Amazon's New Live-Radio DJ App Amp Opens up New Creator Economy Niche
Who hasn't wanted to try to be a DJ?
As live-streaming has changed our entertainment spectrum, it could soon also turn our indie music, DJ and live-radio channels.
Amazon on Tuesday March 8th, 2022 launched Amp, a live audio app that makes DJs of users’ own radio shows.
How is this Relevant to the Creator Economy?
Well it’s a no-brainer. It will enable creators to DJ their own shows for free, with tens of millions of licensed songs. That’s pretty awesome as the intersection between music, live events and live-radio could be really big as we return to normal life after the covid-19 pandemic!
The app comes as the live audio space continues to heat up, with companies like Twitter and Spotify featuring new content.
Amazon has signed up popular artists including Nicki Minaj, Pusha T and Tinashe, as well as social media influencers and radio hosts, to create content for the app.
Subscriptions involving podcasting communities have a huge potential to scale so any apps that are audio related are good bets on the future of the Creator Economy. People will be loving music for decades into the Metaverse.
The Live-Radio DJ Creator Economy Begins Now
Creators can work from a catalog of tens of millions of licensed songs from Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group, and a long list of independent music companies, such as Beggars Group, Believe, CD Baby, and PIAS, with more being added. Users must use or create a free Amazon account as their login credentials for Amp.
“Radio has always been about music and culture,” said John Ciancutti, vice president of Amp. “But imagine if you were inventing the medium for the first time today. You’d combine what people love about radio — spontaneous talk, new music discovery, diverse personalities, and broad programming — with all that’s made possible by today’s technology. You’d make it so anybody with a phone, a voice, and a love for music could make their own show. And that’s exactly what we’re doing.”
I find this pretty exciting and dynamic and one of the more innovative ideas Amazon has had since it acquired Twitch around the Creator Economy. I don’t think Amp can manage to grow like Twitch, but it could be huge.
Twitch key statistics
Twitch made an estimated $2.3 billion revenue in 2020, primarily from subscriptions and IAP
In 2021, Twitch had an average of 2.84 million concurrent viewers
Nine million Twitch users stream on the platform once a month
18.6 billion hours of content was consumed on the platform in 2020
So Amazon is definately a player in the Creator Economy and how the Metaverse could develop as well. Some are even calling Amp Amazon’s Clubhouse rival, I’m not sure that’s a good comparison but fair enough.
Still I can see how Amp is being compared to Clubhouse. Amp is a lot like Clubhouse — live broadcasts, a bunch of speakers hanging out in a room together — but it has one key difference: Amazon negotiated music licensing deals with the major labels and a bunch of indies, unlocking the ability for hosts to stream “tens of millions” of songs, no subscription required. Amazon is taking a page out of ByteDance’s playbook here.
Not everyone will want to suddenly turn into a DJ, but how about having your own live-radio channel? That’s like podcasting augmented into the streaming era. So what’s the concept like?
Anyone who signs up will be able to host their own live show, complete with the ability to stream “tens of millions of licensed songs” from the big three record labels and “a long list” of indies, Amazon says. The goal is to turn any user into a radio DJ, able to program a playlist, talk to listeners, and chat with call-in guests.
Thankfully they changed the name. In development it was called under the name Project Mic, represents Amazon’s somewhat belated entry into the live audio market. Who can own the future of audio platforms? Certainly Spotify is the market leader but doesn’t treat Creators in the Creator Economy very well. The best platform will be more Creator centric. Hopefully Amazon has learned that with Twitch.
Being able to tip your favorite Creator and subscribe to their channel with a premium sub is key to push the audio vibe into a mainstream position in the nascent Creator Economy.
I guess Amp will be somewhere in the middle between Twitch and Audible for Amazon as they build out their Creator Economy suite of apps. I like the “live-radio” type features as its sort of retro.
Amp is announcing a slate of upcoming shows from some major names in music. Nicki Minaj will soon bring her radio show, “Queen Radio,” to Amp, in addition to upcoming shows from Pusha T, singer-songwriter Tinashe, violinist Lindsey Stirling, Travis Barker, Lil Yachty, and Big Boi; personalities Tefi Pessoa and Nikita Dragun; radio DJs Zach Sang, Kat Corbett, and Christian James Hand; and writers from the publication The Fader.
Amp Can Amp up the Live-Radio Creator Community
Amp is creating built-in discovery and notifications, so listeners can find and follow creators and upcoming shows. Hosts can take callers, with control over who speaks and when. They can pre-plan and schedule their shows, and listen to songs in real time with their audiences.
I’m not sure Twitter’s Spaces, Facebook’s Live Audio Rooms, Spotify’s Greenroom really speak very well to the Creator Economy, so I’m hoping Amp can hit closer to the mark but time will tell. Audio platforms have a long ways to go to truly find a mature product-market fit.
However the growing popularity of Podcasting is a good sign for Creators. Epic acquiring Bandcamp is huge, and so is this Amp launch.
Amp allows users to launch their own live show, where callers can join and request to speak.
Hosts can play music in real time with their audience, as well as preplan and schedule their shows.
DJs can choose from a library of millions of songs licensed by Amazon.
Check out Amp’s website:
That’s a pretty feature packed app for Creators to embrace audio better.
Also I like the freedom in the user experience. Think about it, so critically, hosts and listeners won’t need to subscribe to any particular service to tune in — anyone can listen in to full-length songs as long as they sign up for Amp, which is free.
Thanks for reading!