Cloudy mother of a jukebox! Dreaming of my future music player.

With recent iTunes rumors floating around, here’s what I hope my future music player will be like:

  • It will look very much like a mix between Songbird, SoundCloud, Last.fm and Spotify.
  • It’s not really a piece of software, rather it’s a service. It stores playlists, music and social graph data in the cloud, with open interfaces so that my friends and their players can know about my music.
  • I can drag and drop any song link on it. If the link is, say, a SoundCloud song url, the player sniffs the hAudio on that page and caches an mp3-stream locally. It loads my friends’ comments on the song as well. I can surf the web much like in Songbird and save links (=songs) in my playlists as I encounter them.
  • It will have an oversized local cache, that I don’t have to think about. There is no explicit handling of files. The only thing my player handles are links of all kinds. Links to songs or collections of songs (It does not have to be explicit links to files however). I can take any of these links and pass on to my friends.
  • There will be an open service (or several, ..and soon!) with unique urls to every song in the world (e.g. http://songs.ru/USPR37300012), that serve metadata and pointers to where files can be found (e.g. http://soundcloud.com/forss/soulhack.mp3). I can drag any song link to a playlist–my player identifies the song and tries to fetch it using the above-mentioned service and/or other means (it could (even) ask me to buy it). If it can’t find the actual song file it still saves a pointer and metadata for it. That way I can keep and share my playlists/bookmarks without having to care if I have the actual file or not.
  • My player keeps my cache in good condition. It periodically checks for broken links, etc.
  • There’s no “sync to mobile device”. Rather, the mobile device has its own interface to the cloud service and handles caching/streaming by itself. My playlists can be accessed from anywhere and are updated instantly.
  • I can browse and play my library from my linux-based uPnP device as well, from whereever.
  • It can do things like show a smart playlist with an activity stream style feed of what my friends have been listening to.
  • With it I can build a song library over time that goes way back, much like del.icio.us does for links. My library can grow over 5, or 20 years. It’s just a collection of pointers. In the future, when better audio formats are available, my player silently refreshes its cache with FLAC files, or 5.1 24 bit surround files.
  • It differs from iTunes or Spotify in the sense that it is open. Open.
  • It… may never exist. But there are some signs of hope.