SoundCloud Gets an Overhaul and New BetaBy: Sean Patterson - May 10, 2012
SoundCloud, the fast-growing social audio sharing platform, today announced that a new design for its apps is incoming. The redesign is now available through private beta invites, but it will be rolled out in phases over the next few months. Features of the new design will include a more interactive waveform player, reposts for sounds, and continuous play.
“Over the past few years we’ve been championing the need to un-mute the web and have signed up over 15 million sound creators in the process,” said Alexander Ljung, Soundcloud founder & CEO. “Today we are pushing further towards that goal by launching a private beta of the Next SoundCloud, which delivers a simpler, faster, more social sound platform to help everyone appreciate sound more.”
SoundCloud can be thought of as Instagram for audio files. Recording or uploading sounds to SoundCloud makes them easy to share with friends and social networks or embed on webpages. The service recently boasted having over 10 million registered users following a surge from mobile apps it released last year. The changes coming to SoundCloud will bring an entirely new look and new features to users.
“Next SoundCloud has been re-engineered from the inside out,” said Eric Wahlforss SoundCloud founder & CTO. “It’s much more than an aesthetic change. By making use of state of the art technologies available in the latest generation browsers, we’ve created a technology platform that enables us to provide a much better user experience and develop new features faster.”
The highlight of the new design is the waveform player. SoundCloud claims the player is more visible, more interactive, and contains no comment clutter. Actually, the company states that nearly every aspect of the platform has gotten this treatment, with profiles, sets, keyboard shortcuts, and volume control being easier to navigate and more intuitive. The new repost feature allows users to re-share other users’ sounds and sets, the SoundCloud take on playlists. In addition to these new features and asthetic improvements, SoundCloud will begin using push notifications to let users instantly know of reposts or likes. The email system has gotten a buff as well, with SoundCloud implementing what it calls improved algorithms that deliver faster, more relevant searches.
SoundCloud hopes to give out “tens of thousands” of invites over this beta period, and expects to launch a public beta in a matter of months. The final, revamped SoundCloud will be released before the end of the year. What do you think? Are you a SoundCloud user? How do you feel about the changes? Leave a comment below and let us know.