For anyone that has ever struggled to string together a music playlist – whether it be for listening to at the gym, a party, at work or just casually – you may want to listen up. Playlistnow.fm, a brand new startup coming out of Paris, recently launched a microblogging platform that allows users to discover new music by sharing playlists.
When we covered the startup in TechCrunch France, it was nothing shy of a hit with our readers. Perhaps that’s because the platform also managed to do what Apple’s Ping does not do so well: integrate social. The minute users sign-up using Facebook Connect or Twitter, Playlistnow immediately suggests people to follow – including their Facebook friends and the Playlistnow team. Once they’re on the platform, the homepage is essentially a Twitterfeed for music activity; all updates show the usual who-is-now-friends-with-who, plus songs and playlists that are liked by others, whatever new playlists are created and the new songs that are added to each one.
Ok, true, it’s probably not going to give Ping a run for it’s money, as Apple boasted some 160 million users for its new social platform from the minute it launched. But 5,000 new members have joined Playlistnow and created 300 playlists since it released the new version of the platform on September 22nd (yes, last week). In total, the site currently has 1,300 playslists.
But users don’t just have to rely on their friends to discover new songs and playlists. The site also ranks the top 50 playlists each week, in addition to the top 50 songs and artists. Users can also search for playlists according to tag or topic. And some of the rather goofy playlistnames couldn’t be more self-explanatory, like “I am sitting on the couch after eating” or “I am sleeping late on a Sunday morning”. Essentially, you tell Playlistnow what you’re doing and the community will tell you what to listen to. It’s as simple as that.
Yet, if Ping is shy on social, Playlistnow seems somewhat shy on business – at least for now, as the business model isn’t exactly up and running yet. But there are definitely hints of it throughout the platform. For example, like the ability to buy concert tickets via Songkick and there will definitely be more to come in the following months. However, one aspect of the platform that could be an issue is the fact that Playlistnow sometimes offers songs via third-party platforms, like YouTube. Guess that definitely makes them a little harder to sell.
We could naturally compare the music suggestion aspect of the service with Pandora‘s personalized radio, which ultimately understands your taste. Stereomood and Musicovery, another French startup, also offer music suggestions according to your mood. Regardless, Playlistnow’s community definitely seems to love the service (from the comments they’ve posted on TechCrunch France). The site is entirely in English, so if you’re wondering what it’s all about, you don’t have to stand on ceremony!