Three UK gifts customers free Deezer music subscriptions

Deezer's music streaming service has been around for years, but its subscriber base is small compared to Spotify and newcomer Apple Music. Now, the company hopes to grow those numbers by partnering with a UK mobile network -- but this time, it's Three rather than Orange. New and existing customers on monthly and pay-as-you-go contracts, as well as SIM-only deals can get a free six-month subscription to Deezer Premium+. Usually this would cost £9.99 per month -- the industry standard for an ad-free music streaming service -- and is redeemable online starting today. The registration process is a little clunky, but presumably new Three customers will be walked through the process in stores.

Deezer backed out of an IPO last month, but claims it's "well funded and well positioned" to start growing again. However that won't be easy, given the competition. Spotify is still the service to beat, but there's also Apple Music and Google Play Music, which is now being packaged alongside YouTube Red and YouTube Music in the US. Deezer is fighting against Tidal, Rdio and countless other music services competing for both free and paying users. The company has found success in the past by teaming up with European networks -- a deal with Orange in France, for instance, attracted plenty of new users. As of last June, the company had 1.5 million standalone subscribers, and a further 1.5 million "active bundle" subscribers -- people that were using the service through a mobile deal. A further 3.3 million were "inactive," meaning they had access but weren't streaming regularly.

With so much competition, Deezer's partnership with Three makes sense. The network's subscribers are likely to try the service given that it's free, and regardless of whether they've heard of it before. If they're impressed, there's then a chance they'll continue to subscribe after the promotional period. (Spotify has a similar deal with Vodafone at the moment.) But that's where the challenge lies. Transitioning customers to a regular subscription is tough, especially when Deezer has few unique features to set itself apart.

[Image Credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images]