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Shazam-logoIn what is likely to be the first of many such announcements, unless they update in a batch, Shazam yesterday announced that Rdio subscribers will be able to stream full songs on Shazam. Other services are expected to be added in "coming weeks." Shazam has been known as a great app for identifying and "Shazaming" music in the wild but has only shared song previews to this point. Shazam has also been a great driver of music downloads which may start to decline with the addition of streaming services.

News that Shazam is integrating Rdio streaming represents a big shift. Till now they've been playing previews of song.

[Update: Billboard says:

"The new feature is powered by streaming service Rdio and will be seamless, and free, for users of both products."

I don't know what part of this is free. I guess they mean the feature is free which is kind of weird to point out given the implementation. In any guess, you may or may not be able to stream the free songs you'd get from the free tier of Rdio. Seems like you could but it's a big missing chunk of the info put out. I'm assuming that if you could suddenly get all the Rdio you want for free that would be a big note in the press release since somebody would be paying for that.]

Rdio Subscribers Can Now Stream Shazamed Songs

Rdio subscribers "will now see a redesigned play button that allows them to listen to the full track [from the Shazam app] after Shazaming a song:"

"Rdio subscribers will also be able to access two recently launched features:
Your Shazamed Tracks: A new automatic playlist feature that creates a list within Rdio of all the tracks a user has Shazamed
'Add to Playlist' button: Allows users to choose additional Rdio playlists into which they can put the songs they Shazam"

For non-subscribers a prompt to install Rdio will be shown.

A Big Shift For Shazam

This is just the beginning. "Additional streaming services to be added and announced in the coming weeks" could mean numerous options crowding screenspace though they are likely to have an interesting solution to that problem.

For Shazam this is a pretty big shift and an opportunity as well. To some degree their free app could become the go to app for people wishing to connect their streaming services. That possibility depends on many factors from design to being able to access playlists and so forth from those services.

However it's implemented, this change also introduces affiliate fee possibilities and the like for music service signups.

Will Download Sales Be Affected?

Whether or not people can use it as a portal to multiple streaming services, this addition does turn Shazam into the final stop in the music discovery and enjoyment process.

In the past that trail has led to a huge number of digital download sales.

It seems quite likely that the addition of streaming options will disrupt the trail to music sales by feeding the immediate urge to hear the song the listener has just discovered or rediscovered.


Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch) also blogs at DanceLand. Send news about music tech startups and services, DIY music biz and music marketing to: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.