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BUSINESS
October 1, 2012 | By Jon Healey
Subscription music services offering unlimited access to a massive online jukebox have been around for more than a decade, but they're still struggling to attract a mass audience. Meanwhile, some musicians complain that the likes of Spotify and Rhapsody pay such minuscule royalties, it's counterproductive for artists to support them. Now, one of those services -- Rdio -- is trying to solve both problems at once. On Tuesday it plans to launch a new payment system that gives money directly to artists for attracting new customers to the service.
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ENTERTAINMENT
March 6, 2014 | By Ryan Faughnder
Spotify, the Swedish streaming music service, is buying The Echo Nest, a data company that has analyzed more than 35 million songs.  With the acquisition, Spotify will improve the ways users discover new music, the company said Thursday. The move comes as Spotify, founded in 2008, faces increasing competition from rivals such as the heavily promoted Beats Music, launched in January by headphone company Beats Electronics.  INTERACTIVE: Discover songs of L.A. "We are hyper focused on creating the best user experience and it starts with building the best music intelligence platform on the planet," Daniel Ek, Spotify's chief executive, said in a statement . " With The Echo Nest joining Spotify, we will make a big leap forward in our quest to play you the best music possible.” Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.  The purchase of Somerville, Mass.-based  Echo Nest will also make it easier for third-party developers to build applications for Spotify, which completed a funding round of about $250 million in November.
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ENTERTAINMENT
June 13, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
Music streaming service Rdio, which competes with Spotify and Pandora, is launching in seven new territories, including Hong Kong and Malaysia.  This marks the first time Rdio (pronounced are-dee-oh) will be available to listeners in Asia, the company said in a blog post Thursday .  San Francisco-based Rdio, which charges $4.99 a month for unlimited Web streaming and $9.99 for use on mobile devices, is now available in 31 countries, the company said. Other new markets include  Colombia, Chile, the Czech Republic, Switzerland and Poland, widening its reach in Europe and South America.  PHOTOS: Tech we want to see in 2013 London-based Spotify, which offers a similar streaming service, is available in 28 markets and has 24 million active users, according to its website.  Spotify launched in Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore in April, along with Mexico, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Iceland.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 4, 2014 | By Ryan Faughnder
Beats Music is bringing more tools for musicians into the fold.  The new music streaming service is acquiring Topspin Media, a company that helps artists promote and sell their music and merchandise to consumers. Ian Rogers, Beats Music's chief executive and the former CEO of Topspin, said the acquisition will help artists connect directly with fans.  PHOTOS: Behind the scenes of movies and TV "We're committed to establishing Beats Music as a conduit for the artist-fan relationship, a platform where artists have a voice, and a provider of useful data and analytics on how fans interact with artists and their music," Rogers wrote in a blog post on the Beats Music website .  "This acquisition puts our money where our mouth is. " Financial details were not disclosed.  Beats has already integrated some of Topspin's features into its service to let artists update their profiles with photos and merch offers.  Launched in January by Beats Electronics, the headphone company started by Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine, Beats Music offers a variety of ways to help people discover music, including play lists created by artists and taste-maker publications.
BUSINESS
May 29, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Music subscription services Spotify and Rdio both released updates for their apps Wednesday, with Spotify adding a new "Discover" feature for its website-based music player. "Don't know what to listen to next? That's okay. We do," Spotify said in a statement announcing the service's new Discover feature, which will give users personalized song recommendations. The Discover feature is a section users can click on to find the latest recommendations Spotify has to offer. The recommendations include new songs, albums and artists based on which artists users follow as well as what their friends are listening to. PHOTOS: Top music subscription services Spotify is also rolling out "Audio Preview," which lets users click and hold on any of the songs they see on the Discover page to get a short preview of what they'll hear if they play the entire track.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 3, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
The streaming music service Rdio has tapped Anthony Bay -- a former digital media executive at Amazon.com Inc., Microsoft Corp. and Apple Inc. -- as its new chief executive. This ends a search that began in June when the company's former CEO, Drew Larner, said he would step down after a replacement was found. Larner will become vice chairman and strategic advisor to Rdio's board of directors.  Rdio, the San Francisco company founded by Skype co-creator Janus Friis and launched in 2010, has been trying to compete in a crowded industry that includes larger competitors such as Spotify and Pandora.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 17, 2014 | By Ryan Faughnder
The Internet music service Rdio is now letting people in the U.S. access its 20-million-song library on the Web without paying -- though those users will hear ads.  The change is part of a deal announced last year in which terrestrial radio company Cumulus Media acquired a minority stake in San Francisco-based Rdio, which was launched in 2010 by Skype co-creator Janus Friis. Rdio's on-demand Web version was previously available only to paying subscribers. The company had already made its algorithm-based, Pandora-esque stations feature available free of charge through its mobile app. To get unlimited, ad-free Web and mobile, users must upgrade to the $10 monthly fee.   On the set: movies and TV Rdio has never revealed how many users it has, but it's thought to lag behind Swedish company Spotify, which has also expanded its offerings.
