Cricket Wireless Partners with The CW to Discover “The Next” Major Music...

Cricket Wireless Partners with The CW to Discover “The Next” Major Music Star

- "The Next" Contestants will use Muve Music® Enabled Smartphones to Download and Perform Songs Featured in Competition - Fans Select their Favorite to Send to "The Next" Finals via Text using the "Cricket Wireless Vote"


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SAN DIEGO, Aug. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Cricket Communications, a leading provider of innovative and value-driven wireless services, and The CW Television Network today announced an exciting partnership with interactive and wireless promotional support for the upcoming musical competition series, The Next, premiering Thursday, August 16, 9:00 p.m. ET/8:00 p.m. CT on The CW. Contestants on The Next will interact with Cricket smartphones using Muve Music and prepare for the competition by exploring music playlists for inspiration or by selecting songs to perform. Muve Music will be featured prominently in the hot new reality series, and all of the contestants’ studio-recorded singles will be available for download on Cricket’s Muve Music service. On-air announcements will encourage fans to participate in the “Cricket Wireless Vote” by texting a short code on their mobile phones. With an Atlantic Records recording contract on the line, these interactive votes have the power to help shape who will become The Next.

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“Promoting new music and nurturing emerging artists are at the core of why we introduced our Cricket Muve Music service on a mobile device,” said Tyler Wallis, senior vice president of Product and Marketing for Cricket. “We’re honored to be a part of this show dedicated to helping these local musicians realize their dreams and look forward to following their stories throughout the run of the show.”

“We are excited to be working with Cricket, which has embraced this concept and brought great value to this partnership,” said Alison Tarrant, executive vice president of Integrated Marketing for The CW. “Cricket’s brand alignment with up-and-coming artists is an ideal fit for The Next, where our celebrity mentors have been fantastic and shared that same commitment to the young artists.”

About The Next

The Next will go on a nationwide search for undiscovered artists on the verge of stardom. In this new take on the music competition genre, superstar mentors including pop legend Gloria Estefan, country star John Rich, pop superstar Joe Jonas and hip-hop superstar Nelly, travel to where the talent is and immerse themselves in the lives and towns of these local performers, preparing them for the chance to represent their home city on stage, live, in front of America. These aspiring stars are proven artists on the brink of success who just need a little help making the leap from opening act to headliner.

The CW will broadcast the final three episodes of its new music competition series The Next live from Los Angeles:

• Thursday, Sept. 27: 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET

• Tuesday, Oct. 2: 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET

• Special two-hour finale on Thursday, Oct. 4: 8:00-10:00 p.m. ET

During these live performance episodes, viewers are encouraged to tweet and interact with the show via social media, and viewers can vote for their favorites via text message during the Cricket Wireless Vote, narrowing the field until just one contestant is chosen as The Next.

From executive producers Dave Broome (“The Biggest Loser”), hip-hop icon Queen Latifah, and Shakim Compere, The Next is produced by CBS’s Raquel Productions Inc., in association with 25/7 Productions, LLC and Flavor Unit Entertainment, Inc. For more information about The Next or The CW, go to CWTV.com.

Cricket’s Partnership with The Next

Each week, The Next contestants will be shown interacting with a Cricket phone or searching through Muve Music’s catalog of songs. Muve Music is a digital music subscription service that offers millions of songs with unlimited downloads to your Cricket mobile phone. Following every episode, studio-recorded versions of the songs performed by the contestants will be available for download on Cricket’s Muve Music service. Exclusive behind-the-scenes video footage, contestant playlists and music from the show along with information about Cricket and Muve Music will also be posted on Cricket’s social media channels, at MyCricket online and on the CW’s online show hub. Cricket is the official voting sponsor for the show with the “Cricket Wireless Vote” – an interactive text-to-vote experience for the fans. Immediately following the show, fans will be able to vote for their favorite performances using a text code that will be provided during The Next for each contestant.

What Viewers Can Expect To See Each Week and How to Join in the Fun

Throughout The Next’s season, viewers who tune in weekly will see the contestants engaging with Muve Music – one of the largest digital music subscription services in the US, including the following features:

• My Music: see up-and-coming artists scroll through and play clips of songs until they select the one that best matches their singing style and will help them to shine in the competition

• Ringtones: watch and learn as your favorite contestant sets and cuts a ringtone within Muve Music and assigns it to a specific contact

• Playlists: learn how to create your own playlist while performers scroll and name a playlist featuring their favorite songs that showcase their voice

• Genres: just as the mentors align with a variety of music genres, see the genres in Muve Music and choose an artist’s album

• Shazam: want to know who is singing that new hit song? You’re not alone and with Shazam, you and The Next contestants can Shazam and identify a song, download it immediately all within Muve. The only difference is that the contestants will be singing it in front of millions to become The Next!

Viewers can also interact with conversations online about the show via Twitter at #thenext @cricketnation. Additional exclusive content, contestant playlists and music from the series will be available across Cricket’s online channels at Cricket’s Facebook, Twitter pages and http://www.mycricket.com and The Next’s show page at http://cwtv.com/shows/the-next.

How to get Muve Music

In January 2011, Cricket Communications became the first U.S. wireless carrier to offer consumers unlimited music as part of a wireless rate plan. Cricket customers across the country can purchase an all-inclusive wireless service on a Muve Android smartphone with nationwide talk, text, web and unlimited music (full track downloads, ringtones and ringbacktones). Muve Music is the first music experience designed specifically for the mobile phone with labels, artists and consumers in mind.

Muve Music’s mobile music service is available on the Huawei Mercury, named the best prepaid smartphone in America by PC Magazine as well as on the Huawei Ascend Q, Huawei Ascend II, Samsung Vitality, ZTE Score and the ZTE Chorus at Cricket company-owned stores, online at http://www.mycricket.com and through select partner retail outlets. Additional accessories are available for purchase including premium headphones, an audio jack and Bluetooth adapter to connect to home and car stereos, either wired or wirelessly.

With the ever-growing Muve Music song catalog, customers can choose from millions of songs featuring the hottest artists from thousands of record labels, which are distributed through Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, EMI Music and global rights agency Merlin, as well as independents CD Baby, IODA, INgrooves, The Orchard and TuneCore.

For the latest news and updates online for The Next, Cricket or Music from Gloria Estefan, Joe Jonas, John Rich and Nelly, visit Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/cricketwireless and Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/cricketnation.

About Cricket

Cricket is the pioneer and leader in delivering innovative value-rich prepaid wireless services with no long-term contracts serving approximately 6 million customers. Cricket offers nationwide wireless voice and mobile data services over high-quality, all-digital wireless networks. Cricket’s innovative products and services including the award-winning Muve Music® – the first music service designed for a wireless phone, are available nationwide at Cricket branded retail stores, dealers, national retailers and at http://www.mycricket.com. For more information about Cricket, please visit http://www.mycricket.com.

About The CW

THE CW TELEVISION NETWORK, a joint venture between Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corporation, made its debut on September 20, 2006 as America’s fifth broadcast network and is the only network specifically targeting viewers ages 18-34, particularly women, a demographic highly sought after by advertisers. Delivering a total of 30 hours of programming a week, The CW offers a five-night, 10-hour primetime lineup that runs Monday through Friday. In daytime, The CW broadcasts a Monday through Friday afternoon block, and a five-hour Saturday morning animation block.

SOURCE Cricket Communications

Cricket Wireless Partners with The CW to Discover “The Next” Major Music Star