EXCLUSIVE Samsung Milk Goes Off In OZ
Samsung Milk has gone sour with the music service set to be closed down in Australia on April 28th, customers were told the news earlier today by email.
Samsung has denied that the Korean Company is looking to buy the struggling Tidal streaming service.
The email that was sent to Australian customers read ‘With a heavy heart, we will be closing the service in Australia on April 28, 2016. After this date, you will no longer be able to stream music or access your cached music from Samsung Milk Music on your Samsung device’.
Samsung said that f you have subscribed to Milk Premium, the auto-renewal of your current subscription will be automatically disabled on March 21, 2016. We will also no longer be accepting any new subscriptions or renewals after March 21, 2016.
The shut-down comes two years after Samsung unveiled Milk Music with big fanfare as a competitor to Pandora.
The service, which offered consumers personalised radio stations, had initially been exclusive to owners of select mobile devices made by the company. Samsung later opened up Milk Music on the Web, and brought it to its smart TVs as well, but never released apps for phones from other manufacturers.
In the past Samsung has promoted deals with EMI but this also failed to take off in Australia.
Milk Music was initially meant to be part of a bigger move toward a new generation of media services that would add value to Samsung devices while also adding incremental advertising and subscription revenue to Samsung’s bottom line.
The Company even built out their own transaction platform in an effort to sell content to consumers.
As part of that strategy, Samsung launched Milk Video as a platform for short-form video content in late 2014. There had been plans to branch out with the Milk brand into sports and other forms of entertainment as well.
But late last year, Samsung closed down Milk Video after it failed to gain traction with consumers.
Now, Milk Music has also bitten the dust
A source close to the company said that Samsung executives are looking to “clean house” after spending significantly on Milk Music without seeing the expected returns. Another source with knowledge of the project said that the service’s free component has seen some traction with consumers, but that hardly anyone bothered to pay for Milk’s premium tier, much to the dismay of senior executives.
A first sign that Milk Music was in trouble was on display at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this year.
During the show, executives touted how well Samsung’s TVs work with third-party media services, but didn’t mention or show Samsung’s own Milk Music smart TV app at all.
And when Samsung recently introduced its new Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge smart phones, Milk Music was again nowhere to be seen.
Insiders and sources close to the company said that that the Milk Music team has seen significant staff reductions over the past couple of months. “A lot of people in the organization have left or are shifting positions,” said one source.
It’s still unclear what exactly is going to replace Milk Music. Samsung had been in talks with Tidal about a potential acquisition, and Tidal owner Jay Z even stopped by Samsung’s campus to meet with the company’s executives last October. The New York Post reported last month that the two parties have picked up talks again.
However, multiple music industry insiders cautioned that an acquisition may be far from certain even before Samsung’s official denial.
any see a partnership with Tidal or another streaming service as a likelier option.
This would also fit better in Samsung’s overall strategy: After failing to get its own services off the ground, Samsung has over the last year or two moved toward striking deals with high-profile partners. In 2014 Samsung shut down its own electronic book store to partner with Amazon on a customized Kindle app for Samsung devices. And at CES, Samsung announced a new “Made for Samsung” program that will include co-branded apps from partners like Expedia, CNN and the Weather Channel.