Samsung Make Google Play Their Default Music Service with Plenty of Perks

Samsung have just partnered with Google Play making this their default music service for all their phones and tablets around the world.

This exciting news came when Google Play’s Lead Product Manager, Elias Roman, announced that the partnership had been made between them and Samsung in April. Samsung have been offering deals on the Google Play Service for a few years already but making it the default system is a new launch towards an easier way to access music on Samsung devices.

One of the key features of Google Play Music is the ability to add up to 100,000 songs from your own personal library to Google’s cloud locker and then gain access to all of your own music wherever you are via cloud streaming. You can also transfer music between devices this way by using Wi-Fi to access the cloud and then re-downloading onto other devices. Once you’re signed into your Google Play account you can access this anywhere in the world, this is similar in many ways to services such as Spotify and Pandora. Additionally they offer a 3 month free trial with any Samsung device.

Other than listening to your own personal collection, you can choose from Google Play’s massive library of 30 million tracks to stream from once gaining membership. If you don’t fancy paying for the service, Google Play has a free radio service which looks at your music and chooses songs it thinks you will be interested in.

This new venture came after the downfall of Samsung’s Milk Music after launching in 2014, this was an ad supported streaming service but did not take off due to lack of features such as offline streaming or the ability to purchase tracks. The closing down of Milk Music made way for this new partnership deal.

A large bonus of Google Play is that your music and details are very secure on the web, Google and Samsung both have advanced technology and experience to deal with intelligent cyber attacks and have been very successful in the past in preventing any issues. Keeping your details and music safe on the web appears to be a large deal to Google Play with regular updates and work to conquer this.

In whole this seems like a great plan for both parties and I think this brings something to both companies that they benefit from. I look forward to testing it out when it comes out.

Disney and YouTube executives joining Spotify for video boost

Spotify have some interesting new reported additions to their board of directors that suggest video on Spotify is about to get a lot bigger.

Spotify are reportedly bringing in 4 new members to join their board of directors, according to the Financial Times. The picks suggest a more focussed approach to video whilst Apple Music are currently announcing what seems like a new show or documentary what feels like every week.

Among the former executives reportedly joining Spotify’s board of directors  are Tom Staggs, ex-COO at Walt Disney, and Shishir Mehrotra, former YouTube head of product. The board already features Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos, suggesting that Spotify are gearing up to take on Apple’s video push.

It’s no surprise that Spotify want to boost video as they’ve been working with video for roughly a year now. It started with a section on their mobile app featuring various shows from Adult Swim, Ted Talks and various other content creators. Since then Spotify have expanded into their own video content with a variety of shows from live sessions to animated explorations of famous artists’ history.

As Apple Music continue to brag about how great their videos are going to be, with around 10 different shows announced so far for the music streaming service, there is a clear competition between the two already-competing services. To make matters more tense Apple have bought the rights to an exclusive series of Carpool Karaoke whilst Spotify are preparing their own similar but, in my opinion, more unique and exciting version of music on the road.

Apple launch trailer for Puff Daddy & Bad Boy Records documentary

Apple aren’t holding back on their move into videos releasing a trailer for another upcoming documentary featuring Puff Daddy coming to Apple Music.

Apple Music’s upcoming documentary, one of many, will follow the rise of record label Bad Boy Records and in particular it’s owner Sean Combs (Puff Daddy). With behind-the-scenes moments and interviews with top industry executives the film will look at the label’s inception in the 90s to it’s 20th anniversary celebrations last year.

The documentary, called ‘Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop’, will feature an interview with Apple Music’s head Jimmy Iovine. Iovine told Billboard in April: “I went to the [Bad Boy Reunion] concert and thought it was incredible. I think Puff and Bad Boy’s story is incredible and one that a lot people can relate to in any genre or in any business. His story is powerful. He really overcame a lot to get to where he’s at today and the documentary shows that.”

The documentary comes as part of Apple’s major plans to transform Apple Music into a multimedia streaming platform with a variety of video content like documentaries and Carpool Karaoke. Apple’s roster of upcoming shows and documentaries is now up to 10 potentially being produced to release this year.

An advance screening of Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop was shown at TriBeCa Film Festival at the end of April. Apple will hold exclusive rights to the documentary for at least a year.

Spotify buy French startup Niland, their 4th company in just 3 months

Spotify seem to be on a spending spree as they’ve just announced another startup purchase less than a month since their last acquisition.

Spotify’s ambition for 2017 seems to be to build a Transformers style combination of services, tools and functions to create a super-streaming-bot. Less than a month since they acquired Mediachain, Spotify have announced their 4th company purchase in a quarter of a year – Niland.

Niland is a Paris-based startup that developed machine learning technology to enhance music searches and recommendations. The team will join Spotify’s New York office to advance Spotify’s music recommendations and “personalization technologies” to make music discovery more specifically tuned to the tastes of listeners.

In their press release, Spotify said: “We are pleased to welcome Paris-based machine learning startup Niland to the Spotify family. Niland has changed the game for how AI technology can optimize music search and recommendation capabilities and shares Spotify’s passion for surfacing the right content to the right user at the right time. Their innovative approach to AI and machine learning based recommendation systems is a perfect fit for the Spotify team.”

Niland started their analysis of audio 4 years ago, utilising deep learning technologies to understand music content further allowing them to create “more sophisticated listening experiences. They said of their acquisition: “Spotify has changed the music industry and revolutionized music consumption in less than a decade. We couldn’t imagine a better partner for our next chapter.”

Niland went on in their statement, to say: “Starting from today, Niland’s team and technology will now become part of the Spotify R&D unit based in New York City. We are very proud to join this experienced team that combines cutting-edge science, engineering and design. We will keep working on new ways to better understand music to craft better innovative listening and discovery experiences.

“As we start this next chapter, we want to express how truly grateful we are to the people who followed and contributed to this project along the way, with special thanks to our investor (IT-Translation), our former Incubator (Agoranov), Inflexion Points Technology Partners (our advisors for the acquisition process), Frederic Monvoisin and Fabrice Dumont (Business Angels), Didier & Levy (Legal Counsel), Bruno VanRyb (Special Advisor), David Argellies and Smiirl.”