BUSINESS
March 2, 2014 | Dawn C. Chmielewski
The gig: Veteran digital media executive Anthony Bay took over in December as chief executive of Rdio, a streaming music service created by Janis Friis, the co-founder of the Internet phone application Skype (and the file-sharing service Kazaa). Rdio has received favorable reviews, but the 4-year-old Internet jukebox nonetheless has struggled to match the momentum of competing services such as Spotify, which boasts some 9 million paying subscribers. Rdio has undergone layoffs, a management shake-up and a strategic shift (it now offers a free, advertising-supported version through its website)
ENTERTAINMENT
June 18, 2013 | By August Brown
Another brick in the wall -- the one that's separated Pink Floyd fans from the band's music on Spotify -- has come down. The legendary rock group, one of the last major holdouts from Spotify's vast catalog of streamable music, announced that its ouvre would go live in Spotify after fans played a millionth stream of its single "Wish You Were Here" on the service. Though it's certainly an occasion for prog fans on Spotify to celebrate, the news isn't entirely unprecedented for the band.
BUSINESS
November 15, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Half a year after launching for Android, Google Play Music All Access is now available to iPhone users. An app for Google Play Music became available for download for iPhone users on Friday. The app gives users access to All Access, Google's subscription service, and also lets them stream music they own that they have uploaded onto Google's cloud. All Access is a rival to other music subscription services, notably Spotify and Rdio. But unlike those other services, iPhone users have not been able to use All Access on their devices until now. PHOTOS: Google barge to be 'unprecedented artistic structure' To promote the service, Google says new users can get a free 30-day trial of the service.
BUSINESS
March 2, 2014 | Dawn C. Chmielewski
The gig: Veteran digital media executive Anthony Bay took over in December as chief executive of Rdio, a streaming music service created by Janis Friis, the co-founder of the Internet phone application Skype (and the file-sharing service Kazaa). Rdio has received favorable reviews, but the 4-year-old Internet jukebox nonetheless has struggled to match the momentum of competing services such as Spotify, which boasts some 9 million paying subscribers. Rdio has undergone layoffs, a management shake-up and a strategic shift (it now offers a free, advertising-supported version through its website)
ENTERTAINMENT
February 21, 2014 | By Randall Roberts, Los Angeles Times Pop Music Critic
Got discerning taste? Interested in digging in the digital crates for the best music available in the cloud? Then you've no doubt been targeted by Beats Music in the past few months. The much-hyped streaming service is the latest entry in an increasingly crowded field that includes Spotify and iTunes. It offers access to millions of songs and hundreds of hand-selected playlists for $9.99 a month (or, for ATT customers, $14.99 for a family plan). It was unveiled last month during a big budget rollout by longtime music business executives and hitmakers Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine through their company, Beats Electronics.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 17, 2014 | By Ryan Faughnder
The Internet music service Rdio is now letting people in the U.S. access its 20-million-song library on the Web without paying -- though those users will hear ads.  The change is part of a deal announced last year in which terrestrial radio company Cumulus Media acquired a minority stake in San Francisco-based Rdio, which was launched in 2010 by Skype co-creator Janus Friis. Rdio's on-demand Web version was previously available only to paying subscribers. The company had already made its algorithm-based, Pandora-esque stations feature available free of charge through its mobile app. To get unlimited, ad-free Web and mobile, users must upgrade to the $10 monthly fee.   On the set: movies and TV Rdio has never revealed how many users it has, but it's thought to lag behind Swedish company Spotify, which has also expanded its offerings.
