Uncubed

National Edition |

Spotify, Apple, Tidal, and all the players in the music streaming wars

"Is lossless audio worth the additional expense?"


It’s not just your imagination – the number of streaming platforms has exploded in the last few years. But if you haven’t been able to keep up with all the contract leaks, diss tracks, and Tinder albums, we’ve got you covered.

Spotify

Spotify had plenty to celebrate last week – the streaming platform announced a big move from streaming music library to full-on entertainment hub. The platform is rolling out short video clips, podcasts, playlists that anticipate what a user wants to see or hear based on time of day, and even a feature that matches music to a runner’s tempo. Spotify is not, however, celebrating the leak of its contract with Sony that allowed Spotify to use Sony Music’s catalogue.

Apple

Want to be the first to get your hands on Apple’s relaunched music streaming service? Move east (way east). Russia is rumored to be among the first countries due to receive Apple’s new service later this year, thanks in part to a booming streaming market. Cook and company have remained tight-lipped about the service, though 9to5Mac reports that it will feature a social network for artists to connect with fans.

Tidal

Jay Z’s penchant for diss tracks may have helped him reach the pinnacle of hip hop – whether it helps to pull Tidal out of the app store abyss remains to be seen. His choice words for streaming competitors at the exclusive Tidal “B-Sides” concert in Manhattan created some much needed buzz weeks after the platform plummeted out of iTunes’ Top 700 apps chart. And because Tidal is on a mission to prove struggling musicians deserve more money, the platform released an exclusive video of Beyonce bathing in expensive champagne.

SoundCloud

Spotify’s not the only streaming platform dealing with Sony-related drama of late; Sony Music pulled much of its biggest artists’ music off SoundCloud because they believe the platform isn’t properly enabled to make money. Not everyone’s up in arms over SoundCloud’s free offerings – Dogecoin cofounder Jackson Palmer has created Noise Supply, a free (and ad-free) Pandora-like radio service that uses SoundCloud’s hefty catalogue of tunes.

All Four You

Though they put on exactly zero rap shows to back up the announcement, Rdio launched a new streaming option at a new price model: $3.99 a month for Rdio Select, which will allow users to download up to 25 new songs every day to play offline. And Tinder doesn’t just want you to love. They want you to swipe right on Zedd’s new album True Colors, launched on their platform for an exclusive price of $3.99.

Punching In

French high-quality streaming service Deezer announced they’ll too offer podcasts. One-time Windows-only streaming app MixRadio landed on iOS and Android. And in a bid to help bring music videos to streaming platforms, Portland-based Vadio raised a $7.5 million Series A round.

Now go forth (and row, row, row).

Share