Category Archives: Music

Week 88 News Roundup – ISP Privacy, Twitter Changes, Streaming Music Numbers

This is the second of our new News Roundup episodes, which will usually appear on Fridays and discuss several of the week’s top tech news stories. This week, we cover:

  • Congressional action to roll back privacy regulations for ISPs, which has been covered in somewhat hyperbolic fashion
  • Three tweaks to Twitter features, including a new model for @-replies, DM protections, and an avatar change
  • New RIAA numbers on the size of the US music market in 2016, and especially the contribution of streaming.

As always, you’ll find links to these stories and other things we discussed underneath the SoundCloud player embedded below.

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you. You can reach the individual hosts on Twitter (@jandawson@aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com). We also have a dedicated Podcast Twitter handle at @BDPcast. And we’d love it if you would leave a review of the podcast on iTunes or in your podcast app of choice.

Episode 74 – Music Streaming, Are Gadgets Dead?

Our News Roundup this week covers three topics. First, T-Mobile’s announcement of Digits, a service which will allow customers to use their single number on multiple devices, or multiple numbers on a single device. Second, we discuss two news items relating to Apple and AI: the announcement that its researchers will now be able to publish their research, and second the slides from its talk this week at an AI conference. Third, Amazon’s announcement of Amazon Go, a sort of grocery store of the future.

Our Question of the Week is “How is streaming changing the music industry?” Jan talks about the size and composition of the music industry and its revenues, and the rise of streaming. We discuss the differences between ad-supported and paid streaming, and what’s happening with each. And we talk about where the industry will go from here.

Our third segment is a conversation about Farhad Manjoo’s article this week in the New York Times about the increasingly tough landscape for hardware vendors, and whether we agree with his conclusions.

We wrap up with our Weekly Pick, which this week is a holiday gift guide recommended by Aaron.

As usual, you’ll find some links to related content as well as other ways to listen to the podcast beneath the embedded Soundcloud player below.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson@aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com). We also have a dedicated Podcast Twitter handle at @BDPcast.

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you. Also, we’d love it if you would leave a review of the podcast on iTunes.

Episode 66 – Conflict Minerals and the De-Democratization of Publishing

Our News Roundup returns this week with three topics: first off, the latest installment of the Samsung Galaxy Note7 saga; secondly, Amazon’s launch of two new streaming music services and the implications for the sector; and thirdly, the figures on iOS 10 adoption and what they tell us.

Our Question of the Week is “What is the human impact of mineral sourcing in consumer electronics?” Aaron talks us through the meaning and significance of the phrase “conflict minerals”, but he also explains the latest reporting from the Washington Post on two additional minerals used in consumer devices: cobalt and graphite. We talk about the implications of all this for device manufacturing, as well as what we as consumers can do about it.

Our third segment is a discussion of a topic Jan writes about this week for Techpinions, which he refers to as the de-democratization of online publishing. Essentially, new platforms such as Google’s AMP, Facebook Instant Articles, and Apple news make it harder for smaller publishers to have their voices heard. We also talk about the broader changes in publishing and media, especially in the current presidential election cycle in the US.

We wrap up the episode with a Weekly Pick, which this week is a movie recommendation from Jan.

As usual, you’ll find some links to related content as well as other ways to listen to the podcast beneath the embedded Soundcloud player below.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson@aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com). We also have a dedicated Podcast Twitter handle at @BDPcast.

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you. Also, we’d love it if you would leave a review of the podcast on iTunes.

Episode 59 – Tim Cook’s 5 Years, Intel IDF Announcements

Our News Roundup this week covers the Backchannel article about Apple’s AI efforts; Spotify, Amazon, and Pandora’s attempts to negotiate new rights deals with music labels; and the shutdown of John Gruber’s Vesper note-taking app for iOS (and what it says about the state of the App Store and the app economy more broadly).

Our Question of the Week is “How should we view Tim Cook’s first five years as Apple CEO?” and builds off the blog post Jan did this week with lots of charts comparing Apple at the beginning and end of Tim Cook’s first five years. We talk about how Apple has changed, what Tim Cook has done differently (notably increasing R&D spend), and his biggest successes and failures during his time as CEO. There’s a link to the post in the show notes for today’s episode.

Our third segment is a discussion of Intel’s announcements from its big developer event last week. We talk about the emphasis on specialized silicon and non-traditional devices for Intel, the focus on sensors and their many applications, and the licensing deal with ARM, among other things.

Lastly, we wrap up with a Weekly Pick, which is a personal hygiene recommendation from Aaron.

As usual, you’ll find some links to related content as well as other ways to listen to the podcast beneath the embedded Soundcloud player below.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson@aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com). We also have a dedicated Podcast Twitter handle at @BDPcast.

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

  • The Backchannel article by Steven Levy on Apple’s AI efforts.
  • John Gruber’s post on Vesper shutting down
  • Jan’s post with about 20 charts and analysis on Tim Cook’s first five years as Apple CEO
  • Aaron’s Weekly Pick was an electric toothbrush – specifically, the Oral B Vitality Floss Action model, which you can find on Amazon (affiliate link).

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you. Also, we’d love it if you would leave a review of the podcast on iTunes.

Episode 48 – Consumer Tech in Africa, Apple & AI

We’re back to our usual format for this week, with a News Roundup, Question of the Week, and a third topic, plus a Weekly Pick.

Our News Roundup covered three topics: Spotify’s financials, which Jan wrote about earlier in the week; Microsoft’s decision to exit the consumer smartphone market; and Twitter’s planned change to the 140-character limit. Our Question of the Week piggybacks off Aaron’s recent trip to Ghana, which is one of a number of trips he’s made there over the last nine years. The question is “What’s the state of consumer technology in Africa?” and we spent a good amount of timing doing a deep dive into this topic, based not just on Aaron’s personal observations but on additional research (see the show notes for a couple of good sources).

