iTunes is being split up into 3 different apps

Apple are breaking iTunes up into 3 different platforms for a streamlined service at last.

Apple are doing something they probably should have done a long time ago, they’re sorting out iTunes. Apple are splitting up music, TV, and podcasts into 3 separate places so you each has a platform of it’s own dedicated to that type of content.

According to 9to5Mac, the next version of MacOS will have indiviual, TV, music, and podcast apps. The plans have been verified by two well-known Apple developers, Guilherme Rambo and Steve Troughton-Smith.

It will be great to see the platform that led the digital download business of music online for so long streamline itself into a fully fledged music service without the surrounding fuss.

However, iTunes isn’t going to be banished to the far depths of hell – unfortunately. Older iOS devices like iPods will still need iTunes to sync music to the devices. Apple will unveil the next MacOS at their Worldwide Developer Conference in June.

India can’t get enough of YouTube with the biggest growth globally

India’s love for YouTube is creating unparalleled growth for the home of online video around the world.

India is a major up-and-comer for online services right now with the recent launches of services like Spotify and YouTube Music, as well as the massive growth of local platforms like JioSaavn. Now, with over 256 million active monthly users, India is leading the way for the giant video site YouTube.

With a population of 1.3 billion people in India, 256 million users isn’t just a massive number but also means that one-fifth of India is watching videos on YouTube. With the launch of YouTube Music they’ve only become more popular and earned triple the users of Spotify’s impressive first week in which they gained 1 million users.

YouTube’s CEO, Susan Wojcicki said: “India is now both of our biggest audience and one of our fastest growing audiences in the world. YouTube today has become the first stop for users to consume content, whether they’re looking for entertainment or information. It is this incredible variety of content combined with the growing reach that makes YouTube a perfect platform for brands to drive personalised engagement.”

According to Wojcicki India’s use of YouTube on mobile devices has increased by 85% in the past year. 60% of the views in the country are coming outside of the 6 largest metro areas in India showing that their love for India doesn’t just represent metropolitan growth but a nationwide trend.

YouTube’s Indian growth isn’t just in viewers as creators are thriving in the country. Five years ago only 2 creators in India had over 1 million subscribers, that number is now over 1,200.

Amazon won’t keep you in the dark with Audible credits anymore

Sick of losing your credits before you buy a new audiobook with them? Audible want to get you listening more giving you more time to decide.

As someone who doesn’t use Audible the fact that this is an update that needed to happen came as a shock. But now, the credits used to buy audiobooks on Audible that you purchase, get given, or hit rollover limit will last up to a year before you use them.

Before this update credits would only last 6 months and if you hadn’t purchased an audiobook with them in that time then say goodbye to your credits. The new time-limit follows a class-action lawsuit against Amazon’s audiobook platform, claiming users might not be aware that they’d lose their unspent credits.

It seems that Amazon cleanses credits regularly as part of their monthly memberships which add credits to your account once a month. To prevent “stockpiling” credits expired after 6 months, meaning many users lost credits they’d paid for because they didn’t use them soon enough.

Amazon’s extension of Audible credits’ to 12 months also introduces some other measures to make sure users are aware of what happens with their credits. Members will receive a monthly email statement detailing their credits and when they expire.

Members can use their unused credits to gift a book to friend or family if they haven’t got anything to purchase with their unused credits. Amazon will also now allow memberships to be placed on hold between 1-3 months once a year.

Whilst it still seems ridiculous to me that they would have a time limit on credits people have paid for, it’s good to see Amazon responding productively to criticism (a nice way of saying a criminal lawsuit).

Apple Music now has more subscribers than Spotify

It’s been 4 years since Apple launched their alternative to Spotify for music streaming and after a long battle Apple have taken the lead.

Apple Music now officially has more paying subscribers in the US than Spotify. Last week The Wall Street Journal reported the new leader in US music streaming service after Apple had grown it’s streaming service 2.6% to 3% on a monthly basis.

According to their numbers Spotify had roughly 26 million paid subscribers at the end of February, whilst Apple Music had surpassed with 28 million. This is a big milestone for Apple who jumped on to the scene in 2015 and quickly became a major player in Western music streaming.

Spotify are still beating Apple for numbers in most other territories where they both operate. Globally Spotify’s last numbers put it near to 100 million paying subscribers up 36% from last year. Apple Music are at 50 million around the world.

Technically Spotify also still have more US listeners than Apple Music thanks to their free service, but paying subscribers are where the numbers really count.

Take control of your JioSaavn artist page with insights

See who’s streaming your music and how many people are listening, customise your artist profile and more with JioSaavn Artists Insights!

JioSaavn is India’s favourite music streaming service with over 250 million listeners it’s one of the most popular music services in the world! You can get your music on JioSaavn for free with RouteNote and with Artist Insights you can see exactly how your music is doing and making sure it looks how you want it to.

JioSaavn Artist Insights offers:

  • Up to date Streams and Monthly Listeners statistics
  • See where your listeners are coming from
  • Track your growth
  • Update your artist image
  • Add an artist biography to your profile

Getting access to your JioSaavn Artist Insights is simple if you’re the artist or an artist manager:

  • Go to the Artist Insights website
  • Select ‘GET ACCESS’ and sign up
  • Look for your artist profile
  • Fill in the verification and wait to be verified (within 2 days)
  • Log in and go!

