Archive for the ‘Streaming’ tag
Rdio And Shazam Expand Full Music Track Streaming Partnership To UK, Canada, Australia, Brazil And Mexico
Shazam and Rdio have offered something wonderful for U.S. users as of fall 2012, providing full track streaming for tagged music via Rdio, thanks to a “Listen Free on Rdio” link within the Shazam app. That means that once you use either the free or paid version of Shazam to identify a song from your device, you can then listen to the entire track, so long as you’re either an Rdio subscriber or have signed up for a free 14-day trial. Now, the service is available to Rdio and Shazam users in Canada, Australia, Brazil, Mexico and the UK in addition to the U.S.
That means it’s now available to a potential combined audience of 120 million users of Shazam’s free app, which is great news for Rdio. Rdio has only around 1 million monthly active users according to AppData, which means it stands to gain a lot from the increased exposure afforded it by getting in front of Shazam users. And of course for Shazam, it offers another incentive for users to access its services.
Rdio is still getting the better end of the bargain, however, unless Shazam is also taking in referral fees for any subscriptions that come out of tags it sends Rdio’s way. That’s because this provides a big jump start to the customer acquisition and conversion funnel that Rdio has in place, which depends on convincing free trial users into subscribers at either $4.99 per month for the Rdio web plan, or $9.99 per month for the unlimited version which includes mobile apps access and offline storage.
Major League Baseball Brings Archives, Highlights And Live Streaming Games To YouTube (But Not In The U.S.)
Major League Baseball has always been very strict about its content appearing on YouTube and other video streaming sites. Peruse YouTube for highlights from your favorite players and teams, and you’ll find it nearly impossible to find quality footage. As soon as a clip from a game goes up on YouTube, it’s taken down. Up until now, it’s just a collection of slideshows and footage uploaded from fans’ shaky hand-held cameras at the ballpark. Finally, Major League Baseball is stepping up its effort to tear down those walls.
Today on Google+, the company announced that MLB is finally bringing baseball to YouTube. While this is a significant partnership for YouTube, which continues to roll out new content initiatives and partnerships, don’t expect it to be fully baked quite yet.
Through its YouTube channel, MLB will begin offering game highlights from the current season, which will be uploaded 24 to 48 hours after the game. Not only that, but it will be offering classic fare, with thousands of hours of archived games going back to 1952, along with clips from “Baseball’s Best Classics” and “Best Moments.”
MLBAM first began putting full-game archives and highlights on its YouTube channel back in 2010, which were only available to viewers in Australia, Brazil, Japan, New Zealand and Russia. The new channel update will now bring that content to an even wider, global audience. However, it is missing a few key markets.
Under YouTube’s new partnership with MLB, viewers will be able to watch two live games per day during the regular season. For free. However, for baseball fans living in the U.S., Canada, South Korea, Taiwan and Japan, we have some bad news. No two-live-games-per day for you.
Naturally, it seems a little ill-conceived for the partnership to be announced without the ability to air in the U.S., Japan or South Korea, which happen to have two of the largest markets for baseball in the world. That being said, it’s a great start, and baseball fans will appreciate the ability to find highlights from their favorite players and teams on YouTube, just one click away from cute cat videos.
Mobile video. Hot space, right? Viddy just raised $30 million, Socialcam just sold for $60 million. But most of the big mobile video apps seem to be more focused on video consumption and building their user base than actually, you know, letting people shoot video. TapIn.tv wants to change that, with a new app that will let users instantly create and share live and on-demand video streams from their mobile phones.
Mobile video streaming is nothing really new — not even live mobile video streaming. As soon as the iPhone had a camera, there were apps out there that were hacking it to let users stream from their phones. But those apps generally required users to sign in if they wanted to share video, name the channel or stream that they’re shooting, and provide a description. With today’s generation of on-demand mobile video apps, users also have the option of adding filters, title cards, and other crap before posting video.
TapIn.tv strips that all down to just the bare necessities. You download and open the app and BOOM! you can instantly start shooting. Streams are tied to the location of the user, and immediately get posted to the TapIn.tv website.
Video quality depends on available bandwidth, with the app uploading 480p live video over WiFi, and 360p over 3G mobile networks. Videos are available through their own links, which is the same whether a viewer is watching live or on-demand. Links can be shared on Facebook or Twitter once a user has logged in, but there’s no requirement for users to do so in order to post. Users can always claim a video later, since the app establishes ownership based on the device ID, rather than a Facebook profile or other account login.
On the TapIn.tv website, users can browse through videos shot using the app based on date and location. According to co-founder David Tyler, location is important because it will allow users to compare multiple views of the same event or series of events. The idea behind the app came in part from the Occupy protests, where an app like TapIn.tv could have shown the crackdown of protesters in Zuccotti Park from different angles, for instance.
TapIn.tv is currently participating in this summer’s Y Combinator class, and the four-person team is one of the youngest groups to go through the program, with an average age of about 20. Three of the founders (David Tyler, Tyler Menezes, and Paul Cretu) met as part of Redmond High School’s robotics club, Exothermic Robotics. They met the fourth founder, Vu Tran, at StudentRND, a student hacker space in Bellevue, Washington. The team first started working on the app as part of a Seattle Startup weekend last November, when they were building it specifically for citizen journalism.
