NO to Music Streaming Services

I’ve always liked to listen music no matter what I’m doing. If I’m working, reading, driving, relaxing, cooking, fixing something in or around the house, waiting, geeking, or simply reflecting (as of doing nothing at all – which I call planning) – I always have some kind of music source playing somewhere in the background. Occasionally, even at full volume of the speakers / headphones / stereo system.

Being interested in new genes of music and sometimes actively looking for new tracks – I got curious about the Music Streaming Services too. Unfortunately, I was disappointed on what I found about them and their possibilities.

First I’ve tried to use Google Play Music. I installed the app on my Android phone and was stupefied to find out that, for free I can only listen to the tracks I upload to the service, no ad-funded service is available. But why Google? Why should I pay 10 pounds for this service? You are having such a big success with Youtube and many of the new generation listeners and musicians started to use it to listen or publish free music. Don’t know how much the earnings from youtube adds are, but for sure I don’t mind them. I don’t mind skipping them, I don’t mind watching them, I don’t mind buying things that are marketed to me this way.

I’m always trying to stay away from Apple services and devices. Will not talk about iTunes or Apple Music. From my point of view Apple is only good at selling overpriced services and devices, that hardly sometimes bring any improvement or step further to technology.

Regarding to music, I’m not going to buy from iTunes a masterpiece of engineering, that managed to sell a musician with no voice and no talent to million of people that easily believe that so called artist it’s a star. In the same way, I’m not going to pay for a music streaming service and here is why:

  • I was born in the 80’s and grew up in the 90’s. The Radio was my best friend during all those years and it streamed music to me for free;
  • I consider that it worth paying for music only for live concerts of known or unknown artists. Only live performances qualify as art worth paying for;
  • Access to music should be a human right, not an industry.
  • “Without Music, life would be a mistake” Friedrich Nietzsche

Going back to the Music Streaming Services – why don’t they take the good lessons learned during the 70’s, the 80’s and the 90’s? Adding some adds to the services – might pay the service I would think and you could publicize it for free enlarging your users. Don’t have the figures on this, but I’m sure some good solutions can be figured out.

Regarding the FM Radio stations, well, they are going to die slowly. The main reason why, is because with the internet speed increase and technology development, people expect to receive both audio and video service. Even if they only listen the audio, or have a quick glance at the video with the audio turned off if time doesn’t permit them to watch it entirely. Radio stations, because you can’t chose or schedule your preferred tracks, because you have to listen to idiot moderators, because they don’t present any integrated video content are going to slowly die.

In my humble opinion, this is where the Music Streaming Services should come in. I’m sure they could evolve to stream video content too, could enable elaborated schedulers, could offer multiple options for the users in terms of genes, artists or even surprise tracks. And they could easily do that for free for their users too, by adding small 30 seconds to 1 minute adds, customized for the location and the target audience by the music preferences. Would be what Youtube started to do right now on the free version, still, it can be a lot improved (I will present some further ideas for a scheduler for Youtube tracks in a further post).

I heard a rumor on some forums, that Google would like to take the music listeners off Youtube and have them use it’s Music Streaming Services. Could that be true? For me Youtube seemed to be a very successful story that manages to slowly change the way people listen to music.

It’s true Music Streaming Services might deliver better content, focused and particularized for Music, but still – as it looks like now it’s not a solution. Mark my words, the entire communication world and social media world will move towards video content in the next years. Even if most of the video content will not be watched because of lack of time or multi tasking, still, it’s better to have it as an option than not having it at all.

I could talk about this subject for hours. Will try to resume with a few conclusions bellow:

  • Stop buying everything Apple sells to you. It’s shitty and expensive any way
  • Stop paying for things that you could get for free
  • Consider access to music and information your human right, a true artist would like you to get the message of his song and listen to it, He would not be interested so much in the percentage of sells, hopefully…

 

Disclaimer: This is a pure personal view susceptible to change. The purpose of the topics is to start a constructive discussion in order to create a better future for ourselves.

You are free to buy, believe or think whatever you like 🙂

 

 

New feature for Chromecast

I love my Chromecast little stick and I tend to use it even for Smart TVs. It’s easy to command and I can easily play my favorite youtube videos or youtube playlists.

I also love about it that it defaults (when nothing is streamed to it) to a nice app that simply shows beautiful nice Featured photos from Google+.

This got me thinking – why I can’t simply listen to music while seeing these nice photos? Why I have to watch them on perfect silence or have to use another device to play music?

For me it seems a fare questions so here are a couple of solutions I thought of:

  • Create a simple app that would allow you to chose what your TV displays. This would allow you to chose to play the youtube videos on background and let the random photos be displayed on your TV. It’s a simple idea, would simply work as 2 diferent tabs in a browser work.
  • Even nicer would be to be able to split the screen in 2, 1/3-2/3, 1/4 – 3/4 and chose what it’s played on left or right side (this applies to all the other items in the list)

or

  •  Integrate the photos app with Google play music (I haven’t tried this service yet) and let the photos be played randomly while you listen a radio station for example.

or

  • The coolest idea would be to have an app that would play random photos from Google plus or the posts of the ones you follow on the social app (even it’s not the biggest social app used) persons or businesses – while you play your favorite music or favorite radio station.

 

Another nice feature/app I would like to have on my chromecast device might seem a little SF.  Nowadays, 4G networks or very good internet services and wifi coverage allows you to make video calls. Why not be able to cast the video you receive during a video call to your chromecast and use the phone to initiate the video call and send the video of your own camera to your caller?

Think about it. You could easily make a conference of 3 people. They will receive the video from the front camera of your phone as usual, but you’ll be able to display their live videos on your TV (which is bigger and has a higher resolution than your phone, laptop, or computer monitor).

Even further, Chromecast could incorporate a mini video conference module and an app built with it, that might change the way some people make phone calls to their families, distant relatives, old friends that moved far away.

 

These are only the simple ideas. I’m sure if anyone finds them good enough they can be translated into a complete requirements document and a project plan can be created based on it.

For any further clarification of the ideas (if needed) drop me a note and I will reply. I would find it as a very relaxing activity to work even more and deeper on such a project 🙂