What was Primephonic? The classical music streaming service exp

(Pocket-lint) – Primephonic is a now-defunct music streaming service that completely provided classical music. It was acquired by Apple, and brought offline in the summertime of 2021.

A publish on the Primephonic web site states that “the Primephonic service has been taken offline. We’re engaged on a tremendous new classical music expertise from Apple for subsequent yr.”

As of writing, this Apple classical music service has but to materialise, although there was proof that it is within the works.

Should you’re within the companies that Primephonic used to supply, you will discover these under:

What did Primephonic provide? 

Primephonic was a whole classical music streaming app. Primephonic’s finest function was its search as a result of it enabled customers to go looking classical music by interval, style, fashion or personnel, resembling who carried out the efficiency. Primarily, customers may sift by huge portions of classical music by taking a look at different elements (as much as eight variables) relatively than simply the artist, track, or album search accessible on different streaming apps.


Based in 2017, the service boasted over three and a half million tracks from 170,000 artists throughout 230,000 albums and a pair of,400 labels. A handbook curation group labored to ensure all the pieces was categorised appropriately. Primephonic claimed to have the most important classical database on the earth, at 230,000 albums.

“Classical music is sophisticated…it has a whole lot of information related to it” says head of curation Man Jones. A single piece can have a whole bunch of various recordings and demonstrated this to Pocket-lint by exhibiting a Beethoven piano concerto with 571 completely different recordings accessible. The app recommends the choose of the variations – which is curated manually for the highest 500 works. 

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The playlists have been additionally curated with the classical listener in thoughts – relatively than only a bunch of “stress-free classical” tracks that may be discovered on one other platform, Primephonic had extra granular newbie playlists like Choral Necessities or Renaissance Necessities to get customers began. And, in fact, there have been quite a few new releases.

Jones mentioned that classical music is so numerous “however it’s attention-grabbing that classical is that this factor that individuals really feel they’ve to know earlier than they will get pleasure from it. There’s a long-standing concept that it’s elitist.” Nevertheless, Jones argued that it doesn’t should be elitist and there are many entry factors.

“There’s an thought of classical music as being peaceable and stress-free,” mentioned Jones. “Loads of it may be thrilling, despairing, hyperactive or the rest.”

What subscriptions and apps did it have? 

A full subscription value £9.99 (Premium) or £14.99 (Platinum) a month. There was a 14-day free trial. The distinction between the 2 tiers was basically the streaming high quality – both 320kbps MP3 or 24-bit lossless FLAC. Customers may save by paying both £99.99 or £149.99 upfront for a yr.

Primephonic CEO Thomas Steffans instructed us that the cut up between the 2 subscriptions was roughly 45/55 with most choosing the upper audio high quality.

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There have been iOS and Android apps, in addition to a web-based app on Macs and PCs. Offline listening was supported on the cell apps as anticipated. It was additionally absolutely built-in with Sonos.

It couldn’t be used with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant units on the time, however customers may naturally hook up with these units and others with Bluetooth, Chromecast, and AirPlay.

Digital booklets

Primephonic had launched booklets, which have been PDFs of CD inlays that customers didn’t get the expertise of with streaming. Due to the detailed data they contained, together with them added one thing to the expertise.

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Primephonic had collaborated with main labels resembling Sony, Common, and Harmonia Mundi, in addition to stacks of smaller labels, over the booklets and was offering tens of hundreds of them for listeners already. Primephonic mentioned it was planning on bringing them to as many albums as potential.

“CD booklets are crucial to classical music fans,” mentioned Steffens. “Our subscribers are passionate in regards to the style and need to soak up as a lot data detailing composers, instrumentalists, and conductors, as potential.”

Writing by Dan Grabham. Modifying by Luke Baker.

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