The team is working on new, interesting ways that they can visualize video events near each other, and working on finding ways to provide a way to watch videos in the app — all without ruining the experience of opening it up and shooting video.
Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) criminal prosecution of British citizen Richard O’Dwyer for operating a site called TVShack hit what ought to be a major stumbling block. TVShack allows users to link to other computer servers that host television shows and movies. Clicking on the link will allow the user to watch those videos from those sites in a frame on TVShack. Read more » about TVShack Extradition Case Tumbling as Seventh Circuit Holds Linking/Streaming is Lawful
This week we’re learning that Microsoft’s new Outloook webmail service is actually pretty awesome, that you can watch the olympics online, in real time, for free, and that Amazon’s CloudPlayer service is actually worth a look again. Also, we’re answering your questions about cloud music, uTorrent, and mobile Wi-Fi hotspots. More »
How many minutes or hours worth of YouTube videos do you think you watch each month? According to the latest stats, the YouTube community is now watching a whopping 4 billion hours of YouTube videos per month.
New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.
Amazon Instant Video for iPad Brings Free Movie Streaming for Prime Members and Offline Viewing for Purchases [Ipad Downloads]
iPad: Amazon has released an iPad app for its Instant Video store. Prime members are able to stream any of the free movies in the Prime Instant Video collection, and users can watch rented or purchased movies directly on their iPad. More »
Today a bunch of consumer electronics partners have announced support for Roku’s Streaming Stick, which will let them introduce streaming video services to users without a lot of upfront investment.
At CES this year Roku announced its new streaming stick, which is designed to let users quickly and easily make their dumb TV sets a little smarter. It’s basically the equivalent of a Roku 2 XS, but in a much smaller, self-contained form factor. Using built-in WiFi and Mobile High-Definition Link (MHL) technology, the USB-sized Roku Streaming Stick will plug into a TV that doesn’t currently have connectivity and provide it with Roku-powered streaming video content. It’ll draw power from the TV and work with customers’ existing remote controls.
For CE manufacturers, that means that they won’t have to build smarts into the device, including adding high-power digital processors or memory to make streaming video services work. Roku’s new CE partners include a bunch of second- or third-tier TV brands, like Element Electronics, GlobalVue International, Haier, Hitachi America, Insignia, Mitsubishi Electric, Onkyo, Integra, OPPO, and TMAX Digital.
These aren’t the type of high-tech, cutting-edge manufacturers who have already begun rolling out their own connected TVs to market — and that’s the point. Rather than investing in building their own development platform or streaming video services, CE makers can leverage the Roku Streaming Stick to make streaming services like Netflix, Hulu Plus, HBO GO, and others available to their customers. All they have to do is invest a handful of dollars to install the MHL port and ensure that their devices are compatible with the Roku stick.
Roku hasn’t released the Streaming Stick to the public, or announced pricing, but plans to do so over the coming weeks. CE makers who have partnered with Roku will also soon start rolling out TVs and other devices — like Blu-ray players and receivers — that come with a “Roku Ready” logo, signifying that Roku has tested them to ensure that they will work seamlessly right out of the box. Once the Streaming Stick is plugged in, they should instantly have access to hundreds of different channels available on the Roku platform.
Roku’s new Streaming Stick news comes just a few days after the company announced it received $45 million in funding from News Corp., BSkyB, and other investors. It plans to use the funding for international expansion, as well as a bigger marketing push behind its streaming video products.
Listening to music while you work can help you focus and power through your day, and GetWorkDoneMusic is a simple webapp that can help. The site gives you three buttons: play, fast, and faster. Hit play to start an auto-generated and randomized playlist of mostly-electronic, mostly-instrumental tracks designed to keep you going. More »
Streaming music service Spotify has once again achieved a new milestone by reaching over 4 million paying subscribers, according to Chief Content Officer Ken Parks.
Parks talked about the premium subscription increase, as well as achieving more than 15 million total active Spotify users, at a Global Business Summit on Creative Content in London today, reports The Next Web. For the handful of people who haven’t heard about it, Spotify is an ultra-popular music service that lets people share their song library with others and discover new music. It’s built on a freemium business model, bringing in both advertising-based and subscription-based revenue.
News of the subscription growth comes after months of continuous improvements and additions to the service, such as its app platform, embeddable play button feature, and access across multiple platforms. More recently, Spotify added unlimited Pandora-like smart radio to its Android app.
The beginning of Spotify’s massive growth spurt arguably started last year when the Swedish company first launched in the U.S. Shortly after, it hooked up with social media behemoth Facebook to be one of the first Timeline launch partners. The last time the company reported its subscriber numbers was in late January after crossing the 3 million mark. In less than eight months, it’s managed to boost that number by 25 percent.
The steady growth rate is impressive, but Spotify’s business model isn’t completely free of turbulence. Critics cite the company’s extremely high music licensing costs as one reason it may not succeed in the future. Also, indie music labels aren’t happy with Spotify’s payment structure, and have even removed their music from the service entirely. However for the moment, it appears that both music fans and music labels are pleased with the service.
Spotify has raised around $188 million in funding, and is reportedly seeking a massive new round that could boost the startup’s valuation upwards of $3.5 billion.
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