Saturday, August 16, 2014

Google Acquires Songza: Started To Get Serious About Streaming Business

Google announced July 1 that it's buying music streaming service Songza for undisclosed sum. Songza is a music streaming and recommendation service, it uses information about the users and context to determine the best playlists for you at any given time. In addition, users can also find playlists not just on artists or genres, but also based on their interests. 


Songza is the latest example of the escalation of the race and an ongoing arms race among the tech world's largest players to dominate the highly competitive streaming industry. Its highlights the increasing competitive environment of the streaming market, as companies like Apple and Google all seek to boost their competitive offering by providing top-notch streaming services.

The startup has been in streaming business since 2007, originally launched as a streaming service for expert curated playlists, Songza made its major break in the streaming music market when its debuted its first popular concierge feature in March 2012. Six months later, the Queen-based startup reached 2 million users and raised $1.5 million in funding.

Overall, Songza has raised a total of $6.7 million in funding, with backing and participation from notable investors like Amazon, Gary Vaynerchuk, Scooter Braun, Deep Fork Capital, Lerer Ventures, and David Hirsch.

According to Google, they still got no plan to take any immeadiate changes,Google said that Songza will remain intact for users and nothing will change about the company for now. The startup will stay in their Long Isand City office for the next few weeks and eventually move into Google's NYC office. Google does not make any comment about employment situation of all current Songza employees.

Here’s what the search giant Google had to say in its official announcement:

[Songza has] built a great service which uses contextual expert-curated playlists to give you the right music at the right time. We aren’t planning any immediate changes to Songza, so it will continue to work like usual for existing users. Over the coming months, we’ll explore ways to bring what you love about Songza to Google Play Music. We’ll also look for opportunities to bring their great work to the music experience on YouTube and other Google products. In the meantime, check out their service to find a playlist for any mood you’re in — whether you’re feeling a little mellow or a lot funky.

And here’s Songza’s statement:

We can’t think of a more inspiring company to join in our quest to provide the perfect soundtrack for everything you do. No immediate changes to Songza are planned, other than making it faster, smarter, and even more fun to use. In the meantime, we’ll be walking on sunshine.

Apple recently acquired Beats Music for a massive $ 3 biillion to boost its presence in the streaming market, Beats takes a Songza-like approach to music curation, using humans to put together a perfect playlist and then using technology to match users with the right playlists. And then there's Amazon, the ecommerce giant has recently launched its very own Prime Music services, which the company claimed to have million of users. As it expected in the coming tech wars, Google needed something new and big. They need to acquire some very good technology to cath up with their rivals and to stay in the market. Songza is what exactly Google is looking for- a trojan horse.

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