iHeartMedia, the creator of iHeartRadio – the all-in-one streaming music and live digital radio service – today announced the beta availability of iHeartRadio Plus and iHeartRadio All Access powered by Napster. This is the first service that uses on demand functionality to make radio truly interactive, as compared to all current players which simply add on demand functionality to the music collection experience. Available now in beta on iOS and Android devices, the two new services will be fully available on mobile and desktop in January 2017.
With more than 850 radio stations in 150 markets that reach over a quarter of a billion monthly listeners across the U.S., iHeartMedia has the largest national reach of any radio or television outlet in America and is the only media company that has the assets, platform and reach to drive massive consumer awareness and introduce these two new subscription services, built around real radio, to a large new audience on a national scale. In addition, 84 percent of iHeartRadio users do not currently subscribe to an on demand service – and now, for the first time, may be interested in subscribing to a service that provides them with the best of live radio combined with easy-to-use on demand functionality that makes radio programming truly interactive – and that they can connect directly to their music collection, something no other service or company has the assets to offer.
“10 times more Americans listen to radio every month than use a subscription service – so the debut of iHeartRadio Plus and iHeartRadio All Access powered by Napster is a unique opportunity to capture these non-music subscribers with an on demand service built around radio,” said Bob Pittman, Chairman and CEO of iHeartMedia. “Whereas the LP, CD and music downloads are the ancestors of all current on demand services, the ancestor for our new on demand offerings is broadcast radio. By combining radio’s popularity and reach with interactive on demand functionality, we have created the first fully differentiated streaming music service for consumers.”
iHeartRadio Plus, $4.99 a month, completely transforms live radio listening with the addition of:
- Replay: Giving subscribers the ability to instantly replay songs from the radio and then return to the live radio station in progress;
- Live and custom Artist Radio stations: Now equipped with a save button, allowing subscribers to instantly save songs from the radio directly to their My Music playlist for playback any time;
- Search: Search and play any song from a library of millions of tracks;
- Unlimited skips: Subscribers listening to custom Artist Radio stations will no longer have a limit on the number of songs they can skip.
iHeartRadio All Access powered by Napster, at $9.99 a month, combines the interactive radio functionally of iHeartRadio Plus with a complete music collection and library that is linked seamlessly to the radio listening experience. Given that 70 percent of consumers — which includes users of on demand music services — have cited radio as their primary source of music discovery, there is finally a service that allows them the convenience and accessibility of merely pushing a button to add a song immediately to their music collection at the same time they hear it on the radio — something no other music collection service can offer. This new offering is the best of all worlds, combined in one service with the ability to:
- Build subscribers’ personal music libraries: Completely create, control and curate playlists from a library of millions of tracks;
- Give subscribers total flexibility to listen to their music the way they want, when they want: With no playback cap and the ability to reorder, delete and sequence their playlist experience as well as manage unlimited playlists;
- Access offline listening: Subscribers can now enjoy offline listening and take their music and playlists with them everywhere they go, even when they don’t have a data connection.
“iHeartRadio Plus and iHeartRadio All Access powered by Napster are revolutionizing how we think of live radio,” said Darren Davis, President of iHeartRadio. “With features such as personal music libraries and playlists, the ability to search and play any song instantly, and the option to save and replay songs directly from live and custom radio listening, our new iHeartRadio on demand offerings are fundamentally changing the way consumers interact with live radio at an unprecedented level. We are introducing a service like no other to tens of millions of consumers across dozens of devices, and also driving massive awareness of the new service to more than a quarter of a billion Americans a month through our broadcast stations alone, which presents a major revenue growth opportunity for our very important strategic partners – artists and the music industry.”
iHeartMedia partnered with Napster to power the music technology back office behind iHeartRadio All Access. Napster brought their depth of experience in on-demand music delivery, customer billing, data and analytics and rights holders’ payments to complement the iHeartRadio-based application.
“iHeartMedia has a unique opportunity to shine a spotlight on the tremendous value premium streaming services bring to music fans, and to the music community at large,” said Mike Davis, Napster CEO. “We’re honored that iHeartMedia selected the Napster platform and brand to power a great music experience for consumers, and we’re excited to play a role in what will be a successful launch.”
Aside from the two new subscription on-demand services, iHeartRadio will remain free. iHeartRadio offers users thousands of Live Radio stations, personalized custom Artist Radio stations created by just one song or seed artist and the top podcasts and personalities. With over a billion downloads, iHeartRadio has had tremendous momentum — reaching 90 million registered users faster than any other radio or digital music service — and even faster than Facebook.