Lets take a journey down memory lane. Winamp. Does it ring a bell? If yes, you’re obviously a 90’s kid!
The mention of Winamp brings with it waves of nostalgia for those who remember using the media player back when it was one of the premier music and video alternatives to both Apple’s iTunes and Windows’ Media Player. After its most recent release in 2013, it was assumed that the project might have died off after being acquired by Radionomy in 2014. However, a new leaked version of the software found online points to a possible return.
History of Take Overs & Updates
Winamp was created by Nullsoft in 1997, the highly customizable Winamp became the standard from which all other desktop music players were judged. AOL picked up the music player in 2002, but later sold it again to Radionomy in 2014. 2013 was the last time the desktop app saw an update. F
Fast-forward to 2016, and Winamp isn’t compatible with modern operating systems like Windows 10 or any Apple OS. Looks like this is about to change. Till the new update the internet saw on the 18th of October, the application had not been updated for over a decade since the acquisition by AOL.
Version 5.8, it’s true Winamp is back!
Winamp 5.8 offers support for Windows Audio, bringing full compatibility to both Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 operating systems. Numerous bugs have also been squashed including memory leaks, the player crashing with specific MP3 ID3v2 tags, and long loading times. The company has also taken the time to update or replace the media player’s various audio decoders.
Winamp is now 100-percent freeware again. This marks the return of the media player from a freemium model that was introduced in 2002 by AOL.
They have reported to also associate themselves with a desktop application of a streaming site. Which one has not been disclosed. It is obviously that the mammoths of the streaming ecosystem do not require a new desktop player. Meanwhile, services like Spotify, Google Play Music, and Amazon Music Unlimited have been branching out to offer support for podcasts to their users.
Winamp’s competitors can’t touch the nostalgia factor the music company carries. Indeed, Winamp’s mobile comeback could be the best part of 2019 for mobile music listeners— that is, if the CEO is able to reach his lofty goals for the relaunch.
CEO of Radionomy Alexandre Saboundjian says
The war for the best streaming app on the desktop is over, but mobile is still a battleground. He also noted that the mobile audio experience is a fractured and inconvenient place when switching between podcasts, playlists, and on-device music.
While the leaked bit of software is now available on the internet via an anonymous source, we won’t be linking to it as it has been failing safety checks by virus scanning solutions; this could simply be the result of an incomplete software build or evidence of something more malicious. Radionomy hasn’t made any announcement about Winamp, and we recommend waiting for an official release before downloading any unknown software.
“There will be a completely new version next year, with the legacy of Winamp but a more complete listening experience,” Saboundjian stated. “You can listen to the MP3s you may have at home, but also to the cloud, to podcasts, to streaming radio stations, to a playlist you perhaps have built.”