SoundCloud has long been the bastion of obscure tunes and under-appreciated gems, but it’s always lacked the kind of discovery tools that make services like Pandora and Google Play Music so addicting. SoundCloud has big plans for 2016 after closing licensing deals with both Universal and Warner Music. The company intends to launch a full-scale subscription-based music streaming service this year, perhaps to become competitive with the likes of Spotify and Apple Music, and they’re kicking it all off with a new radio station feature.
It’s nothing too fancy, but the radio station function has already made its way over to the Android and iOS apps. Once your app is updated, just tap the three-dot menu next to a track and then choose “start track station.” These stations seem to work adaptively, much like Pandora, with the playlist growing and changing based on which songs you like and which you don’t.
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No telling yet if this will be the boost SoundCloud needs to really break into the mobile streaming arena, but it’s definitely a bold step forward. The current market is dominated by four brawling titans, but maybe this scrappy indie player can find a niche to call its own.
What are your thoughts on SoundCloud’s new radio service? If you want to give it a whirl for yourself, you’ll have to grab the app by clicking the button below, because the feature hasn’t been rolled out to the web browser version yet. See how it strikes you, then report back and tell us what you thought in the comments!