When AT&T (then Cingular Wireless) introduced its music service late last year we admired the carrier's model. Rather than creating its own music store, as Sprint and Verizon Wireless did, Cingular partnered with online music subscriptions services like Napster Mobile. To us, it seemed like a clean and a simple arrangement, even if you couldn't use Napster to download songs over the air.
Other than its first reported quarter of positive cash flow, Napster has enjoyed a relatively unremarkable year--at least on the surface. It is now apparent, however, that plenty of tinkering has been going on in the background.
The company on Tuesday announced a fairly significant redesign to its music service and software. The new Napster, version 4, is lighter and a bit simpler--and it definitely appears to take some cues from RealNetworks' Rhapsody.
Of particular note are the launch of a Web-based version of the service, which will enable Mac and Linux users to join in the fun, and the … Read more
UPDATE (12:15 p.m. PDT Friday): CNET News.com interviewed Snocap CEO Rusty Rueff after this story was published. He says the company's music stores just weren't catching on fast enough and its time to sell the company. You can read what he has to say in this story.
Snocap, the music-licensing company best known for being the follow-up act of Napster founder Shawn Fanning, has cut its staff by 60 percent, a spokeswoman for the company said Thursday evening.
You'd think it would've drawn crowds.
TechCrunch founder and controversial Valley 2.0 icon Michael Arrington was making a rare appearance in New York, moderating a panel at the DigitalLife trade show on Thursday night. And the panel in question, called "The Disruptors," included a few of the start-up world's hottest names: Napster, Plaxo, and Facebook veteran Sean Parker (currently of the Founders Fund); Oovoo CEO Philippe Schwartz; SpinVox co-founder Daniel Doulton; IGA Worldwide CEO Justin Townsend; and Ooma founder Andrew Frame. Considering the resurgence of tech culture and startup spirit in New York in … Read more
MyStrands provides event goers with an easy way to interact with their surroundings using their mobile phones. The derivative of PartyStrands got a substantial update this week. The service (which we covered in November) has rolled out a few new tools for users to host similar features in their own homes.
MyStrands now lets you pull from Napster's music library to host music for parties. Users can browse through Napster tracks using the MyStrands app and play any full song for free up to three times, without actually having to use Napster. There's also an indie-artist radio player, … Read more
AOL. Napster. Partnership. Imagine if those three words had been put together in a sentence way back in 1999. It would've been something out of The Onion: AOL was the massive, dominant corporate giant, and Napster was pretty much a bunch of punks who were raising hell. But times change, and companies change, and today AOL has announced that it has inked a deal with the music subscription service--formerly synonymous with cyber-piracy--as the power behind the download service on its AOL Music site.
Napster will be replacing the AOL MusicNow subscription download service, which AOL had been operating since … Read more