After a month long private beta period, MSpot has opened up its streaming service to the general public. MSpot offers free and unlimited streaming from the cloud to your PC or Android-based device, at least for the first two 2GB of storage.
You can stream all day long and to multiple devices at once, and if 2GB doesn't cover your music collection -- or the portion you want uploaded to the cloud -- MSpot sells several storage plans, including 12GB ($3/month), 22GB ($5/month), 52GB ($10/month), and 102GB ($14/month).
We briefly kicked the tires on MSpot's public release and found it works as advertised. Following a quick software install, it didn't take long for MSpot to comb through our iTunes and Windows Media Player libraries and begin uploading songs. As songs are uploaded, you can start playing them back through MSpot's easy-to-use media player, which integrated perfectly fine in Chrome (it also supports Firefox, IE, and Safari).
You know what's all the rage right now? Music streaming. You know who the newest player in that space is? HP. After buying up Palm in a $1.2 billion deal, HP has picked up music streaming service Melodeo for around $30 million. Quite the deal by comparison. Get ready for the audio streaming wars.
Both Google and Apple are working on streaming services of some sort. Google actually showed off this feature at Google I/O. But Apple has been silent since it acquired Lala a few months back. We can only assume they plan to do something with it. Melodeo's main product is called nuTsie; an app that allows Android, Blackberry, and WinMo phones to stream iTunes playlists.
We would be shocked if this service didn't end up in WebOS in the near future. We'll keep an eye on this one. Before you know it, a streaming music solution will be as important as an app ecosystem.
In the decade or so since the rise and fall of Napster, it’s become very hard to find a single person who doesn’t keep a super-size collection of MP3s on their hard drive. That’s all well and good, but what happens when you get a new roommate or move in with a significant other, and want to merge two music collections into one? Windows 7 and most popular music library managers, like Windows Media Center, iTunes, and WinAmp offer solutions for sharing your music library over a home network, but a big decentralized library (likely with lots of duplicate files) spread out over a network is inefficient, hard to manage, and hard to keep backed up. In this article, we’ll show you how you can use a free program to merge multiple libraries into a single, organized music archive.
If nothing else, give Jammie Thomas credit for stretching out her five minutes of fame for much longer than that. When the legal dust does finally settle, however, she'll either go down in history as the first person to take the RIAA to task over copyright infringement claims and won an unlikely victory, or the person who foolishly opted not to settle and owes the music industry a bunch of money as a result.
So far in her file sharing saga her place in history has leaned towards the latter, though after all this time, Thomas is still fighting. Everyone at this point is ready to move on, including a federal court in Minnesota, which has just appointed a special master to help mediate the case.
The decision to appoint a special master falls squarely on Judge Michael Davis and is not the result of any urging by the RIAA. Regardless, the special master inherits a four-year case littered with appeals and all kinds of legal drama. In case you somehow managed to miss it all, Thomas was found guilty of copyright infringement back in 2006 and ordered to pay $222,000. The judge later ruled that he erred in instructing the jury that the act of making songs available constitutes copyright infringement. Thomas got her retrial, only the second time around the jury increased the award to $1.92 million, an amount that would later be deemed "monstrous and shocking" and lowered to $54,000.
Since then, the RIAA has tried to settle with Thomas for $25,000, all of which would be donated to music charities. Thomas refused, and so here we are.
Read the order appointing a special master in Capitol v. Thomas-Rasset here.
Google is said to be prepping its own music store for a fall 2010 launch. The internet giant had announced a web-based iTunes rival during its I/O developer’s conference last month. The music store was revealed as a new section of the Android marketplace, but knowing Google, its music plans could be far too ambitious for the service to remain confined to Android. According to a Cnet report, quoting music industry sources, Google is indeed looking beyond Android. It is likely to link digital downloads and streaming music to its search results.
I don't get super-excited over new Web apps very often--not unless said application has the words, "World," "Warcraft," or "Apple" in the title (I kid; I kid). But a new find on my Web App radar has had me rocking out all weekend long. Literally, rocking out, as said app is an awesome tool for finding new music to jam to.
