Spotify

Music Diary Notes: Rdio Launches Ad-Free On-Demand Service! [Update]

MAJOR UPDATE: initial indications were that Rdio Free allowed access from their mobile app (including the blog talking about signing up for Free from the mobile apps), but that is NOT the case! That is a HUGE difference … And while Rdio Free is cool, this difference makes the service an ‘also ran’ rather than a game changer. A couple of weeks ago MOG introduced ‘FreePlay’, which allowed you unlimited free music streaming based on a ‘tank’ system. As you shared and recommended music, you would refill your tank to give yourself more listening hours for the month. Now Rdio…


A Relevant Thought About ‘Free’

This week we learned that Samsung will be the latest Android licensee paying huge royalties to Microsoft, and a general sense that the final nails in the ‘Android is free’ coffin have been hammered. We also heard the uproar about the Spotify-Facebook linkage, and even though Spotify now has a ‘private listening mode’ they still require a Facebook account and connection. Finally, Facebook itself has gotten criticism for its practice of tracking users even when they are logged out of the service! This is yet another security issue for online services, something I talked about in Invasion of the Super-Cookies….


Music Diary Notes: The Post f8 Spotify-Facebook Hangover

Last week I reported on the Facebook Music announcements, and I showed how the new Free mode of Spotify would auto-fill the registration with your Facebook profile. Well, this weekend a couple of less-exciting things came to light. First, I actually USED the Facebook-Spotify ‘connection’, and second I discovered that the sign-up process I highlighted was more than ‘convenient’. First, over at DMN there is word that the Facebook connection for Spotify isn’t a convenience – it is a requirement! Here’s what the registration prompt now says: “You need a Facebook account to register for Spotify. If you have an account,…


Music Diary Notes: As Spotify Reminds Us … $0.04 Is Infinitely More than $0.00

There was considerable coverage of the content of the ‘What an artist makes’ article I did last week, with Digital Music News kicking it off, and Gizmodo and others getting in on the same action. The focus of the article was to show just how much the band would make from their album based on a variety of listening choices, from streaming through buying vinyl. The obvious fact is that the greater the cost and lower the overhead … the more the band made. One message that some have been spreading for a few years is that an outcome of…


Music Diary Review: Jimi Hendrix – ‘Winterland 5 CD Box Set (Amazon.com Exclusive)’ (2011, Rock)

Jimi Hendrix – ‘Winterland 5 CD Box Set’ For anyone who has ever played or aspired to play the guitar in the last half century, Jimi Hendrix must surely place on the short list of influences and inspirations. Regardless of what you think about his lifestyle, drug use, or even the music of that era, there is really little debate about the raw talent and visionary approach Hendrix had as a guitarist. But guitar talent alone is not enough to carry a career – and self-destructive behavior certainly never helps! So Hendrix had a great run between 1967-1968 … and…


Music Diary Notes: Survey Says – Ownership Remains Supreme!

Recently eMusic contracted Insight Research Group to try to get a sense of consumer feelings about music ownership. After all, bloggers like myself are constantly crowing about MOG and Slacker and Rdio and Pandora and Spotify and … well, you get the picture. Turns out, while there is plenty of interest in streaming …when it comes to money, people want to actually OWN their content. This is good news for folks like iTunes, Amazon and eMusic … and not so great for all the streaming companies I have mentioned. Here are the conclusions: Study results show that purchasing ‘music to…


Music Diary Notes: MOG Introduces FreePlay!

One of the reasons that Spotify became so popular was … well, because it was FREE. From a PC, with some ads, you could listen to just about anything you wanted to hear. Of course, over the last couple of years Spotify has dramatically trimmed their offerings for free users and put on ever-increasing restrictions to move them to paid subscribers. Now MOG has introduced a free model called ‘FreePlay’, that isn’t just better than anything Spotify has offered, it is simply a brilliant way to deal with a free usage model! Here is the announcement and details from their…


Review: Acer Iconia Tab A100 7″ with Android Honeycomb – Everything Right & Wrong with Android Tablets

Recently the Acer Iconia A100 Android tablet went on sale, and I have had a couple of weeks to play around with one and formulate some opinions. Dan also grabbed one, and we had been chatting about the Iconia back and forth until he returned his. Even before I got the A100 there were a few things I had read about it that were troubling, and other things that had me quite excited! I wanted to document some of the great things about the tablet and latest version of the Android OS … and some things that make the moniker…


Music Diary Notes: Rdio and MOG Offer Gift Cards, Rdio Introduces Family Plans

With the launch of Spotify crowding the relatively small on-demand music market, Rdio and MOG are working hard to maintain current members and to continue to grow their businesses. Rdio already has a great iPad app – the first one in the category – and MOG is working hard on one of their own. Loyal users recommend one service or the other to their friends. Now each has introduced ways for music fans to enjoy the services – MOG and Rdio now offer Gift Cards, and Rdio offers family subscriptions. Gift cards are a great way to give someone the…


Music Diary Notes: RIM’s BBM Music Poses the Question: Perhaps Late is NOT Better than Never?

Imagine if back in 2006 someone told you that RIM was offering a music plan for the Blackberry that would allow you to get 50 songs per month, share them with all of your friends who also have a Blackberry, unlimited and on-demand. And that it would have cost $5 a month! You would likely have lamented that you couldn’t also get them on your PC or iPod … but would otherwise been pretty thrilled and signed up immediately! This was the time before the iPhone, before Spotify and Slacker, and when RIM ruled the enterprise phone market. This was…


Invasion of the Super-Cookies!

