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Music-Sharing Takes on New Meaning with New App


The ubiquity of earbuds has turned listening to music into a solo activity — but new technology is making it possible to listen as a group without ever removing your headphones.

Mystream, a mobile device application, which allows listeners to share their music with others around them by playing a song through all of their devices simultaneously, was launched earlier this year by Richard Zelson, a 24-year-old entrepreneur who came up with the idea for this mobile music app while studying abroad in Europe several years ago.

Riding the trains, Zelson found himself envying his friend's music selection, and wished there was a way for them to share the tunes without swapping earbuds.

"I never really thought of it as something I could do as a business," Zelson told BusinessNewsDaily. "I just thought it was a good idea."

His app's device-to-device streaming technology uses Bluetooth and Wi-Fi to allow between six and 12 people to listen to a song at the same time — each of them hearing the tune through their own headphones .

"This lets people listen to music together," Zelson said. "Anytime you would have given someone your earbud, you can just use the Mystream app."

[Zelson's 5 Tips on How to Start a Business Before Age 25 ]

Users can create their own network so that they know who
near them is listening along, Zelson said. In addition, the app allows users within one network to view the others' music selection and listen to short clips, even if that song isn't currently being played on the owner's mobile device.

While there are other apps with the technology to allow one-on-one sharing, Mystream is the first to expand the technology to a whole group, Zelson said.

"We are the only ones who use this advanced technology," he said. "On a scale level, there is no competition."

Zelson has been working to make the app a reality since first crafting the idea several years ago. He has an economics background, so he turned to technology experts to see if the concept was even possible.

After being told that it was, he worked to create a business around it — a process that included working with developers and finding investors.

"I had no idea what I was getting into," Zelson said.  "It has been a very interesting experience."

Mystream is a free app and is available on the iPhone, iPod, iPad, with future plans to expand to Android devices.  

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Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based writer who has nearly 15 years' experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.