Grooveshark Has New And Improved Look, But Same Old Problems
Grooveshark Has New And Improved Look, But Same Old Problems

Music streaming service Groovshark has a new, slicker look that is sure to please its customers. But the Gainvesville, Florida-based company also has the same issues that have followed it for years. .

Grooveshark has always carried itself differently than other music services. It has had legal tussles - the latest being an action against the service this week brought by Danish rights holders. It has a more underground approach to marketing compared to its peers. And within music industry circles, the company's reliance on user-uploaded material has made it one of the more controversial music services.

The result has been immense popularity - 35 million global visitors, 600 million streaming minutes each month, says the company. And that was before Grooveshark's new design.

Business Matters: Grooveshark's Facebook Activity on the Rise

Unveiled November 11, the new-look Grooveshark is an improvement in terms of functionality and attractiveness. Like earlier iterations, the new version is a web-based player that does not require the user to download and install an application.

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Grooveshark's simple, Google-esque home page

A new navigation menu runs atop the page while the home page takes a Google approach with a simple, large search prompt. Creative Director John Ashenden tells Billboard.biz people use Grooveshark as a search engine but often don't know what they want to hear. So the company built out the "explore" section that highlights featured artists, new releases and popular songs and artists.

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Grooveshark's new "exlpore" section

Grooveshark's "music community" has been overhauled, too. It now has more information and a better presentation. Anyone familiar with social networks will feel at home with the way Grooveshark allows people to follow friends and their activity on the service.

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Grooveshark's new "exlpore" section

The company has more changes planned for 2012. Ashenden says Grooveshark will work on improving the fan-to-fan connection. He expects Grooveshark's integration with social networks - a Grooveshark account can be connected with Facebook and Google accounts - to be a more built-out feature. And users can expect playlist collaboration in the near future.

"We're trying to redefine the platform," says Ashenden.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboardbiz

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