App Store — nope. HTML5 — bingo.
Despite its ongoing lawsuits with several major record labels, the music streaming service Grooveshark has made its way back to the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad by launching a new HTML5 web app. Grooveshark, launched in 2007, allows for its over 35,000,000 registered users to search, stream, and upload music for instantaneous playback.
Grooveshark has faced a considerable amount of criticism related to its legality, but the company stresses that it is completely legal under United States law. The streaming service has licensing agreements with several different labels, including EMI. Furthermore, it cooperates with government agencies to remove any copyrighted material that infringes upon the Digital Millenium Copyright Act in the United States. So, why’d the company have to resort to HTML5?
The answer is that the mounting litigation from record labels against Grooveshark was presumably too risky for Apple and Google, resulting in both companies removing their Grooveshark apps from the App Store and Android Market respectively. By visiting http://html5.grooveshark.com in your mobile browser, however, you’ll quickly discover that Grooveshark for iOS is cleverly possible once again. The service’s rebirth on iOS is a result of Grooveshark converting its originally Flash-based service into one based on the cross-platform HTML5 technology. Read into Grooveshark’s new app, in the words of Read Write Web:
Like any good mobile Web app, Grooveshark’s has the feel of a native application, albeit a visually stripped-down one. Users can search for music, listen to pre-built stations or stream what’s trending under the “Popular” tab. It borrows a few UI conventions from native mobile apps, such as sliding down and releasing to load more content. On the iPad, the app’s interface scales up nicely and plays back without any major problems. You can even minimize Safari and let it stream in the background while you do other things.