When I’ve written about Stationhead, I’ve focused on how the startup aims to bring theand interactivity of a live radio broadcast to streaming Music. But CEO Ryan Star said his ambitions are broader now: “We’re going to be the largest platform in the world.” The startup says it’s snowballing, with 100,000 users increasing by 65% each month and 500,000 total users. There are 6,300 hosts on the platform, and they created nearly 2 million and recorded streams in the first three months of the year.
COO Murray Levison told me that the pandemic had brought more artists to the platform as they sought new ways to reach their fans. For example, Cardi B joined the fan show Bardigangradio last month, prompting 132,000 paidand Spotify during the broadcast. (Station head integrates with both Music — when DJ cues up a song, it’s playing through your account.) At the same time, Star (who co-founded the company due to his frustrations as an independent musician) and Levison suggested that is not quite as central to their vision as it used to be. Instead, they said Stationhead is all about broadcasting, with or without Music.
From a product perspective, Levison said they’re trying toand everyday people to use.” At the same time, he added, “Music is still at the core of what we’ve built. Just like games are to Twitch, Music is our social glue.” While the company emphasizes the live experience (which Levison described as “the core value prop”), Stationhead also supports recording shows for listening later. 50% of users are listening to both life and recorded performances. It has also beta-tested allowing broadcasters to monetize their shows.
Of course, you can’t talk about social audio without talking about Clubhouse, which attracted 2 millionJanuary, according to CEO Paul Davison. Levison suggested that the buzz around Clubhouse has get more excited about social audio. And Star argued that the companies are taking very different approaches. “It’s in the name Clubhouse; it’s exclusive,” Star said. “It’s about social climbing and getting closer to the stage. [Stationhead is] living where Cardi B was excited to meet her fans. We are for the 99 percent.” I also contacted intelligence company SensorTower for its latest download data. SensorTower told me that StationHead had been installed 349,000 , compared to 16.3 million installs for Clubhouse. (StationHead are on the web and, therefore, not tracked by SensorTower.)