How to stop Canvas videos playing on Spotify albums

If you’re finding the new animated backgrounds on some Spotify albums annoying then you aren’t the only one – here’s a fix.

Spotify recently added video backgrounds to some albums when listening on their app, a feature they tested early last year. The ‘Canvas’ feature overlays the Now Playing screen with moving animations which, though it may look cool, totally gets in the way of controls for playback.

Many have said that they are an annoyance and make the experience worse rather than enhancing it. Whilst Spotify insight it uses very little data and battery to play the animations, it’s invasive and it’s possible to accidentally get rid of the controls, leaving you incapable of accessing the controls at all.

If you’re fed up of the new Canvas videos then here’s how you can stop them from playing on your Spotify app:

  1. Go to the settings menu
  2. Select ‘Playback’
  3. Scroll down until you find a toggle switch called ‘Canvas’
  4. Tap it off to stop animated playback
Spotify canvas animations videos music now playing playback toggle turn off stop

Now when you listen to the select albums with the feature you shouldn’t be presented with a Canvas animation anymore.

Find out who’s clicking on your Spotify ads

Spotify want advertisers to know how people are reacting to their ads with additions to their Ad Studio.

In 2017 Spotify launched the Ad Studio, a platform for advertisers to target fans using Spotify’s data on tastes to find fans of similar artists to advertise to. For a minimum of $250 advertisers can acquire a 30 second audio ad.

Spotify have added new streaming conversion metrics to allow artists and labels to track how listeners respond when they’re presented with their ads. It shows how many people listened to the music after hearing the advert, does it connect with new and recent listeners, and how many people saved the music to their library or playlists following the ad.

Jimmy Brunetti, vice president of marketing at Croshal Entertainment Group for independent labels, said: “This is the reporting we’ve been wanting to see. I really like how it gives us an indication about how our ads drive deeper actions. That’s promising for an artist, especially newer artists with room to grow.”

Digital marketing manager at Independent label Yep Roc Records, Mariah Czap said: “Spotify Ad Studio helps us discover new fans for our artists and encourage passive fans to become more active. With the new reporting, it’s really exciting that we can now see how listeners are taking action even after they hear an ad. The new metrics give us a deeper understanding of how our campaigns are performing and how they have an impact far beyond a click.”

In a statement Spotify wrote: “We love hearing these types of success stories from artist teams who use Spotify to turn casual listeners into devoted fans – the fans who end up at the front row of your shows, buy your merch, and eagerly share your music with friends and followers. Ad Studio is just another tool to help support what you do best: create music that has the ability to touch hearts around the world.”

You can head to Ad Studio now to learn more about setting up a campaign and to view your new stats as member of an artist team with access permission: https://adstudio.spotify.com

Amazon are making their own version of Apple’s AirPods

Amazon are creating their first Alexa wearable which looks to take Apple’s controversial yet popular AirPods head on.

According to a new report from Bloomberg, Amazon are producing wireless earbuds as the first in a new range of Alexa products. According to “people with knowledge of the plans, the headphones will look and act similar to AirPods and come with built-in Alexa functionality.

Amazon’s earbuds sit inside the ears rather than clipping on, a design that made AirPods unique but also led to criticism. Users complained that the already small earbuds were easy to lose as they were capable of slipping out of the ear, a fatal flaw when they cost $159 for a pair.

With voice control users can use the Alexa earbuds to order products online, search and listen to music, find out the weather and news, and more that Alexa is typically capable of. The people who shared the information say gesture controls will include tapping to pick up and end calls and switch between songs.

Amazon have refused to comment or confirm the details. Whilst we have no official information yet it’s likely that Amazon’s earbuds will be available for cheaper than Apple’s AirPods as their products often do.

Tim Buckley’s Chase the Blues Away has never sounded better than in this live session

Our very own Sam Sweeney blessed us with his ability to transport you to another world with just his voice and a guitar.

This very special session features a bonus track for 4 songs of bliss in total, including a magical cover of Tim Buckley’s Chase the Blues Away.

Routenote Sessions

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MySpace have recovered hundreds-of-thousands of their lost songs

Millions of songs on MySpace were reported lost, assumed gone forever but thankfully they’ve managed to find a chunk of them again.

Last month musicians from around the web were horrified to hear that MySpace had made a slip up at the cost of 50 million songs. The social media platform that dominated before Facebook came to rule over the internet was hub for artists but a change of server saw over 14 million artists’ music gone.

Old users of MySpace were reporting photos, videos, and audio missing for 3 years but a recent server migration was what really started the uproar. Over 50 million songs uploaded between 2003 and 2015 were thought to be lost by MySpace. They claimed that it was an accident, but many said was a result of the expense of moving so much old data.

Thankfully ‘The Internet Archive’ have just published 490,000 songs from MySpace uploaded between 2008 and 2010. The chunk of tracks was being used an anonymous academic group that were studying music networks whilst MySpace was still alive. When news of the site’s music loss was announced the group released files for the 1.3 terabytes of music they downloaded.

The Internet Archive are a notorious site for backing up the plethora of music online. They famously hosted massive backups of SoundCloud’s catalogue in 2017 after rumours spread that the service might close thanks to multiple layoffs.

Unfortunately whilst this chunk was recovered the fate of the other 49+ million is likely to remain the same as it is.