Tech Predictions 2009: Music-As-A-Service (…at last)

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The title says it all, and I believe that 2009 will be the year in which we start to see some real music-as-a-service propositions come to life. Although some existing online music services may claim to be already providing “music as a service”, but such services are often limited in one way or another. To […]

The title says it all, and I believe that 2009 will be the year in which we start to see some real music-as-a-service propositions come to life. Although some existing online music services may claim to be already providing “music as a service”, but such services are often limited in one way or another. To my mind, a real music-as-a-service proposition would be able to supply: any music, any time and on any device, perhaps in a model akin to utilities e.g. water / gas / electricity.
The technology components to deliver this vision are already available today, and several trends in online music provision / consumption lend further support to this outcome. However, the biggest stumbling block remains the ever so excruciating process of license negotiation with rights owners, but even that is slowly becoming less of an insurmountable task given the number of online music services that can boast of content from all four major music labels and numerous Indies. So I can predict that it won’t be long before we see a proposition that offers real music-as-a-service; and one of several exciting fall-outs from this could be mega mash-ups of music content distribution and channels with a multiplier network effect (Think Rock Band meets Pop Idol meets Virtual Worlds, with an Alternate Reality Game ARG thrown in for good measure). You heard it here first.

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