Millions of smartphone users were surprised to learn this month that the rock band U2 had not only made a new album available to them for free, but that it was already loaded into their iPhones. U2 gave away the album as part of a blockbuster business deal with Apple, which is rolling out its newest devices this fall. But the band and the company are both being criticized over how the promotion affects the value of music in the digital age. Join Kojo for a Tech Tuesday conversation about the intersection of technology and music.
When Spotify launched in the US back in July, we were pretty stoked about the service’s flexibility, response and depth of features. We’ve spent a few months with it, and, as a consumer product, it is still very impressive. Now that we’re past the infatuation phase, it’s time to take a closer look at the relationship between Spotify and musicians, particularly independents. For those just tuning in, Spotify is a streaming on-demand music service that has an ad-supported free version, as well as a premium, ad-free subscription option. Unlike say, Pandora, Spotify lets you choose which specific songs you want to hear and create playlists. This means that on-demand services like Spotify (and MOG, Rhapsody and Rdio) have to pay a different license than radio-like services.
Here at FMC, we’re intrigued by the potential of “cloud music”— from mobile apps to remote storage lockers to sites and services that facilitate discovery and collaboration. When you look at recent developments, it seems that the future for digital music may be headed off of hard drives and into the cloud. When we say “intrigued,” we mean it: after all, we keep keepwritingaboutit. read more
If you've been following the music-tech news lately, you've probably heard about the rather sudden and unexpected acquisition of digital music service Lala by Apple, Inc. Speculation has run rampant about why the country's largest music retailer — which sells individual music downloads via its iTunes store — would purchase a company that's made a name for itself via "cloud-based" access. read more
Will MOG be the service that makes streaming subscription take off in the US market? That's the question music industry observers are asking today, as the web-based streaming/recommendation music service unveils its buzzed-about monthly streaming subscription service. One thing's for sure: you can't beat the price. MOG is charging a mere 5 bucks a month for streaming, on-demand access to a huge catalog of music, all legally licensed from record labels and publishers. MOG is also letting potential customers try the service for free, for one hour. read more
Proponents of the so-called “celestial jukebox” have had plenty to be excited about over the past couple of years. Online services that allow listeners to stream music “from the cloud,” coupled with broadband connections on desktops and mobile devices, have given music fans a sea of tunes to surf on-demand. read more