Photo credits: “Music” (Public Domain) by UnnarYmir
We all know that Amazon is one of the biggest companies in America, with business ventures stretching across a lot of different genres, whether that be streaming services in entertainment or music, groceries or their delivery shopping app. They describe their new Amp as an app “that will give you a way to DJ your live radio shows. Creators can use a catalog of tens of millions of licensed songs from Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group and [many] independent music companies, such as Beggars Group, Believe, CD Baby and PIAS, with more being added every day.” They also say that “Creators can also engage with their community in real-time— no subscription, additional hardware, or editing needed.”
There’s a more familiar app that you may know about, called Stationhead, that follows this same format. John Ciancutti, Vice President of Amp, had a few words to say as the app rolled out to the public for download: “Radio has always been about music and culture […] But imagine if you were inventing the medium for the first time today. You’d combine what people love about radio — spontaneous talk, new music discovery, diverse personalities and broad programming — with all that’s made possible by today’s technology.” He clarified: “You’d make it so anybody with a phone, a voice and a love for music could make their own show. And that’s exactly what we’re doing. Amp makes it possible for you to grab the mic and run the airwaves. We are creating a new version of radio that will have an infinite dial of shows.”
One of the faces leading the app right now is rapper Nicki Minaj, who is said to bring her popular radio show, “Queen Radio,” to the platform from Apple Music. She took to Instagram live to break the news, saying, “I am very excited to be partners with Amazon on bringing back ‘Queen Radio’ […] ‘Queen Radio’ is something that is so dear to my heart. Of course, there have been times where I’ve thought about not wanting to do ‘Queen Radio,’ or any radio for that matter, but why not?”
Fans of Nicki have already been reporting issues with the app, such as its lack of international availability and that it is not available for android users yet. But it’s important to note that the app is still in its early stages and they’re still working out the kinks of it. Amazon also reports that artists such as “Pusha T, singer-songwriter Tinashe, electronic artist and violinist Lindsey Stirling, Travis Barker, Lil Yachty and Big Boi,” as well as “personalities Tefi Pessoa and Nikita Dragun” and others will be joining the platform as well.
Who knows if the new app from Amazon will stand the test of time and be able to go toe to toe with the likes of Spotify and Apple Music.
Isaiah Ireland is a first-year Media & Culture major. II978280@wcupa.edu