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Mehaleye, an Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo online audio distribution platform that enables users to purchase, stream, and download mezmurs (worship songs), teachings, and Kidase (liturgy), has gone live.

Developed by Marathon Systems, a sister company of Kulu Network, four months ago, the Mehalye application allows users to search and find new worship songs and albums as well as listen to playlists curated by Mehaleye.

In addition, users can also create their own playlists and download songs for offline usage.

Mehaleye is a Geez word and the name is inspired by a term found in the Old Testament of the Bible, Mehalye Mehalye Ze Solomon, which has the English equivalence of Song of Songs, and means beloved, worship, praise, and prayer, with ‘ye’ signifying personal attribution.

Users in Ethiopia can purchase the worship songs with their airtime (Ethio telecom) and Telebirr. In addition, Mehaleye has integrated YenePay as a payment gateway, enabling users to pay from various mobile money accounts. On the other hand, users abroad have the option of making a purchase through MasterCard, PayPal, and Google Play in-app purchases.

“Most of the time, worship singers upload their songs to their YouTube accounts or, more frequently, give them to YouTube channels. As a result, singers don’t usually get paid a reasonable amount for their work,” Hiwot Wolde, deputy manager at Mehaleye, told Shega.

Mehaleye aims to solve this problem and plans to keep its singers in the know as it has another application for worship singers enabling them to track the number of downloads and streaming their songs get.

The application has onboarded more than 150 worship singers to date who sign a deal with Mehaleye to get their work uploaded on the platform, with Mahaleye taking its share as per the agreement.

Single worship songs are sold on the platform for 5 birr or 1.99 dollars. Albums and playlists are sold for around 30 birr or 10 dollars. In addition, Mehaleye has various packages for its users, including monthly, quarterly, and yearly subscriptions.

In addition, the application, which is available in Google Play and App Store, has a feature that allows users to hear the songs first before they commit to purchasing. All the songs on Mehaleye are copyright protected, meaning the downloaded songs cannot be shared with another device.

“The platform has received a huge reception from the Orthodox Christian community, generating 45k users only within a few months of its launch alone,” added Hiwot. 

Mehaleye envisions building a huge studio, making worship songs accessible to many users, and fostering the next generation of orthodox Christian singers.

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