NEWS
December 12, 2013 | By Jon Healey
This post has been updated, as indicated below. A belated arrival on the streaming-music scene, Led Zeppelin quickly shot up the charts on Spotify this week despite not having released an album of new material in more than 30 years. The service made the band's first two albums (both from 1969) available Wednesday -- the first Led Zep releases to appear on any of the licensed music subscription services -- and within a day they were both in Spotify's Top 25. [ Updated, 12:15 p.m. Dec. 13: Spotify made two more of the band's releases available Thursday, and all four were in the Top 25 by noon Friday.]
BUSINESS
December 6, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Spotify free riders, get ready to rejoice. An ad-supported version of Spotify's mobile music-streaming service reportedly will be unveiled next week. Bloomberg says the Swedish company will announce a free version of its mobile service in New York City on Wednesday. Currently, Spotify is free to use with ads on desktop computers, but U.S. users who want the service on their mobile devices have to pay $9.99 per month. PHOTOS: Top 10 ways to take advantage of the 'sharing economy' Spotify is a leader in the music streaming market, but the space is crowded with several others, including Pandora, Apple's iTunes Radio, Google Play Music All Access and Rdio.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 3, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
The streaming music service Rdio has tapped Anthony Bay -- a former digital media executive at Amazon.com Inc., Microsoft Corp. and Apple Inc. -- as its new chief executive. This ends a search that began in June when the company's former CEO, Drew Larner, said he would step down after a replacement was found. Larner will become vice chairman and strategic advisor to Rdio's board of directors.  Rdio, the San Francisco company founded by Skype co-creator Janus Friis and launched in 2010, has been trying to compete in a crowded industry that includes larger competitors such as Spotify and Pandora.
BUSINESS
April 18, 2013 | By Jessica Guynn and Dawn C. Chmielewski
Will a song be worth more than 140 characters to Twitter users? After testing out a new music discovery service with celebrities such as Ryan Seacrest, Blake Shelton, Ne-Yo and Moby, Twitter is clicking play on Twitter #Music . The free service will be available starting Thursday at  https://music.twitter.com and as an app for the iPhone in the App Store in the U.S., Canada, Britain, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand, Twitter said....
ENTERTAINMENT
October 23, 2013 | By Dawn C. Chmielewski
YouTube is poised to launch a subscription music service as soon as December, positioning it to compete with Spotify, Rdio and other digital offerings, according to people familiar with the matter. The Internet's dominant online video already is the most popular on-demand music offering in the world.  YouTube even has surpassed radio as the leading way teens and young adults listen to songs.  A subscription service would seek to build YouTube's strength in digital music.  YouTube users already can watch an unlimited number of music videos through an application on their mobile devices, as well as through a browser on their computers.  ON LOCATION: Where the cameras roll The subscription service would offer additional features, such as a commercial-free experience and the freedom to store music on a mobile device to listen when not connected to the Internet, according to people with knowledge of the matter who were not authorized to speak publicly.
BUSINESS
November 15, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Half a year after launching for Android, Google Play Music All Access is now available to iPhone users. An app for Google Play Music became available for download for iPhone users on Friday. The app gives users access to All Access, Google's subscription service, and also lets them stream music they own that they have uploaded onto Google's cloud. All Access is a rival to other music subscription services, notably Spotify and Rdio. But unlike those other services, iPhone users have not been able to use All Access on their devices until now. PHOTOS: Google barge to be 'unprecedented artistic structure' To promote the service, Google says new users can get a free 30-day trial of the service.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 24, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
After the coffee. Before World Series ratings come in.   The Skinny: I didn't catch the whole Red Sox victory, but got to the gym just in time to see the Cardinals' Carlos Beltran rob David Ortiz of a grand slam. Thursday's stories include a big carriage get for Al Jazeera America, YouTube's streaming music dreams and the end of Conde Nast's internship program.  Daily Dose: Guess I'll finally be able to see what "Fault Lines" is all about. Time Warner Cable and Al Jazeera America finally have a carriage agreement, bringing AJA into markets including Los Angeles, New York and Dallas over the next six months.
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