MWC

Samsung Pulls the Plug on Milk

Tim Maytom

milk devicesSamsung has announced plans to shut down its Milk Music streaming service on 22 September, with existing users encouraged to switch to Slacker, the music streaming service that powers Milk.

Milk Music was launched in 2014 as a free personalised radio service for Samsung customers, similar to Pandora. It was part of a larger scheme designed to attract people to Samsung handsets with services that could also generate revenues in the future, and was launched alongside a video aggregation app called Milk Video.

However, both services failed to find much of an audience, with Milk Video shut down in September 2015, a year after launching. A planned expansion into streaming sports coverage never materialised, and Samsung's US-based services group went through a series of layoffs.

The latest departures, last month, included senior vice president of business development Steve Standford, vice president and general manager of content and services Ian Langridge, and executive vice president of media solutions John Pleasants.

Pleasants, previously co-president of Disney's Interactive Media Group, had been one of the strongest voices in calling for Samsung to create its own media services group, and with his departure its likely that most remaining projects in this area will shutter.

"We have made the strategic decision to invest in a partner model focused on seamlessly integrating the best music services available today into our family of Galaxy devices," said a Samsung spokesperson in a statement on the closure of Milk. "We believe that working with partners will accelerate innovation, enhance device sales and provide amazing new experiences for our customers."