Digital music service pioneer Rhapsody has been rather quiet of late, especially compared to the relative newcomers’ current jostling for position, and today it revealed what it’s been working on since being spun off from RealNetworks. Having switched its operations from web-based over to a dedicated online platform earlier this year, Rhapsody has now opened up a wealth of social engagement and sharing options that should help attract notice to a service that reports having more than 800,000 subscribers who pay for Rhapsody every month in actual cash money.
Most obvious is the integration with Facebook Connect, which allows Rhapsody members to explore the musical tastes of Facebook friends, even if those friends aren’t Rhapsody subscribers. It also enables sharing buttons to “like and link” music and playlists and post music-related status updates, putting those activities into members’ Facebook news feed. Additionally, members can create a Rhapsody profile with a custom URL so that other members can view recently played songs, playlists and play songs through Rhapsody directly from a profile, as well as share via Twitter.
Another interesting new feature is My Radio, which with one click plays a stream of what the owner of any public profile has been listening to lately. Other services already similar capabilities, but it’s worth noticing that Rhapsody also allows members to remain anonymous and to opt out if that’s what they prefer.
“Rhapsody members can now tap into a music community that is 800,000 members strong to share, recommend and find music,” said Jon Irwin, president, Rhapsody. “Our subscriber base is composed of people who are passionate about music and who influence their friends’ music tastes. Now they can connect to and influence like-minded people on Rhapsody, while sharing their musical discoveries with their friends on Facebook and Twitter.”
A subscription to Rhapsody provides unlimited on-demand access to more than 12 million songs via computer, Internet connected home stereo or TV, MP3 player or mobile phone. It costs $9.99 per month for web and one mobile device access or $14.99 per month for web and three mobile devices.
“We’ve distilled the core ethos around which Rhapsody was founded: music discovery, and amplified the experience with social tools that connect the Rhapsody community in a new, meaningful way,” said Irwin.
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