Spotify Could Have ‘Died’, CEO Says He Had to Bet Company to Survive

While Spotify has been reportedly valued at $8.5 billion, its founder and chief executive says the company could have ‘died’ a few years ago. Speaking during a talk at the Slush technology conference in Helsinki on Wednesday, Daniel Ek said the company didn’t realize the significance of mobile early on.

Before 2013, Spotify only had a mobile product that required people to pay a subscription for. On desktop, the music streaming service had a freemium model – with both a free and premium tier. In the short term, Spotify benefited with people paying for the mobile product, but it was missing out on further growth.

Source: CNBC

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Don’t Blame Jay Z, Tidal’s Music Streaming Service Has Always Been a Disaster

Back when the music industry was being ravaged by piracy and the slow demise of the compact disc, Kjarten Slette and Thomas Walle wrote business-school papers about turning things around. After graduation the two got a chance to test their theories as top executives at a Norwegian streaming music service that made its debut in 2010, not long after Spotify appeared in neighbouring Sweden.

You may have heard of their startup, Tidal, even though it hasn’t flourished.The also-ran streaming service achieved pop-star status after Jay Z purchased the company for US$56 million in 2015 and vowed to use it as a vehicle to revolutionize the music business. But the rapper-turned-mogul didn’t deliver on his grandiose vision.

Despite exclusive steaming releases of big albums, including his wife Beyoncé’s “Lemonade,” Jay Z’s Tidal had amassed only 4.2 million subscribers by May 2016, the most recently available figure. Spotify claims more than 100 million active users, 40 million of whom pay to use its service. Apple Music, a distant No. 2 among streaming services, had 17 million subscribers as of September.

Source: Financial Post

Spotify Is Investing In Original Musical Content With New Programs ‘Singles’ And ‘Live’

Throughout the year, Spotify has seemingly focused its vast resources on several areas: playlists, acquisitions, and original content. The latter of the three has only been a topic of discussion from time to time with the Swedish streaming service, as videos and recordings made specifically for Spotify have seemed to pop up here and there, only making a small splash upon arrival. T

he company looks like it wants to change that with a new weekly series of completely original content.

Today, FORBES can exclusively announce that Spotify is launching two new programs that will bring original musical recordings to listeners around the world: Singles and Live.

Source: Forbes

With Music-Making Tools and One Day Live-Streaming, Smule Hopes to be the Social Network for Music

Music app maker Smule doesn’t want to be counted out of the battle of mobile live-streaming services. Facebook, Twitter and Musical.ly — and likely soon YouTube and Snapchat — are among major mobile app brands that want people to broadcast video from their smartphones. Live video can attract a widespread and focused viewership, something that video advertisers covet but isn’t yet easy to find on social networks.

Smule, which develops popular apps such as Magic Piano and Sing! Karaoke to make and share music videos, declined to go into details about potential live-streaming features. But during a recent vist to Los Angeles, Chief Executive Jeff Smith said going live is more than a fad.

Source: LA Times

‘Thanks 2016, It’s Been Weird’ Says Spotify in Biggest Ever Global Campaign

Spotify has kicked off its largest ever global campaign with a major, data-driven outdoor push in which it bids goodbye to 2016 with the sign-off, “Thanks 2016, it’s been weird.”

The campaign begins rolling out in the U.S., the U.K., France and Denmark today (Nov. 28) and then to a further 10 markets (Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Indonesia, Mexico, New Zealand, the Philippines and Sweden.) It was developed in-house by Spotify’s internal creative team in New York, supported by insight from its regional teams around the world.

Source: Creativity Online

Spotify Joins with Headspace to Help People Practice Mindfulness, Meditation

spotiheadSpotify is looking to make people better, as well as more entertained.The company has launched a new partnership with Headspace, an app meant to help people live “healthier and happier lives”. In the new deal, people will be able to suscribe to both of the services for a reduced price.

Together, the two apps will sell for £14.99 — or roughly the same price in other currencies — rather than the £10 or so that each of them costs.

Source: The Independent

How the Music Streaming Giants are Helping You Find Your Next Favorite Song

40 million tracks. It’s a massive, incomprehensible number of songs but that’s the figure music-streaming sites have used in recent times to legitimise their services. Hit the 40 million mark and this somehow proves to potential music listeners that because they have such an unequivocal amount of music on offer they are the ultimate service.

The problem is: if you are given too much choice, no matter how big of a music fan you are, it’s likely you’ll retreat back into your nostalgia cave and put on a record that you are familiar with.

Source: TechRadar

Spotify Japan Shows What a Little Techno Can Unleash In You

spotify-logoJapanese music lovers, oddly enough, are still devoted to CDs; the Tower Records brand even lives on there, with dozens of locations. Spotify entered the country in September, betting it can make converts.

The streaming service just launched a Japanese campaign with Wieden & Kennedy Tokyo, touting its ability to help people “discover new music you didn’t know you’d love.” That’s one advantage Spotify definitely has over old-school records and CDs.The campaign’s theme is “New Music, New Me.” One of the five spots, seen here, shows a middle-aged woman vigorously chopping vegetables to a techno beat with a drop of sweat trickling down her cheek.

Source: Creativity Online

How Streaming Will Change the Sound of Pop Music

As terrestrial radio continues to become less relevant, song structures and arrangements will likely become more fluid. New, innovative mediums may even emerge. Who says a recording has to present the same experience with every play? What if tracks evolved over time? What if, after one hundred plays, a bonus verse emerged?

As play count becomes a dominant metric for measuring the success of tracks, ideas like these are fair game.

[This terrific post about the music-making process and streaming is written by Jason Moss. Check out his mixing tips at Behind The Speakers. And definitely read the full blog post at TuneCore.]

Source: TuneCore

Live-Streamed George Strait Show Reaches 14m

Wrangler Network, a site for “those living the western lifestyle” operated by the jeans company of the same name, says the live-streamed performance from Gruene Hall (800-cap.) in Texas – Strait’s first – broke all previous viewership records by generating more than 14 million impressions.

“This was an event we may never again see in the history of music”“This was an event we may never again see in the history of music,” says Craig Errington, Wrangler’s vice-president of marketing. “We’re honoured to be able to bring such a monumental moment involving the King of Country Music to hundreds of thousands of fans through the Wrangler Network.”

Source: IQ Magazine

Spotify Focusing on Deal to Move to World Trade Center

960xSpotify, the world’s No. 1 music streamer, is focusing on a deal to move its city offices to the World Trade Center. The Swedish company, whose US offices are now located in about 140,000 square feet at 620 Ave. of the Americas on the Ladies’ Mile in Midtown South, is negotiating through a JLL team for prime positions at both One World Trade Center and 4 World Trade Center, real estate sources tell The Post.

Source: New York Post

Streaming vs. Pay-Per-Song: The Ethical Implications

With the rising popularity of music streaming platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music and Google Play, there are now fewer reasons to purchase songs and albums individually. This is to the dismay of several artists who claim they are being robbed of the total revenue they deserve for their work. Their argument is similar to the following analogy: you do not go into a clothing store and pay an entrance fee to then collect all of the items you want. This is what they feel listeners are doing when they pay a monthly fee to use services like Spotify Premium and Apple Music. They also think it is not fair to other fans who go out and buy their CDs when others just wait to listen to it for free online.

Source: Fordham Observer