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All posts tagged "pandora"


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Field of Streams: Ranking the Best Streaming Music Services

Posted by Todd Klein in "Digital Home Talk" @ 10:00 AM

http://gizmodo.com/5750415/the-best...g-music-service

"The era of listening to any song, at any moment, in any location is fast approaching. While we're not quite there yet, a handful of on-demand music services have come close."

Gizmodo has done some heavy lifting sifting through various streaming music services. After narrowing the list down to 4, they rank Grooveshark, MOG, Rdio, and Rhapsody along a continuum that includes features, catalogue size, monthly service cost, and the breadth of devices the service can be played on.

Based on their rankings, relative upstarts MOG and Rdio seem to have overtaken industry stalwart Rhapsody despite the latter's longevity (still barely passable Chrome functionality, really?). All of these have yet to carve out profitable niches, and still must compete against personalized radio services like Pandora. That said, the true winner is a service you can't get in the US. Spotify is touted by industry pundits as the best streaming service not available in America. Why? No deals with the labels. Someday, all of this will integrate with each of our devices wherever we are. Until then, we're on our own to create an individualized music experience.


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Did Digital Kill the Radio Star?

Posted by Todd Klein in "Digital Home Talk" @ 08:00 AM

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/24/t...&pagewanted=all

"The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, a trade group based in London, said last week that sales of music in digital form had risen only 6 percent worldwide in 2010, even as the overall music market had shrunk 8 percent or 9 percent, extending a decade-long decline. In each of the past two years, the rate of increase in digital revenue has approximately halved. If that trend continues, digital sales could top out at less than $5 billion this year, about a third of the overall music market but many billions of dollars short of the amount needed to replace long-gone sales of compact discs. “Music’s first digital decade is behind us and what do we have?” said Mark Mulligan, an analyst at Forrester Research. “Not a lot of progress. We are at one of the most worrying stages yet for the industry,” he continued. “As things stand now, digital music has failed.”

The New York Times reports this astonishing indictment of an industry that's produced iTunes, Pandora, Spotify, Lastfm and several other services with millions of engaged worldwide users. Yes, digital killed the CD business by undbundling songs from albums, and by extension struck a fatal blow to bricks and mortar music retailers. Yes, piracy is a problem that must be managed if artists are to be supported. But to declare that an entirely new medium, digital delivery of music, has failed because the established players have suffered economically while consumers have experienced a technology tsunami of music discovery, sharing, choice, and purchasing models seems to put the cart before the horse.

Tell me, has digital killed your music experience?


Thursday, December 10, 2009

Pandora in Your Car? You Can't Be Sirius!

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 09:30 AM

http://gigaom.com/2009/12/07/pandor...ng-to-your-car/

"During an early afternoon panel at the SF Music Tech Summit, chief technology officer Tom Conrad said the company’s mobile strategy will first hinge on a transitional phase in which its smartphone apps will be controlled from dashboard or steering-wheel interfaces, before dispensing with the smartphones altogether as the service is built into web-connected cars."

Some of you must be thinking, "Ha! I already have Pandora in my car! I have a <insert trendy smart/featurephone> that streams the music for me!" Well, that's true, and Pandora recognizes that fact. However, unless you have figured a way to control Pandora by voice, controlling it could be dangerous, or in some cases, against the law. The goal is to integrate controls for Pandora into a vehicle's dashboard, much like what you can do with an iPod, or Sirius, so things are easier to use. Of course, that will not stop Pandora from picking the most inopportune song when you drive by a bunch of your friends.


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Internet Radio Finally Can Let The Music Play!

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 01:00 PM

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/08/t...ner=rss&emc=rss

"On Tuesday, after a two-year battle, record labels and online radio stations agreed on new royalty rates that cover music streaming. Many of the music sites had argued that the old rates were so high that they were being forced out of business. That could have come back to haunt the record labels, since for many people the sites are becoming a useful way to discover music. “This is definitely the agreement that we’ve been waiting for,” said Tim Westergren, the founder of Pandora, one of the most popular Internet radio sites with 30 million registered users."

It has been a long road, and while the results may not please everyone, an agreement has been inked between web radio stations and music labels. Music streaming has existed on the Internet for years, even in the era of dial-up, but music labels, through an organization called SoundExchange, started noticing the growing popularity of Internet radio and wanted to bill these stations for playing their music. At first, the rates were high, going up to 0.19 cent per song, though finally, after two years of negotiations, they have worked out a deal that seems to have satisfied most of the parties involved. The rates are still much higher than what is paid by radio stations, though to be fair, Internet radio stations do offer a far greater degree of flexibility and interactivity than traditional broadcasting mediums. There are lots of other details I could question. Will musicians, especially the smaller ones, ever see any money generated by this agreement? What constitutes an Internet radio station that must pay these fees? I am mostly just relieved that a deal has been reached that companies like Pandora (which still does NOT serve Canada! Grrrr!) have an agreement that they believe they can work with.


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