The march of progress is inevitable, regardless of how we might feel about it. Over recent years, streaming has become a huge part of how we consume music, but hasn’t quite broken the club scene. That’s not to say there hasn’t been some support: Spotify is a long-time partner for Algoriddim’s djay line of apps, and Deezer also has some foray into the DJ world. That’s without even mentioning Pulselocker’s false start, having seen the promising dance music focused platform shuttered in late 2017 and bought up in mid 2018.

Which leads us to this… the launch of the long-rumoured Beatport streaming service, actually split in to two products: LINK, and CLOUD.

With CLOUD, you get extra features added to your Beatport store services, such as full track needle drop, or unlimited downloads of purchased track, for a monthly fee of $4.99. LINK takes things further for $14.99/month, giving you CLOUD, plus access to stream Beatport’s entire catalogue of music, either on the site, or with partnered apps like the brand new WeDJ update that arrived with the new DDJ-200.

Here’s the press release…

BEATPORT ANNOUNCES ‘BEATPORT LINK’ SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE FOR DJs

BERLIN, DE – MAY 14, 2019 – In a groundbreaking development for the DJ community, Beatport today announced its new subscription service for DJs, Beatport LINK.

Built with the company’s ‘for DJs, by DJs’ ethos, the current beta version of Beatport LINK makes Beatport’s extensive music catalogue available to stream directly into performance software.

In addition, Beatport LINK includes the beta release of Beatport CLOUD. Beatport CLOUD introduces a suite of features for the store’s loyal customer base, including full track previews via Beatport’s proprietary Needle Drop Player, unlimited re-downloads of previously purchased tracks and an all-new My Library section.

Beatport also revealed Beatport LINK’s first performance software integration, available via Pioneer DJ’s WeDJ app. Developed in close collaboration with Pioneer DJ, the integration is a game changer for WeDJ’s user base of beginner DJs.

Fall 2019 will see Beatport launch its next highly-anticipated Beatport LINK integration as part of Pioneer DJ’s rekordbox software. Tailored to the pro DJ market, the integration allows Beatport LINK subscribers to stream Beatport’s entire catalogue within rekordbox, alongside unique features such as the ability to access curated playlists.

In its full version, Beatport LINK will be the only service to offer pro DJs unrivalled freedom via an Offline Performance Mode.

Further Beatport LINK integrations will be rolled out with a host of other key partners throughout 2019. Beatport CLOUD is also available now as a standalone subscription service, while Beatport LINK subscriptions begin with a 30-day free trial.

Beatport’s CEO, Robb McDaniels, commented, “The launch of Beatport LINK exhibits our commitment to creating the best possible experience for our expanding ecosystem of DJs, and we can think of no better partner than Pioneer DJ for the service’s first software integration. We are particularly excited to introduce the upcoming Offline Performance Mode, which firmly sets Beatport LINK apart from its competitors in the DJ market.”

About Beatport:
Founded in 2004 as the principal source of music for DJs, Beatport is today the worldwide home of electronic music for DJs, producers, and their fans. The Beatport Store offers music in premium digital formats and provides unique music discovery tools created for and by DJs. Each week, Beatport’s music collection is refreshed with hundreds of exclusive tracks by the world’s top electronic music artists. Beatport has offices in Los Angeles, Denver and Berlin. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram.

My Take

I struggle to find value in the CLOUD offer. Bandcamp has pretty much had these features as standard since launch, and this launch shows how behind-the-times Beatport is with these things. Looking back, improvements to the Beatport site have been few, and slow to arrive, with complaints from users seemingly unheard by the developers.

The giant elephant in the room with LINK, of course, will be its legitimacy beyond the bedroom. And this is more than just a legality issue, though that will make a big part of it. As is the case with Spotify, there’s still no offline caching of music, and the terms of the user agreement make for some very blurry language regarding the use of the service in a public space. The whole thing feels like all these companies want streaming to take off, but won’t allow themselves to take any responsibility for the technology.

That’s not even taking into account the public trust in streaming for DJs, which would be greatly improved by caching. I suspect that until all of these aspects improve, streaming in DJ apps will remain on the peripherals.

Your Take

Will you be signing up for Beatport CLOUD or LINK? How do you feel about the current state of streaming services for DJs?

You can subscribe Beatport CLOUD for $4.99/mo, and Beatport LINK for $14.99/mo now.


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