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Chatting in songs to find common taste in music

Image credit: https://telegguide.com/music-in-telegram-search-listen-and-download/

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Povilas S
Povilas S Oct 28, 2021
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The idea is to have a chat app where instead of text people send each other songs by taking turns (one song at a time). This wouldn't be just sending a link of the song for the other person to listen, sending would equal playing and both participants would hear the same song at the same time. Each person would set the comfortable sound level and other parameters of the sound system in advance and after the chat has started the played music could be only switched off in one of the following ways:
  • The whole song has been played out (listened till the end)
  • The other person sends another song (the played song could be interrupted like that at any point and the new song sent by the 2nd participant starts playing immediately instead)
  • Any of the participants leave the chat by logging out, closing the app, etc.
Why do this:
  • To understand each other and connect, preferably on a deeper level, through music.
  • Train your skills of compromising and collaboration - make the process enjoyable for both sides by collective effort.
  • Broaden your musical horizons and discover new music through people.
How would this work: You'd start with something that you'd enjoy listening to at the moment. The person on the other end of the line would listen to your played song until they still felt like it, then they would "propose" (= paly) another song of now their choice, and the process would continue. During the musical session, the participants wouldn't be able to communicate in any other way, so the only indicator of whether your chat colleague liked your played song or not would be how long did they allow it to play before changing it. That would be the only feedback to guide each other in the right direction.
Such musical chat can go about different ways, if both people were impatient, arrogant, and confrontational they might just fire up songs back and forth after a few seconds of listening (given they don't enjoy each other's music that much), but in the end, there's not much point of such chat. If they, however, were open to each other's taste and willing to expand their musical horizons they would try to collaborate/compromise and find songs that they both maximally enjoy.
This could potentially grow into a great collective dj'ing experience. Each sent song has a potential to elicit association of another song. If your chat buddy sent you something different from your taste you might remember something that is leaning towards that genre but is still different enough for you to enjoy as well. Then the other side would hopefully respond in a similar way and mutual satisfaction would emerge out of this.
The idea is primarily for the musical chat of two people, but there might as well be as many participants as desired, just with more people the communication process becomes more complicated, perhaps three people could still work fine. Such chat app could be adapted to be used by people of any familiarity - friends, acquaintances, people having/looking for a romantic relationship, total strangers, etc.
Similar apps and the novelty of the idea: There was one similar app that was apparently unsuccessful because their website is not available anymore. Here's an article about it. That's the only similar app I've managed to find and it was different from the one proposed here because it was just about sending links for the other person to listen, it wasn't oriented towards collaboration and finding common taste in music which is the main focus of this idea. The gamification process summarized by the bullet points in the first paragraph is what's supposed to encourage this. The app would also be presented as aiming for that.
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Creative contributions

Market overview, thoughts, and innovating ideas

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J
Juranium Oct 29, 2021
The first thoughts
I like the idea and I have never heard of something like this before. I listen to music a lot and often find myself hearing a phrase and continue singing it out loud because it's part of the lyrics. It would be cool if I could do that while messaging. But, at the first glance, the app you described is very limiting.
  • Listening to the whole song could be tiring. We don't always have the time nor are willing to spend 3-5 mins just to hear our favorite part. It doesn't mean we don't like the song.
  • Messaging the whole song could be a problem due to intellectual rights. The app should have permission to play all the songs available (which could be expensive).
  • Messaging whole songs could be storage-consuming (one 20-song conversation would take approx. 80 Mb; a few days of these chats and we are close to Gb).
The market overview
I checked the market and the link you provided. The article mentions the 2014 La-la app which solved the above-mentioned limitations by sending links, not songs, and by an option to send snippets instead of the whole songs. They obviously solved the problem with intellectualright, since they had a "selection of licensed music by popular artists and the option for users to create their own messages by searching YouTube for music and clipping out a section for sending." I would like to see why they didn't suceed.
Just year before, in 2013, the article highlighted the important role of music in future messaging. They also mentioned a Stereotypes app, that allowed forming a group, sharing and commenting on songs, and the PingTune, which tried to make it more simple and straight-forward (was acquired by Eros and implemented in Eros)Now. At that time Tango (WhatsApp competitor) tried to do the same by implementing 30-sec Spotify-connected songs in their messaging platform. They had a fun feature which allows you to click on the song snippet and listen to the whole song on Spotify (solves all of the above-mentioned problems).
In 2015, Msty came on scene with an Apple Music partnership, but also didn't survive (as I was able to track).
A bit newer (2017) app called Beatshare wanted to resemble the messaging and listening to music in a form of a short 10-second song clips. They even added a feature of adding text, picture or a video to a song (like Instagram stories) to make it more interesting. In the same year, Spotify noticed the market gap and launched an iMessage app which allowed a user to send songs using iMessages directly .
The final thoughts
Messaging songs has become a standard thing. Apps like TikTok and Instagram allow you to send videos enriched with songs, texts and effects, which users find really cool and more content-rich than just plain text (or a song). There is no word that it's not a big market opportunity, but due to a huge competition, I think you need something more innovative here.
Two ideas
From a brief market overview and user profiles, I would go towards the "deeper" analysis of the songs, emotional characterization and stitching to the emojis. Another idea could be the text-to-speech add-on function that allows you to write a piece of text (2-5 words) and then search for matching song lyrics. That way, when a user receives a message, it gets notified that there is a song implemented into text. When it listens to a message, user can hear regular text-to-speech voice with few words or a phrase sang by the chosen singer. It could sound cool and help users express emotions better.

[1]https://thenextweb.com/news/spotify-finally-lands-imessage-app-store#.tnw_GWjyddyz

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Povilas S
Povilas Sa month ago
Glad you like the idea and thanks for such an extensive and informative contribution, Juran!:)
I like your idea of implementing a search engine that would find the songs with lyrics that match the words you want to write in a chat:) You could perhaps post it as a separate idea. But again then the software should be able to play the song from the exact place where the intended lyrics are.
I understand why the proposed app seems limiting to you, but the idea is a bit different from just a chat app for sending music, it would be more like a game than a chat. Well both in fact. It's mostly about collective efforts to find songs that both participants would enjoy, it's conceptually close to this idea.
That's why I propose that the software would be built in a way that you'd instantly play the song for both sides to hear simultaneously instead of just sending a link/embedded song. And you wouldn't even be able to tune it down or turn it off easily, so once you're in the process you'd have to either participate or leave. It would be like collective dj'ing but through distance, nevertheless, you'd both hear exactly the same music so it would be like being in the same venue in that sense. Maybe I should change the title of the idea to make this point more clear.
So, having this in mind, to be able to play full songs is important and it's also important to have a large variety of songs available, combining both the resources of Youtube and Spotify and preferably also Soundcloud perhaps would be the best. I'm not going to discuss the complications of doing that, copyright issues, etc. I understand those are obstacles. Talking about the relatively large space that the whole songs take, this could simply be solved by deleting the old songs in the chat automatically. Or the embedded songs could simply be replaced by links in case you'd want to listen to them later, the last option is perhaps the best.
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