Twitter Inc. has released an app that will allow its users to play and share songs from services including Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iTunes, and streaming music from Rdio Inc. and Spotify Ltd. Though the app is not yet available for devices running on Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android software, Twitter said in a blog post that Android accessibility will be added at some point in the future.
The move is the latest in Twitter’s multimedia approach to increase the amount of time users spend on the site, which started out simply as a medium for sharing 140-character messages, or Tweets. Twitter released a video app in January, and now the new music app could be an even bigger draw, as record companies are likely to utilize it for promoting new tracks, drawing music lovers to the service.
Spotify and Rdio already let subscribers share songs and playlists through Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), which made Twitter’s next move pretty obvious. Social networks are becoming an increasingly important way for users to share music with friends, and as Facebook improves its music offerings — the company recently updated its news feed to make finding music easier — Twitter is getting on board with the trend, a must if it is to remain a viable Facebook competitor…
Twitter’s service, called #music, is available as of today, April 18, in the following markets: The U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and the U.K.
According to Twitter’s blog announcement:
[#music] uses Twitter activity, including Tweets and engagement, to detect and surface the most popular tracks and emerging artists. It also brings artists music-related Twitter activity front and center: go to their profiles to see which music artists they follow and listen to songs by those artists. And, of course, you can tweet songs right from the app.
As an obvious marketing tool with a wide reach, #music should find widespread adoption rather quickly, especially if listening spurs sales. It can direct purchases straight to Apple’s iTunes, or any other partner site or program that sells music. This benefits the middle-men, so to speak, but also obviously the producers, artists, and everyone else involved in creating the music itself.