Stephen Fry’s favourite mobile audio start-up, AudioBoo, is taking a major step forward by launching a browser-based solution.
Audio can be recorded directly within the web app using a microphone or webcam mic attached to your computer. Alternatively you can use the service to upload any audio clips that you’ve already recorded elsewhere.
As with the mobile version of AudioBoo there is a five minute limit on the length of the uploads, although a paid option for uploading longer clips is being prepared.
An image and location tag can be linked to each upload. Like all AudioBoo uploads, the clips can be played back via the service’s own website or by using an embeddable audio player elsewhere. All uploads are automatically uploaded to iTunes too, making this a great tool for podcasters.
Until now AudioBoo has mainly been used for ‘audio diary’ and interview-type applications by bloggers and journalists (as well as some broadcasters including Stephen Fry). As a mobile app it was well-suited to that purpose. The move on the browser repositions AudioBoo as a much more flexible service for archiving and sharing audio of all kinds.
Mark Rock, the founder of Audioboo, says: “Our ambition is to be the Youtube of the spoken word. Expanding the service to non smartphone users is a logical step in this. We have been careful to make the process as simple and intuitive as it is on the iPhone and are looking forward to the range of applications, voices and fine content that this release creates”.
It will be interesting to see how users take to the new feature. Here are a few of the ideas I’ve thought of for using browser-based uploading:
- Podcasters could use the forthcoming premium option to enable them to upload complete programmes, using the service as a quick and easy hosting solution. With each user account having an RSS feed and iTunes feed this is a particularly interesting idea.
- Even without the premium option, the service may encourage a new wave of short-form podcasts. Many popular podcasts are at least half an hour in length. ‘Bite-size’ alternatives may appeal to some listeners.
- Museums with archives of historically significant audio could use the service to open their collections to the world.
- Radio presenters and voice-over artists looking for jobs could use the service to host demos of their work.
You’ll be able to try out browser-based recording and uploading at AudioBoo.fm from Thursday 3 December.