Stephen Fry announced the launch of the Dublin start-up Soundwave app in London on June 24, 2013. Soundwave allows users to see what music their friends, favorite bands and celebrities are listening to in real time. Soundwave was released for both android and iPhone and is available in 14 different languages.
The app went live last Thursday and has already received praise from some major figures. The Irish Independent quoted that Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak said the app was a “music product that fits my life so perfectly.” Mark Cuban, the owner of the National Basketball Association’s Dallas Mavericks and a regular on the tv show ‘Entourage’ and Danny O’Reilly of The Coronas both use the app.
Soundwave was created by Brendan O’Driscoll, Aidan Sliney and Craig Watson. The beta version of the app was popular with Dublin bands such as Choice Music Prize winner Delorentos. O’Driscoll said that Apple and Google helped refine the app before the launch. He said, “The product itself is inherently viral.” He added, “If I download the product as an early adapter I am going to want to know what my friends are listening to and share the product.”
The app also allows the music industry to see which songs are being played the most. O’Driscoll said, “Record labels want to know what is trending and what is being played in certain locations.” He explained, “They want to get in from the outset by getting their artists on to the app and using the app to increase their engagement with their fan base.”
Soundwave makes revenue from facilitating song sales and providing song analytics to the music business. O’Driscoll said about the former, “If you discover new music within an app you can also purchase a song through our app. By facilitating the sale you get a fee. It is an affiliate concept that has been proven and is directly linked to the number of users.”
O’Driscoll said Soundwave provides analytics on how much people listen to songs. He said, “Bands, music agents, consumer bands can log on and find out what music people are listening to and where. What songs they listen to and what songs they don’t. That is information people are really looking for right now. They have no visibility of what people are listening to.” O’Driscoll added that competitors in the industry were unable to deliver the same analytics that Soundwave can.
Soundwave is looking to expand and add more features. O’Driscoll said that right now there is a lot of potential for a music map feature. This feature would allow users to listen to the music of ongoing concerts in their area to help them decide whether to go or not.