The Music Industry and the Cloud – Streaming Radio Nirvana
In a previous article entitled Console Gaming’s Downfall – Future is up in the Clouds I made it known for some time prior: Console Gaming is dying thanks to Piracy. This is the same scourge that is currently affecting Digital Video and Music Industry as my article Digital Video and Music Piracy – A Land grab for Taxes on the Internet chronicles.
E-Book Piracy is also on the cusp of becoming a real nuisance as my article Piracy and E-Books in a Tale of Two Cities notes. Certainly, regulation of the Digital Video and Music Industry would be a considerable source of taxable revenue for the US Government. It is certainly something the Jamaican Government should pursue as well. As for these various Industries, a push towards the Cloud to protect their intellectual content is inevitable.
Already, Silicon Valley sees the money and instead of waiting for Music Labels to jump onto the Cloud Bandwagon, they have gone ahead without them. Typical Music Labels and their anathema as it relates to Technology!
Slow to see their demise thanks to freely downloadable Mp3 an now the Cloud revolution may be passing them by. This as Amazon has already made the plunge with their Amazon Cloud Drive with its associated Amazon Cloud Player announced Monday March 28th 2011AD. A DropBox for Music that allows you to store files and stream your own uploaded music to any device, it is available for both Apple and Android devices. Street legal too, as it is basically the streaming of your personal backup of your music library, which the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) allow!
Plus its measly 5GB of online free storage, 3GB better than DropBox, is nothing to make the RIAA (Recording Industry Artiste Association) and the MPAA (Motion Picture Artiste Association) get litigious, as it is no threat to the Movie Industry. Google, not waiting for the Music Labels to sign up to the future, have also launched their much rumoured Cloud-Based Google Music service. Apparently their plans of world domination a la Google Android OS 5.0 aka Ice Cream in everything from Toasters, Microwave Ovens to Refrigerators is well advanced.
Apple has plans akin to the above Music lockers, but is choosing to go the scan-and-match route akin to its earlier purchase of Lala.com in 2009. As Apple’s a-bit-too-late wheeler-dealing with Music Labels is solid news, I will be penning another analysis on what I hope is a Lala.com clone as oppose to a DropBox clone with Music streaming optimization as the above services appear to be.
If this trend catches on with local broadcasters here in Jamaica, especially with the steady proliferation of Blackberrys, which are capable of streaming via an installed app. Examples such as Last.FM readily come to mind. Local Radio Stations in Jamaica may be able to expand their customer base by streaming to smartphones and Tablets, as commuters with such device are a captive audience for both Radio Adverts and in-app purchase and advertisements!
Zip 103 FM realizes this and started out from early 2009AD by creating an app that specifically streams their Radio Station. Perhaps some local budding entrepreneur, using Backup space provided by Digicel on their Tier III Certified Data Center initially for Cloud Backup Services as per my analysis Digicel’s Cloud Backup Services – A deep Analysis can even start their own on-demand Streaming Radio Station.
With the endorsement of Reggae and Dancehall Artiste and Advertisers on board, this service would experience phenomenal expansion. Users could opt to upload to the service and stream their music collection locally from the Cloud over Wireless 3G or 4G Connections to smartphones.
With more space requiring users to pay a premium, but in local currency, eliminating the need for a Credit Card.
In another take on this model, customers pay a flat monthly or thirty (30) day subscription model to stream exclusive music from artiste that they select from a library of songs online to their smartphones. Strange as it may sound, there are people in Jamaica who would pay to stream music to their phone! It is just a matter of making payment easy (no credit Card? How about Paymaster?) and subsidizing the cost with advertisements, both in the stream as well as on the smartphone.
Such an entrepreneur would be able to recoup on investment with little competition. This as most of the above Streaming Services, with possibly the exception of Google Music, are IP Blocked and payable only in US dollars from people outside of the North American Market! Thus an opportunity awaits such and entrepreneur as well as Local Reggae and Dancehall Artiste to take advantage of the Cloud to earn revenue from their Digital Video and Music.
Digital Video and Music Piracy, be gone!!