As we approach Midem 2013, the legendary music industry tradeshow in Cannes, now seems like an apt moment to delve a little into Serendip, a new iOS app that proclaims to offer “…true social music on-the-go.”
The roll out follows four months after the startup launched a Web app, which lets you find people who share your music tastes.
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The iOS app follows a similar path; it connects users with potential music soulmates – those who share similar musical tastes and, on the back of this, creates a continuous playlist based on the music they’re sharing.
How it works
First up, you have to connect either with Twitter or Facebook when signing up…this is fundamentally a social app, after all. Once in, you’ll be asked to create a user profile within Serendip itself.
This is where the social element comes in to play. It identifies your existing Twitter/Facebook contacts already using Serendip. It will automatically follow these friends within the app, unless you choose not to.
The onus is now on you to tell Serendip what your favorite artists are – this gets the ball rolling, and lets you connect with like-minded music fans. You can skip this part, however.
Serendip also takes this opportunity to recommend some DJs to follow, based on the artists you indicated you like. Click ‘Done’, and you’re good to go.
You’ll see a stream of people with similar tastes to you, and I guess the idea here on in, is that you’ll discover new music, or rare/career-defining performances from your favorite artists.
Perhaps the biggest surprise for me here was that Serendip wasn’t purely an audio experience – it taps YouTube and Vevo to serve up video delights too. So if someone has a penchant for a particular performance from Jools Holland twenty years ago, you can watch within the app for yourself.
You can dive in to a friend’s profile and see what else they listen to, and play the exact songs they’ve previously listened to.
Based on our initial tinkerings, the Serendip mobile app offers a beautiful interface, and worked like a charm…no first-day teething problems detected. And it did what it proclaimed to do – it played tracks continuously, and knew what I liked.
Users can also reshare their music choices with friends and followers, and both the mobile and Web apps are in sync with each other.
Serendip was founded in Tel Aviv, Israel, in 2011, by Sagee Ben-Zedeff and Asaf Atzmon. It’s a privately held company with $850,000 seed investment from Gigi Levy, The Jeff Pulver Micro Angel Fund, Yossi Gofman and Tron Capital. It’s currently working on its next round of funding.
“Everyone loves listening to music, but enjoying a lean-back radio-like experience that isn’t lame is pretty much impossible,” explains Ben-Zedeff, who’s also CEO. “And I am not even mentioning discovery. That’s why we created Serendip – to give users a ready-made playlist, but one that’s interesting and constantly updated. Our ‘magic sauce’ is the music friends we match you with, which will be the one making up your playlist, in a way that no algorithm can.”
The iOS app is available to download for free now.
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