The Rhapsody music service has been through a lot of change in recent years — spinning off from RealNetworks, acquiring Napster, bringing on new investors, making cutbacks, growing its subscriber base and still aiming to become profitable in an increasingly competitive market for subscription music.
One more big change: The company recently moved into new headquarters in downtown Seattle’s Columbia Center, complete with a live music stage, conference rooms named after Seattle music icons, and plenty of music memorabilia.
GeekWire took a tour of the new Rhapsody space for this installment of Launch Pads. Check out the space in the video above. This series, sponsored by Knoll, takes a peek inside some of the coolest and most interesting technology offices in the Pacific Northwest.
We happened to tour the Rhapsody space on the same day that Amazon launched its new subscription, and our tour guide was Ethan Rudin, Rhapsody’s chief financial officer, so we took the opportunity to ask for his take on Amazon’s new service.
From a competitive standpoint, he pointed out that Rhapsody has more than 30 million tracks in its service, compared to 1 million for Amazon Prime Music at launch.
But overall, Rudin said, more companies getting into the music subscription business translates into greater awareness that ultimately should help Rhapsody, because the company specializes in music and isn’t beholden to any one tech company’s ecosystem. That’s unlike tech giants such as Apple and Amazon, which use their music services to round out their product lines and pull people into their platforms.
“For us, we’re pure play. We’re ubiquitous to ecosystem and device,” Rudin said. “And we’re genuinely here for music, and music only.”
Watch the video tour above, and click any image below to open a gallery of pictures.