Digital music downloads and streaming revenues for the first time ever have surpassed those of physical CDs in the United Kingdom, according to the British Phonographic Industry. Digital music accounted for 55.5% of U.K. music revenue between January and April of this year compared to 31% of worldwide industry revenue in 2011, with industry revenues growing by 2.7% to £155.8 million. Digital music revenue, including subscription and ad-supported services, grew by 23.6% year-over-year to £86.5 million, while revenue from physical formats fell by 15.1% to £69.3 million. Sales of digital albums increased by 22.7% to £35.9 million. Paid-for subscription services revenue almost doubled over the same month a year ago, increasing 93% to nearly £9 million, while revenue from ad-supported services such as Spotify increased by 20% to £3.4 million. The continued increase of digital revenues highlights the switch millions of users continue to make from physical music formats to digital downloads and streaming services. The British Phonographic Industry’s press release follows below. More →
While Spotify offers a native iPhone app, the company still doesn’t offer one for Apple’s iPad. According to a photo recently published to the web, however, that may soon change. A Swedish technology consultant posted the first image of what is said to be a beta version of Spotify’s official iPad app. The image was posted on Instagram and it featured the caption, “It’s getting closer!” The image has since been removed, but not before it began to spread across various tech blogs. Spotify on Friday sent out press invitations for a special announcement event in New York City. Could the event be for an iPad app? Perhaps, although a press conference dedicated solely to an app seems unlikely. Earlier reports indicated that the music streaming company may announce brand partnerships that will allow app and playlist recommendations from companies in an effort to make the platform more attractive to advertisers. More →
Spotify on Friday sent out press invites for a special announcement in New York City on April 18th. It’s not entirely clear what the event might cover, although recent reports have indicated the music streaming service may allow app and playlist recommendations from various brands in an effort to make the platform more attractive to advertisers. The company previously held a press event in November to announce its embedded applications platform.
Custom music steaming company Spotify on Wednesday announced that it will soon launch its popular service in the U.S. The company has been rumored to be in negotiations with major U.S. music labels for more than a year now, and it looks like those negotiations finally panned out. “The award-winning music service that’s taken Europe by storm will soon be landing on US shores,” the company said in a statement on its website. “Millions of tracks ready to play instantly, on your computer and your phone.” In markets where the service is currently available, Spotify allows users to stream music on demand for free to PCs. For a monthly fee, the service adds additional features and supports more devices, such as the iPhone, iPad and Android devices. Pricing and other details for the U.S. market have not yet been announced. More →
In the mobile space there are leaders and followers, and our friends over at Novatel Wireless are clear leaders. The company’s MiFi devices set the market abuzz as people rushed to replace their older mobile broadband devices with portable mobile hotspots capable of connecting multiple devices to cellular data networks via Wi-Fi. Now, Novatel is extending its lead in the space by updating the AT&T MiFi 2372 with DLNA streaming media support. We’re big fans of making good gear even better, and by adding wireless media server capabilities to AT&T’s MiFi, that’s exactly what Novatel did. We tested the MiFi 2372’s new DLNA functionality and it indeed works exactly as expected — by simply connecting to the device over Wi-Fi, users can stream media stored on the MiFi’s microSD card to computers, smartphones, tablets, televisions or anything else that supports DLNA. We were able to stream movies, music and even browse photos from an iPhone, a laptop and an LCD TV as well. We had no problems whatsoever, and — surprisingly — battery life doesn’t seem to take too much of a hit. If you own an AT&T MiFi 2372 and haven’t updated the software yet, consider this your motivation. A video showcasing the MiFi’s DLNA capabilities follows below. More →
Are you wondering what the music service on Sony’s upcoming PlayStation Phone might look like? PSP owners will soon have access to what may be the best indication yet of things to come. Sony announced earlier this week that a new software update, version 6.35, would prepare the PSP for the Sony’s upcoming “Music Unlimited powered by Qriocity” service — which bears a name so ill-conceived that even Sony apologetically wraps it with quotes. Like Zune, Rhapsody, Napster and countless other services, Music Unlimited will be a cloud-based product that allows subscribers to stream music on demand to compatible devices. The service will launch soon and when it does, Sony’s PSP will be ready and waiting. More →
A bit of digging into a property list file included with Apple’s latest build of iTunes, version 10.1, may give us a hint as to what Apple might introduce in the near future. The plist file in question makes reference to “iTunes Live Stream,” an unannounced service that could find itself at the center of Apple’s announcement tomorrow. There is currently no solid information in terms of what iTunes Live Streaming might entail, but speculation ranges from live streaming of television programming to live user-generated audio and video streams. While nothing is known for sure, iTunes Live Streaming will likely be one of the first new services to make use of the $1 billion data center Apple is currently building.