The acquisition signals the first move towards a significant music streaming service that will integrate immersive live music offerings.
MelodyVR, leaders in the virtual reality music industry, have announced their acquisition of Rhapsody International which runs Napster. They hope to integrate their content to offer a combined experience of virtual reality and immersive live music performances within a full music streaming service.
Their separate services will continue operating separately for the time being whilst they work out ways to integrate their offerings together. They hope to create “one-of-a-kind, future platform of combine entertainment services, which is built on the understanding that live music and recorded music are equally as loved and important”.
Napster have come a long way in the last two decades, originally being one of the most prominent homes to the pirated music industry they stripped themselves of that reputation and became one of the most recognisable names in the new digital music industry.
MelodyVR CEO, Anthony Matchett said: “We are as keen to see our favourite artists perform live as we are to listen to their albums. Our purchase of Napster, one of the music industry’s original disruptors, is born out of our wish to deliver the world’s foremost music experience, available seamlessly across audio and visual media and in turn presenting a truly next-generation music service.”
It will be exciting to see how these two platforms combine their products and whether it has an impact on competitors. Leading streaming services like Spotify and Deezer have been looking to podcasts to expand their content library but live music, particularly immersive and VR live music, is as yet mostly unexplored by the large streaming services.