Online music streaming service, Saavn* has added English content to its catalogue. Including English, the company currently offers content in six different languages including Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, and Gujarati on its portal.
Catalogue: Saavn stated that it has tied up with music labels like Sony Music Entertainment and Universal Music Group for this initiative and claims to have 2,50,000 western songs at launch.
Among the songs offered include new songs and classics from artists like Jay-Z, Pitbull, Shakira and Michael Jackson, Sony Music Artists like AC/DC, Aerosmith, Alicia Keys, Beyonce, Billy Joel, Bob Dylan, Carrie Underwood, Chris Brown, Britney Spears, INXS, Jimmy Hendrix, Johnny Cash, Justin Timberlake, Kings of Leon, Kelly Clarkson, Mariah Carey, Miguel, Oasis, Pink Floyd, and Usher and Universal Music Group artists like Bob Marley, Bryan Adams, Celine Dion, David Guetta, Jennifer Lopez, and Kanye West.
The company stated that through this initiative, it intends to reach out to Western music enthusiasts in the country. It’s however worth noting that Saavn’s competitors Gaana* and Dhingana also offer English music, although the breadth of their catalogues is not known. Only Much Louder’s NH7.in also offers English music but it focusses only on Independent music.
On the other hand, English-language services like Spotify, Rdio and Pandora are yet to make their debut in India. Grooveshark offers English music streaming in the country and claims to have 15 million files on its portal but it’s essentially a user-generated catalog.
Music Labels Deals: As an aside, Saavn also claimed to now have music licensing deals with more than 300 South Asian record labels, up from 200 labels in August 2012. While there is no word on the total number of songs in the company’s catalogue, Saavn had claimed to have 1 million songs in August 2012.
In August 2012, Saavn had launched a feature phone app, allowing users to stream music on their feature phones. The company had claimed that the app works across various handsets manufactured by Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Samsung, and Motorola, however we had later noticed that the app works only in select Nokia S40 devices, as indicated by the company’s app download page.
The company had also stated that it had added support for six new languages including Tamil, Telugu, Marathi and Gujarati on its web, iOS and Android app. It had claimed to have added 75% of all Tamil music content, 90% of all Telugu music content, 90% of all Marathi content, and 90% of all Gujarati content available.
Prior to this, Saavn had claimed to have 9.3 million users across its web portal, iOS and Android apps in March 2012, up by 25% since December 2011 and was witnessing 125,000 new registrations every month. It had also claimed to have clocked over 2 million hours of streaming content per month with more than 1 million streams-per-day. However, it must be noted that the company has a music license to stream in more than 200 countries and India accounts for 58% of Saavn’s usage, followed by United States (10%), United Kingdom (3%).
In addition, the company had also claimed to have 2 million mobile users. While there was no word on the break-up between its Android and iOS users, it had noted that India accounts to 68% of traffic from the Android app and 27% of traffic from the iOS app.
In December 2011, Saavn had also launched an open graph app on Facebook, allowing its users to share their activity on the Facebook Ticker, News Feed, and Timeline. The company had claimed that it had increased its monthly active user base, from 35,000 to 785,000 in the first four weeks of the app launch, with the daily new users of the Facebook app increasing by 40 times, and content shares increasing by four-fold. After three months of launch, Saavn had announced that it had gained over 2 million Facebook-connected users and the company had generated over 1 billion Facebook impressions since launch.
*Disclosure: Saavn is an advertiser with MediaNama. Indiatimes, which owns Gaana.com, is also an advertiser with MediaNama.