SoundCloud is a platform that lets people share the sounds they create, from professional musicians to public companies who want to post earnings calls. The company just unveiled SoundCloud Labs, a site dedicated to experimental projects and features built on the SoundCloud API and developed by employees of the company.
The company has 4 million users, and more than 150 applications based on the API have already been created by external developers, but CEO Alexander Llung told me that SoundCloud Labs (much like Google Labs) grew out of the company’s internal culture and employees’ participation in music hack days and other events.
One of the first Labs features is called TakesQuestions. “You can record a question for me and I will record an answer. It’s like this asynchronous conversation. Somebody from the X-factor in the UK is doing it for instance,” Ljung said. Another interesting Labs project is SocialUnlock, which creates a customized page to promote and stream new sounds and then rewards fans with a download when they share the track link via Twitter.
SoundCloud is based in Berlin, has around 50 employees and has received $13 million in funding from Union Square Ventures and others.