Play-what-you-want music service Rdio gets a makover, looks simple and pretty

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The music industry is a multi-billion dollar venture across the world, with more companies and record labels hoping that you would fork over a couple of cents to purchase that catchy tune that has been stuck in your head for weeks.

But the situation for online music is a bit different, as services like Spotify and Pandora try to rope you in with free offerings first, and then hope to high heavens that you enjoy the (somewhat limited) service so much, that you purchase a monthly subscription.

Rdio is one such service, competing for a slice of the virtual music pie by offering desktop users up to six months of free streaming, or trying Rdio Unlimited free for 30 days. But offering free stuff is often not enough, and if you want to compete with Spotify, Deezer and Pandora, you have to shake things up a bit.

And that is exactly what the Rdio did by adding the functionality to browse and listen to specific genres – which is pretty much the business model of competing Pandora. Besides for an update to its already great user interface, it has been changed so that you can more easily browse your favourites.

“We believe that when music is beautifully presented, it sounds even better. Our new suite of features makes playing your favourites and discovering new music easier and more joyful than ever,” Rdio said in an email alert.

The biggest draw card to Rdio’s rather small user base compared to the other services available, is the ability personalized music by mixing different ideas from competing services, and it’s this aspect that its hopes will attract more listeners.

As we looked at other music apps in the market, we kind of saw them as falling on one of two sides on the fence. You have services offering sort of an on-demand service, servicing albums, songs and playlists — a choose-whatever-song-you-want-to-play service. And then on the other side you have more passive listening station experience — push play, lean back and let us do the work. What they end up doing is splitting their listeners between multiple apps,” Chris Becherer, Rdio’s senior vice-president of product, told The Financial Times.

[Source – Rdio]

Charlie Fripp

Charlie Fripp

Charlie started his professional life as a motoring journalist for a community newspaper in Mpumalanga, Charlie explored different journalistic angles since his entry into the fast-paced world of publishing in 2006. While fostering a passion for the arts, Charlie developed a love for technology – both which allowed him to serve as Entertainment and Technology Editor for an online publication. Charlie has since been heavily involved in consumer technology for various websites and publications. He thoroughly enjoys World War II films and cerebral documentaries; aviation; photography and indie music. Oh yes, and he also has a rather strange obsession with collecting coffee mugs from his travels.