Wednesday 11 December 2013

Spotify just went free on Mobile. This is going to hurt.

Music streaming just got shot.

Spotify announced that its music streaming service will be free (yep, free) to mobile users. Now that's a real shot at Itunes Radio (which is free) as they prepare to launch fully. Other services will be really hit because you can't compete with free - only match it.

Spotify was previously 9.99 a month (spotify premium) but they did have a free version for desktop and laptop.

And they also announced to get more publicity, that they now had a whole lotta Led Zep online. For free. (Led Zep 4, cover above, is always thought to be their best moment btw).

The service will be supported by Advertising for revenue.

This will concern local radio stations with a music bias, who'll have difficulty in retaining online listeners too. 

Of course, Spotify will try to upsell you to ad-free versions and indeed other services such as 'on-demand'. But this is a breakthrough in the fight for listeners however, it's also a sign of a race to the bottom for all subscription services.

What's happening is, people are able or prepared to pay less so they're moving. If Spotify's subscription model was a roaring success, they wouldn't be doing this, trust me.

And will advertising pay for the music copyright fees and run the business? Difficult to see, but it is a model working for Facebook and starting to work for Twitter. 

One thing for sure though, it has killed the market.

Tuesday 10 December 2013

Newsy sells for 35 Million. Online Video news service bought by a...Newspaper.

Newsy is a video-journalism 5 year old "startup" by producing news videos alongside content for websites. Websites like Mashable or The Huff Post on commission. 

Their strategy too, is to provide that video news to online newspapers.

Sound familiar?

It was exactly the model that Streamabout started with.

And Newsy has just been bought for 35 million usd by E.W. Scripps in cash.

Scripps are the owners of a large number of daily and "community" (regional) newspapers. So online news they see as important both as a reader service but also as a potential revenue generator through the syndication of news.

In other words, here are a group on newspapers prepared to invest in digital news to grow their business rather than seeing it as a threat. Money where their mouth is - 35 million dollars of it in cash.

And they are right.

News is at the very core of newspapers and the ability to provide online video, brings newspapers into Television land and the money that goes with that. They can break news quicker than TV who are hampered in "holding back" the day's news for lucrative 6 or 9 o'clock bulletins.

When I want news, I want it now. Not tonight.

With crews 'on the ground', you can make that news video as local and as relevant as you want.

It's a great thumbs up for digital news video and more importantly, another clear example of Newspapers getting on board the digital train.

35 million?
Offers on a postcard please.