January 26, 2005
../ Beatport Launches Version 2.0
Beatport officially launched Version
2.0 of their best-in-class electronic music online store. The second generation of their service includes many
significant improvements to the user interface, added navigation options, and a major upgrade to the embedded audio player.
Corresponding with 2.0 and in association with their new partner Native Instruments, Beatport will offer a
free software audio player based on Traktor, Native Instruments computer based DJ solution. The Traktor Beatport
Player allows users to play back and mix all of their digital audio files as well as organize and catalog their
collection into playlists and libraries. Additionally, the software supports playback of DJ mix files, which recreate
a pre-recorded DJ performance from a set of regular audio files.
"We are continually striving to evolve and improve our content and service. Beatport 2.0 represents a complete
make over of the Beatport user shopping experience. As evidenced by our new site and our partnerships with the industry leading companies like Native Instruments, Beatport has significantly
raised the standard by offering the most relevant, integrated, hassle-free, online solution for DJs and consumers
looking to purchase up-front club music." stated Jonas Tempel, CEO of Beatport and a fine DJ himself.
Other new features include: Added support for video, ringtones, DJ mix files, and 320 kpbs bit rate MP3s,
a user customizable section allowing subscription to label or artist releases and syndication of specific music
to third party web sites. The most noticeable change is to the interface. Version 2.0 has a more horizontal
graphical user interface making navigation more intuitive. However, due to an all Flash interface the system still could
use some refinement. Browser navigation is rendered useless, and the back/forward buttons on the Flash interface are small and easily missed. The hype area on the homepage doesn't
leave much room for individual label/track promotion, and there appears to be a large area of dead space on the left hand side. In addition, my crate, which had several gems that I mined
from the Beatport library of music, has unfortunately vanished. These issues are minor and pale in comparison to the overall improvement
to the interface and user experience.
The Future: One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind. Version 2.0 increases the
already sizable lead that Beatport has on its competitors in the dance music download space. The mature service once
again raises the high watermark for an industry that is still in the shallow end of the feature pool. Apple's programmers
could certainly learn a few things by giving Beatport 2.0 a thorough evaluation.
>>> Digihear? January 2005
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