Our third topic this episode was Apple’s efforts in AI, and a narrative that seems to have emerged recently about a perception that Apple is behind in AI, and that this will be problematic for the company. We talk about the pros and cons of this argument, how it relates to Siri specifically, and how Siri might evolve at this year’s WWDC. Lastly, we have our Weekly Pick, which is actually a double recommendation from Jan this time around.

As usual, you’ll find some links to related content as well as other ways to listen to the podcast beneath the embedded Soundcloud player below.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson@aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com). We also have a dedicated Podcast Twitter handle at @BDPcast.

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you. Also, we’d love it if you would leave a review of the podcast on iTunes.

Episode 45 – Music Industry Interview

As we said last week, Aaron is out of the country for the next couple of weeks on a trip to Ghana, in Africa. As such, we’re switching up the format of the podcast a little in his absence. This week, that means you get an interview between Jan and Ryan Wright, who was formerly SVP, Global Marketing at Sony Music, and who is now CMO at music startup Kobalt. Our conversation kicked off with a brief history of Ryan’s career in the music industry, which included launching the Backstreet Boys in Korea and working with other artists such as Britney Spears and Michael Jackson. Ryan also explained what he does at Kobalt, which is a tech startup that helps labels and artists (and others) get their money from all the many parties that pay to play their music. We then talked for quite a while about how the industry has evolved over the last 15 years, and where it’s likely to go from here, including the rise of streaming and whether ad-supported streaming is good or bad for the industry. Thanks to Ryan for his time this week, and we look forward to another interesting conversation next week.

As usual, you’ll find some links to related content as well as other ways to listen to the podcast beneath the embedded Soundcloud player below.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson@aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com). We also have a dedicated Podcast Twitter handle at @BDPcast.

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you. Also, we’d love it if you would leave a review of the podcast on iTunes.

Episode 19 – Music Survey Results, Elon Musk and Foxconn, Overcast and iOS Business Models

Our Question of the Week this week concerns Elon Musk’s recent comments on Apple’s car efforts. In an interview with a German newspaper, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said (among other things), “You can’t just go to a supplier like Foxconn and say: Build me a car.” Our Question of the Week is to what extent Elon Musk’s comment was justified. Around that middle topic, we have two others: we kick off the episode with a review of some of the findings of Jan’s recent music consumption surveys and what they tell us about Apple Music usage and subscribership. And our third and final topic is Marco Arment’s new Overcast app and its unique patronage-based business model, the controversy it’s caused, and what it says about the state of the iOS app market. And we wrap up, as always, with our Weekly Pick.

The SoundCloud Player is embedded below, and beneath that are links to other versions of the podcast and a host of links to things we mentioned on the show today and other relevant items.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson, @aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com). We also now have a dedicated Podcast Twitter handle at @BDPcast.

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you. Also, we’d love it if you would leave a review of the podcast on iTunes.

Episode 9 – Apple’s MVNO, the Law of Large Numbers, Apple Music subscribers

This week, we talk about the reports (now shot down by Apple) that Apple was doing trials for launching a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO), and the reasons why this might (and mostly might not) be a plausible scenario. Our Question of the Week (which starts at 11:35) tackles a term that’s often bandied about in relation to Apple but that few really understand, which is the “law of large numbers” – Aaron talks us through the real meaning and definition of that law, and why it isn’t really applicable in the way it’s often used in relation to Apple. He also talks about another similar concept called the Gambler’s Fallacy, as well as the history of very large companies. Our final big topic (at 30:18) is the subscriber numbers Apple released for Apple Music the morning we recorded this podcast – is 11 million good or disappointing? And our weekly pick is a singer/album recommendation from Jan.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson, @aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com).

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you. Also, we’d love it if you would leave a review of the podcast on iTunes.

Episode 8 – Apple Music issues, Windows 10, Apple TV

In Episode 8 of the Beyond Devices podcast, we discuss some of the recent criticisms of Apple Music from some prominent Apple commentators, whether they have merit, and what can be done about them. Our Question of the Week is about Windows 10, Microsoft’s big new operating system upgrade, including the context and history behind it, the major features, and how it’s likely to impact Microsoft and its partners. Our final topic is Buzzfeed’s report that the long-awaited new Apple TV might make an appearance at September’s iPhone event. And we close with our Weekly Pick, which this time around is a TV show recommendation from Aaron. As usual, the SoundCloud version is embedded below, and you can find links to other versions under that, along with show notes and relevant links.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson, @aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com).

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Apple Music topic:

Other topics:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you.

Episode 5 – Apple Music launch, Apple’s PR strategy, Indie Developers

This week, our first major topic of discussion is the Apple Music launch, the new service, and Beats 1, along with our first impressions. We have somewhat different reactions to Beats 1, but both enjoy the other features. Our Question of the Week is “How is Apple’s PR strategy changing?” in the wake of former PR chief Katie Cotton’s departure and the new openness Tim Cook is bringing to Apple (something Jan wrote up for a blog post too). We use the Apple Music launch over the past few weeks as a case study of the new approach. Our third topic is Brent Simmons’ blog post about the supposedly dire prospects for indie app developers. Lastly, we introduce a new segment called the Weekly Pick, in which we recommend something new we’ve discovered recently – this week, Aaron recommends a new motown album he’s enjoying. Some relevant links in the show notes below.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson, @aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com).

As ever, you can also find the podcast on iTunes, in the Overcast app, or your own favorite podcast app. Here is the RSS feed for the podcast if you want to add it manually to your app of choice.

Show notes:

Here are some useful links relating to this week’s episode:

Please leave us a comment or get in touch via Twitter to give us feedback. We’d love to hear from you.