Items tagged with music

With Google responsible for at least 50% of the world's search traffic, I think it's safe to say that the company knows what it's doing in search -- but that doesn't mean that its service can't be improved over time. No one seems to realize that better than Google itself, as we've seen many features rollout over the years that have been really useful. Personal favorites of mine have been on-demand sports scores, Wikipedia snippets, as well as flight information. This week, I can add another favorite to that list: lyrics. As I'm sure many of you have, I've turned to Google whenever... Read more...
Another year is almost in the books, but before we head into 2015, Spotify took a stroll down memory lane and revealed what we collectively listened to most this past year, which turned out to be Ed Sheeran. He beat out Eminem, Calvin Harris, Avicii, and David Guetta (in that order) for top male artist on the streaming service, while Katy Perry vibrated our eardrums more than any other female artist.The rest of the top 5 in the female category include Ariana Grande, Lana Del Rey, Beyonce, and Lorde. Unfortunately, Spotify doesn't include the exact number of times each artist was streamed, so it's... Read more...
As part of a massive holiday giveaway promotion, Microsoft is offering over 100 MP3 albums through its Music Deals app for free to everyone. That is, everyone who uses Windows 8 or owns a Windows Phone.The promotion is available for a limited time but it is worth taking advantage of. Country, Rock and Roll, Rap, and Pop music are just some of the genres available in the collection Microsoft is offering. Among the free albums are ones from artists such as Eminem, The Rolling Stones, Linkin Park, Mumford & Sons, Lana Del Ray, U2, Stone Temple Pilots, Faith Hill, The Who, Bon Jovi, The Doobie... Read more...
Robots... they're taking over! That's a refrain we've heard for years, of course, but you have to wonder how close we're actually getting when they start to appear in popular music videos. Honda's Uni-Cub, described as a 360-degree personal mobility device, is shown front-and-center in OK Go's latest music video. Granted, the band has a penchant for oddities when it comes to crafting videos to showcase their songs, but this is certainly one of the most interesting uses to date. The song, "I Won't Let You Down," has been viewed over 11 million times on YouTube, and much of the attention has come... Read more...
Apple took the world by surprise when the company bought the Beats brand for $3 billion earlier this year, which remains the Cupertino outfit's largest acquisition to date. Now the big question is, what will Apple do with the Beats Music portion of that acquisition? We've heard a few different rumors, the most recent of which is that Apple will relaunch Beats Music as part of iTunes next year to bolster the latter's declining music sales. That's the word from The Wall Street Journal, which spoke with a person who is supposedly familiar with Apple's streaming music strategy. While nothing is yet... Read more...
Earlier this year, Google acquired a company by the name of Songza. Now, we're seeing some fruits of the integration. Playlists have become awfully important for all music apps, from Beats to Rhapsody to Pandora. And now, Google Play Music is joining the fun with curated music stations that respond to whatever it is that you're presently doing. The only major catch? It's just available to All Access members that pay a monthly subscription fee, so those who use the free version of the service won't be able to partake. Here's a description of what's new, right from Google itself: "If you’re... Read more...
Don't look now, but we might be on the verge of a price war in the streaming music space. Music labels probably won't let that happen to the degree that we'd like, though if Apple is successful in relaunching its Beats Music subscription service at $5 per month as it reportedly wants to do, labels and music artists will feel the pressure from competing services like Spotify to follow suit. News of what Apple is trying to do comes just hours after Spotify announced a new family plan starting at $14.99 per month for two users. Each additional user runs another $5 per month for their own Premium plan... Read more...
The search game is changing as Google makes a concerted effort to cut down on music piracy while simultaneously helping to promote legitimate download sites like Netflix and Google Play. In keeping with its transparent theme, Google spelled out some specific changes it's making (as well as already made) to search in an updated How Google Fights Piracy report. So, what can you expect? One of the things Google has been doing is experimenting with its ad formats. The sultan of search wants to make it easier for people to find legitimate sources of media. And for the "relatively small number" of search... Read more...
Online services are slowing coming around to the idea that not all of its customers are single users who never learned how to share. The latest to experience this epiphany is Spotify, which is rolling out a discounted family plan for multiple member households. With Spotify Family, up to four members can share a single billing account while keeping music listening preferences separate. Each person on a Spotify Family plan has a separate listening history, recommendations, and playlists -- everyone has their own account, in other words. These are Premium level accounts, too. That means you and little... Read more...
U2’s collaboration goes way beyond the album Apple forced on iPhone users at the launch event. According to a report in TIME, the band and tech company have been working on a project that could give bands a new way to deliver albums to their audiences. Hopefully, this new album format doesn’t involve auto-downloads. Itunes already puts album artwork front-and-center. The new album format Apple and U2 are developing is expected to make new uses of album artwork. Image credit: Apple People involved in the project are stressing that, although this new format is expected to be difficult... Read more...
In a new interview with Esquire, legendary rocker Gene Simmons claims that the music industry isn't dying - it's been dead for quite some time. As the interview was conducted by Gene's 25-year-old son Nick, it seems inevitable that file-sharing would be brought into the discussion, and it was. But despite that, this isn't a simple matter of an old crank complaining about the younger generation - he does make some great points. When asked about what advice he'd give starting musicians, Simmons replied, "Don't quit your day job is a good piece of advice. When I was coming up, it was not an insurmountable... Read more...
The streaming music landscape isn't getting any less competitive -- just the opposite -- so in order to remain relevant in what's become a fast growing market, Rdio reportedly will join some of its more popular competitors by launching a free, ad-supported radio service. Rdio's transition to a freemium model will kick off with an updated app next Thursday. The four-year-old service faces stiff competition from the likes of Spotify, Google Play Music All Access, Beats Music (now owned by Apple), and others. It's available in 60 countries, though presumed to have less paying subscribers than Spotify... Read more...
It's long been rumored that Google would offer some kind of streaming music service through its YouTube division, but with the release of Google Play Music All Access, it seemed as though YouTube was destined to remain a video sharing site. Perhaps not. We're now hearing that YouTube will launch a service called YouTube Music Key with ad-free music, audio-only playback (for enjoying in the background or listening with the screen turned off), and offline playback. Where does that leave Google's existing music service? We're not entirely sure, though according to Android Police, Google is going to... Read more...
Valve's Steam digital distribution platform is the go-to place for games, and there's even been an effort to flesh it out with creativity and productivity software. Now there's evidence to suggest that Valve may take things a step further by adding new types of content, including film, TV series, videos, music, and plugins. Could it be that Steam is growing into something much bigger than a game library? It's too early to tell, but what's out there is certainly interesting. Credit goes to SteamDB for digging through the recent Steam Beta update and noticing several new application-type IDs, such... Read more...
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