February 4, 2016
Music streaming service SoundCloud intends to make music discovery easier through its new “Stations” feature for iOS and Android apps. Stations can create an endless playlist of music based on a search term or track. The new feature populates these stations with songs related to a user’s “Likes” on the streaming music platform. Users have long sought such a feature to make discovery easier. SoundCloud’s latest update makes it more comparable to paid streaming services like Pandora, Apple Music and Spotify.
The music platform is known for hosting tracks from emerging and under-the-radar artists, but finding those artists could be difficult at times. Prior to the launch of Stations, music discovery was mainly limited to the “Related Tracks” feature, which took advantage of SoundCloud’s data about the similarities between songs, reports TechCrunch.
The Stations feature will use that data to automatically generate a radio station of related music. Users can create a station based on a search term, individual track, content stream, or even a user’s Collection. The stations are saved in the user’s Collection so that they can come back to them again. SoundCloud has over 100 million tracks on its service, so users have a wide variety of possible stations.
SoundCloud plans to offer paid subscriptions sometime this year, but before it can do that, it needs to upgrade its offerings to match competitors. Pandora, Apple Music, Spotify, Play Music, and other music streaming services already have a similar stations feature. SoundCloud is looking for ways to monetize to not only to grow its business, but to pay the royalties that are part of licensing agreements with music publishers.