Tag - Napster
Rhapsody International announced today that it hit a significant milestone for its business. The company revealed that it reached two million subscribers for its premium services, including Rhapsody, Napster and the joint venture with T-Mobile called unRadio. On the success of unRadio, the company announced plans to extend the service to other parts of the world.
Rhapsody International, the company that houses both Rhapsody and Napster music streaming services, says it is cutting ties with the music recommendation system The Echo Nest. The move comes not long after Spotify purchased The Echo Nest for an undisclosed sum at the beginning of March.
The Official Charts Company of the UK from Monday onwards will start releasing a chart based solely on streamed music tracks. The Official Streaming Chart will be the first chart ranking audio streams from both ad-funded and subscription streaming services in the UK, instead of product sales or radio airplay figures.
Rhapsody, the streaming music subscription service, announced on Thursday that it has bought Napster assets in Germany and the UK. The company also bought Napster's business in the US before laying off the majority of those employees. Rhapsody promises to keep the European employees on, however, and the Napster name there will remain untouched.
Subscription music services faced more of a backlash after UK distributor ST Holdings stated that it would follow Coldplay's path and keep its labels' music out of subscription music services. All of the work its primarily electronic musicians, such as drum-and-bass artists like Blu Mar Ten, Cyantific, Makoto, and Mistabishi, was being pulled from flat-rate subscriptions on Napster, Rdio, Simfy, and Spotify. The company noted that its digital revenue had dropped for the first time ever, by 14 percent, and that much of the blame could be pinned on having its first full quarter supplying those services with music.
Logitech gave owners of its long-serving Squeezebox music hubs an update Tuesday for MOG's online audio. The addition lets listeners stream on-demand from MOG's whole catalog at 320Kbps, at the higher end of the compressed audio most listen to. It joins Napster and Spotify among the choices for unlimited music on the devices.
Qualcomm Atheros just announced the release of the Skifta 1.0 Android app (free, Android Market) that will allow users to stream content from their Android devices or saved on the cloud to any DLNA-compatible device. It will offer a Channel library, that will let users access content from their Picasa, Photobucket, Soma.fm, Napster, ShoutCast, Revision 3 and TED Talks accounts or service, among others, without launching those apps separately.
Yesterday, Rhapsody announced it was acquiring the US operations of streaming and download music service competitor Napster from Best Buy in a stock swap. Today, more details of the deal have begun to emerge. GigaOM now reports that the merger is expected to lead to major job cuts and that much of Napster's core team will be gone.
Rhapsody shook up online music Monday by buying Napster. The deal will put the two streaming and download music services together. Cash involved in the deal wasn't mentioned, but Napster's now former owner, Best Buy, will have a minority stake in the combined service.
Netgear made inroads to home networking Wednesday headlined by a self-proclaimed high-speed router. The N900, also known as the WNDR4500, is part of a still-rare group that can run Wi-Fi up to 450Mbps concurrently on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. Wireless sharing is atypically faster as well: the USB controller is more powerful than on most rivals and estimated to be 30 percent faster for sharing an external hard drive or a printer.
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE