Windows Help & Advice - - DISCOVER -

What is this, 1997?

Quiet, you. Any­one who lived through the crunchy old days of the In­ter­net will re­mem­ber Wi­namp, at one time the de facto mu­sic player of choice for per­sonal mu­sic col­lec­tions. It did in­deed first emerge in 1997 – along­side the rise of ser­vices like Nap­ster – and even­tu­ally landed in the hands of AOL, who last re­leased a ver­sion in 2013.

Great. So what’s the story?

AOL, in one of its many rounds of di­vest­ment and man­age­ment shake-ups, sold off Wi­namp (and In­ter­net ra­dio stream­ing ser­vice Shout­cast) to Ra­dion­omy in 2014, and now that com­pany is set to re­lease not only the first up­date to Wi­namp in five years, but a whole new ver­sion of the soft­ware.

What’ll it do dif­fer­ent?

Wi­namp has al­ways been about col­lec­tions; it played your il­licit MP3 col­lec­tion back in the day, and the new ver­sion, due in 2019, will play your whole mu­sic col­lec­tion. Since your playlists and tunes are likely now at­tached to one or a num­ber of stream­ing ser­vices, that’s what it’ll tar­get: in­te­gra­tion with the likes of Spo­tify, Ap­ple Mu­sic, and more.

Why do I need it?

The­o­ret­i­cally, the new Wi­namp will make things seam­less. If there are tracks that are only avail­able on one plat­form, it’ll bring them in line with your whole col­lec­tion – you won’t need to run a whole bunch of dif­fer­ent apps just to lis­ten to your favourite mu­sic.

Any­thing else?

Nat­u­rally, we don’t all lis­ten to mu­sic all the time. The new Wi­namp is set to stream pod­casts, In­ter­net ra­dio, and just about any­thing else you might want to pipe in to your ears, and there are ver­sions both for the Win­dows desk­top and for mo­bile plat­forms in the works. That’s if it all func­tions prop­erly – ty­ing to­gether a host of mu­sic ser­vices sounds like a tech­ni­cal and bu­reau­cratic headache to us.

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