Founded in 2015, JOOX is a relatively new kid on the block making waves across the music streaming industry. Today, JOOX rivals some of the most prestigious music streaming platforms. Being a fairly recent addition to the market perhaps makes it less well known than some of its competitors, particularly to Western audiences. However, this doesn’t mean it should be overlooked. Let’s visit some of JOOX’s key features and benefits and see why it might be the best music streaming platform for you.
JOOX primarily caters to the Asian market, with its headquarters in Hong Kong. JOOX has established itself as the largest music streaming app in Asia and is free to use. The Tencent-owned free music streaming platform offers their user access to an impressive catalogue of music from a diverse selection of genres.
You may be wondering, ‘how many songs does JOOX have?’ The answer to your question is over 40 Million songs. A slightly more modest number than some of the other players in music streaming, but a pretty impressive number, nonetheless.
JOOX has some unique features for a music streaming service and knows how to play to its target market. JOOX music streaming has recognised its place first and foremost as a key player in the Asian music streaming market. Therefore, it offers specific features to ensure it maintains this position and status.
Once you have signed up for your free JOOX account and joined the JOOX register, you can begin to explore all the features that the platform has to offer. JOOX is keen to promote its karaoke function, tapping into the popularity of karaoke across Asia. Making this an integral part of the JOOX service sets the platform apart from other music streaming platforms who perhaps don’t make this such a key feature.
The addition of karaoke adds a more interactive dimension to the platform with users able to duet with their favourite artists. Continuing on the topic of interactivity, JOOX also boasts their ‘ROOMS’ service. This gives users the option to join in audio or video-based group chats whilst listening to their favourite songs.
It seems that JOOX has been clever in adding these features, establishing itself somewhere in between a music streaming platform and a social media platform.
We’ve already briefly visited JOOX’s favour towards video features, but JOOX doesn’t stop with video chatting. JOOX offers video live streams of popular artists which you can watch and interact with, very much like Youtube’s live stream feature.
Similar to TikTok, JOOX provides users with a trending video section showing them popular short videos from around the world.
As well as, accessing album artwork and lyrics, the user has the option to watch music videos and artist interviews. This further enhances the interactive element that JOOX seems incredibly keen to champion.
Like many other music streaming platforms, JOOX music’s free streaming platform offers the user the option to listen to pre-curated playlists, as well as make their own. JOOX also has a queuing feature meaning music can be played in the order of your choosing. On top of this, users can upload pre-existing songs from their devices to play through the JOOX music player.
For non-paying users, some of these features will be limited or the overall experience slightly lessened with the addition of ads and a slightly lower quality of sound, so what about JOOX premium?
JOOX premium or ‘VIP’ is a paid service available for any user to upgrade to. One advantage of becoming a VIP is the removal of ads making for an uninterrupted listening experience. Paid users also have the freedom to download their favourite tracks to listen to when offline for on-the-go listening. VIPs can select the ‘Auto-Download’ option which conveniently downloads songs from their JOOX playlist to their chosen device automatically. A great feature for those with a busy lifestyle.
The VIP option is a great consideration for those who want to access features such as the JOOX music mp3 download service, are serious about a seamless listening experience, and have a bit of extra cash to spend.
Whilst the JOOX online player is an option that is immediately accessible, users can also download the JOOX app for both iOS and Android. The JOOX app shares many similarities with the browser version and makes these available in one neat little package on your device’s home screen. After you have downloaded the app, you can access your playlists, videos, and downloads at the touch of a button.
On their website, JOOX mentions their admiration of local music scenes and states how they aim to make it easier for such musicians to reach their listeners. Independent artists can distribute their music with JOOX via the JOOX artist sign-up. Although how they do this is not immediately obvious from the JOOX website. Most probably through the use of a distribution service like ourselves.
During the pandemic, JOOX’s South African division launched their ‘Gig to Earn’ initiative whereby the country’s artists could apply for a 30-minute-long live broadcast slot on the JOOX platform to generate some much-needed extra income during this time of monetary hardship.
When speaking on eNCA, Brett Loubser – Tencent Africa’s CEO – was sympathetic towards the struggling musician. He explained to the viewer how performing is a musician’s primary source of income, and how devastating the impact of the pandemic had been on their livelihoods. He also said that JOOX pays the artists directly for their performance which makes a strong case for the ethical thinking behind the JOOX platform.
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With the music streaming industry becoming increasingly saturated, it’s important to weigh up your choices. Let’s take a look at some key industry competitors and see which could be the best streaming service for you.
First of all, when asking this question, it is important to consider your geographic location. With JOOX only available in Asia and South Africa at this moment in time, it isn’t accessible to many of us outside of these places. However, looking at their track record of expansion, JOOX taking on the West is certainly not out of the question.
In terms of their features, there is a great deal of overlap between JOOX and Spotify. Both offer the users features you would expect from a music streaming platform such as playlists, album artwork, lyrics, queuing of tracks, and the option to download tracks depending on your subscription. Both also share in the freemium approach to the streaming business offering a slightly preferable treatment to those with a paid subscription.
An easy comparison to make is the size of each platform’s music library. Spotify trumps JOOX’s comparatively meagre musical offerings with a colossal library of over 82 million tracks so if you’re looking for something extremely specific or variety is a deal-breaker, Spotify might be your best bet.
Although, if K-pop is one of your preferred genres, perhaps JOOX is a better choice considering its place in the Asian market, and also Spotify’s licensing dispute with Kakao Entertainment last year, resulting in the removal of some K-pop tracks.
A major difference between the two platforms is the level that which JOOX pushes interactivity within its platform. Features such as trending videos, and the option to chat are yet to be seen on the Spotify platform. It will be interesting to see whether Spotify jumps on this trend in the upcoming years.
Whether you choose a platform that is more or less interactive is a personal preference. Some may wish to keep their music streaming platform solely for listening to music, whereas others may prefer a more all-inclusive experience, accessing a well-rounded music streaming and social media service.
Apple Music is another industry heavyweight with an immense number of songs. Over 90 million tracks to be exact, outweighing even Spotify’s generous offerings.
Again, there are many similarities to be found between JOOX and Apple Music. These include the wide selection of pre-curated playlists at your fingertips, a variety of album artwork for your viewing pleasure. Also, the option to display song lyrics to sing along with your favourite tracks. However, this final feature is somewhat downplayed by Apple when considering JOOX’s enthusiastic approach to karaoke. Would this feature alone be enough for you to make the move from Apple music?
A major difference between the two platforms is Apple’s ‘Voice’ plan which is designed for use with Siri. This feature allows the user to access the track of their choosing simply by using their voice. If you’re a busy Apple user with little time to manually select the songs you want to hear, this feature may be the decider for you.
Other than Apple Music’s free trial, it is a paid subscription service. Perhaps this gives JOOX the edge for the thriftier music streamer. Like paying JOOX users, Apple Music subscribers can download tracks but for them, the number of downloads is capped at 100,000.
Although JOOX may not be the most well-known music streaming platform, particularly in the West, it certainly has its charms and makes for strong competition against some of the most established music streaming platforms in the business. Interactivity is at the heart of JOOX and for a listener who desires a more immersive streaming experience than is achievable with a more traditional music streaming service, JOOX is well worth consideration.
In many ways, JOOX exists on the plane between a music streaming platform and social media. This makes it unique in many respects. For many, it may be an appealing prospect to have music and social media all in one place rather than finding each feature interchangeably across several apps or online platforms.
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