Electric Jukebox thinks music streaming is broken. “It’s almost like you need a degree in engineering,” CEO Rob Lewis said on stage about rival streaming services. So he’s fixing the music industry by launching a £179 dongle named the “Electric Jukebox,” aimed at families and people who aren’t currently using streaming services.
The new music streaming service plugs into a TV and you use a colourful microphone controller to choose what songs to play. Lewis explained that his device isn’t aimed at young people who already use Spotify or Apple Music, but instead it’s for older people who don’t “go jogging on their iPhone.” That’s presumably where the name “Electric Jukebox” comes in.
And in case you aren’t yet persuaded to buy an Electric Jukebox, the company has signed up some family friendly celebrities: Former Take That singer Robbie Williams, Sheryl Crow, “Strictly Come Dancing” star Alesha Dixon, and raconteur Stephenu Fry.
Business Insider went to the launch of the Electric Jukebox in London. Here’s what happened:
John Whittingdale MP, who is the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, came on stage. He talked about tech in the UK and then left.
Then the CEO Rob Lewis got on stage. You may remember him from streaming services Rara and Omnifone. He was very happy to be there, and swaggered around the stage.
The key message was that the Electric Jukebox is simple to use. There's no monthly subscription, but you do have to pay a yearly subscription fee (you get one year free with the device.)
Here's what it will look like to use the Electric Jukebox. There's a little CD in the middle of the screen.
That's an expensive music streaming service! But you do get a year's premium subscription thrown in with your purchase. That's worth £60.
There wasn't much said about the fact that Electric Jukebox is coming to the US. But this press photo features a cowboy, just to be clear.
The CEO flashed this slide up on the screen to tease an upcoming product. Maybe this will be called the 'Electric Radio.'
Every music streaming service needs a big star backer. Tidal has Jay Z, Apple Music has Drake. Electric Jukebox has Sheryl Crow, the American singer.
Here's one of the press photos that flashed up on screen. Robbie Williams' wife is bringing her exclusive gym and after-dinner mixtapes to Electric Jukebox.
Stephen Fry is also backing the Electric Jukebox. But the company made him take off his Apple Watch for the press photos.
A young man named Tyrone handed Dixon the stick and she said 'Robbie Williams' into it twice. Tyrone joked that he is going to listen to her exclusive hangover mixtape on Saturday.
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