All posts tagged Specific Media

Digital Round Up: More Spotify, Rhapsody + Napster, Rdio goes free & more…

There seems to be quite a bit of optimism lately in the realm of digital music and what the future holds for subscription services. So far 2011′s album sales are already up from the previous year, with a big bump from digital, and at least one major label is claiming that they’ve finally figured out “free”. Glassnote artist Mumford & Sons became the third artist ever to sell 1 million digital albums, and even MTV has announced a second O Music Awards show, celebrating music and technology, which is set for October 31st… Spotify was quick to release new user data within only a couple months of launching its service in the U.S., and while they are clearing unclear in terms of paying versus free and how many are U.S.-only as opposed the world-wide, the overall statement is that a lot of people are trying out the service. The announcements in the music arena made during Facebook‘s recent f8 conference also helped boost the outlook of not only Spotify, but a number of other digital music services including MOGRdio and iHeartRadio that were also included in the social networks big changes. And while most eyes remain on the Swedish-start up, the competition continues to counter with new moves of their own. Rdio announced this week that it will be launching a free on-demand streaming service, that has no ads, and an unspecified limit on free-listening, which follows a similar move by MOG… Meanwhile, Rhapsody has acquired Napster from Best Buy, in a purchase that will raise the longtime streaming service’s plateauing numbers… Elsewhere, Apple revealed during their press event on Tuesday that its new iCloud service will be extended to Europe, following recent reports that the company was seeking worldwide music rights from labels and publishers… And after only a few months as the new owners of MySpace, Specific Media held presentations for top-level advertisers at Radio City Music Hall on Monday, trying to generate excitement for the site, which will be focused primarily on music and video content. Creative partner and investor, Justin Timberlake (who has also been tapped to play Neil Bogart in an upcoming biopic of the Casablanca Records co-founder) was on hand for the presentations as well.

Bits & Pieces: MySpace Sold, AOL links with Slacker and Rhapsody Keeps on Keeping on

The names making music-tech news this week are a veritable who’s who of the once mighty, including MySpace, AOL and Rhapsody… News of the sale of MySpace broke yesterday, with ad network Specific Media choosing to pick up the pieces of the former social network goliath for $35 million – for those keeping score, it was purchased for $580 million in 2005 by News Corp. (who will continue to keep a small stake). And in an unexpected twist, it was also announced that Justin Timberlake has taken an ownership stake as part of the deal, and that he will be heavily involved in rejuvenating the site… On Tuesday a new partnership between AOL and Slacker was announced, with the interactive radio service set to power AOL Radio starting in September. They will replace AOL’s current partner in CBS, and the new service will expand the music offerings and give users the same pricing options as what Slacker already offers. It’s expected to more than double Slacker’s current number of listeners… Elsewhere, now seasoned music streaming service, Rhapsody, has added 100,000 new customers since its spinout from RealNetworks and Viacom last year, as revealed in a PaidContent interview this week. The increase comes mainly from its mobile app efforts, and the company will likely be looking for new investment soon, particularly with the recent interest in streaming startups.