It wasn’t too long ago since GarageBand took a $2.5 million investment from David Weiden of Khosla Ventures and former COO of AOL Time Warner, Bob Pittman, and launched iLike, a service that helps you determine what music you may be interested in based on your and your friends’ taste.
Garageband crashed during the Internet bubble burst and then rose again from the ashes in 2002. Apple has a similar product group and software name as iLike and Garageband. Apple’s iLife division has developed Garageband, a software that eases the creation of podcasts. Initially when iLike was launched, Garageband allowed users to upload music and then would decide which bands were to be featured.
October 25, 2006: The opening day for iLike:
iLike launched on October 25, 2006 and saw an immediate approval reaction from the public as proved by the Alexa chart below:
Some of the publicity iLike had to cause this spike in traffic is partially responsible by Marshall Kirkpatrick of TechCrunch, who reviewed iLike on the day before it was released. The CEO of iLike provided feedback on the TechCrunch post by stating that the review did not focus on the social networking aspect of iLike, a key selling feature. The users in the social network surrounding iLike take responsibility for reviewing and rating the independent artist music that is submitted on iLike as well as the mainstream music which should deter any skeptics about the quality of indie music. Later that week, VentureBeat also gave exposure to iLike’s release which also must have contributed to the spike.
Above is a picture of the iLike team found from the iLike Team Blog, who had been working on the iLike development for 6 months before the company launch. iLike is run by two twin brothers, Ali and Hadi Partovi. At the time during launch, iLike was backed by 25 engineers based in Seattle, California, and Australia. I’m not sure what the current employee numbers are.
November 2, 2006: iLike Team decides to add a music feature to complement their 30 second music preview:
“Not just music clips” exclaimed Hadi Partovi. “But music videos!” The iLike Team then sat down and started plugging-and-chugging this feature into the iLike user interface. Within 72 hours, the iLike team turned an idea into specifications, began development, started testing, and then sent the new feature into production. Hence the reason for my post title. “What I Like About iLike.” Any company that can have such a quick turnaround time on an idea gets my vote.
November 7, 2006: YouTube Features Launch; A couple days later, Michael Arrington Writes About It:
The idea behind this new feature is that if music videos are available for the selected songs, iLike users can click on “Play Video (if available)” and if it is, then a mini-embedded video from YouTube will open up directly below the song title on iLike. Here’s a screenshot:
November 9, 2006: VentureBeat’s Matt Marshall reports that iLike Has Quietly Acquired FotoDunk:
The four founders of FotoDunk are David McIntosh, Daniel Kluesing, Alan Rutledge, and Darian Shirazi. “These guys met with the iLike folks at in a Fulsom St. bar in SF to sign the documents, but were forced to go into an alleyway to finish the deal because there were underage,” stated Matt Marshall. FotoDunk is a software application that allow users to upload photos from their phone into a Flash widget which can be embedded in MySpace profiles.
November 10, 2006: New technology company, Pulse 2.0 reviews and submits an Approval for iLike:
I strongly believe that iLike has come a long way in such a short time. I’ve never heard of a company that has produced strong results for a company that could potentially absorb marketshare from Yahoo! Music and Amazon.com. Now if only there was a way for iLike to open their own music store rather than sending music customers to Amazon.com and iTunes.