A few weeks ago it came to light that Spotify was using a special type of tracking cookie. Of course, once caught with their hand in … um, the cookie jar (sorry!), Spotify said they would suspend the use of the Kissmetrics cookie technology. But as Digital Music News notes, it is a bit late for the tens of millions of users worldwide who have used Spotify already! Spotify is already managing this like a crisis. According to research just published by researchers at UC Berkeley, Spotify has been using a cookie that cannot be deleted, still tracks if the…


Bye-Bye, Spotify

When Spotify finally came to the US I was quick to jump on it. I like using streaming, subscription music services a great deal. I like the flexibility. I love being able to download and listen to pretty much whatever I choose for a small fee each month. Sure, I already have a huge music collection but there’s a ton of music I want to hear that isn’t part of it and there are enough tunes that it would cost me a small fortune to purchase all of them. I tried Rhapsody for a while and while I got hooked…


Sonos PLAY:3 Review

We have had a fair bit of coverage of the Sonos Wireless Hi-Fi System over the past few weeks. As I noted in my initial review of the system, I only had the review units in my home for 23 hours before I went and ordered my own. I was impressed by the ease of use, the overall sound quality, and the vast amount of music that was available to me through the Sonos eco-system. It was by no means an inexpensive purchase but I have not had a single moment of buyer’s remorse. At this point I am a…


Music Diary Notes: Spotify Has Early Success, but … a LONG Way to Go to that 50 Million Member Goal!

Over the weekend we got some initial data from the Spotify launch courtesy of Billboard, who cite ‘inside sources’ as estimating that in the first week or so after launch Spotify has 70,000 subscribers (i.e. people who pay). From the article: In my travels last night and in emails this morning I had three distinct label/publisher execs confirm the same number: that @Spotify has right in the ballpark of 70,000 paid Stateside subscribers after only one week in business. It’s hard to put these numbers into context, but it would also be hard to call that anything but positive news…


Apple’s in-App Sales Policy — an Intimidation Tactic?

There was so much drama and upheaval in the eBook, magazine, and subscription services on iOS yesterday as Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and others caved to Apple’s demands that they either get a 30% cut of in-app sales or all links to external purchasing systems be removed, that it is easy to assume that all this comes down to one word – GREED. But what if it comes down to one different word. What if instead of this being all about Apple and the word “greed”, what if it all comes down to Apple and the word “Amazon”? What if…


Kindle App Removes Store Links from iOS

A picture is worth 1,000 words… Amazon has updated the Kindle app to reflect Apple’s new rules, namely that you cannot link to an external store in an iOS application. Will this impact buying habits? Only time will tell, but one thing is clear: we, as consumers, are losing. Spotify, Netflix, Rhapsody, NOOK, Kobo, Google Books and now the Kindle have all undergone dramatic changes that will require major adjustments to how we shop on an iOS device. Will this change how you shop for books? Will you be holding off on updating your Kindle app? Sound off in the…


Music Diary Notes: The Four Reasons I Chose MOG Over Rdio

As I mentioned in my review of Rdio and MOG, both are excellent services and each provides plenty of value for the $10 monthly fee. Yet when it comes down to it, I really only need a single ‘on demand’ service – so I needed to make a choice. As a reminder, both MOG and Rdio offer on-demand listening on millions of songs from all of the major music labels. Each has a web player, as well as apps to run on Android, iPhone, and at least some amount of set-top entertainment devices like Roku, but neither has an iPad…


RIP Rock Radio in NYC!

It’s a sad day for rock fans in the New York/New Jersey area. 101.9RXP, the only rock station in the area, is going off-air as of tonight. They’ll still exist in website form, but that doesn’t do much good for those of us who relied on RXP to control road rage during rush hour. I’m bitterly disappointed. Honestly, I am not a huge music person, and mainly listen when I’m in the car driving to and from work. However, I really, really, really hate pop music. The only genre I generally enjoy is rock and left to my own devices…


Sonos + Spotify = Even More Music Throughout the House

Despite using MOG quite a bit recently (It replaced RDIO for me.) I’m still a huge Slacker Radio fan. I like the interface, the customization and the catalogue. And now that you can cache music AND selectively grab tracks or albums it is just awesome. Unfortunately it still doesn’t integrate with my Sonos audio system so, at home at least, it is either MOG or Pandora. Hopefully I’ll have yet another choice before the day is out. Spotify went live in the US this morning and I’m waiting for my invite to arrive so I can try out the long-awaited…


Music Diary Notes: Spotify Launch Next Week? Also, No Warner Music Deal (?) and Launch Notes Leaked!

I have written about Spotify’s plans to launch soon, including a sign-up page. However, there were even more interesting developments this week! First, as indicated in the title it seems that Spotify is looking for a launch between the 11th and 18th of July, if we believe a report from the Wall Street Journal: Spotify AB has told record label executives that it is aiming to launch its music-streaming service in the U.S. as early as the middle of next week, according to people familiar with the matter. Next, in spite of the imminent launch, it appears that the deal…


Review: Sony’s Qriocity ‘Music Unlimited’ Streaming Service

I had planned to include Sony’s attempt at a streaming music service with my recent look at Rdio and MOG as ‘Spotify Alternatives’, but frankly it is so ill-conceived and poorly executed that I didn’t want to obscure those excellent services with this dreck. The Hype The music you want, when you want it. Qriocity™ offers access to millions of songs on a variety of Sony devices. Upload your personal library for access anytime, anywhere or discover new favorites with automatic recommendations based on your unique listening habits. The Reality Don’t believe the hype. Qriocity consists of a web-based front-end,…