Beats Music Service Launches, Spotify Introduces Artist Merch Stores
While Beats Music — the new streaming music service helmed by Trent Reznor, Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine and built on the ashes of MOG — is stealing all the headlines with its big launch today, its main competitor, Spotify, pre-empted Beats with a surprising announcement of its own yesterday: the service will now allow artists to build merch stores within their profiles.
Spotify won’t be taking any cut of an artist’s merch sales, which might seem too good to be true at first. But it turns out that Spotify isn’t actually hosting the stores itself — it’s just letting each artist showcase three items and link out to their own existing merch store from which customers can purchase those items directly. Still, it’s a cool move on Spotify’s part, and it shows that they’re very cognizant of the fact that artists need revenue from as many sources as possible. Spotify is partnering with Topspin to run the back-end of the merch showcase feature.
According to Tech Crunch, Spotify currently has over 24 million monthly active users, over six million of whom pay for the service.
MOG sent out a letter to subscribers this morning announcing the transformation into Beats. MOG proper will shut down on April 15th.
Meanwhile, has anyone given Beats a spin yet? From what I can tell there’s no desktop app for the Mac — or a web player — which is a big buzzkill. I’m downloading the iPhone app as we speak. I’d suspect that the metal selection is similar to that of how MOG was, but can anyone confirm? Any key players missing?