SOURCE: Abacast Inc.

Abacast Inc.

September 17, 2013 05:00 ET

Abacast Officially Launches Beta of Live Song Skipping Feature on Federated Media's WMEE

Initial Analysis Shows Longer Session Lengths vs. Non-Skip-Enabled Streams; Abacast Also Announces New MusicStart™ Feature, Ensuring That Complete Songs Will Always Play at the Start of Live Streams

VANCOUVER, WA--(Marketwired - Sep 17, 2013) - Abacast, a provider of digital radio streaming and monetization software and services, announced that it released the beta version of its live-stream song skipping feature on 8/1/13 on Federated Media's WMEE, supporting desktop usage.

The service enables listeners who are listening to live radio streams to skip songs that they don't want to hear. When a listener chooses to skip a song that is currently being played, another song from the station's playlist will be played immediately and in its entirety for that listener. Abacast's patent pending Personalized Live Radio's technology ensures that the rest of the stream, including songs, DJ's, and commercials, is played seamlessly and in its entirety as well, resulting in a personalized live stream for each user.

Initial analysis of the beta usage to-date shows that, compared to non-skip-enabled stream, the session lengths with the skip feature are longer. Abacast plans on releasing more detailed metrics shortly after the skip feature is released into production in Q4 2013.

"The feedback on the skip feature from our user base has been extremely positive," said James Derby, Director of Interactive Media at Federated Media. "We realize that sometimes listeners don't want to hear certain songs, and this new technology allows for more choice. We work hard attracting listeners to our brand -- the skip feature enables them to avoid songs they don't want to hear and stay on our stream."

As part of the skip service, PD's are provided with reports showing which songs are skipped and in what frequency and how long into the song each skip request occurred, which they can use to refine programming.

"The reporting system with this service contains the songs that are being skipped most frequently and provide our PD's with valuable insight into actual listening preferences, which we've incorporated directly into our programming," added Mr. Derby.

Abacast is also announcing its new, patent pending MusicStart™ service for Q1 2014. Also built on Abacast's Personalized Live Radio technology, MusicStart™ guarantees that all streams start off with music, with a goal of vastly reducing stream abandonments due to in-progress ad breaks or songs.

"Our Personalized Live Radio service, which includes song-skipping and MusicStart™, enables live digital audio to be competitive feature-wise with playlist services, while preserving the uniqueness of radio's live, local, programmed experience," said Rob Green, Abacast CEO. "We are excited to bring this innovation to the broadcast radio market."

About Abacast (www.abacast.com)
Abacast is a leading provider of streaming, advertising, and audience analytics services for the digital radio industry. Abacast's software and services drive advertising revenue, build listener loyalty, grow audiences, and deliver top-quality user experiences. Abacast was founded in 2000 and currently serves over 200 customers and over 1,000 stations.