In our new Royalty Tech Spotlight series we’ll be speaking to the minds behind some of the latest innovations in music royalties and rights related technology.
Founded in 2018, London-based tech company Audoo is on a mission to revolutionize the way public performance royalties are tracked through its Audio Meter device.
After a successful 2021 that included attracting investment from the likes of Sir Paul McCartney and Björn Ulvaeus, the company is focused on rolling out its technology on an increasingly global scale.
Here, we speak to CMO Alex Futcher about how the Audoo solution works and its vast potential for ensuring artists and rights holders are more accurately compensated in the future.
Where did the idea for Audoo come from?
The idea for Audoo came about when our founder and former musician, Ryan Edwards, was checking his PRO royalty statements upon hearing his band’s top 10 hit being played in a retail store in London. After not receiving any payment, several months later, Edwards decided to investigate how the royalties were calculated.
He found that Performing Right Organisations (PROs) & Collecting Management Organisations (CMOs) have for a long time paid artists, producers and rights-holders based on estimations. These estimations are calculated on radio airplay, manually collected data (in person with clip boards) and other varying qualitative data points. This long-existing model for compensation has proven somewhat inaccurate, with Edwards experiencing the short end of things first hand. This prompted him to see if there could be a better way both he and fellow rights-holders could be recompensed more accurately for their work.
What does it do / how does it work?
The Audoo solution is a simple one. We have created a small, discreet piece of hardware, that simply plugs into any public performance location around the world, such as gyms, bars and restaurants, taking a digital, GDPR compliant fingerprint of the music being played day or night. This information is then reported to our PRO & CMO partners, compensating artists and rights-holders with a much greater level of accuracy.
On the device itself, there is a microphone array that accurately tracks the music played in any given setting, stripping out all foreground noise thanks to cutting edge signal processing techniques. Then, to identify the music being played, the Audio Meter uses its unique Music Recognition Technology (MRT) to match the data against a library of over 70 million tracks.
“The data can also provide a greater level of insight into their members’ public performance usage from around the world, allowing every PRO & CMO the opportunity to deliver a more accurately representative payment to artists and rights-holders.”
Who is it for?
The primary use of the Audoo Audio Meter™ is to supply PROs & CMOs with an accurate view of exactly what is being played by their licensees. The data can also provide a greater level of insight into their members’ public performance usage from around the world, allowing every PRO & CMO the opportunity to deliver a more accurately representative payment to artists and rights-holders and provide much greater transparency within their public performance royalty statements.
How does Audoo contribute to the wider industry ecosystem?
As a technology company we see ourselves as solution agnostic. In that, we are happy to partner with / work alongside any company looking to help with the challenge of getting artists and rights-holders paid fairly and accurately. One example of that is signing up to best practices initiatives like DDEX to ensure the highest quality of data is being supplied in the most universally recognised format.
Another example is working with organisations like the Ivors Academy and FAC to help with the education on how important it is to have your ISRC and ISWC correctly registered. While we like to think our technology can change the world, we are very aware it is only one piece in a very complicated puzzle.
“While we like to think our technology can change the world, we are very aware it is only one piece in a very complicated puzzle.”
What was your 2021 highlight?
We had multiple pilot successes across three continents and several countries. The highlight being, our hardware, software and algorithm all work emphatically no matter where they have been deployed in the world. We like to think this is quite an achievement.
What’s next for Audoo?
Our goal for 2022 is the rollout and adoption of the Audoo Audio Meter™, which is our number one priority and something we are laser focused on delivering. We have already had several exciting conversations about how the data could be used in addition to the primary function. Only as this data starts to come in will we be in a position to develop next steps and offerings but it is something we are very excited about.
Enjoyed this piece? Why not check out:
- Royalty Tech Spotlight: Music Clearance Search Engine Rightsholder.io
- Profiling Music Publishing’s Pandemic Performance
- World Mapped: The Future of Music Royalties on a Global Scale