I'll steer this one off at the pass: No, the Web app is not Pandora. However, it does borrow from Pandora's general setup in that it attempts to create an online playlist of songs for you to rock out to based on a common theme or classification. In this case, you don't start out with a favorite band as the first breadcrumb in your trail of match-ups. Instead, the Web app Stereomood does as its name suggests--you pick from a whopping list of emotions and, upon doing so, the service matches you up with a ton of music to listen to based on your selection.
Dension has figured out a way to cram tens of thousands of Internet radio stations into your pocket with no one ever being the wiser. It's called the Webradio and it's no bigger than a USB thumb stick, but unlike your flash drive, the Webradio lives up to its name by loading your RadioTime presets, provided you sign up for a free RadioTime.com account. After you do, just pair the device with a 3G-enabled mobile phone and plug it into your car radio's USB port and you're ready to rock.
"RadioTime.com will provide our users with access to 30,000 AM/FM and Internet-only radio stations and 100,000 music, news, talk, sports and entertainment programs, and the Dension Webradio makes it so easy to listen to your favorites anywhere, from the living room to the driver's seat," said Bill Moore, founder and CEO, RadioTime, Inc. "You simply plug the Webradio into your computer to copy your RadioTime account in one step. No need to enter any codes or endure a registration process."
You can also connect the Webradio to your home stereo, not just your car's audio system. Stations appear as MP3 files, and you can browse, select, and listen to the stations just as if they were regular MP3 music files.
Many would argue that Lime Wire has been running on borrowed time for years, but their luck appears to be running out fast. The music industry has asked a New York federal court to shutdown Lime Wire permanently, and they might just get their way this time based on the summary judgment leveled against them last month. "Every day that Lime Wire's conduct continues unabated guarantees harm to plaintiffs that money damages cannot and will not compensate," RIAA lawyers wrote to U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood. "The scope of the infringements that Lime Wire induced...boggles the mind."
Representatives from Lime Wire and the RIAA are scheduled to meet before the judge on Monday, but failing any last minute plea bargains, they could potentially be given a final date by which they must fully cease operations. Despite the gloomy prospects for Lime Wire's future a spokeswoman for the company claims "We are looking forward to an opportunity to address the Court for the first time in two years and show that as a matter of fact and law there is no support for this motion."
The RIAA's primary focus at this point is shutting down the service once and for all, but they are also starting to get concerned that Lime Wire's founder Mark Gorton has been squirreling away the Lime Wire profits into "family partnerships". With liability running into the "hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars", the RIAA could find itself raiding an empty cash drawer by the time they finally finish shutting down the service.
If we'd been asked to come up with a name for Google's upcoming music retail web store, we would have shrugged our shoulders and muttered something like 'Google Music'. Turns out Google is just as straight forward and uncreative as us. TechCrunch did some digging around on Google's servers and found what appears to be a logo indicating the service would be called Google Music. The file has since disappeared.
Google demoed the web-based music store at Google I/O last month. It was shown off with the ability to do over the air downloads to Android phones. Google didn't really give any detail about the service, which is expected to roll out with the new web-based Android Market. We were skeptical that Google would be doing the actual sale of the music themselves, but would rather be a storefront, but this new evidence makes us think they might go toe to toe with Apple after all.
Apple is expected to launch a cloud-based music service at WWDC next week. So if Google wants to get people interested, they should get Google music ready to rollout soon.
The irony here is so thick we could cut it with a chainsaw. What are we talking about? Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis, the duo responsible for the former P2P app Kazaa that, let's face it, was never really used to download Linux distros and instead was the tool of choice for illicit downloaders, are stepping back on the digital music stage and launching a new startup called "Rdio."
Taking a page from Napster, Rdio is a legit service and will charge $5 to $10 a month for "unlimited access to music from your computer and mobile phone, even when you're offline." There will be apps for different smartphones, including iPhones, BlackBerry phones, and Android-based phones, and if you shell out the full $10, you'll be able to store and stream songs on these and perhaps other mobile devices.
According to The New York Times, Rdio will open this week as an invitation-only preview, and then become more widely available later this year, joining a sea of other subscription music services. Where Rdio will attempt to set itself apart is in its social element, giving users the ability to follow friends on the site, see what songs they're listening to, and view a list of the most popular music on your friends list.