Bluetooth wireless technology that's used with stereo headphones. A version of the phone will be available for cellular networks run by Verizon and Cingular.

Motorola is hoping its music phones and other new handsets will help it regain the market momentum it gained with the popular Razr model. While still firmly the No. 2 cellular phone manufacturer behind Nokia, Motorola lost market share last year in some regions of the world due to the failure of its new Krzr model to reach the same level of success as the Razr, according to Gartner.

Besides unveiling the MotoRizr, Motorola also announced a partnership with Warner Music Group. The two companies have agreed to work together on product development and marketing campaigns. Motorola plans to offer customers through Warner songs, ring tones, music videos, and other paid content.

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