Wednesday 7 September 2011

Facebook to launch iTunes competitor

Reports presume that Facebook will be launching a music service at their F8 conference scheduled on the 22nd of September, 2011 in San Francisco. This music service will be Facebook's competition to iTunes and will allow users to share songs through Facebook the same way they can currently share movies, videos and links. The feature would allow online music services like Spotify and Rdio to post information to Facebook pages, which is reminscent of Apple's Ping service. The feature will be similar to the way websites can be 'liked' on Facebook and will reportedly work the same way Ping worked in iTunes.

Facebook will be looking to provide music streaming services instead of cloud music services. They may require users to pay a monthly subscription fee to Spotify or Rdio, but users will then be able to stream unlimited amounts of music. This is different from cloud services like Google and Amazon's services, as well as Apple's upcoming iCloud because these services allow users to access their private collections remotely.

Having a music service would mean Facebook would have to develop a music player specifically for the website. This would require users to log in to be able to stream music, but for non-users, the service might be available as an app. The app would allow users who work in places that do not allow Facebook log in to stream music. The idea of such a service would be to share music in a way that friends can 'discover' new music from each other. If users wanted to just stream music, Grooveshark would be a way to go since that does not require a monthly subscription, but Facebook's service would add the social element that is currently not ubiquitous with Grooveshark.

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