Electric Jukebox is a dongle that streams music to a TV. It can be controlled through a remote or voice commands and was introduced last year. The dongle, the remote, and Electric Jukebox’s streaming service only work in the UK, and the hardware costs £169, or around $209. That purchase price includes a one-year subscription to Electric Jukebox’s music service. After a year, users can listen to certain curated channels for free, or resubscribe for £52 to access all albums ad-free for a year. The dongle also displays a slideshow of Getty Images while music plays. I have no idea.
The thinking behind Electric Jukebox is that people want to hang out in the living room and listen to music together. And if they buy Electric Jukebox, they can’t access the streaming service anywhere but on their TV. This probably sounds illogical to you, but the co-creator of Electric Jukebox, Rob Lewis, told Engadget that his company isn’t trying to compete with Spotify. It’s trying to win over the population that hasn’t yet subscribed to a streaming service, as well as older people who don’t get technology. Again, I have no idea.
Electric Jukebox will launch with 29 million tracks cobbled together through deals with Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, and Warner Music Group, among others. Nothing about Electric Jukebox makes sense. For $35, you could buy a Chromecast and stream whatever you want, including music from a free Spotify account. If you’re going to buy a TV dongle, why not get something that streams music, movies, and TV shows?
Is a TV jukebox what we wanted? I’m leaning toward no, but apparently Sheryl Crow and Stephen Fry think I’m wrong.