Myspace Is Back — As an iOS App

Myspace-660x474Myspace, the social network that dominated the early part of this century, has risen from the ashes. Or at least, that’s the plan, as Myspace’s new website emerges from beta along with a new mobile app.

The experience on both platforms is designed around three key tenets: connections, discovery, and the ability to create. Myspace has maintained a few major aspects that defined its original product: the Top 8, which lets you place favorite connections in a coveted spot on your profile, and its focus on music. Oh, and GIFs. The GIFs are in full effect. Otherwise looks and feels like a completely different product — one you may, surprisingly, be interested in using.

Like any newer social network emerging these days, you can log-in with Facebook or Twitter to jumpstart the experience. Unlike the “old” Myspace some of you may remember, your relationship with others on the new service is unidirectional. As with Twitter, you follow others, and they can follow you back — Myspace calls it connecting. But you can connect with far more than just people — things like music, songs, albums, and photographs.

“What that does is help define who you are through your connections,” Ali Tahmasbi, Myspace VP of product marketing, told Wired. “People can see what you’re into and it helps to curate your experience.”

The company wanted to keep some aspects of the classic Myspace profile — personality and customization — while maintaining consistency and the user experience. It’s reminiscent of a Facebook or Path profile, with a profile image and a background cover image, but also seems to share design cues with Google+. Below that, your page is populated by things you’ve connected with and items you’ve posted. People with whom you have connected can also post to your profile.

To post text, images, or GIFs, you tap the Create button at the bottom of the app interface. For GIFs, an easy-to-use GIF-maker is built-in (sweet!). You can also share your posts to Twitter and Facebook for maximum tail-eating social effectiveness.

Another major feature is personalized radio. The service builds a station of the music you have connected to, music you’ve put into a mix, or what you’ve listened to on-demand on the website. If you click on a musician’s radio station, it’s not just their music, it’s what they’re listening to. Tahmasbi says Myspace thinks this is a way it can help strengthen the connection between artists and their fans. We agree — what’s Daft Punk listening to? What’s Justin Timberlake listening to? It’s a peek inside their worlds that could provide hints as to what will influence their upcoming music. You know, as long as they’re using Myspace, too.

Therein lies a problem. With so many social networking apps already taking up our time and our smartphone screens, why would anyone go back to using Myspace?

“There’s still a gap in terms of what Myspace used to provide — a place for the creative community where people could express themselves,” Tahmasbi said. “For people looking to collaborate and discover around content, I think this is something different and something that will draw people to the application.”

You can grab the iOS-only Myspace app for free from the App Store.


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