Open audio codec Opus gets real, gains VLC support

The popular media player application VLC just added support for Opus, the new open audio codec co-developed by Mozilla, Google, Microsoft and others. Meanwhile, there has been more speculation on how music platforms like Spotify could benefit from switching to Opus.

MIT’s 35 under 35 list covers tech from Dropbox to medical devices

Some of the names on this year’s Technology Review list of 35 innovators under 35 are SUNY Buffalo materials chemist Sarbajit Banerjee, Lookout Mobile Security’s John Hering, as well as some familiar folks like Dropbox’s Drew Houston and Pinterest’s Ben Silbermann.

Parker: Apple tried to keep Spotify out of the U.S.

It took Spotify seemingly forever to launch in the U.S. after making its debut in Europe, and while the licensing discussions were complicated, Apple played a role in holding up Spotify’s U.S. entrance, according to company backer Sean Parker.

Spotify’s new apps could be a big boost for labels

Spotify is adding a second batch of apps to its desktop player, and this time around, there is a big emphasis on record labels. That’s good, because labels could use these kinds of apps to reestablish themselves as curators in the age of subscription music.

First numbers: How successful are Spotify’s apps?

It has been a month since Spotify rolled out its app platform to all of its users, and early data from some of the participating third-party developers looks very positive: Spotify users seem to like the added functionality, with many coming back to their favorite apps.

Today in Connected Consumer

Taking a page from the old Apple PR playbook, Spotify sent out invites yesterday to a press conference on Nov. 30 where it promises to reveal “a new direction for the company” but was otherwise coy on the details. The invite says Spotify CEO Daniel Ek will be on hand, along with “special guests,” again unnamed. Any guesses? Peter Kafka at AllThingsD speculates that Spotify could be planning to announce an MP3 store to complement its streaming service, but since it already has one in Europe I’m not sure that qualifies as a “new direction.” Others speculate that the service might be adding other types of content, such as movies and e-books (we probably would have heard about rights deals being negotiated), an acquisition of some kind (with what?) or new carrier and device partnerships (maybe). Whatever it is, my guess is it will involve leveraging the recent Facebook integration, which would at least qualify as new-ish.

Off the mark with Spotify revenues

Last year, I did a back of the envelope estimate of revenues for Spotify for 2010 at $134 million, of which $80 million came from subscriptions and rest from advertising. It’s time for a mea culpa: I blew it. Here are the updated numbers.

I wonder how other music services are feeling today

Music services such as MOG, Rhapsody and others were expected to be part of the big Facebook re-launch. They were, except as an afterthought. Somewhat predictably, Mark Zuckerberg brought the CEO of Spotify on stage while competitors were relegated to little icons on a single slide.