It used to cost 35 dollars to add Wi-fi to a device. These days it's less then one dollar. And with the internet everywhere, it becomes quite obvious that cloud services will be one of the major battlefields over the next year.
This is nothing new of course. But in terms of music consumers will decide wether it will be licensed services, like iTunes and 7digital, or unlicensed like Google Music that'll win the battle. Ben Drury, CEO and co-founder of 7digital seems to think that the battle will be over by this time next year.
Finetunes managing director and co-founder Oke Göttlich doesn't completely agree that consumers will decide. The major difference in his perspective is, that Google Music and iCloud aren't cloud services in the same way as streaming services such as Spotity or Grooveshark.
Curation is key. Most streamin services are like a new kind of radio, that allows you to discover new music. iCloud and Google Music is only the potential to listen to what yu already own.
Changes in society and on the Internet is caused by anarchy.The last decades of changes to the music industry, are caused by players, that changes the rules from day to day. Napster, The Pirate Bay, Spotify, Simfy, the list goes on. Oke Göttlich seems to think that licensed services will prevail, because it enables the consumer to enter a virtual all you can eat buffet. But that will also lead the way for premium products for users who wants better quality, finer artwork or whatever might be the priority.
In other words curation is key for streaming services, and the way they can not only monetize on their services, but also a way for them to beat the virtual storage lockers.
One of the necessesities in order for streaming and virtual locker services to keep growing, and keep a firm grasp on their users, is constant acces to the Internet. People want their music on whichever device they use. 3G is just about rolled out everywhere in Europe, but roaming charges and difficulties in making handovers on the networks often stands in the way. So basically it's up to the Telecom or the European Union to pave the way.
Oh, and later this year LG will have a new line of fridges out, complete with touch screen and 7Digital streaming service. Finally the connected fridge is here.
Key takeaway:The experience is not defined by ownership, but the access to and discovery of unlimited amounts of music.
Lab Agent and Chief Hacker, Thomas Wittenburg is currently in Berlin for the Popkomm conference. Follow him on twitter: @t_wittenburg, or catch his blog here at innovationlab.dk.
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