Neil Young Announces Xsteam ”Adaptive” Streaming Music Service
Neil Young is pivoting his efforts to bring higher quality audio to the masses from downloads to streaming. In a post to users of his Pono Music service, Young announced a new partnership with Singapore based technology company Orastream to launch Xstream, an "adaptive" high resolution streaming music service.
To deliver the best quality audio possible, Young says that Xstream's music streams will "adapt" up or down depending on available bandwidth.
Young did not share when the new service will launch or what it will cost. Tidal offers higher quality streaming at $20 per month and there are signs that Spotify is planning a similar offering. But Young says that Xstream will be different.
"complete high resolution playback"
"Finding a way to deliver the quality music without the expense and to bring it to a larger audience has been our goal," wrote Young. "That effort has led to a technology developed by Orastream, a small company in Singapore that we’ve been working with."
Xstream "is absolutely amazing because it is capable of complete high resolution playback," according to Young. "Unlike all other streaming services that are limited to playing at a single low or moderate resolution, Xstream plays at the highest quality your network condition allows at that moment and adapts as the network conditions change. It’s a single high resolution bit-perfect file that essentially compresses as needed to never stop playing."
"today’s broken music industry
continues to make major mistakes"
Young has been meeting with labels, mobile carriers and investors, but admits that it's been a hard sell. "There are already streaming services, some doing well and others not," said Young. "While there’s nothing as good as Xstream, or as flexible and adaptive, it’s still proven a difficult sell for companies to invest in."
"So, in my experience," he continued, "today’s broken music industry continues to make major mistakes, but we are still trying."