What Is Their Name Really?
Napster has succeeded in restoring its name as it was once entirely synonymous with music piracy when it was acquired by the music streaming service Rhapsody (owned by RealNetworks) in 2012. Rhapsody eventually changed its name to Napster in 2016. RealNetworks ultimately retained an 84 percent stake. According to 2019 data, Napster served 10.8 billion streams and brought in $113 million in revenue.
The VR Giant
It’s clear that MelodyVR seeks to be the “destination for music in virtual reality,” with live performance VR experiences on Oculus Go, Oculus Quest, Samsung Gear, iOS and Android platforms. It’s equipped with catalogs from Warner, Universal and Sony (including Sony labels Columbia, Epic, Legacy, Masterworks, RCA Records, Sony Classical, Sony Music Latin and Syco Music).
The Birth of a New Platform
Together the two companies will create an at-home-concert. According to MelodyVR “acquisition of Napster will result in the development of the first-ever music entertainment platform which combines immersive visual content and music streaming,” said CEO Anthony Matchett. “For music fans today, live and recorded music are intrinsically linked. We are as keen to see our favorite artists perform live as we are to listen to their albums.”
It’s a Step In a New Direction
RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser has expressed his happiness over the continuation of Napster, even if it appears to be evolving into something else. The tough has come under some heavy scrutiny, has worked hard to keep the torch burning. The deal is expected to be finalized by the end of 2020.