Rumoured music app will make Facebook a true one stop shop

lara_web

A giveaway line of code in Facebook’s newly launched video app, suggests the social network is set to launch a music downloading service – the latest in a line of innovations intended to ensure users never need to click away from the site.

A keen-sighted web developer and blogger, Jeff Rose, spotted the use of the errant words “MusicDownloadDialog” in the plug-in for Facebook’s new Skype-based video calling application:

Here’s the code extract in question:

(paramString.equals(“com.facebook.peep”))
return this.window.getMember(“VideoChatPlugin”);
if (paramString.equals(“com.facebook.vibes”)) {
return this.window.getMember(“MusicDownloadDialog”);

Facebook has yet to respond on whether the new music app, seemingly named “Vibes” is in fact a work in progress, but the fact that the social network hired former Spotify designer Rasmus Andersson last year has led to speculation that the company must have something music-based up its sleeve.

Andersson’s former company is also set to be launching in the US “as soon as possible” and with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg saying his site will no longer focus on user numbers, but instead user engagement, a music service does not seem out of the question. Neither does Spotify’s involvement.

Earlier this week, Marketing Week editor Mark Choueke, said Facebook needs to continue being useful, or it will shed users that are already leaving the social networking site in their droves.

A music download service is certainly useful. Especially if users can share the recent tracks they have bought and recommend them to others.

Current third-party music recommendation services on Facebook look like messy spam, and are not universal enough in terms of reach to have a real effect when a user is looking to promote their favourite artist to friends who might be interested. If it’s not a click away, interest wanes.

A Facebook service, that does not require a separate registration – except, perhaps, for an initial input of credit card details – could be the site’s legitimate answer to MySpace, which recently brought Justin Timberlake on board to resuscitate its flat-lining user numbers.

Despite nay-sayers preaching that Facebook is little more than a fad and will become yesterday’s news as quick as the News of the World will sadly be forgotten, every small innovative update it takes will continue to remind users of its usefulness as a one-stop internet shop.

It does social, it does commerce, it does gaming, it does video calling – how long before Facebook becomes a pre-loaded portal homepage on our desktops?

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