Tidal, the high-quality music streaming site designed mostly for musicians disillusioned with iTunes and Spotify royalties, is amazingly still here. As first noted by The Verge, Tidal’s latest push for continued attention arrives today in the form of new Android TV and Apple TV apps. And yet, we’re in shock the service still exists.
After Kanye West famously implored Apple to take Tidal off owner Jay Z’s hands last year, a $200 million investment from Sprint kept the service afloat in 2017 despite predictions that it might not even survive 2015 or 2016. Tidal somehow made it through this year, which apparently means it’s time to expand to more platforms.
If you’re in the tiny Venn diagram overlapping Tidal subscribers and owners of not-quite-number-one video streaming devices, you’ll be happy to know that you can now access Tidal’s catalog of music, concerts, music videos, and livestreams through your television. Specifically, Tidal promises that its 130,000 music videos are in “High Definition,” and its “HiFi audio experience” is “uncompromising.” 4K UHD support? Not mentioned.
Tidal’s rivals in the music streaming industry have reported steadily rising revenues as users continue to transition from buying music to monthly subscriptions. Seeking differentiation, Tidal’s fortunes have been tied largely to its exclusive deals with handfuls of prominent musicians, who have removed their catalogs from competing services and released albums on timed exclusives to inspire hard-core fans to subscribe. Individual releases from Beyoncé, Kanye West, Rihanna, and Jay Z have caused seemingly temporary spikes in the service’s subscription base, though critics have questioned whether fans merely sign on for free trials before departing.
Even fellow multi-millionaire artists such as Snoop Dogg have talked about bootlegging Tidal exclusives rather than paying for subscriptions. But hey, Tidal is now on Android TV and Apple TV.