Tag Archives | MOG

MOG Goes Free to Fight Spotify, but With a Twist

If Spotify proved one thing with its U.S. launch, it’s that people will go nuts for free music. So now MOG, one of my favorite paid streaming music services, is getting a free version of its own.

Like Spotify, MOG lets you listen to any song or album you want from a library of about 11 million tracks. But unlike Spotify, MOG’s free service isn’t strictly time-limited. (Spotify users get six months of unrestricted listening, followed by 10 hours per month and five plays per track.) Instead, MOG uses a game-like system that rewards certain actions with more free listening. Refer some friends, get some free time. Recommend a playlist, get more free time. Click on an ad, get more free time.

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A Free Version of MOG is On the Way

As a happy customer, I’ve tried my best to evangelize MOG and other subscription-based music services to friends and family. The conversation is always the same: Millions of songs on-demand? Awesome! $10 per month? Not bad. You can’t keep any of the music after leaving the service? Nevermind.

It’s an idea that takes getting used to, and most people aren’t willing to take the plunge for $10 per month. So I’m not surprised that MOG is working on a freemium business model that it hopes to introduce in a couple of months. Evolver.fm’s Eliot Van Buskirk reports that MOG will give away limited access to its streaming catalog in hopes of roping in more users.

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MOG Mulls Higher Prices and Other Options as Apple's Subscription Rules Loom

With Apple declaring that subscription-based iOS apps must offer in-app sign-ups and hand over 30 percent of the subscription revenue, streaming music service MOG is considering every option — even a price hike.

MOG costs $10 per month for unlimited mobile access to its on-demand streaming music library, the same price as competitors Rdio, Napster and Rhapsody. After the music labels and publishers get their share, and after MOG pays other fees for things like bandwidth, hosting and reporting of listening data, the company will lose money on every in-app subscription if Apple takes a 30 percent cut.

“We don’t understand why Apple should get more from our business than we get,” MOG’s founder and chief executive David Hyman said in an interview.

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MOG Goes Mobile

Music service MOG has launched the iPhone and Android apps I wrote about last month. For $9.99 a month, you get unlimited streaming and album downloads in your browser and on your device. And MOG has a unique “artist radio” feature that can play only songs by that artist, rather than the more typical combination of songs by the artist, related artists, vaguely-similar artists, and not-similar-at-all artists.

MOG offers a three-day trial that’s worth checking out. Nitpick on the iPhone edition: It’s been waiting for Apple approval for so long that it’s not an iOS 4 app. That means that it can’t play in the background while you use other programs. Once it has that feature, it should be a killer alternative to iTunes. (As should Rhapsody, which says it’s working on a multitasking version.)

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MOG Headed for the iPhone, Android, and Roku

Music service MOG has a number of attractive features, including Rhapsody-like on-demand access to albums and tracks, “artist stations” that only play songs by the artist in question, and a low price ($4.99 a month for unlimited streaming). It’s also had one major limitation: It’s only been available in your browser. But MOG has plans to change that, starting next month.

As TechCrunch’s Jason Kincaid is reporting, MOG says that Apple has approved a MOG app for the iPhone–one that lets you stream or download any song from its catalog. It intends to release the iPhone app and a similar Android one in July, and to charge $9.99 for all-you-can-listen access in the browser and on a phone. (That’s low by historic standards, but the same price that Rhapsody charges for a plan that lets you listen online and on one mobile device.)

July should also see the debut of a version of MOG for Roku’s cool, inexpensive TV set-top box. Unlimited on-demand Roku listening will be included in the basic $4.99 plan; for music fans who want to listen a lot without spending a lot, it sounds like a deal.