It is the news Michael Jackson fans have been waiting for – but those desperate for a new album by the King of Pop may have to buy a new mobile phone to hear it.
Sky News understands Sony Music Entertainment will release an album of the late singer’s unreleased material and lost tracks by the end of April.
However, it will initially be available only as pre-installed music on the Sony Xperia Z2 phone.
An advert for the Xperia Z2 phone uses a song from the album – a remix of Jackson track Slave 2 The Rhythm.
The ad features a ballerina dancing with a red sheet, and Sky News sources believe this will form part of the music video.
The album is being produced by Epic Records, which is owned by Sony, and chief executive LA Reid is thought to be personally involved.
It would be the first Jackson album featuring fresh material since 2010’s Michael.
LA Reid is personally involved in the project
Music journalist Kevin Hughes said: “Because we’re talking about a new Michael Jackson album, many fans will probably invest in the phone.
“But Michael’s music deserves to be available to all, so I hope the full album release will follow within days or weeks.”
Jackson was said to be working on new songs when he died in 2009 and rumours of an album surfaced last year.
Renowned producer Timbaland is known to be working on several tracks.
His official DJ, Freestyle Steve, tweeted last year: “So last night I heard some of the new tracks Timbaland is doing for the King of Pop … WOW!”
Sony’s official price for the Xperia Z2 is £599 in the UK and it is expected to cost about $600 in the US.
The company is not the first to use music to sell phones.
Rapper Jay Z made the first million copies of his 2013 album Magna Carta Holy Grail available for free download to Samsung customers.
Source: Sky News