Irish music discovery app Soundwave comes out of beta on 20 June

17 Jun 2013

A member of the Soundwave team participating in the Start Up Soccer tournament. Photo via Soundwave's Facebook Page

This Thursday will see the full release of Soundwave, a music-discovery app created and developed in Ireland that Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak called “a music product that so perfectly fits my life”.

We’ve been tracking the progress of Soundwave and the Irish start-up of the same name for more than a year now. First came a second-place People’s Choice Award finish at Dublin Beta in late April 2012, followed by an out-and-out win at NDRC’s Lift Off competition in May, which earned the team a €50,000 investment.

In the year that has passed since, Soundwave has undergone beta testing with users such as high-profile early adopter Stephen Fry and is now complete and ready for a full public release on Thursday, 20 June.

The app will be free to download from the iTunes App Store and Google Play, giving Android and iOS users the ability to see what music their friends are listening to in real-time across a number of services.

How it works

Soundwave tracks what users are listening to in their native music apps, as well as through streaming services like Spotify and Rdio. This information appears in the Soundwave feed as it happens, providing a window onto what friends and others that you follow are listening to right now.

To listen back to these tracks, users can either avail of iTunes previews or purchase directly from the app, or they can listen for free through YouTube or SoundCloud where available.

The app also tracks listeners’ location and feeds this back to other users, so if you want to see what people in a selected area are listening to, you simply draw it on a map.

As well as taking a cut for music sold through the app, Soundwave stands to benefit financially from the listening data that the app generates and collates.

Soundwave app screens

A special event to celebrate the app’s release will take place in Apple’s flagship store on Regent Street, London, on Monday 24 June, with Fry in attendance, and a separate Dublin launch party is also in the works.

Elaine Burke is the editor of Silicon Republic