After a legal kerfuffle with the band Rush’s management company (no, seriously), the team at Anthm saw their social playlist app get unceremoniously booted from Apple’s App Store. So what’s a down-on-their-luck team of app creators to do? Why, give the app a bunch of new features, a mild facelift, and a new name — Jukio — before pushing it into the wild again.
In case you missed it back when it had a different name, Jukio is an iOS app that lets guests and partygoers choose exactly what they want to hear when the host just can’t be bothered. Setup is dead-simple — one iDevice running Jukio gets hooked up to the sound system, while guests who have the app installed can make requests from a connected streaming music service like Rdio and vote up inspired suggestions to create a party playlist.
One of the neatest things about Jukio though is that you’re not limited to making suggestions at whatever shindig you’re currently attending. As always, half the fun comes from crashing other people’s remote, unprotected party rooms and cramming the playlist with inappropriate tunes. The beauty of the system is that other users can downvote other people’s choices, which unsurprisingly happened to me just about every time I suggested they listen to William Shatner’s stirring spoken word cover of She Blinded Me With Science. Philistines.
So what’s changed over the past year? For one, Jukio finally supports a service other than Rdio — co-founder Ben Myers told us all the way back in February 2012 that the four-person team was working to expand that list of sources, and they announced via blog post the other day that Spotify support has finally been added to the proverbial mix. Throw in the ability for Jukio to run in the background (which I’m surprised didn’t make it into the app any sooner), and access to Rdio and Spotify’s Heavy Rotation sections for easier song selection, and you’ve got yourself a pretty neat party tool.
Sadly, some things haven’t changed since Anthm first hit the App Store all those months ago. The team hasn’t yet made good on their promise to bring Jukio to other platforms for instance, but that could change shortly. There’s still no word on an Android version of the app, but Myers says that a cross-platform HTML5 version is in the works, as is a “Listen With” feature that will let users listen in on Jukio parties across the globe instead of just trolling them from afar.