Jay Z’s Tidal has an army of haters, no CEO, fierce new competitors and few paying subscribers.
Now, the almost-high-resolution audio (HRA) streaming service has dumped national sales and marketing manager David Solomon, a HRA veteran with deep ties to the custom A/V industry.
David joins former Tidal CEO Peter Tonstad on the roster of Tidal casualties. The CEO lasted three months. David lasted 10.
But the good news is: music legend Prince is sticking with the service, as he withdraws from every other streaming service, most likely because “I personally can’t stand digital music. When you play it back, you can’t feel anything,” he told The Guardian in 2011.
That may well be the case, but regular people don’t seem interested in paying £12.80 per month, even to support poor starving artists like Jay Z, Beyonce, Alicia Keys, Kanye West and Rihanna who don’t get paid their fair share by other streaming services.
The cool head among all of these spoiled brats seems to have been David, who was a founder of the high-performance digital audio company Peachtree, where he served as VP sales from 2005 to 2013.
David posted on Facebook last week that, after his CEO boss was fired, he received a call from Jay Z’s entertainment company Roc Nation “with one short sentence and the dream was abruptly over. ‘Your services will no longer be required.’”
Jay Z acquired a controlling interest in Tidal in March from a smallish Swedish company.
As David explains on Facebook: “When big companies take over other companies, there are always casualties due to different directions or simple redundancies.”
He adds: “Am I upset? Not really. Working for Tidal was a great experience and it is truly the very best service available. I learned a lot and met friends that I’ll treasure always.”
As Tech Times explains it, the early press around Tidal and its famous owners shot the app to the top of the iTunes App Store, “but its ranking quickly plunged, as consumers felt confused about what exactly differentiated Tidal from its larger streaming competitors such as Pandora and Spotify.”
Tidal’s £12.80/month subscription fee for almost-HRA quality is twice that of Pandora, Spotify and Tidal’s own standard-def music.
Tidal isn’t really ‘high resolution audio’ as the term is commonly defined. T
hey use the made-up term “high-definition audio,” meaning lossless CD quality, just to confuse people, because HRA isn’t confusing enough.
HRA is considered to be better than CD quality’s 16 bit/44 kHz resolution. HRA is usually 24/96 or better.
You can now hear the real deal via Sony at Best Buy. Or take the HRA listening test at NPR.
Tech Times concludes: “Most music listeners have neither the finely-tuned ears it takes to notice the high def sound nor the desire to spend double for it. The company failed to even hit the million mark in subscribers, with the last count at just 770,000 compared to over 20 million for industry leader Spotify.”
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