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Beatnik Squeezes Music Into Ten Times Less Space

Article Comments  29  

May 29, 2007, 1:25 PM   by (staff)

Beatnik, the technology company founded by Thomas Dolby, today announced a new audio format for mobile devices. The format can reduce the size of a song up to ten times more than MP3 can by taking parts of the song that are used more than once and only including one copy in the file - calling up that musical phrase where it is needed after that. Beatnik is proposing that including support for this musical format in future phones would allow carriers to offer over the air (OTA) track downloads to users of entry level or 2G phones, and not just 3G subscribers. Beatnik has developed a music player for handsets in addition to the file format, so that carriers could quickly roll out support for it. They expect to announce carriers and manufacturers who will launch the format in about a month.

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May 29, 2007, 5:26 PM

I'm suprised no one else mentioned this, but...

...He Blinded Me with Science!
Sadly, I know exacly what that comment means....... now I feel old.......

May 31, 2007, 5:43 PM

This was released 10 years ago...kinda.

Since someone brought up MOD files, I figured I'd add this in since no one else has. Headspace (another Thomas Dolby company) released something called Beatnik Player (Related? I'd guess so!) sometime around '97 if I remember correctly. Here's a blurb on v2.0: http://news.harmony-central.com/Newp/1999/Bea tnik-20.html

Basically it was a glorified MOD player. Essentially a MOD is a file which designates what sound loop plays when and at what frequency/musical note. So this was released ten years ago! 🙂 I'm sure they've updated the tech a bit, hence I added on that "...kinda."

Although really, we should just all be using Ogg Vorbis--and open audio format that isn't patent encumbered. Read that as, "My cell phone was less expensive...
Yep it does sound very similar, but can you imagine the process of breaking up an existing song by hand so you can put it into MOD format? LOL
I think it would take A LOT longer than most people would consider using. So it seems the innovation here i...

May 30, 2007, 11:39 AM

sounds like the old MOD format

Anyone remember .mod files?
Wow... You just made me have a nostalgic moment! I can't believe that I forgot about MOD files! I used to listen to those all the time! Now I have to go and dig through some of my old floppies!

May 30, 2007, 4:38 AM


Wouldn't the headline sound better using "one tenth the space" instead of "ten times less space"? The wording just seems cumbersome to me.
🙄 ... stop wasting forum space with whining
I'm sure that "one tenth the space" reads a bit less dramatically then "ten times less space" 😁

May 29, 2007, 1:33 PM


There's no mention no whether the quality remains the same as (or comparable to) that of MP3. Does anyone know?
it repeats things, I REALLY hope this doesn't catch on. at this point there's no reason for it unless you want as much music on your phone as you do your big ipod and if you want that much music and don't care at all about the quality then you really...

May 29, 2007, 6:25 PM

Justin Timberlake "Sexy Back" now 10kB?


May 29, 2007, 4:24 PM

riddle me this?

with this format in mind will "The Song That Never Ends" be the shortest (size) and longest(length) song on any cellphone at any given time?
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