Just my 5 cents...
There's a lot of noise right now on the Internet about Jay-Z's "flopping" Tidal service. But I think all the critics are forgetting one important issue or maybe they know it but choose to ignore it for whatever reason.
I can't for the life of me hear the difference between Lossless and AC320. I've taken the test multiple times and I've gotten anything from 3 out of 5 to 0 out of 5. It might be my stereo, my med-high quality headphones or my hearing or all three. I want to hear the difference, but I just can't.
But there is one major difference between Tidal and Spotify that should be clear (even though you might have a hearing problem or a bad stereo). And that is that Tidal (at least in some way) are coming from the artists themselves. And that's a bold move and that's what the music industry and artists needs to do to take control over the consumption of their art. It's the exact same thing that the old part of the publishing industry has failed to do.
At least for some languages e-books appear to be more of a nuisance than a blessing. But it appears that the old publishing industry rather than trying to take control of it just let it run wild - leaving the field wide open to services like danish startup Mofibo and similar. There's SOO much more that could be done with the e-book format if somebody with industry knowledge would just take control and drive it. Whether the publishing industry likes it or not - the e-book format is part of the experience of reading a book.
Back to music.
Whether the artists like it or not - music today is mostly consumed on an iPod, iPhone or similar. Although I love vinyl and that Jack White broke a most-sales record with Lazaretto with more than 7K copies - most people still consume music on an MP3-player or smartphone. I'm deeply grateful for Jack White for bringing back vinyl and opening my eyes to it.
But no matter how grateful I am most still people listen to music on their MP3-player or smartphone.
The interesting thing is that the art of music is still the "same" but the format with which it is consumed has changed. And it has changed a lot. How I see what Jay-Z is doing is that he's trying to bring the control of the music format back to the artists. And this is all important.
Because the incentives of the artists will always be to protect their fans and make sure that they get the best experience out of their music. Nobody else than the artists can do this.
At least I hope that's why Jay-Z & Co. are doing this :)
If this is true - then give Jay-Z & Co. a break. Yes maybe there has been a few marketing blunders here and there. But the rest of us so called "entrepreneurs" also need to try a couple of times to get it right.
Disclaimer: I mention Jay-Z multiple times. But trust me I'm actually not a fan of his music. I can see he's very skilled and all but it's just not my style :)